The Supreme Court’s new sex dilemma

New York Post Opinions 1 week ago

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 forbids employment discrimination based on “race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.” When the members of Congress wrote and passed it, they surely thought their meaning was straightforward. But now the meaning of “sex” has been contested all the way up to the Supreme Court.

In Harris Funeral Home, Inc. v. the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the justices must decide if Title VII now bans discrimination on the basis of gender identification. If so, that will impact not just family businesses like Harris, but everything from women’s shelters to single-sex athletic competitions. A girls’ track meet that refused to allow a trans runner to compete could wind up in the same legal hell as one that tried to ban black runners.

Harris Funeral Homes’ long march through the legal system began in 2013 when funeral director Anthony Stephens came back from vacation as Aimee Stephens. Thomas Rost and his wife, co-owners of the family business, say the surprise wouldn’t have been a problem — except that Stephens had agreed to follow a sex-specific dress code: suits for men, dresses and skirts for women, so that funeral directors offer a calm center for grieving families.

Asked to comply with the dress code, Stephens refused. And after long reflection, the Rosts fired Stephens.

Enter the Obama-era EEOC, which sued, insisting that “gender identity” is a facet of “sex” under the law. After several rounds of appeals, the last ruling holds that the EEOC was correct.

Will the Supreme Court agree? Most of the justices seemed unsure during oral argument, noting that Congress plainly didn’t intend that meaning of “sex” in 1964, and has never amended the law to adopt it. Yet some were open to the argument that the logic of anti-discrimination can and should now extend to categories no one even considered back in 1964.

One thing should be clear: Setting a reasonable standard here is more complex than most trans-rights advocates admit.

As the self-described radical feminists of the Women’s Liberation Front put it in their friend-of-the-court brief: “Legally redefining ‘female’ as anyone who claims to be female results in the erasure of female people as a class. If, as a matter of law, anyone can be a woman, then no one is a woman, and sex-based protections in the law have no meaning whatsoever . . . a ruling that Congress surely did not intend.”

Sorting out such issues requires more than re­defining “sex”; it’s a task the Supremes should leave to legislators.

Source link
Read also:
Washington Times › 12 minutes ago
Louisiana's Supreme Court has sidestepped, for now, the question of whether juveniles convicted of sex crimes can be required to register as sex offenders for the rest of their lives.
Reuters › 2 weeks ago
The annoyance among voters in the hilltop town of al-Alia shows the dilemma facing Tunisia's moderate Islamist Ennahda party as it seeks to win Sunday's parliamentary election after years of sharing power with the secular political elite.
USA Today › Sports › 3 weeks ago
Lamar Jackson certainly has displayed signs of growth, but Ravens need more from their defense. Plus the latest on CBA talks and Redskins' QB dilemma.
ABC News › Finance › 2 weeks ago
The Fed's odd dilemma: Ultra-low unemployment and inflation but pressure to do more
The Hill › Politics › 2 weeks ago
The Supreme Court's decision to take up a Louisiana abortion case this term will pose a major test for President Trump's nominees on the politically divisive issue.The case marks the first time the Supreme Court wi...
Business Insider › Politics › 0 month ago
Prime Minister Boris Johnson's opponents have called on him to resign following the explosive verdict of the UK Supreme Court that his suspension of parliament was illegal. The UK Supreme court ruled that Johnson's decision to close down parliament was...
CNN › Opinions › 3 weeks ago
The court has a historic lack of turnover that allows justices to often serve past their prime, which has eroded the institutional integrity of the Supreme Court, write Kermit Roosevelt and Ruth-Helen Vassilas. The best solution is to create Supreme...
CBS Local › 15 hours ago
Coral Gables has gone to the Florida Supreme Court in a legal battle about whether the city should be able to ban the use of Styrofoam food containers, according to documents posted Monday on the Supreme Court website.
The Hill › 3 days ago
Democrats and pro-immigrant activists are digging in on their negotiating positions ahead of the upcoming Supreme Court decision on President Trump's order to revoke the "Dreamers" program.The Supreme Court is due...
The New York Times › Politics › 2 weeks ago
The U.S. Supreme Court is leaving in place a decision that derailed the impeachment trials of three West Virginia Supreme Court justices.
Sign In

Sign in to follow sources and tags you love, and get personalized stories.

Continue with Google