Sunday, August 27, 2006

An Unlikely Source

Victories have often come from an unlikely source.

Virtually all of the expansion of civil and privacy rights came from the decisions of the Warren Court. Chief Justice Earl Warren was a hard-nosed Republican prosecutor before joining the court.

When abortion rights were hanging by a thread, it was Sandra Day O'Connor, a staunch opponent of abortion who voted with the majority, repeatedly, to uphold Roe v. Wade.

I believe it is all but beyond dispute that the biggest victory ever for full equality for the GLBT commumnity was "Romer v. Evans". You can read about the case here if you are not familiar with it. But the most remarkable thing about the case was that the GLBT community owes its victory to an unlikey source, current Chief Justice of the United States, John G. Roberts.

Mr. Roberts was, at the time a lawyer for Hogan & Hartson; he was asked to assist, pro bono, the gay rights side of the case. He agreed and according to those who argued the case, his assistance was indispensible. Don't take my word for it. listen to the view of our our enemies.

My point is this:

Have faith in the machinations of our legal system. Justice will alway win in the end, and those victories will often come from an unlikely source.


John Hosty said...

When you read that precident it makes you wonder how this petition in Massachusetts has any chance. Great job finding this for us John.

John said...

I don't have to work hard to "find" this stuff, because court watching is my hobby.

Romer's precendental value is unclear at this point. Since Romer, three courts have failed to see it's wisdom.

One of my favorite legal bloggers is very pessimistic about Romer.

I am more optimistic because I don't see anyway the Massachusett's petition can prevail. I think the SJC has all but guaranteed its failure.

The real test of Romer's value will be in federal court. I don't see that happening for many years.