Aid to religious groups: The court ruled that states must sometimes provide aid to religious groups even when their state constitutions call for a strict separation of church and state. The decision concerned a Missouri program to make playgrounds safer that excluded those affiliated with churches. Chief Justice John Roberts, writing for the majority, said unjustified government discrimination against churches and other religious institutions is odious and unconstitutional.

2nd Amendment: The court declined to hear a Second Amendment challenge to a California law that places strict limits on carrying guns in public. The justices gave no reasons for deciding not to hear the case. They let stand a ruling from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals that held last year that the "2nd Amendment does not preserve or protect a right of a member of the general public to carry concealed firearms in public."

Same-sex marriage: The court reaffirmed its 2015 decision recognizing a constitutional right to same-sex marriage, ruling that states may not treat married same-sex couples differently from others in issuing birth certificates. The case concerns an Arkansas law. A husband of a married woman there is automatically listed as the father even if he is not the genetic parent. Same-sex spouses are not. The 2015 Supreme Court case listed birth certificates among the "governmental rights, benefits, and responsibilities" that typically accompany marriage.

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