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Seventh Circuit Rewrites the Civil Rights Act

Congress, responsible for writing laws for the country, has repeatedly denied efforts to add sexual orientation to the list of protected classes under the Civil Rights Act. Despite the original intent of the Congress of 1964 and the will of the modern Congress to not expand the classes in the Civil Rights Act, the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals has decided to interpret “sex” to encompass sexual orientation by “judicial interpretive updating,” according to Judge Richard Posner. If you remember, Judge Posner recently declared there was “absolutely no value” in studying the U.S. Constitution because “eighteenth-century guys” couldn’t have possibly foreseen the culture and technology of today. The case will most likely be decided by the U.S. Supreme Court.

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Judge Refuses to Rewrite Title VII

While federal judges increasingly show a proclivity toward “interpreting” laws in ways that actually rewrite them (see today’s blog post), the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals actually demonstrated some judicial restraint in a decision released this week. Lambda Legal, which represented fired lesbian security guard Jameka Evans, had hoped the court would expand the word “sex” in Title VII of the Civil Rights Act to include sexual orientation. The court refused, leaving it up to Congress to decide if sexual orientation should be added to the law.

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