Lambda Legal Serves Supreme Court Dish for Bon Foster Dinner

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September 10, 2002

(Chicago, September 10, 2002) - Gay America’s civil rights battle in the U.S. Supreme Court sets the backdrop for two nationally-known journalists who will speak at the October 25 Bon Foster dinner, a benefit for the Midwest Office of Lambda Legal, the civil rights organization announced today.

Joyce Murdoch, managing editor for politics of The National Journal, and her life partner Deb Price, columnist for the Detroit News are leading authorities on gay rights argued before the Supreme Court. They will share insights on the personal and political dynamics that shaped the Supreme Court’s attitudes toward America’s gay and lesbian community. The couple, co-authors of the book Courting Justice, Gay men and Lesbians v. the Supreme Court (Basic Books, 2001), will speak at the Bon Foster benefit, Friday, October 25, at the Hotel Intercontinental.

“Price and Murdoch’s address at the Bon Foster dinner couldn’t be more timely,” said Mona Noriega, Midwest Regional Director, Lambda Legal. “In October the Supreme Court will decide whether to hear Lambda Legal’s case challenging the constitutionality of the Texas ‘Homosexual Conduct Law.’ The case will determine a basic tenet in American civil rights that upholds Americans’ right to privacy in their own homes.

“Laws like the Texas law criminalize private intimacy, but only when it involves lesbians and gay men,” Noriega said. “They are used to justify a range of bigotry and discrimination against gay individuals.”

Lambda Legal is the leading organization that challenges the Supreme Court to recognize the equality and civil rights of American gays, lesbians, individuals with HIV and AIDs, and transgender people. In the last few years, Lambda Legal has gone in front of the Supreme Court to help protect the rights of an HIV-positive woman whose dentist refused to fill her cavity (Bragdon, Randon, D.M.D v. Sidney Abbott, et al.), and a young man who, after 12 years as a distinguished member, was expelled from the Boy Scouts of America solely because he was gay (Boy Scouts of America v. Dale), and a stroke survivor who faced losing employment discrimination protection if she applied for Social Security benefits (Cleveland v. Policy Management Systems).

Prior to joining The National Journal, Murdoch served as an editor and reporter at The Washington Post for more than ten years. Price is author of the first nationally syndicated column in mainstream journalism that explores life from a gay perspective. Her prize-winning weekly column is distributed to more than 100 newspapers and is available online at Murdoch and Price also co-authored And Say Hi to Joyce: America’s First Gay Column Comes Out. A couple since 1985, they live in Takoma Park, Maryland.

Lambda Legal is a national organization committed to achieving full recognition of the civil rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, the transgendered, and people with HIV or AIDS through impact litigation, education, and public policy work.

Contact: Mona Noriega, 312/663-4413



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