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What was the outcome of the Supreme Court case Reed v. Reed, and how has it affected...
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The case of Reed v. Reed is an important case in the law of sexual discrimination. It is important because it represents the first time that the Supreme Court of the United States ever ruled that the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment can be used to prevent discrimination on the basis of sex.
The Reeds were a married couple who had separated. While they were separated, their son died. The two parents then came into conflict over who would be named as the administrator of the son’s estate. At that time, Idaho (the state where the Reeds lived) law specified that men were to be preferred over women when there was conflict over who should serve in a role such as that of administrator of an estate. This law, in effect, discriminated against women, making it clear that they were not equal to men when it came to being named to such positions.
In Reed, the Supreme Court unanimously ruled that the Idaho law was unconstitutional. They ruled that there could be no arbitrary discrimination on the basis of sex. This was a landmark case in that it was the first to ever hold such a discriminatory law to be unconstitutional. It has affected women’s rights positively in the US because it set the precedent that women could not be discriminated against arbitrarily. However, it did not have as sweeping an impact as some might have hoped. It did not give laws that discriminate on the basis of sex the same kind of scrutiny that laws based on race get. Thus, this case had an important impact, but it was not as impactful as women’s rights activists might have hoped.
Posted by pohnpei397 on January 30, 2014 at 11:37 PM (Answer #1)
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Reed vs. Reed is the first decision in a century of 14th amendment litigation to rule that statutory gender discrimination violated the equal protection clause.They ruled that there could be no arbitrary discrimination on the basis of sex. The effect that it had on women was that women could not be discriminated.
Posted by Yojana_Thapa on January 31, 2014 at 2:51 PM (Answer #2)
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