The Kentucky Supreme Court on Oct. 31 dismissed a case on technical grounds that concerned a company whose Christian owners refused to make T-shirts for an LGBTQ Pride festival.

The company, Hands On Originals, provides personalized items such as hats, mugs, T-shirts and bags for customers bearing company logos and other messages. Citing their religious beliefs, the firm’s owners refused to provide Pride T-shirts for the Gay and Lesbian Service Organization (GLSO) of Lexington. On its website, the firm refers to itself as “Christian outfitters.”

Aaron Baker, GLSO’s president, subsequently filed a complaint against Hands On Originals before the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Human Rights Commission, which brought legal action against the Lexington-based company.

The state high court ruled that while the case raised “very important issues,” it must be dismissed because under Kentucky law, only an individual can raise a claim of discrimination.

Asserted the court in Lexington-Fayette Urban County Human Rights Commission v. Hands On Originals, “[B]ecause an ‘individual’ did not file the claim, but rather an organization did, we would have to determine whether the organization is a member of the protected class, which we find impossible to ascertain.”

Americans United’s Legal Department filed a brief in the case, urging the court to reject religion-based ration­ales for discrimination.


The Supreme Court just gutted decades of precedent by stripping away public school students’ religious freedom rights.

This is the greatest loss of religious freedom in generations. Help us fight back!