Showing posts with label Justice Kennedy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Justice Kennedy. Show all posts

July 17, 2015

Justice Kennedy Equals Same Sex Marriage Opposition to Flag Burning


                                                                          
Meet the Supremes
  U.S. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy compared opposition to the court’s landmark ruling ending legal opposition to same-sex marriage to a 1989 decision that said freedom to burn an American flag is protected speech.

It was Kennedy's first comments since last month's decision, Obergefell v. Hodges, that struck down a ban against same-sex marriage in 14 states. Kennedy believes that while the decision on the flag burning case was unpopular at first, public opinion changed over time.
He made the comments Wednesday at a 9th Circuit Conference in San Diego. Kennedy, 78, often seen as an important swing vote on the Court, is a native of Southern California who formerly ruled from the 9th Circuit bench.

"Eighty senators went to the floor of the Senate to denounce the court," declared Kennedy of the 1989 ruling. “President Bush took the week off and visited flag factories, but I noticed that after two or three months people began thinking about the issues.”

Kennedy added a story about a World War II veteran and POW who carried a American flag with him in Europe and how he even came to turn around his opinion on the then controversial flag burning case. Kennedy said it took him six days to write the controversial opinion on marriage.
The Christian Post reached out to Josh Blackman, an associate professor at the South Texas College of Law, who provided a post he wrote concerning Kennedy's comments and added to CP, "If he [Kennedy] is comparing flag burning to same-sex marriage, he is really out of touch."
Blackman found most notable Kennedy’s comments regarding spending and rebuilding the capital of trust, which he addressed in his post.

"We spend the capital of trust, and we have to rebuild that capital," declared Kennedy. "We have to put new deposits, new substance into this reservoir of trust."
Blackman asked, "So how do we read this? Is a decision invalidating marriage laws drawing on the trust deposit, requiring the court to 'rebuild that capital later' with some future case? Or is the decision invalidating marriage laws what 'rebuilds that capital' after it has been "draw[n]" down? If so, then what decisions are “draw[ing]" on that trust?"

Kennedy has been criticized by some conservatives and liberals in the past for thinking about political solutions and injecting politics into decisions rather than ruling with a consistent judicial philosophy.
In striking down the Defense of Marriage Act in 2013, Justice Antonin Scalia argued in his dissent that the majority opinion was classifying same-sex marriage opponents as an “enemy of the human race."

Scalia was also heavily critical of Kennedy's writing in his dissent of Obergefell, calling the reasoning "fortune cookie" logic. In terms of the implications for religious liberty, all four dissenting justices mentioned harmful implications for religious liberty resulting from the decision. Chief Justice John Roberts noted that the decision "creates serious questions about religious liberty." Associate Justice Clarence Thomas declared, “The majority's decision threatens the religious liberty our Nation has long sought to protect."

Kennedy, an associate justice, was appointed to the Supreme Court in 1988 by former President Ronald Reagan after the failed nomination of Robert Bork. In The New Yorker in 2005, legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin noted that Kennedy has written the “the two most important gay-rights-decisions in the Court's history."

Many conservatives seem to disagree with Kennedy's reasoning that controversy over the decision will dissipate. Presidenitial candidate Rick Santorum has compared the rulling to the Dred Scott and Plessy decisions. Heritage Action CEO Michael Needham, like many others, compared the decision to a controversial abortion decision: "This is judicial activism plain and simple — on par with Roe V. Wade.”




  RAY NOTHSTINE
 christianpost.com

April 15, 2015

Justice Kennedy had Gay Mentor a Dean at University


                                                                        
 In this May 8, 1991, file photo, Gordon Schaber poses for a photo in his south Sacramento, Calif., home. Schaber was the Dean of the McGeorge School of Law. The Irish Catholic boy who came of age in Sacramento after World War II is an unlikely candidate to be the author of the Supreme Court’s major gay rights rulings. Justice Anthony Kennedy’s friendship with Schaber began in the mid-1960s when Schaber recruited the young lawyer to teach at the McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento. Schaber, who served as the school’s dean for 34 years, was in the process of transforming McGeorge from an unaccredited night school to a respected institution that now is a part of Pacific University.(Genaro Molina/Sacramento Bee via AP)

The Irish Catholic boy who came of age in Sacramento after World War II is an unlikely candidate to be the author of the Supreme Court's major gay rights rulings.
But those who have known Justice Anthony Kennedy for decades and scholars who have studied his work say he has long stressed the importance of valuing people as individuals. And he seems likely also to have been influenced in this regard by a pillar of the Sacramento legal community, a closeted gay man who hired Kennedy as a law school instructor and testified on his behalf at his high court confirmation hearings in Washington.
With three major gay rights opinions to his name already, the 78-year-old Kennedy is the prohibitive favorite to write the Supreme Court decision in June that could extend same-sex marriage nationwide.
Kennedy's friendship with Gordon Schaber began in the mid-1960s when Schaber recruited the young lawyer to teach at the McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento. Schaber, who served as the school's dean for 34 years, was in the process of transforming McGeorge from an unaccredited night school to a respected institution that now is a part of Pacific University.
Schaber never married and was widely believed to be gay, according to accounts from a dozen people who worked for him or were active in Sacramento's political and legal communities.
"Schaber's sexual orientation was general knowledge among the Sacramento community and the law school community," said Glendalee "Glee" Scully, the longtime director of McGeorge's legal clinic, where students got practical experience by taking on cases for people who couldn't otherwise afford a lawyer.
Among those who worked at the school when Schaber was dean, not one could recall Schaber discussing his sexual orientation. "Generationally, it was not something gentlemen spoke about," said McGeorge professor Larry Levine, himself openly gay.
Scully said, "As close as he and Tony Kennedy were as friends, I would doubt they ever had a conversation about it. But how can't it have helped to some degree Tony's willingness to have an open mind?"
Only nine years older than Kennedy, Schaber was a mentor to many of the young lawyers he brought to the school and looked after them in ways large and small.
Schaber helped some become judges. Year after year, Kennedy reported the same gift from Schaber on his annual financial disclosures, $400 worth of shirts.
Kennedy spoke at the dedication of the Sacramento courthouse in Schaber's memory, but he has never talked about how Schaber has influenced his views on the bench. Kennedy declined to respond to questions for this story.
Schaber died in 1997, just shy of his 70th birthday.
By that time, Kennedy had written his first gay rights ruling on the Supreme Court, striking down a Colorado constitutional amendment that prevented local governments from enacting anti-discrimination protections for gays and lesbians.
In 2003, Kennedy again authored the majority opinion in Lawrence v. Texas, which struck down state laws that made gay sex a crime.
"It suffices for us to acknowledge that adults may choose to enter upon this relationship in the confines of their homes and their own private lives and still retain their dignity as free persons," Kennedy wrote. "When sexuality finds overt expression in intimate conduct with another person, the conduct can be but one element in a personal bond that is more enduring."
Ten years later, Kennedy's opinion for the court in U.S. v. Windsor struck down part of the federal anti-gay marriage law. "It seems fair to conclude that, until recent years, many citizens had not even considered the possibility that two persons of the same sex might aspire to occupy the same status and dignity as that of a man and woman in lawful marriage," Kennedy wrote in the Windsor case.
The decision left for another day the question of whether states can keep same-sex couples from marrying. That question is now before the court, with arguments set for April 28.
So what are the roots of Kennedy's views?
Childhood friend Joseph Genshlea said the issue never came up at Stanford University, where they attended college together in the 1950s, or the Sacramento neighborhood in which both grew up and later raised their own families.
"When we were in college, we didn't even know there was a closet," Genshlea said. "I don't have an answer to it except that he's a very bright guy and he certainly has thought through the issue."
Another longtime friend, former California Gov. Pete Wilson, said Kennedy always has evaluated people as individuals, not as members of a group. Kennedy, he said, sees everyone "based on their merits."
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg suggested in an interview last summer that one reason for changes in public opinion in favor of same-sex marriage was that, as gay Americans became more comfortable talking about the topic, people learned that they had gay friends and relatives, "people you have tremendous respect for." She was describing what sociologists call the contact theory, the idea that the majority group's interactions with a minority will break down stereotypes and enhance acceptance of the minority group.
Helen Knowles, the author of a book about Kennedy's jurisprudence, said she doesn't place too much emphasis on this theory.
"Having said that, I have difficulty believing that Kennedy's friendship with Gordon Schaber didn't affect his views," said Knowles, a professor of government at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, New York. Her book is "The Tie Goes to Freedom: Justice Anthony M. Kennedy on Liberty."
Knowles and political science professor Frank Colucci of Purdue University Calumet in Hammond, Indiana, said the earliest indication of Kennedy's views about the treatment of gays and lesbians can be found in a 1980 ruling that ironically upheld the Navy's dismissal of gay sailors.
"He rules in favor of the Navy policy, but it's about as sympathetic as one could be to the plaintiff," Colucci said.
Kennedy was a judge on the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals at the time. "Upholding the challenged regulations as constitutional is distinct from a statement that they are wise. The latter judgment is neither implicit in our decision nor within our province to make," he wrote then
                                                                         

The Irish Catholic boy who came of age in Sacramento after World War II is an unlikely candidate to be the author of the Supreme Court's major gay rights rulings.
But those who have known Justice Anthony Kennedy for decades and scholars who have studied his work say he has long stressed the importance of valuing people as individuals. And he seems likely also to have been influenced in this regard by a pillar of the Sacramento legal community, a closeted gay man who hired Kennedy as a law school instructor and testified on his behalf at his high court confirmation hearings in Washington.
With three major gay rights opinions to his name already, the 78-year-old Kennedy is the prohibitive favorite to write the Supreme Court decision in June that could extend same-sex marriage nationwide.

Kennedy's friendship with Gordon Schaber began in the mid-1960s when Schaber recruited the young lawyer to teach at the McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento. Schaber, who served as the school's dean for 34 years, was in the process of transforming McGeorge from an unaccredited night school to a respected institution that now is a part of Pacific University.
Schaber never married and was widely believed to be gay, according to accounts from a dozen people who worked for him or were active in Sacramento's political and legal communities.
"Schaber's sexual orientation was general knowledge among the Sacramento community and the law school community," said Glendalee "Glee" Scully, the longtime director of McGeorge's legal clinic, where students got practical experience by taking on cases for people who couldn't otherwise afford a lawyer.
Among those who worked at the school when Schaber was dean, not one could recall Schaber discussing his sexual orientation. "Generationally, it was not something gentlemen spoke about," said McGeorge professor Larry Levine, himself openly gay.
Scully said, "As close as he and Tony Kennedy were as friends, I would doubt they ever had a conversation about it. But how can't it have helped to some degree Tony's willingness to have an open mind?"
Only nine years older than Kennedy, Schaber was a mentor to many of the young lawyers he brought to the school and looked after them in ways large and small.
Schaber helped some become judges. Year after year, Kennedy reported the same gift from Schaber on his annual financial disclosures, $400 worth of shirts.
Kennedy spoke at the dedication of the Sacramento courthouse in Schaber's memory, but he has never talked about how Schaber has influenced his views on the bench. Kennedy declined to respond to questions for this story.
Schaber died in 1997, just shy of his 70th birthday.
By that time, Kennedy had written his first gay rights ruling on the Supreme Court, striking down a Colorado constitutional amendment that prevented local governments from enacting anti-discrimination protections for gays and lesbians.
In 2003, Kennedy again authored the majority opinion in Lawrence v. Texas, which struck down state laws that made gay sex a crime.
"It suffices for us to acknowledge that adults may choose to enter upon this relationship in the confines of their homes and their own private lives and still retain their dignity as free persons," Kennedy wrote. "When sexuality finds overt expression in intimate conduct with another person, the conduct can be but one element in a personal bond that is more enduring."
Ten years later, Kennedy's opinion for the court in U.S. v. Windsor struck down part of the federal anti-gay marriage law. "It seems fair to conclude that, until recent years, many citizens had not even considered the possibility that two persons of the same sex might aspire to occupy the same status and dignity as that of a man and woman in lawful marriage," Kennedy wrote in the Windsor case.
The decision left for another day the question of whether states can keep same-sex couples from marrying. That question is now before the court, with arguments set for April 28.
So what are the roots of Kennedy's views?
Childhood friend Joseph Genshlea said the issue never came up at Stanford University, where they attended college together in the 1950s, or the Sacramento neighborhood in which both grew up and later raised their own families.
"When we were in college, we didn't even know there was a closet," Genshlea said. "I don't have an answer to it except that he's a very bright guy and he certainly has thought through the issue."
Another longtime friend, former California Gov. Pete Wilson, said Kennedy always has evaluated people as individuals, not as members of a group. Kennedy, he said, sees everyone "based on their merits."
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg suggested in an interview last summer that one reason for changes in public opinion in favor of same-sex marriage was that, as gay Americans became more comfortable talking about the topic, people learned that they had gay friends and relatives, "people you have tremendous respect for." She was describing what sociologists call the contact theory, the idea that the majority group's interactions with a minority will break down stereotypes and enhance acceptance of the minority group.
Helen Knowles, the author of a book about Kennedy's jurisprudence, said she doesn't place too much emphasis on this theory.
"Having said that, I have difficulty believing that Kennedy's friendship with Gordon Schaber didn't affect his views," said Knowles, a professor of government at Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, New York. Her book is "The Tie Goes to Freedom: Justice Anthony M. Kennedy on Liberty."
Knowles and political science professor Frank Colucci of Purdue University Calumet in Hammond, Indiana, said the earliest indication of Kennedy's views about the treatment of gays and lesbians can be found in a 1980 ruling that ironically upheld the Navy's dismissal of gay sailors.
"He rules in favor of the Navy policy, but it's about as sympathetic as one could be to the plaintiff," Colucci said.
Kennedy was a judge on the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals at the time. "Upholding the challenged regulations as constitutional is distinct from a statement that they are wise. The latter judgment is neither implicit in our decision nor within our province to make," he wrote then.

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