Supreme Court decision, anyone?

Kristin Teigen

Boy, was it a bizarre day. The news of the failed bailout vote had me thinking of stockpiling canned goods and starting an indoor garden. While I've always had faith in Peter DeFazio and Earl Blumenauer, I have just enough economic knowledge to be truly scared but not enough to see a viable way out of this mess.

For now, we all have to sit tight until Thursday, when most lawmakers will return from the Rosh Hashanah holiday to once again consider legislation to resolve our nation's financial crisis.

Until then, who wants a diversion? Well, other than reviewing the funds in one's retirement account...

Apparently, part of the CBS interview between Sarah Palin and Katie Couric that has not been yet released reveals the fact that Palin cannot name a single Supreme Court decision other than Roe V. Wade.

So, here's the deal. Earlier, I posted a challenge that I would send money to the Obama campaign for every Republican lie proven wrong, up to $600. Despite the exemplary efforts of some avid participants (thanks, Rebecca), I've yet to get to the goal.

I'm going to try again. For every precedent setting Supreme Court decision that made life better for women, people of color, gay men and lesbians, and the working class, I will send $5 to the Obama campaign, up to $300. Please include the specifics of the case.

How many of us have more legal and historical acumen than Sarah Palin?

  • verasoie (unverified)

    Brown vs. Board of Education (led to desegregation) and Griswold (established right to privacy and right of couples to use contraception).

    Off the very top of my head. Many others, but I'll share the fun.

  • Jägermeister (unverified)

    Well I'll put mine in. Shelley v. Kraemer (1948) was a landmark decision overturning the legal enforcement of any private 'covenant' that restricted the ownership or transfer/sale of property on the basis of race. While the Supreme Court upheld the right of such covenants to exist under the 14th Amendment, they denied the legal enforceability of any such covenant in a court of law, allowing for the sale and transfer of property regardless of any historical covenant.

    Obama thanks you for the $5. :D

  • Miranda (unverified)

    Wow, this is insane. My niece, who is in the 8th grade, knows more Supreme Court cases than she does!

    How about Tinker v. Des Moines to start off with? Freedom of expression.

    Korematsu v. United States? No more internment/concentration camps.

  • (Show?)

    I am so glad someone posted this ! We were just getting a giggle on about this ourselves.

    How about the 1972 decision for Title IX that let Sarah "Baracuda" Palin get equitable athletic funding on her girl's high school basketball team. I guess that mean Katie Couric is the baracuda now. Palin seems more like..."I don't know, but when I do, I'll get back to ya ! "

  • (Show?)

    Miranda v. Arizona is an obvious one to me. Before this ruling, those who were not as educated on their rights (often times those in the lower income brackets and minorities) didn't know they had certain rights upon being arrested. Because of this case, everyone has to be specifically read their rights.

    Kirchberg v. Feenstra, overturns state laws designating a husband "head and master" with unilateral control of property owned jointly with his wife.

    There are a whole bunch pertaining to women here:

  • jashu (unverified)

    And then there's Loving v. Virginia (1967) which was a landmark civil rights case in which the United States Supreme Court declared Virginia's anti-miscegenation statute, the "Racial Integrity Act of 1924", unconstitutional, thereby overturning Pace v. Alabama (1883) and ending all race-based legal restrictions on marriage in the United States.

  • George Seldes (unverified)

    Baker v Carr: One person, one vote. You couldn't give rural counties with few people all the political power.

    Lawrence v Texas: decriminalizing sodomy and overturning the heinous Hardwick case.

  • RW (unverified)

    Tricksy wench! Now I have to poke around till I find me a LazyGirl Constitution Reader. Eh.

  • admiral_naismith (unverified)

    I'm going to suggest Gideon v. Wainwright, the case that granted the accused the right to a court appointed lawyer if they could not afford one. It still freaks me out thinking that there was a time in America when that was not guaranteed.

  • Brian (unverified)

    Romer v. Evans, which established that states cannot single out gays and lesbians for discriminatory treatment in laws.

  • Laura Calvo (unverified)

    Here are three U.S Supreme Court decisions. They are just the ones I could think of quickly and find without a lot of searching.

    Please make your donation to the Obama campaign at the Transgender Bloggers For Obama Day Event at which has brought in over $10K and is close to $11K at the moment.

    Here are three US Supreme Court Cases:

    Oncale v. Sundowner Offshore Services, 523 U.S. 75 (1998), The Court held that Title VII's protection against workplace discrimination "because of... sex" applied to harassment in the workplace between members of the same sex.

    One, Inc. v. Olesen 355 U.S. 371. January 13, 1958) was a historical decision for LGBT rights in the United States. ONE, Inc., a spinoff of the Mattachine Society, published the early pro-gay "ONE: The Homosexual Magazine" beginning in 1953. After a campaign of harassment from the United States Postal Service and FBI, the Postmaster of Los Angeles declared the October, 1954 issue obscene therefore unmailable under the Comstock laws.

    The magazine sued. The first court decision (March 1956) sided with the post office, as did the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals (February 1957). To the surprise of all concerned, an appeal to the Supreme Court was not only accepted, but citing its recent landmark decision in Roth v. United States 354 U.S. 476 (1957) the Court, in a terse per curiam decision, reversed the 9th Circuit without even waiting for oral arguments. This marked the first time the Supreme Court had explicitly ruled on homosexuality.

    Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins, 490 U.S. 228 (1989) Respondent was a senior manager in an office of petitioner professional accounting partnership when she was proposed for partnership in 1982. She was neither offered nor denied partnership, but instead her candidacy was held for reconsideration the following year. When the partners in her office later refused to repropose her for partnership, she sued petitioner in Federal District Court under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, charging that it had discriminated against her on the basis of sex in its partnership decisions. The District Court ruled in respondent's favor on the question of liability, holding that petitioner had unlawfully discriminated against her on the basis of sex by consciously giving credence and effect to partners' comments about her that resulted from sex stereotyping. The Court of Appeals affirmed. Both courts held that an employer who has allowed a discriminatory motive to play a part in an employment decision must prove by clear and convincing evidence that it would have made the same decision in the absence of discrimination, and that petitioner had not carried this burden.

    Held: The judgment is reversed, and the case is remanded.

  • Rachel (unverified)

    United States v. Virgina - allowing women into the Virginia Military Institute and one of Justice Ginsburg's greatest opinions.

  • Tammy (unverified)

    How about Muller v. Oregon, which limited the working day for women employed in bakeries and laundries?

  • (Show?)

    The saddest thing is that if McCain wins, most of these decisions will be overruled or "distinguished" away to nothing, within a decade or two. The four top reasons to vote for Obama are named Scalia, Thomas, Roberts, and Alito. One more of those, and you won't recognize this country in a few years.

  • Bill R. (unverified)

    Oh boy.... searching my data banks from History class.

    Marbury vs. Madison ( establishes the right of judicial review) Plessy vs. Ferguson- (Allowed for separate but equal accommodations, overturned by Brown vs. Board of Education)

    Miranda decision- (establishing the rights of persons taken into custody under arrest)

    Gore vs. Bush- ( the SOTUS elects George Bush president overturning the will of the people of the U. S.)

    Hamdan vs. Rumsfeld (rules that military tribunals lack authority to try Guantanamo detainees without further Congressional authorization)

  • Estelle (unverified)

    Griswold v. Connecticut

    SC ruled that the Constitution includes a right to privacy as part of the "penumbra" of rights it guarantees. A Connecticut law prohibited the use of contraceptives - even for married couples!. Supreme Court invalidated the law on the grounds that it violated the "right to marital privacy".

  • Eugenian (unverified)

    Sarah oughtta like this one, when it comes up:

    upcoming Supreme Court case

  • Kathy (unverified)

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  • BOHICA (unverified)

    Roe v Wade

  • negev79 (unverified)

    Planned Parenthood v. Casey

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    Lawrence v. Texas (2003) struck down a Texas "anti-sodomy" law and overturned the infamous Bowers v. Hardwick decision from 1986. In that previous case the court upheld a similar law in Georgia that criminalized certain kinds of sexual activity between consenting adults.

  • (Show?)

    I was waiting for that one in particular, Dan. Thanks!

  • squizzi (unverified)

    U.S. v. Price (1966) reinstating indictments against conspirators (KKK members). The facts were the basis of the film "Mississippi Burning."

  • Cody (unverified)

    West Coast Hotel v. Parrish, 300 US 379 (1937): Supreme Court upholds Washington state law that required a minimum wage for female hotel workers.

  • gary (unverified)

    Yea, and none of you did'nt "google" real quick?? You are all sooo brainy!

  • RW (unverified)

    Morton v. Ruiz, 415 U.S. 199 (1974)

    Tribals who lived off-reservation were being denied rights to subsistance aid when they fell upon hard times b/c they were off-rez (this was a case of a Papago who lived some miles away, to mine coal - and when the VERY long running strike occurred, was denied tribal benefits by BIA) - Supreme Court realized that BIA had been using "on or near" language to request appropriations, but were in fact denying disposition of those appropriations to any full blood, non assimilated tribals who lived NEAR but not ON that rez.... hah. Fixed that.

  • Jägermeister (unverified)

    Yea, and none of you did'nt "google" real quick?? You are all sooo brainy!

    Yes, we are! Thanks so much!

  • RW (unverified)

    Doe v. Bolton, 410 U.S. 179 (1973), was a landmark decision of the United States Supreme Court overturning the abortion law of Georgia. The Supreme Court's decision was released on January 22, 1973, the same day as the decision in the better-known case of Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113 (1973).

    The Georgia law in question permitted abortion only in cases of rape, severe fetal deformity, or the possibility of severe or fatal injury to the mother. Other restrictions included the requirement that the procedure be approved in writing by three physicians and by a special committee of the staff of the hospital where the abortion was to be performed. In addition, only Georgia residents could receive abortions under this statutory scheme: non-residents could not have an abortion in Georgia under any circumstances

    Roe and Doe were argued at the same time by different teams. The same 7-2 majority (Justices White and Rehnquist dissenting) that struck down a Texas abortion law in Roe v. Wade, invalidated most of the remaining restrictions of the Georgia abortion law, including the medical approval and residency requirements. Together, Doe and Roe recognized abortion as a constitutional right and by implication overturned most laws against abortion in other US states.

    Specifically, HEALTH of the mother was defined VERY broadly, providing a woman and her medical provider decision-making latitude. In addition, the primary focus was, indeed, upon the wholistic well-being of the woman as the primary concern. In many ways, Doe established the fate and facts of the woman as the center of the ruling.

  • RW (unverified)

    Cherokee Nation v. Georgia, 30 U.S. 1 (1831), was a United States Supreme Court decision.

    Georgia (we have an infamous Cherokee relation who owned slaves and was beastly to them, in Georgia - there is an historical mansion there now that bears his name) feared Jackson (the bastard on our twenty-spot, kids) would not Remove the tribes from their historical lands, ceding it to the non-people-of-colour. Laws passed to strip tribals of rights, in order to force them to leave, if not Removed. John Ross, Chief, went to Congress instead of taking a delegation of futility to Jackson.

    After Congress, SEcty of War and the President himself ordered Removal, Ross the Radical took it to the Courts! The People were being driven across country and dying along the way even as Ross maneuvered in the courts. Initially the S.C. ruled that Cherokees were a people, not a nation, and so were subject to whatever laws Georgia enacted upon them. Two years later, however, the 1832 Supreme Court decision (Worcester v. Georgia) ruled that Georgia could not impose its laws upon Cherokee, their tribal lands. Many had already been scattered to the winds in yet another wave of Removal, but this was the beginning of establishment of the concept of sovereignty for Cherokee, diasporaed from NC to GA to OK.

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