Much of the progress towards freedom and equality occurs in legislatures and courts, making a legal education a necessity. This past weekend I had the pleasure of attending the 25th anniversary conference of Lavender Law in San Francisco.
Never in my 79 years, nearly 59 of them married to the only man I have ever known, did I imagine being able to say -- much less write -- this: I am guilty of sodomy. We live in Virginia, and in Virginia, the state's anti-sodomy law is again front and center.
In his dissenting opinion in the DOMA case, Justice Scalia states with profound disgust that as a result of the decision, "the view that this court will take of state prohibition of same-sex marriage is indicated beyond mistaking." Justice Scalia, you are a veritable divining rod of the truth.
The fight for equality in 37 other states continues. But we now have clear direction that the Constitution, in addition to the political process and changing attitudes of the general public, are coalescing in favor of marriage equality across the entire country.
What does it feel like to be like everyone else? As I write this, I can hear my daughter Clara squealing from her high chair in the kitchen as Papá -- who can now become a citizen because I can sponsor him -- tells her not to plaster herself with yogurt.
Question: In 10 years, how did we get from an America in which 13 states still had anti-sodomy laws that made criminals of lesbian and gay people just for having sex to an America where 13 jurisdictions allow same-sex couples the freedom to marry?
In a rather typical fit of hyperbole, Rev. Richard Land of the Southern Baptist Convention took some new swipes at the LGBT community. When it comes to Land's morality, there is no "live and let live philosophy" in operation.
This year marks the anniversary of two powerhouse decisions of the Supreme Court: Roe v. Wade, in which a woman's right to have an abortion was established 40 years ago, and Lawrence v. Texas, which held 10 years ago that laws prohibiting same-sex sexual conduct are unconstitutional.
With the Lawrence v. Texas decision, our lives and the law changed forever. No longer were we to be thought of as criminals. And the recognition that the nation's Constitution requires respect for our lives has inspired victory after victory for LGBT students, workers, couples, and parents.
Told from the perspectives of the plaintiffs, arresting officers, attorneys, judges, and prosecutors, Flagrant Conduct is a detailed account of the 2003 landmark case of Lawrence v. Texas, in which the U.S. Supreme Court made same-gender sexual activity legal.
In The New Yorker Dahlia Lithwick questions whether Lambda Legal dressed up the Lawrence v. Texas story to make it about love and relationships. I have been the Executive Director of Lambda Legal for 20 years, and I am happy to respond to Ms. Lithwick.
Three ordinary people who stood up against injustice and became heroes died in the past two months. Lambda Legal was proud to represent each of them in court, winning victories that improved the lives of many.
Some of the effects of Lawrence were immediate: Lesbian, gay, and bisexual people could no longer be presumptively branded criminals and treated as such in public and private spheres. But many of its effects are still unfolding.
What does it mean to exist in a country that reminds you that you exist outside of the law? How do you process a night like Friday, where you celebrate a huge entry into legal equality, but understand that doesn't make you fully legal?