The conservative supermajority on the Supreme Court is refusing to hear an appeal by a group of parents concerned about transsexual intrusion on intimate same-sex spaces used by their children.
The lawsuit, Parents for Privacy, et al., v. William P. Barr, Attorney General, et al., was an attempt to get the Supreme Court to weigh in on the legality of an Oregon state provision that allows biological men and women to use opposite sex bathrooms and changing rooms at school.
Last February the 9th Circuit court upheld Oregon’s law, while in August, activist judges at the 4th Circuit overturned a Virginia state law banning the practice with the bang of a gavel. By denying the Oregon case its day in court, SCOTUS indirectly affirms the 9th circuit’s ruling.
The decision is a blow to parents and children’s rights as well as social conservatives, a pattern that appears to be holding up even after Donald Trump’s appointment of three Federalist Society picks. Last June, the Supreme Court voted 6-3 to include transsexuals as a privileged class of people with special rights under the 1964 Civil Rights Act.
As a delicate culture war issue, the conservatives on the court could’ve been put in a vise. If they were to rule in favor of gender ideology, it would provoke outcry among GOP voters, but if they ruled against it then it could trigger elite retaliation and hurt the Republican party financially with billionaire donors such as Paul Singer. So far, nobody appears to be taking credit for the decision not to rule on Parents for Privacy.
With the recent appointment of Amy Coney Barrett, six of nine justices are now Republican appointees. While the conservative judges are eager to side with big business against workers and consumers, they have adamantly refused to rule on the constitutionality of Second Amendment restrictions or even defend the First Amendment for other conservatives.
By sending cases back without a decision, conservative judges have found a weasely loophole that keeps the left-liberal abuses they are expected to keep in check in tact instead.
While many social conservatives expressed excitement over the appointment of ostensibly religious Amy Coney Barrett, Trump’s decision to nominate her was the product of $10s of millions of dollars worth of aggressive lobbying and promotion in support of Barrett by corporate interests led by speculator Jeffrey Yass and the Koch brothers.
Analysis of Barrett’s judicial record shows little of consequence on social matters, but her bona fides as a safe pair of hands for plutocrats and oligarchs are well-established.
This latest ruling, or non-ruling, serves as a reminder that the American institutional right is primarily a lobby for capital.