Are cases involving gay people and women on different trajectories?


Are cases involving gay people and women on different trajectories? Are male judges more likely to be sympathetic towards gay rights than towards women’s rights? New York Times touches upon this sensitive social justice aspect today through an article by Adam Liptak.

“Gay men and lesbians still have a long way to go before they achieve the formal legal equality that women have long enjoyed. But they have made stunning progress at the Supreme Court over the last decade, gaining legal protection for sexual intimacy and unconventional families with stirring language unimaginable a generation ago.

At the same time, legal scholars say, the court has delivered blows to women’s groups in cases involving equal pay, medical leave, abortion and contraception, culminating in a furious dissent last month from the court’s three female members.

For now, said Suzanne B. Goldberg, a law professor at Columbia, “the court’s recent gay rights decisions seem to be catching up with women’s rights cases of earlier decades.”

“At the same time,” she added, “we live in a society that now seems more receptive to gay rights than women’s rights generally, so it is disheartening but not surprising to see that reflected in decisions like Hobby Lobby, which failed to see the link between contraception access and women’s equality.”

(Photo by Saswat Pattanayak)