Gavel Drop: Anita Hill’s Story Re-Emerges at Exactly the Perfect Time

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Roundups Law and Policy

Gavel Drop: Anita Hill’s Story Re-Emerges at Exactly the Perfect Time

Jessica Mason Pieklo & Imani Gandy

The story of the Clarence Thomas Supreme Court hearings and the re-emergence of Anita Hill in the public eye is a reminder of both how much, and how little, has changed in gender politics.

Welcome to Gavel Drop, our roundup of legal news, headlines, and head-shaking moments in the courts.

Anita Hill: badass for the ages. Her story of publicly fighting back against workplace sexual harassment during the U.S. Supreme Court confirmation hearings of Justice Clarence Thomas has resurfaced in an HBO movie, bringing with it a renewed platform for Hill to remind the country of how far we have yet to go for true gender justice.

The Texas attorney general who is still investigating Planned Parenthood has just been sued by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for securities fraud.

North Dakota lawmakers put taxpayers on the hook for $245,000, paid to the lawyers representing the only abortion clinic in the state in the fight over the “heartbeat ban” that would have banned abortion as early as six weeks.

Attorneys for the state of Arkansas urged a federal judge not to expand a lawsuit challenging efforts to kick Planned Parenthood out of the Medicaid program to all Medicaid recipients in the state. Instead, they want individual women to bring their own lawsuits challenging denials of reproductive health-care services.

Roe is gone. The chaos is just beginning.

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An Alabama minister’s lawsuit challenging the state’s sex-offender registry can move forward. The minister claims the law that makes it illegal to house two or more offenders within 300 feet of each other violates his First Amendment religious rights to minister to his flock.

Senate Republicans can’t seem to hold hearings to confirm an exceptionally qualified Supreme Court nominee Merrick Garland, on the grounds that doing so just wouldn’t be good for democracy. But they can apparently confirm lower-court appointments.

A federal appeals court has tossed out a challenge to Utah’s polygamy ban; the lawsuit was brought by the family featured on the reality TV show Sister Wives. Jonathan Turley, the attorney-pundit who represents the polygamists, said his clients were considering appealing the decision, possibly to the Roberts Court.

Thousands of day cares in this country are run by religious organizations with little to no government oversight. The results are as horrific as you might imagine.

A North Carolina judge ordered this woman to cover up while breastfeeding during a court appearance, calling the woman “ridiculous” for thinking she could feed her child in public.