CEO's Note

Find Your State

Know the laws in your state that protect LGBT people and people living with HIV.
Rachel B. Tiven

Brave New World

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When Lambda Legal began in 1973, the far horizon of what our founders Bill Thom, Michael Lavery and Cary Boggan could imagine was decriminalization.

Bill and Mike and I have talked about this period. Their goal was for us not to be criminals, and to be allowed to work and love and serve openly as a result.

When the national gathering of LGBT lawyers first met more than 30 years ago, Lambda Legal and our peers called it the Ad Hoc Sodomy Law Task Force. Now called the LGBT Civil Rights Litigators Roundtable, we met before the inauguration, more than 100 lawyers strong.

We changed the world, and we are not going back.

We are now on defense, no question about it. The shift from a presidential administration that embraced us to a cabinet stocked with homophobes is a rude awakening— literally. Our new president is a bully, and proud of it. He may say he exempts LGBT people from his disdain—at least those of us who aren't immigrants, women, Muslim, or disabled—but the choices he is making say otherwise. Some of the attacks on us will be direct and obvious. Some will be hidden, until Lambda Legal ferrets them out.

We are not afraid. Our equality does not depend on executive orders or agency guidance, though we will fight hard to keep them. Our equality rests on the Constitution and the laws of the land, and decades of case law protecting us.

We know this infrastructure is solid. We built it.

Even in these times, we will continue to move forward. We are too out, too proud not to. Our strength lies not only in the Constitution and the rule of law, but the broad support of the American people. Our success belongs not only to LGBT people, but to our family and our friends, and the millions of Americans who share our pride and love and our wish for a more equal society.

We are your lawyers and we are here to defend you.

Rachel B. Tiven,

CEO, Lambda Legal