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Today in legal history...

Monday, May 20, 2013

Supreme Court decided landmark gay rights case
Zachariah Rivenbark at 12:00 AM ET

On May 20, 1996, the US Supreme Court held unconstitutional Amendment 2 to Colorado's state constitution because it violated the Equal Protection Clause. Amendment 2 prohibited the state and municipal governments from enacting, adopting or enforcing anti-discriminatory legislation that protected persons of same-sex orientation. The Court analyzed the amendment under rational basis review and found that the legislative classification bore no rational relation to a legitimate state interest. According to Justice Anthony Kennedy, "a law declaring that in general it shall be more difficult for one group of citizens to seek aid from the government is itself a denial of equal protection of the laws in the most literal sense."

Learn more about gay rights from the JURIST news archive.

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