CourtSide - The FindLaw Breaking Legal News Blog

October 2010 Archives

Ninth Circuit Issues Stay in Don't Ask Don't Tell Case

The Ninth Circuit issued a temporary stay halting a district court judge's injunction that prohibited further enforcement of the Don't Ask Don't Tell law, which prohibits homosexuals from openly serving in the military.

Judge Denies Stay in Don't Ask Don't Tell Lawsuit

The judge that issued a permanent injunction barring enforcement of Don't Ask Don't Tell, the law prohibiting homosexuals from openly serving in the military, has denied the federal government's request for a stay of the injunction pending appeal.  The judge ruled that the government was not entitled to a stay since they had not demonstrated a likelihood of success on appeal or shown that they would be irreparably harmed in the absence of a stay.  The judge also ruled that denying a stay would not harm other parties interested in the proceedings or injure the public interest.

Golfer Lana Lawless Sues LPGA over Female at Birth Rule

Professional golfer Lana Lawless has sued the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) and the Long Drive Association (LDA), along with sponsors of LPGA and LDA events in California over rules requiring female participants to have been female at birth. Lawless claims she was deemed ineligible for membership in the LPGA due to being a transgender woman. Lawless won the 2008 LDA Women's Long Drive Championship, but her complaint alleges the LDA subsequently revised its entry requirements to exclude transgendered people.

Lawless seeks damages as well as an injunction to prevent the LPGA and LDA from holding events in California as long as their female at birth requirements remain. Her suit claims violations of California's Unruh Civil Rights Act, as well as unfair competition, and intentional interference with economic advantage under California law.

Under California's Unruh Act, all people in the state are "free and equal, and no matter what their sex, race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, disability, medical condition, marital status, or sexual orientation are entitled to the full and equal accommodations, advantages, facilities, privileges, or services in all business establishments of every kind whatsoever."

As Ms. Lawless states it, "I could participate in female wrestling in international Olympic events but, here in my own state, in my chosen profession, because of blatant prejudice, I am excluded and discriminated against."

Don't Ask Don't Tell Injunction

A federal judge in California has found that the law excluding homosexuals from openly serving in the military, known as Don't Ask Don't Tell, violates the First and Fifth Amendments to the United States Constitution. The judge issued a permanent injunction barring the military from continuing to enforce the law.