The Specter of a Lesbian Supreme Court Justice: Problems of Identity in Lesbian Legal Theorizing
St. Thomas Law Review, Vol. 5, p. 433, 1992
26 Pages Posted: 1 Apr 2010
Date Written: March 30, 1992
With the renewed interest in a lesbian (or gay) United States Supreme Court Justice, this article – originally published in 1993 – looks at sexual identity and identity politics. It begins thusly: “To start with, we need a lesbian on the Supreme Court.”
It was the summer of 1992, the last summer of the Reagan-Bush regime, although the demise of that era was far from certain. I was being interviewed by a gay and lesbian magazine for a feature article about the Supreme Court. I was staying in Provincetown, a place renowned for its lesbian/gay culture, surrounded by lesbians of every ilk. My opinion was solicited as a constitutional scholar and expert on lesbian legal issues and theories. While lesbians appear in periodicals, on the streets, and in legal theories, not one lesbian has appeared as a United States Supreme Court Justice, ever. So, when the interviewer asked me a general question about changing the United States Supreme Court, I replied that we should start with the appointment of a lesbian.
Keywords: lesbian, gay, sexuality, identity, supreme court, judges
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