In the last 20 years, the debate over same-sex marriage has grown into a national controversy involving a complex mix of issues, including those pertaining to civil rights, constitutional law, morality and religious belief. And it's just one reason why Law & Sexuality, a Tulane student-edited law journal, continues to be a timely and relevant publication, says editor-in chief Christopher Scott.
First published in 1991, Law & Sexuality is the first and only student-edited law journal dedicated to covering legal issues of interest to the gay community. It also is the official legal journal of the National Lesbian,Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Bar Association.
"A lot of the things we publish are looking at several different areas — obviously the big one right now is same-sex marriage," says Scott, who is in his third year at Tulane Law School. "Adoption and employment discrimination are other big areas we focus on."
Scott sees indicators pointing to mounting support for the legal recognition of same-sex marriage.
"A number of states recognize same-sex marriage, and now there is a debate about whether or not to go to a federal level and bring cases to the federal courts. … The worry is if a negative decision is handed down, we've taken a step back."
Each year the journal publishes the winning article from a national writing competition for law students held by the National LGBT Bar Association. This year's winning piece focuses on the variability of same-sex adoption laws from state to state.
Scott says a lot has changed in the legal world in the years that have transpired since Law & Sexuality was first published.
"When the journal first started back in the early '90s … the focus was staking a ground and saying 'we have to fight this to get recognition that we can have a same-sex relationship,'" Scott says. "They just wanted to create something that established this as an area of the law, now it's one of the more dominant ones."
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