January 27, 2004
The recent Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court decision, which said the state cannot deny gay marriage, prompted the Tulane and LSU Federalist Societies to host a same-sex marriage symposium to debate its political and societal impact on Louisiana and other states. This topic took on additional importance last week when President George W. Bush said in his State of the Union address that "[o]ur nation must defend the sanctity of marriage." From his comments and recent judicial decisions, it is clear that the landscape of marriage law is changing.
The symposium entitled "Marriage Laws: The Effect of Recent Judicial Intervention Regarding Liberty and Marital Legislation" will be on Friday, January 30, 2004 at Tulane Law School in New Orleans, Louisiana. The Tulane and LSU chapters of the Federalist Society are sponsoring this national symposium which is open to the public. It begins at 1 pm.
Former Louisiana State Representative Tony Perkins will be speaking out against gay marriage in a legal and political debate with local liberals including Chris Daigle, Political Director for Equality Louisiana (formerly Louisiana Lesbian and Gay Political Action Caucus) and Kathryn Lorio, Professor of Law at Loyola University. Seven of the eight panelists are from Louisiana.
Kimberly Oliver, President of the Tulane Federalist Society, looks forward to the symposium bringing attention to the debate already taking place within the New Orleans community. She said, "Marriage laws may shortly become the decisive states-rights issue of our time. We are lucky to have the foremost national authorities on same-sex marriage coming to debate this issue here in Louisiana."
About the Federalist Society: The Federalist Society is a nationwide organization interested in promoting legal debate in law schools throughout the country. Committed to presenting balanced discussions, the Federalist Society seeks to promote awareness of the separation of governmental powers by presenting speakers on all sides of a given issue.