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Constitutional Tipping Points: Civil Rights, Social Change, And Fact-Based Adjudication, Suzanne B. Goldberg Jan 2006

Constitutional Tipping Points: Civil Rights, Social Change, And Fact-Based Adjudication, Suzanne B. Goldberg

Faculty Scholarship

This Article offers an account of how courts respond to social change, with a specific focus on the process by which courts "tip" from one understanding of a social group and its constitutional claims to another. Adjudication of equal protection and due process claims, in particular, requires courts to make normative judgments regarding the effect of traits such as race, sex, sexual orientation, or mental retardation on group members' status and capacity. Yet, Professor Goldberg argues, courts commonly approach decisionmaking by focusing only on the 'facts" about a social group, an approach that she terms 'fact-based adjudication." Professor Goldberg critiques ...


Morals-Based Justifications For Lawmaking: Before And After Lawrence V. Texas, Suzanne B. Goldberg Jan 2006

Morals-Based Justifications For Lawmaking: Before And After Lawrence V. Texas, Suzanne B. Goldberg

Faculty Scholarship

Forever, it seems, the power to shape public morality has been seen as central to American governance. As one of the morality tradition's chief promoters, the Supreme Court itself has regularly endorsed and applauded government's police power to regulate the public's morality along with the public's health and welfare.

How, then, can we make sense of the Court's declaration in Lawrence v. Texas that the state's interest in preserving or promoting a particular morality among its constituents did not amount even to a legitimate interest to justify a Texas law criminalizing sexual intimacy between ...


Abortion, Equality, And Administrative Regulation, Gillian E. Metzger Jan 2006

Abortion, Equality, And Administrative Regulation, Gillian E. Metzger

Faculty Scholarship

This symposium essay argues that administrative regulation of abortion and reproductive rights deserve closer study. Administrative regulation of abortion is overwhelmingly health regulation; the focus is on abortion as a medical procedure, and the government's only stated interest is protecting the health of women obtaining abortions. Such regulation is becoming increasingly common, and is worthy of greater attention on that ground alone. But in addition, and of particular relevance to this symposium on reproductive rights and equality, administrative abortion regulation demonstrates the difficulty in successfully challenging abortion restrictions as unconstitutional gender discrimination. Given general medical agreement that early abortions ...


Constitutional Tipping Points: Civil Rights, Social Change, And Fact-Based Adjudication, Suzanne B. Goldberg Jan 2006

Constitutional Tipping Points: Civil Rights, Social Change, And Fact-Based Adjudication, Suzanne B. Goldberg

Faculty Scholarship

This Article offers an account of how courts respond to social change, with a specific focus on the process by which courts "tip" from one understanding of a social group and its constitutional claims to another. Adjudication of equal protection and due process claims, in particular, requires courts to make normative judgments regarding the effect of traits such as race, sex, sexual orientation, or mental retardation on group members' status and capacity. Yet, Professor Goldberg argues, courts commonly approach decisionmaking by focusing only on the "facts" about a social group, an approach that she terms "fact-based adjudication." Professor Goldberg critiques ...