In modern America’s contentious political climate, we often hear about “activist judges” writing laws from the bench. The Supreme Court, consisting of nine judges who are appointed by the President and Congress for life, may seem far removed from the populist democracy created by the founders, and while voters appear to have very little say in how the Supreme Court decides cases, David Cole’s book Engines of Liberty: the Power of Citizen Activists to Make Constitutional Law shows that community members have great influence over Constitutional law, even before an stately body such as the Supreme Court.
By Ellen Kubit
Today, Friday, June 26, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that state bans against same-sex marriage couples are unconstitutional. In other words, today, for the first time in history, our country must recognize—everywhere—that love is free.
Here at the ACLU of Ohio, we are absolutely ecstatic.
By Shakyra Diaz
Oral arguments provide a small window into the super-secretive process of Supreme Court deliberations. Justices frequently telegraph their views on the case in the questions they ask and their reactions to the attorneys’ answers.
These often-feisty exchanges between justices and attorneys–and sometimes between the justices themselves–do not, however, always predict how the Court will rule.
By Lisa Wurm
Ohio has urged U.S. Supreme Court justices to reject marriage equality by deferring to the “democratic process” that resulted in Ohio’s 2004 bans on the licensing and recognition of same-sex couples’ marriages.
In the brief filed last week, Ohio Attorney General Michael DeWine also reframed the litigation before the Court as a debate over “social change.”
The state reliance on these two themes crumbles under closer examination.
Life changing moments often come at us out of the blue and so it was for Dollree Mapp.
Early on May 23, 1957, Dollree was alone in her Cleveland home, enjoying her privacy. When her doorbell rang, she had no idea that what happened next would change state laws on how evidence should be handled and establish her legacy as a woman who spoke up for her rights.
By Tim Cable
The ACLU believes that the right of every American to practice his or her own religion, or no religion at all, is one of the most fundamental freedoms guaranteed by the First Amendment. The Constitution’s framers understood that religious liberty can flourish only if the government plays no direct role in religion.
By Tim Cable
Save October 12, 2014 on your calendar to learn what religious liberty means post-Greece v. Galloway. Join in the conversation with ACLU of Ohio Staff Attorney Drew Dennis as he discusses the current state of religious liberty with plaintiff Susan Galloway and her choice to speak out against official prayer at public meetings.
By Tim Cable
The ACLU works to guarantee that all are free to follow and practice their faith – or no faith at all – without governmental interference.
The U.S. Supreme Court’s May 5 decision in Town of Greece v. Galloway is a disappointing step in the opposite direction – but it by no means signals the unification of church and state.
By Chris Link
Last week marked the end of a historic U.S. Supreme Court term for the ACLU and civil liberties.
There were huge victories. Wednesday’s decisions striking down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and California’s Proposition 8 were historic moments for LGBT equality.