Columbia Law School Professors Analyze U.S. Supreme Court Marriage Decisions
Co-directors of the Law School's Center for Gender and Sexuality Law Add to the National Conversation on Marriage Equality
New York, July 5, 2013—Professors Suzanne B. Goldberg and Katherine M. Franke, co-directors of the Law School’s Center for Gender and Sexuality Law, applauded last week’s historic U.S. Supreme Court decisions that struck down the federal Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and left in place a lower court ruling that had invalidated California’s Proposition 8, which took the right to marry away from same-sex couples in that state.
Goldberg, the Herbert and Doris Wechsler Clinical Professor of Law, who co-authored amicus briefs in both cases (Edie Windsor v. United States and Hollingsworth v. Perry), described the rulings as “a one-two punch to the nation’s most prominent anti-gay laws.” Franke, the Sulzbacher Professor of Law, said the “Supreme Court affirmed the view held by most members of the American public, that there are no legitimate reasons to bar same-sex couples from legally marrying, and that the reasons offered by the defenders of DOMA and Proposition 8 were based in bigotry and animus.” Franke also signed onto the Windsor amicus brief.
Both Franke and Goldberg have been sought out by the news media for their incisive legal analysis of the significance of the cases, and to explain the country’s complex legal patchwork for same-sex couples. Here is a selection of their commentary:
- Professor Suzanne B. Goldberg analyzed the marriage decisions in a piece that appeared in multiple outlets, including SCOTUSblog, The New Civil Rights Movement, and The Huffington Post, and explained how the decisions relate to the high court’s interpretations of the Constitution’s equal protection guarantee in other cases for Al Jazeera English.
- Professor Katherine M. Franke offered her views on the significance of the marriage rulings in an opinion piece for The Nation (picked up by The New Civil Rights Movement) and in an interview for WNYC’s “The Takeaway.”
In addition, Urvashi Vaid, director of the Center for Gender and Sexuality Law’s Engaging Tradition Project, weighed in for The Nation on what might be next for the LGBT movement . And Center for Gender and Sexuality Law scholar Nathaniel Frank shared his views on the historic decisions in a piece for Slate.
Through the work of the Center for Gender and Sexuality Law, Columbia Law School has become the preeminent law school in the country for research, teaching, and advocacy on gender and sexual justice.