6th Circuit Civil Rights Law News - U.S. Sixth Circuit
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The Sixth Circuit is progressing with cases related to same sex marriage, as it consolidated appeals for all cases pending in that circuit. Meanwhile, the court has heard appeals related to Detroit's bankruptcy, and a habeas case resting on elementary tenets of criminal procedure.

Let's take a look at the most recent happenings in the Sixth Circuit.

You may not be familiar with Insane Clown Posse's music, but you probably are familiar with the way they look. I mean, how many rappers do you know that wear clown makeup? (Yes, we're serious). And, much to our chagrin surprise, they are quite successful and even have a devoted following of fans called Juggalos.

Juggalos show their unity by wearing clown makeup, or sporting HatchetGear, a line of apparel with the Hatchetman logo, as well as other characteristics. Um, so why do we care? Because the FBI does, and because Insane Clown Posse, Juggalos and the ACLU of Michigan have sued the FBI and the U.S. Department of Justice -- that's why.

The Sixth Circuit is seeing a lot action lately on the same sex marriage front, with all four states in the circuit facing appeals on the issue. As the Sixth Circuit will join the national debate on same sex marriage, we also have other cases making progress though the courts related to hate crimes and a death row inmate's attempt at a second chance.

Read on for details ...

There's a lot happening in the Sixth Circuit. With the status of Michigan's same sex marriage status up in the air, a new lawsuit has been filed by the ACLU. What will the fate of the couples married in the small window of time when same sex marriage was legal in the state?

We also remember a former Sixth Circuit judge who broke boundaries and look at what influences federal judges.

The Sixth Circuit is hearing several appeals from different states regarding the recognition of same sex marriages in other states. In Tennessee, the Sixth Circuit granted a stay of a preliminary injunction, and in Kentucky, the parties are filing appellate briefs.

And while all this same sex marriage litigation is happening, three Kentucky death row inmates just want to sweat it out.

6th Cir: Not Allowing Telecommuting for IBS Is a Load of ...

Let's say you have Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), a disease that causes fecal incontinence. Sometimes it's so bad that you can't drive to work without soiling yourself, or, if you get to work, you can't get up from your desk without soiling yourself. Might telecommuting be a reasonable accommodation under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)?

On April 22, the Sixth Circuit decided yes.

Late last week, a district court in Michigan held that the state's constitutional provision and implementing laws the defined marriage as "the union of one man and one woman" violated the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. In making such a holding, that court joined countless other courts across the nation, but unlike many of those courts, the district court denied the state's request for a stay pending appeal.

The Sixth Circuit granted an emergency stay (after a few hundred marriage licenses were handed out to same-sex couples), and yesterday afternoon, continue the stay until the circuit court could hear the appeal.

After Kentucky's somewhat harried search for a firm to defend the state from the potential "chaos" of recognizing out-of-state gay marriages, a firm has been chosen.

The relatively small firm of VanAntwerp, Monge, Jones, Edwards & McCann, LLP has been recruited to defend the state in the Sixth Circuit for at least until June 6, according to Louisville's WFPL. Their contract with the Bluegrass State has a payment cap set at $100,000.

But what will the VanAntwerp firm be doing for that money?

Kentucky is still going to defend its gay marriage ban before the Sixth Circuit, but not with the help of anyone employed by the state.

After Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway refused to defend the same-sex marriage prohibition, citing his refusal to "defend[] discrimination," the governor announced that outside counsel will be hired to represent the state's interests in the appeal, reports The Associated Press.

With Kentucky taxpayer money set to pay for private attorneys, this battle over same-sex unions just got hotter.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine, we couldn't agree more.

Folks, Ohio has this ridiculous election law that bars people from making false statements with malice about candidates. It's a load of crap, restricts speech, is far from content-neutral, and basically makes political satire illegal.

The Supreme Court has repeatedly stated that the remedy for false speech is more speech, not some unconstitutional law that will die an expensive (litigating the issue up to the Supreme Court can't be cheap) death. And now, according to The Columbus Dispatch, the state's Attorney General just took the same position, hopefully nuking the case before Ohio further embarrasses itself.