April 13, 2016 |
THERE WAS no parking anywhere near East Palmer Street in Fishtown on a recent Sunday afternoon. No easy way to cut through the crowd at Interstate Drafthouse, either. The bar was packed with people hyped to meet Braddock, Pa., Mayor John Fetterman, the tattooed, biker-looking U.S. Senate candidate who's made a big splash as much for his size as his politics. I like his politics, but I wasn't there for the big guy. I was there for the woman who's been by his side on this crazy ride that's attracted national attention, even if he is a distant third in the polls.
February 14, 2016 |
Ryan T. Anderson is the author of "Truth Overruled: The Future of Marriage and Religious Freedom" Love is in the air this Valentine's Day. But that doesn't mean that marriage and family are flourishing. A mistaken understanding of romantic love - the Hallmark and Hollywood version - has, unfortunately, undermined key aspects of committed marital love, and the consequences have been dire. Fifty years ago, Daniel Patrick Moynihan issued his famous report on the black family.
February 5, 2016
Veteran civil rights lawyer Mary L. Bonauto wants it known that "millions of ordinary people, gay and straight," helped her make - and win - the case for marriage equality in America. Bonauto's first-ever argument before the U.S. Supreme Court yielded a historic ruling that secured the freedom to marry for LGBT couples nationwide in 2015. On Tuesday, she delivered the annual Rutgers Law School State Constitutional Law Lecture. A crowd of about 150 in the Rutgers-Camden Campus Center's multipurpose room gave her a standing ovation as Distinguished Professor Robert Williams welcomed her to the lectern.
October 28, 2015
WORDS HAVE POWER to make you believe, but also to deceive. In 1984 , his brilliant "Big Brother" novel (that in some ways has achieved reality), George Orwell invented Newspeak, a language in which words don't mean what they say. In real life, Orwell fought against opaque, meaningless words he thought discouraged clear thought. If you are pushing your point of view, you want it to sound smart and nice. You want the other guy's position to seem dumb and nasty. That's why abortion activists on both sides frame their positions as being positive: " pro -choice" or " pro -life.
August 10, 2015 |
Kathleen Kane sowed the seeds of her undoing during her seemingly flawless first year in office. That was the year the Democratic attorney general, newly elected in a landslide, won national attention for stands in favor of gun control and marriage equality. MSNBC host Chris Matthews even suggested she was presidential material. But it was also the year she secretly shut down an undercover sting operation she inherited from her Republican predecessors. Though the investigation had caught Democratic elected officials in Philadelphia pocketing cash and jewelry, Kane, in 2013, declined to press charges, saying the case was badly flawed and possibly tainted by racial targeting.
July 17, 2015 |
First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes, sometimes, divorce. Even as gay and lesbian couples rejoiced last week over the Supreme Court's ruling in support of marriage equality, attorneys were ready for the inevitable - same-sex divorce. Philadelphia lawyer Angela Giampolo performed her first same-sex divorce 15 minutes after U.S. District Judge John E. Jones III established marriage equality in Pennsylvania in May 2014. According to the Williams Institute at the University of California, Los Angeles, School of Law, which conducts research on sexual orientation and gender-identity law, in states where same-sex marriage has been legal for several years and in those that have allowed nonmarital unions, there was a 1.6 percent annual dissolution rate of those relationships as of December 2014.
July 8, 2015 |
A vocal duo's flawless a cappella rendition of "Over the Rainbow" hushed the crowd outside Independence Hall as the reenactment of a pioneering LGBT civil rights demonstration began. Several dozen people marched along Chestnut Street holding placards ("Equality for Homosexual Citizens") that replicated those carried by a plucky group of gay men and lesbians a half-century earlier. It was an emotional, and pitch-perfect, way to celebrate the Fourth of July - and the fact that marriage equality is at last the law of the land.
April 8, 2015 |
Pat Robertson shared a revelation last week. The LGBT agenda, he warned, will force straight people to "like" gay sexual practices. Regardless of Robertson's feverish fantasies - delivered on his 700 Club show - same-sex intimacies are unlikely to become all the rage. But gay people do seem to have attained an unprecedented level of acceptance. You might even call it popularity. Consider the heartening resistance to so-called religious freedom restoration legislation in states such as Indiana and Arkansas.
March 25, 2015 |
It was billed as a "Big Gay Brunch" in Cherry Hill, inspired by Pope Francis' planned visit to Philadelphia. Among the 20 guests were devout Catholic heterosexuals, a gay man raised as a Mormon, and an evangelical Christian crusader against human trafficking. "We're trying to figure out how to leverage this historic visit," said organizer and host Jay Lassiter, a marriage equality and medical marijuana advocate and death penalty opponent. "We want rational, sane, forward-thinking voices to be at the table.
March 17, 2015 |
Many of the courses she is taking at Rutgers-Camden law school are about the law as it currently is, says Katie Lara. "Sexuality, Gender, Identity and the Law" is different, she says: It is about how social movements change laws. The course that has Lara and fellow students excited is inspired by what its creator calls "the great civil rights struggle of our era" - for LGBT rights. Rutgers professor Katie Eyer said she began teaching the elective about a year ago after she was approached by students interested in the law as it pertains to sexuality.