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Race and law

1994

Sexuality and the Law

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Caste And The Civil Rights Laws: From Jim Crow To Same-Sex Marriages, Richard A. Epstein Aug 1994

Caste And The Civil Rights Laws: From Jim Crow To Same-Sex Marriages, Richard A. Epstein

Michigan Law Review

In this essay I address the notion of caste in two separate contexts: in the traditional disputes over race and sex, and in the more modem disputes over sexual orientation. In both cases the idea of caste and its kindred notions of subordination and hierarchy are used to justify massive forms of government intervention. In all cases I think that these arguments are incorrect. In their place, I argue that the idea of caste should be confined to categories of formal, or legal, distinctions between persons before the law. This more limited notion of caste supplies no justification for the …