Planning a wedding is stressful, especially in our semi-post-COVID world, where the specter of another surge of illness still looms over any large event. But a new anxiety now hangs over my own wedding planning: legal impossibility. The Supreme Court majority is methodically laying the groundwork to unravel decades of hard-won civil rights battles, stare decisis be damned.
Public opinion on LGBTQ rights has shifted during recent years. For example, a 2021 Gallup Poll shows that 70% of Americans believe that same-sex couples should be entitled to legally protected marriage rights. National brands, including retailers, banks, and tech companies, have embraced Pride month as part of the annual cycle of holidays and marketing campaigns. Slotting neatly between the tent pole summer holidays of Memorial Day and Independence Day, one might be tempted to believe that queer America has achieved some sort of immutable victory in the fight for equality. Continue reading “Tiny Protests: Living Pride Every Day”
That was my first reaction when Ed Cramp mentioned he wanted to start a firm wide LGBTQ affinity group.
There’s no overt discrimination at the firm. The fact that anyone might be LGBTQ seemed to be completely irrelevant here. So why bother? Plus, I wanted to be known as a lawyer, not a gay lawyer. Continue reading “Why?”
Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) is a hot topic for the vast majority of employers. The benefits of a diverse workforce in today’s society are undeniable both in terms of financial performance and a more integrated workforce.
In the UK, there are no legislative requirements for employing a diverse workforce but many organisations have D&I high on their agendas nonetheless. D&I is no longer a talking point reserved exclusively for “behind closed door” human resources discussions. Whether this change has been driven by a moral obligation to “do the right thing” or the ever increasing socio-economic inequalities within diverse communities, the fact remains that employers and employees alike are now actively talking about D&I in the workplace. That is of course good news, but is talking about it enough? Continue reading “Is Legislative Intervention Required to Build an Ethnically Diverse Workforce in the UK?”
All of the activity around last month’s storming of the U.S. Capitol and last year’s civil unrest over social justice and equality had me, and perhaps everyone else, taking a step back. It made me wonder about our society in these difficult times. You see, the Capitol siege and the civil unrest from last year, both had something in common: they both were examples of a society missing basic principles of respect for human beings, and the basic principles of human decency.
In America, when there is a difference of opinion, or a debate of issues or political sides, we do not traditionally see people violently erupting out of anger, attacking people’s families, or knocking down doors and windows to win the debate. With intellectual discussion and debate, there exists a certain amount of decorum, through an academic pursuit, oft and times with spirited excitement on all sides that comes with a proper oratorical debate. But the people that stormed the Capitol were filled with rage, armed with a false truth about the election and their way of life, and they took it upon themselves to somehow “save” the country by exerting violence instead of reasonable discourse. Continue reading “There’s something missing…..”
Over the summer I wrote about historic milestones in diversity and inclusion that occurred in 2020 that could not be ignored.[i] Well, now, I think it is important to focus on yet another milestone in diversity that we need to cherish, and that needs to garner more attention despite the other, many distractions in 2020. After all, it has been too easy for us to wallow in the bad news of 2020, focusing mostly on the pandemic, racial and social injustice, and or even the fervor over the U.S. presidential campaigns earlier this year. Continue reading “Women Shatter Barriers Again, This Time in Major League Baseball: But We Need to Recognize the Milestone”
With its vast territory and with millions of people immigrating over the past centuries, the United States is a culturally diverse country. One of the largest groups that has immigrated to the United States is that of the Hispanic-Latino group, which refers to those coming from Latin American countries.
Every gay person must come out. As difficult as it is, you must tell your immediate family. You must tell your relatives. You must tell your friends if indeed they are your friends. You must tell the people you work with. You must tell the people in the stores you shop in. Once they realize that we are indeed their children, that we are indeed everywhere, every myth, every lie, every innuendo will be destroyed once and all. And once you do, you will feel so much better. Harvey Milk, 1978, available here.
Harvey Milk spoke these words in 1978, in a speech celebrating the defeat of Proposition 6 in California. Prop. 6 would have prohibited LGBT people from teaching in public schools. Ultimately, a wide coalition of leaders— from Jimmy Carter to Ronald Reagan— joined Harvey Milk in condemning the measure. It went down to overwhelming defeat. Today, it is a credit to Harvey Milk and countless others that it is unthinkable that such a proposal could make it to the ballot. Continue reading “Harvey Milk’s Ideas about the Power of Coming Out Still Hold True Today”
While New Jersey may be one of the smaller states in the nation, it does not shy away from being on the forefront when it comes to protecting the rights of its workers and citizens. Over the last decade, New Jersey has taken many steps to advance the rights of those who are diverse. This look in the rearview mirror highlights some of the Garden State’s efforts: Continue reading “The Long and Winding Road to Workplace Equity in New Jersey”