Res Publica 28 (2):339-363 (2022)

I investigate the normative and conceptual account of the relationship between public recognition and dignitarian, or egalitarian, commitments. I do so through addressing the normative dispute, sparked by legal cases such as Masterpiece Cakeshop, Ltd. v. Colorado Civil Rights Commission and Fulton v. City of Philadelphia, as to whether there are dignitarian grounds for rejecting religious exemptions to antidiscrimination laws. I argue that there are such grounds. Specifically, I argue that, if granted, such exemptions would inflict dignitary harms against LGBTQ individuals by denying them the public recognition necessary for reliably sustaining civic self-respect. Such exemptions would deny this recognition in two distinct ways. First, such exemptions would institutionalize humiliation of LGBTQ individuals as market actors. Second, such exemptions would condition market access for LGBTQ individuals on unequal terms. Through making this argument, I hope to make three primary, and related, contributions: I introduce a concept of civic self-respect; I argue that the normative import of public recognition is grounded in the good of civic self-respect; and I rely on this normative framework to show how religious exemptions to public accommodations laws inflict dignitary harms. My argument is relevant to both political philosophers and legal scholars grappling with questions of why public recognition matters and what it demands.
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DOI 10.1007/s11158-021-09529-w
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References found in this work BETA

What is the Point of Equality.Elizabeth Anderson - 1999 - Ethics 109 (2):287-337.
Two Kinds of Respect.Stephen Darwall - 1977 - Ethics 88 (1):36-49.
Discrimination and Disrespect.Benjamin Eidelson - 2015 - Oxford University Press UK.

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