The action came on the same day President Donald Trump tweeted that he would ban transgender people from serving in the military, an abrupt reversal of an Obama administration decision.
On Wednesday, the Department of Justice filed an amicus brief saying Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 does not protect gay Americans from sexual orientation-based discrimination at work. The law itself does not say that.
The interpretation of the law is unclear, particularly regarding how it applies to gay people. It never embraced the argument for sexual orientation, but at least during the past year, it hadn't taken an explicit stance against such legal cases.
The case is already shaping up as a major test, closely watched by both LGBT activist groups and evangelical religious organizations, which have filed their own friend-of-court briefs. It's not unusual for other parties to chime into cases like this. It didn't have to intervene; it chose to do so.
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For a list of eligible items and guidelines for the tax free weekend, go to the Mississippi Department of Revenue's website. That grew to 19 states with the special exemptions in 2010, but there are only 16 now, according to the Tax Foundation.
The US Justice Department on Wednesday urged the federal appeals court in Manhattan to reject a lawsuit by a former skydiving instructor who claimed he was sacked for being gay.
Urging the Second Circuit Court not to change its mind on the issue, the new filing argued that the Circuit Court's "well-established position correctly reflects the plain meaning of the statute [Title VII], the overwhelming weight and reasoning of the case law, and the clear congressional ratification of that interpretation". Two executors of his estate have replaced him as plaintiffs in Zarda v. Altitude Express.
It adds: "The essential element of sex discrimination under Title VII is that employees of one sex must be treated worse than similarly situated employees of the other sex, and sexual orientation discrimination simply does not have that effect". The full court agreed to reconsider the case, however, after another appellate circuit, the Seventh, ruled in a separate case that Title VII does indeed cover sexual orientation.
"Although the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) enforces Title VII against private employers. the EEOC is not speaking for the United States and its position about the scope of Title VII is entitled to no deference beyond its power to persuade", the Justice Department's brief continued. Looking at it another way, if a woman were a man dating a woman she would not face discrimination; therefore she is facing discrimination because she is a woman.
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She could not sustain an argument that she was targeted because she was a woman per se, but rather that it was because she did not conform to the partnership's stereotypes about women.
Congress's only intention, the brief contended, was to protect against discrimination based upon the traditional view of sex - that is, treating individuals differently due to their biological sex.
They have repeatedly focused on three arguments about sexual orientation discrimination ... that such discrimination (1) involves impermissible sex-based considerations, (2) constitutes gender-based associational discrimination, and (3) relies on sex stereotyping.
It reflected judgments about how men and women should dress and behave, with whom they should have sex, whether they should or shouldn't wear makeup, and so forth.
Israel removes metal detectors from holy site entrance
A crowd of Jordanians gathered at one of the funerals on Tuesday and called on their government to close the Israeli Embassy. However, the director of al-Aqsa Najeh Bakirat said that keeping the cameras does not satisfy Palestinians' demands.