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University of Michigan Law School

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Discrimination

Civil Rights and Discrimination

Articles 1 - 30 of 31

Full-Text Articles in Law

Removing Camouflaged Barriers To Equality: Overcoming Systemic Sexual Assault And Harassment At The Military Academies, Rebecca Weiant May 2018

Removing Camouflaged Barriers To Equality: Overcoming Systemic Sexual Assault And Harassment At The Military Academies, Rebecca Weiant

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

The Education Amendments of 1972 introduced requirements to protect female students from discriminatory policies at post-secondary institutions. A portion of those amendments, commonly known as Title IX, require that no students be subjected to discrimination based on their sex by any educational institution or activity receiving federal financial assistance. An exemption under § 1681(a)(4), however, explicitly prohibits application of Title IX to any educational institution whose primary purpose is to train individuals for military service or the merchant marine. Although those students are still subject to stringent conduct standards, the service academies themselves are tethered to sex discrimination policies ...


Born Free: Toward An Expansive Definition Of Sex, Laura Palk, Shelly Grunsted May 2018

Born Free: Toward An Expansive Definition Of Sex, Laura Palk, Shelly Grunsted

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

The State of New York recently issued its first physician-certified “intersex” birth certificate, correcting a 55-year-old’s original birth certificate. This is a positive step towards eliminating the traditional binary approach to a person’s birth sex, but it creates potential uncertainties in the employment discrimination context. Over the past several years, the definition of what constitutes “discrimination on the basis of sex” has both expanded (with the legalization of same-sex marriage) and narrowed (restricting the use of gender specific bathrooms). Until recently it appeared that a broader definition of the term “sex” would become the judicial—and possibly legislative ...


Deboer V. Snyder: A Case Study In Litigation And Social Reform, Wyatt Fore Jan 2015

Deboer V. Snyder: A Case Study In Litigation And Social Reform, Wyatt Fore

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

On April 28, 2015, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments for four cases from the Sixth Circuit addressing the constitutionality of state bans on same-sex marriage. This Note examines DeBoer v. Snyder, the Michigan marriage case, with the goal of providing litigators and scholars the proper context for our current historical moment in which (1) the legal status of LGBT people; and (2) the conventional wisdom about the role of impact litigation in social reform movements are rapidly evolving.


Title Ix And Social Media: Going Beyond The Law, Emily Suran Oct 2014

Title Ix And Social Media: Going Beyond The Law, Emily Suran

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

The U.S. Department of Education is currently investigating over eighty colleges and universities for civil rights violations under Title IX. From a punitive standpoint, these investigations likely will have minimal impact. Indeed, since the Alexander v. Yale plaintiffs first conceived of Title IX in a sexual harassment context, the nondiscriminatory principles of Title IX have proven disappointingly difficult to enforce. However, in today’s world of grassroots social activism, Title IX has taken on a new, extralegal import. Title IX has become a rallying cry for college activists and survivors. Despite (or perhaps because of) its limitations as a ...


Outing The Majority: Gay Rights, Public Debate, And Polarization After Doe V. Reed, Marc Allen Jan 2013

Outing The Majority: Gay Rights, Public Debate, And Polarization After Doe V. Reed, Marc Allen

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

In 2010, the United States Supreme Court ruled in Doe v. Reed that Washington citizens who signed a petition to eliminate legal rights for LGBT couples did not have a right to keep their names secret. A year later, in ProtectMarriage.com v. Bowen, a district court in California partially relied on Reed to reject a similar request from groups who lobbied for California Proposition 8-a constitutional amendment that overturned the California Supreme Court's landmark 2008 gay marriage decision. These holdings are important to election law, feminist, and first amendment scholars for a number of reasons. First, they flip ...


Bathroom Bias: Making The Case For Trans Rights Under Disability Law, Daniella A. Schmidt Jan 2013

Bathroom Bias: Making The Case For Trans Rights Under Disability Law, Daniella A. Schmidt

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Disability law is one of the more successful tools currently being used to protect trans people fom discrimination. While the use of disability law as a framework for affirming or creating trans rights has come with some success, many in the community remain reluctant to use disability law for fear of the policy implications and stigma associated with medicalization of trans identity. After exploring the current state of the law on both the federal and state level, this Note will argue how disability law both could and should be used more often to further trans protections. In particular, this Note ...


Sex Equality's Unnamed Nemesis, Veronica Percia Jan 2011

Sex Equality's Unnamed Nemesis, Veronica Percia

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Sex inequality still exists. However, its manifestations have evolved since the early sex inequality cases were heard in courts and legislatures first began structuring statutory regimes to combat it. In particular, so-called "facial" discrimination against men and women on the basis of sex has no doubt decreased since the advent of this legal assault on sex inequality. Yet the gendered assumptions that structure our institutions and interactions have proven resilient. With sex discrimination now operating more covertly, the problem of sex inequality looks considerably different than it once did. Courts, however, have failed to successfully respond to the changing contours ...


Removing Categorical Constraints On Equal Employment Opportunities And Anti-Discrimination Protections, Anastasia Niedrich Jan 2011

Removing Categorical Constraints On Equal Employment Opportunities And Anti-Discrimination Protections, Anastasia Niedrich

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

It has been the "historical tendency of anti-discrimination law to use categories to define protected classes of people." This Article challenges the categorical approach and seeks to change that limited framework. This Article focuses on the flaws with Title VII's categorical approach and discusses why there is a desperate need for change to combat the different types and targets of workplace discrimination today, focusing on the transgender community as one example. After discussing the current framework and operation of Title VII, this Article analyzes the insurmountable flaws inherent in the categorical approach to anti-discrimination law, and specifically considers Title ...


Past As Prologue: Old And New Feminisms, Martha Chamallas Jan 2010

Past As Prologue: Old And New Feminisms, Martha Chamallas

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Each "stage" of feminist legal theory-and each brand or strand of feminism- stays alive and is never completely replaced by newer approaches. When I first attempted to synthesize the field of Feminist Legal Theory for a treatise I was writing at the end of the twentieth century, I thought it would be useful to think chronologically and to analyze the major developments of the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s. I crudely divided feminist legal theory into three stages roughly corresponding to the preceding decades: the equality stage of the 1970s, the difference stage of the 1980s, and the diversity stage of ...


Situations, Frames, And Stereotypes: Cognitive Barriers On The Road To Nondiscrimination, Marybeth Herald Jan 2010

Situations, Frames, And Stereotypes: Cognitive Barriers On The Road To Nondiscrimination, Marybeth Herald

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

A study of the psychological literature can enhance legal theory by focusing attention on how the human brain perceives, distinguishes, categorizes, and ultimately makes decisions. The more that we learn about the brain's intricate operations, the more effective we can be at combating the types of gender biased decisions that influence our lives. In developing strategies to achieve equality, feminist, gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, and intersex activists would be wise to learn from the psychological literature. This Article highlights a few examples illustrating how this knowledge might re-direct strategic choices for combating gender inequality.


Contingent Equal Protection: Reaching For Equality After Ricci And Pics, Jennifer S. Hendricks Jan 2010

Contingent Equal Protection: Reaching For Equality After Ricci And Pics, Jennifer S. Hendricks

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

This Article uses the term contingent equal protection to describe the constitutional analysis that applies to a range of governmental efforts to ameliorate race and sex hierarchies. "Contingent" refers to the fact that the equal protection analysis is contingent upon the existence of structural, de facto inequality. Contingent equal protection cases include those that involve explicit race and sex classifications, facially neutral efforts to reduce inequality, and accommodation of sex differences to promote equality. Uniting all three kinds of cases under a single conceptual umbrella reveals the implications that developments in one area can have for the other two.


The Evolution Of Same-Sex Marriage In Canada: Lessons The U.S. Can Learn From Their Northern Neighbor Regarding Same-Sex Marriage Rights, Christy M. Glass, Nancy Kubasek Jan 2008

The Evolution Of Same-Sex Marriage In Canada: Lessons The U.S. Can Learn From Their Northern Neighbor Regarding Same-Sex Marriage Rights, Christy M. Glass, Nancy Kubasek

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

The broad differences between the United States and Canadian cases raise important questions about the social, political and legal factors that have promoted the extension of marriage rights in Canada while retarding similar efforts in the U.S. This article will compare the recent history of same-sex marriage laws in the United States and Canada. We argue that proponents of same-sex marriage as well as lawmakers could learn important lessons from the recent legalization of same-sex marriage in Canada. Section II develops a framework for comparing the U.S. and Canadian experience with same-sex marriage law. The next section traces ...


Expanding Gender And Expanding The Law: Toward A Social And Legal Conceptualization Of Gender That Is More Inclusive Of Transgender People, Dylan Vade Jan 2005

Expanding Gender And Expanding The Law: Toward A Social And Legal Conceptualization Of Gender That Is More Inclusive Of Transgender People, Dylan Vade

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

In Part I, the article first describes the many different ways in which one can be transgender. Many transgender women and men defy gender stereotypes. Part I next suggests a non-linear view of gender. Often, when we get past the binary gender system, the notion that there are only two genders, female and male, we do so by seeing gender as a spectrum or line running from female to male. In Part II, the article argues that the sex-gender distinction is not part of the new conceptualization of gender, the gender galaxy. In Part III, after a brief overview of ...


"Has The Millennium Yet Dawned?": A History Of Attitudes Toward Pregnant Workers In America, Courtni E. Molnar Jan 2005

"Has The Millennium Yet Dawned?": A History Of Attitudes Toward Pregnant Workers In America, Courtni E. Molnar

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

This Article will focus on what might be considered the "prehistory" of the PDA in an attempt to shed new light on the equality/difference debate. Beginning as early as the nineteenth century, pregnant workers have been forced into either the equality approach or the difference approach depending mostly on race and class. This Article will show that, at times, both approaches restrained the autonomy of women and even caused harm to individual women and society by contributing to the development of the stereotypes and social attitudes that continue to permit pregnancy discrimination today.


In The Supreme Court Of The United States Barbara Grutter, Petitioner, V. Lee Bollinger, Et Al., Respondents. On Writ Of Certiorari To The United States Court Of Appeals For The Sixth Circuit, Jerome S. Hirsch, Joseph N. Sacca, Scott D. Musoff, Mark Lebovitch, Linda M. Wayner Jan 2003

In The Supreme Court Of The United States Barbara Grutter, Petitioner, V. Lee Bollinger, Et Al., Respondents. On Writ Of Certiorari To The United States Court Of Appeals For The Sixth Circuit, Jerome S. Hirsch, Joseph N. Sacca, Scott D. Musoff, Mark Lebovitch, Linda M. Wayner

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Brief of the University of Michigan Asian Pacific American Law Students Association, the University of Michigan Black Law Students' Alliance, the University of Michigan Latino Law Students Association, and the University of Michigan Native American Law Students Association as Amici Curiae in Support of Respondents


Amicus Curiae Brief Of Now Legal Defense And Education Fund And Equal Rights Advocates In Support Of Plaintiff-Appellant And In Support Of Reversal In The United States Court Of Appeals For The First Curcuit Lucas Rosa V. Park West Bank And Trust Company On Appeal From The United States District Court For The District Of Massachusetts, Katherine M. Franke Jan 2001

Amicus Curiae Brief Of Now Legal Defense And Education Fund And Equal Rights Advocates In Support Of Plaintiff-Appellant And In Support Of Reversal In The United States Court Of Appeals For The First Curcuit Lucas Rosa V. Park West Bank And Trust Company On Appeal From The United States District Court For The District Of Massachusetts, Katherine M. Franke

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

By dismissing the plaintiffs complaint under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act ("ECOA") on the ground that "the issue in this case is not [Rosa's] sex, but rather how he chose to dress when applying for a loan" (Bench Order at 1), the lower court erroneously established that there are no set of facts in which clothing-based sex stereotyping can form the basis of a legitimate claim of sex discrimination in access to credit. This view of the meaning and scope of the ECOA runs contrary to well-established Supreme Court precedent which prohibits, inter alia, the adverse treatment of a ...


Lucas Rosa V. Park West Bank And Trust Company, Katherine M. Franke Jan 2001

Lucas Rosa V. Park West Bank And Trust Company, Katherine M. Franke

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

In July of 1998 something rather mundane happened: Lucas Rosa walked into Park West Bank in Holyoke, Massachusetts and asked for a loan application. Since it was a warm summer day, and because she wanted to look credit-worthy, Rosa wore a blousey top over stockings. Suddenly, the mundane transformed into the exceptional: When asked for some identification, Rosa was told that no application would be forthcoming until and unless she went home, changed her clothes and returned attired in more traditionally masculine/male clothing. Rosa, a biological male who identifies herself as female was, it seems, denied a loan application ...


Epilogue, Jennifer L. Levi Jan 2001

Epilogue, Jennifer L. Levi

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

The First Circuit reversed the district court's order dismissing Lucas Rosa's claim against Park West Bank. The appeals court's reversal seems to be part of an emerging nationwide rejection of cases from the 1970s and 1980s in which courts summarily dismissed sex discrimination claims brought by transgender plaintiffs, no matter how squarely the facts appeared to present a clear-cut case of discrimination based on sex. Creating what appeared to be a "transgender" exception to sex discrimination law, those earlier courts ignored what the First Circuit recognized here-that a bank officer who tells an applicant to go home ...


Brief For The Plaintiff-Appellant Lucas Rosa In The United States Court Of Appeals For The First Circuit Lucas Rosa V. Park West Bank And Trust Company On Appeal From The United States District Court For The District Of Massachusetts, Jennifer L. Levi, Mary L. Bonauto Jan 2001

Brief For The Plaintiff-Appellant Lucas Rosa In The United States Court Of Appeals For The First Circuit Lucas Rosa V. Park West Bank And Trust Company On Appeal From The United States District Court For The District Of Massachusetts, Jennifer L. Levi, Mary L. Bonauto

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

The District Court fundamentally misconceived the law as applicable to the Plaintiffs claim by concluding that there may be no relationship, as a matter of law, between telling a bank customer what to wear and sex discrimination. It also misapplied Rule 12(b)(6) to the extent that it resolved any factual questions beyond the allegations of the Complaint regarding the basis of the Bank's different treatment of the Plaintiff. Finally, because the District Court incorrectly dismissed the single federal claim in Plaintiffs Complaint, it improperly dismissed Plaintiffs pendant state claims for want of federal court jurisdiction.


Bisexual Jurisprudence: A Tripolar Approach To Law And Society, Rachel Haynes Jan 1999

Bisexual Jurisprudence: A Tripolar Approach To Law And Society, Rachel Haynes

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Part I of this Review will briefly assess the principal arguments in Colker's book. In Part II, Colker's book will be situated within the larger currents of the discussion concerning bisexuality and the arguments for a bisexual jurisprudence. Part III critiques Colker's concept of a bisexual jurisprudence as applied to sexual hybrids from the standpoint of an identity, as well as a legal, skeptic. Part IV will sketch out some important implications for the advancement of a bisexual jurisprudence as well as question the need for a bisexual jurisprudence. This review concludes that the addition of a ...


The Freedom To Marry For Same-Sex Couples: The Opening Appellate Brief Of Plaintiffs Stan Baker Et Al. In Baker Et Al. V. State Of Vermont, Mary Bonauto, Susan M. Murray, Beth Robinson Jan 1999

The Freedom To Marry For Same-Sex Couples: The Opening Appellate Brief Of Plaintiffs Stan Baker Et Al. In Baker Et Al. V. State Of Vermont, Mary Bonauto, Susan M. Murray, Beth Robinson

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

As the first state to prohibit slavery by constitution, and one of the few states which, from its inception, extended the vote to male citizens who did not own land, the State of Vermont has long been at the forefront of this nation's march toward full equality for all of its citizens. In July 1997, three same-sex couples challenged Vermont to act as a leader yet again, this time in affording full civil rights to the State's gay and lesbian citizens. Stan Baker and Peter Harrigan, Nina Beck and Stacy Jolles, and Holly Puterbaugh and Lois Farnham were ...


The Marriage Mirage: The Personal And Social Indentity Implications Of Same-Gendered Matrimony, Linda S. Eckols Jan 1999

The Marriage Mirage: The Personal And Social Indentity Implications Of Same-Gendered Matrimony, Linda S. Eckols

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

This Article will examine why so much is at stake in the political, social, and legal debate over same-gender marriage. It will not address the constitutional questions of whether there is a fundamental right to marry, although persuasive arguments have been advanced from both sides of the debate." This Article will focus on a more introspective view of the potential effects of legalizing same-gender marriage on the identities of gay men and lesbians in committed relationships and on the interaction between same-gender couples and society. Marriage would provide the integration sought by gay men and lesbians, but at the expense ...


Foundations For 15(1): Equality Rights In Canada, Martha A. Mccarthy, Joanna L. Radbord Jan 1999

Foundations For 15(1): Equality Rights In Canada, Martha A. Mccarthy, Joanna L. Radbord

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

The paper discusses a selection of important cases under section 15 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. It traces the development of equality jurisprudence from the introduction of section 15 to early approaches in Andrews, Hess, Weatherall, Symes, and McKinney. This review illustrates the persistence of formal equality analysis and the threats of biology, morality, and tradition to the realization of substantive equality. The May 25, 1995, trilogy of Egan, Miron, and Thibaudeau is critiqued in detail. Finally, we turn to more recent jurisprudence and offer a brief discussion of M. v. H.


Doma: An Unconstitutional Establishment Of Fundamentalist Christianity, James M. Donovan Jan 1997

Doma: An Unconstitutional Establishment Of Fundamentalist Christianity, James M. Donovan

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

According to the text of the Act, DOMA's purposes are "to define and protect the institution of marriage," where marriage is defined to exclude same-sex partners. To be constitutionally valid under the Establishment Clause, this notion that heterosexual marriages require "protection" from gay and lesbian persons must spring from a secular and not religious source. This Article posits that DOMA has crossed this forbidden line between the secular and the religious. DOMA, motivated and supported by fundamentalist Christian ideology, and lacking any genuine secular goals or justifications, betrays the Establishment Clause of the U.S. Constitution.


Honesty, Privacy, And Shame: When Gay People Talk About Other Gay People To Nongay People, David L. Chambers, Steven K. Homer Jan 1997

Honesty, Privacy, And Shame: When Gay People Talk About Other Gay People To Nongay People, David L. Chambers, Steven K. Homer

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

There is a longstanding convention among lesbians and gay men in the United States: Do not reveal the sexuality of a gay person to a heterosexual person; unless you are certain that the gay person does not regard his sexuality as a secret. Lie if necessary to protect her secret. Violating the convention by "outing" another person is widely considered a serious social sin.


Second-Parent Adoption: Overcoming Barriers To Lesbian Family Rights, Maxwell S. Peltz Jan 1996

Second-Parent Adoption: Overcoming Barriers To Lesbian Family Rights, Maxwell S. Peltz

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Part I of this Article will discuss some of the legal difficulties associated with co-parenting and why lesbian couples have sought second-parent adoptions. Part II will examine the particular statutory obstacles to second-parent adoptions and then analyze the various ways courts in several states have overcome these obstacles. Finally, Part III will discuss the implications of these decisions in terms of their creation of legal and social norms.


U.S. Ratification Of The Convention On The Elimination Of All Forms Of Discrimination Against Women, Julia Ernst Jan 1996

U.S. Ratification Of The Convention On The Elimination Of All Forms Of Discrimination Against Women, Julia Ernst

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

The purpose of this article is to highlight the need for ratification of the Convention by the United States, and to address arguments against ratification. Various concerns have been raised with respect to CEAFDAW, both specific to the United States and more international in scope. Some problems pertain to United States ratification generally, other issues concern potential conflicts between specific articles of the Convention and U.S. law, and broader problems have been raised with respect to international implementation. Most of these issues are not uncommon in international agreements, and may therefore be remedied through conventional mechanisms, including implementing legislation ...


Hostile Environent Sexual Harassment Claims And The Unwelcome Influence Of Rape Law, Janine Benedet Jan 1996

Hostile Environent Sexual Harassment Claims And The Unwelcome Influence Of Rape Law, Janine Benedet

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

This article considers the unwelcomeness requirement of the plaintiff’s prima facie case. In particular, it examines the discussion of unwelcomeness found in the decision of the Supreme Court in Meritor Savings Bank v. Vinson, and the content given to this element by the subsequent decisions of lower courts. Such an inquiry reveals several parallels between the approach of courts to sexual harassment claims and their traditional treatment of the criminal offense of rape. The same biases and erroneous assumptions that have hampered an effective response to the physical violation of women have permeated the application of the purported remedy ...


"What's So Magic[Al] About Black Women?" Peremptory Challenges At The Intersection Of Race And Gender, Jean Montoya Jan 1996

"What's So Magic[Al] About Black Women?" Peremptory Challenges At The Intersection Of Race And Gender, Jean Montoya

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

This Article addresses the evolving constitutional restraints on the exercise of peremptory challenges in jury selection. Approximately ten years ago, in the landmark case of Batson v. Kentucky, the United States Supreme Court held that the Equal Protection Clause forbids prosecutors to exercise race-based peremptory challenges, at least when the excluded jurors and the defendant share the same race. Over the next ten years, the Court extended Batson's reach.


The Key To Unlocking The Clubhouse Door: The Application Of Antidiscrimination Laws To Quasi-Private Clubs, Sally Frank Jan 1994

The Key To Unlocking The Clubhouse Door: The Application Of Antidiscrimination Laws To Quasi-Private Clubs, Sally Frank

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

This article focuses on discrimination in quasi-private clubs and the impact of laws and the United States Constitution on that discrimination. For the purposes of this article, a quasi-private club is any organization that claims to be private but which might in fact be viewed as public. The term "quasi-private" is used because litigation concerning discrimination in such organizations often rests on whether the entity is private, and therefore cannot be regulated.