Category Archives: Civil Rights

The Unpredictable Justice Kennedy

The line on Justice Kennedy is that he’s tough to predict. Ever since Justice O’Connor’s retirement, he’s been the Supreme Court’s swing vote, and the swing of the swing vote introduces an element of suspense to many of the most contentious Supreme Court cases. His vote, to a greater extent than any of his colleagues, … Continue reading The Unpredictable Justice Kennedy

The Fishing Expedition Continues: Will there be a Fisher III?

Guest post by Vinay Harpalani, Associate Professor at Savannah Law School On Wednesday, December 9, for the second time, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin. The question in Fisher II is the exactly the same it was in Fisher I: does the University of Texas at … Continue reading The Fishing Expedition Continues: Will there be a Fisher III?

Defying the Court

There was not much mystery as to how this one was going to turn out. Kim Davis’ legal arguments for why she should not be required to follow the Supreme Court’s same-sex marriage ruling were paper thin. They got her nowhere. The only real question was whether the Kentucky county clerk was going to back … Continue reading Defying the Court

Religious Liberty and Resistance to Same-Sex Marriage

The next wave of litigation involving same-sex marriage is now underway.   In the wake of the Supreme Court’s ruling last June striking down same-sex marriage bans across the nation in Obergefell v. Hodges, various individuals have been claiming a constitutional right to continue resisting same-sex marriage. At the core of these cases is what Justice … Continue reading Religious Liberty and Resistance to Same-Sex Marriage

Fisher v. Texas, the Remix

Guest Post by Vinay Harpalani, Associate Professor of Law, Savannah Law School In its October 2015 term, the U.S. Supreme Court will once again consider the constitutionality of race-conscious admissions policies. On June 29, the Court surprised many observers when it granted Abigail Fisher’s petition for a writ of certiorari in Fisher v. Texas (II)—two years after its … Continue reading Fisher v. Texas, the Remix

Oral Arguments in the Same-Sex Marriage Cases—What Did We Learn?

What did we learn from yesterday’s oral arguments in the historic same-sex marriage cases? The basic take-away seems to be that the issue looks a lot harder inside the Supreme Court than it does outside. The run of success for the cause of same-sex marriage—in state legislatures and referenda, in state courts and the lower … Continue reading Oral Arguments in the Same-Sex Marriage Cases—What Did We Learn?

Predicting the Winner in Obergefell v. Hodges, the Same-Sex Marriage Cases

The Supreme Court heard oral argument in the historic case of Obergefell v. Hodges, the same-sex marriage cases, which ask two questions:  1) Does the Fourteenth Amendment require a state to license a marriage between two people of the same sex?, and 2) Does the Fourteenth Amendment require a state to recognize a marriage between … Continue reading Predicting the Winner in Obergefell v. Hodges, the Same-Sex Marriage Cases

Oyez Covers Same-Sex Marriage Arguments

Today, the U.S. Supreme Court hears oral arguments in Obergefell v. Hodges, a consolidation of cases that ask the Court to consider two key questions about same-sex marriage: Is there a constitutional right to same-sex marriage? And are states required to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other states? Because of the landmark nature of this case, … Continue reading Oyez Covers Same-Sex Marriage Arguments

Defying the Federal Courts

“Courts are just people. They’re just men and women dressed in black robes who have no power to re-declare, or declare, the social foundation of this nation as being unconstitutional.” These were the words of Roy S. Moore, chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court. Moore is a man with a proud history of defying … Continue reading Defying the Federal Courts

The Sit-Ins, the Supreme Court, and the Constitution

On Wednesday, a South Carolina court made national news when it vacated the civil rights-era convictions of a group of lunch counter sit-in protesters. The convictions stemmed from a protest in Rock Hill, South Carolina, on January 31, 1961. A group of African American students from Friendship College took seats at a local five-and-dime lunch … Continue reading The Sit-Ins, the Supreme Court, and the Constitution