Next week the Tennessee Senate will vote on a bill that would tell courts that any undefined word in the Tennessee Code should be given its normal and ordinary meaning. The bill is needed because judges increasingly like to give unambiguous words new meanings, like Judge McMillan in Knoxville recently did. But this week, the attorney general gave our judicial legislators an assist. He issued an opinion that said that the bill should not prevent courts from giving words like “father” and “husband” a gender-neutral meaning and that courts should substitute gender-neutral words into the statute in place of such words.
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