Human Rights and Sexual Orientation

An Expansion of the Equality Doctrine

Human Rights and Sexual Orientation : An Expansion of the Equality Doctrine - Elaine Hensle


When the seminal documents of human rights were written, no thought was given to the inclusion of sexual orientation minorities. As the movement for equality of orientation expands and the existing human rights paradigm becomes increasingly challenged by feminist critique, the question is growing of where sexual orientation belongs within human rights. Attempts at including sexual orientation have largely been through the right to privacy. Through an examination of American jurisprudence and changes in American and European legislation, this paper argues that the equality doctrine can and should be extended to include sexual orientation.


The question of sexual orientation presents one of the greatest challenges to the human rights doctrine of equality. While the majority is able to envision itself as the minority across other dimensions of discrimination, this has not generally been the case with sexual orientation; sexual orientation minorities, meaning gay men, lesbians, bisexuals, asexuals, trans- and intersex individuals and the other categories emerging under the more encompassing category of queer are not in the majority anywhere.* There is no society where heterosexuals receive treatment as a sexual minority. This has prevented the heteronormative population from recognizing that its orientation is only one of many. Further, this refusal has contributed to a trend toward hate crimes that in 1988 prompted Mario Cuomo, then mayor of New York City, to comment that based on statistics, sexual orientation minorities made a stronger case for hate crime legislation in New York City than any other group.[1] Due to the rise in overall hate crimes, the US Congress passed the Hate Crimes Statistics Act in 1990, including sexual orientation as one of the categories of hate bias. In 2004 alone there were 1,482 victims of hate crimes motivated by sexual orientation.[2] However, it should be remembered that these statistics only account for reported incidents; the majority is believed to go unreported because of fear of further victimization. Many other sources have detailed the long, depressing history of violence against sexual orientation minorities, and that is not the goal of this paper. Instead, these brief statements are offered only to create a context in which to frame the debate surrounding sexual orientation and equality.

* The terms sexual orientation minorities, homosexuals and queers are used interchangeably throughout the paper as to avoid the overuse of the longwinded, but politically correct, terminology “sexual orientation minority.” While the use of the term “queer”may seem unusual to those not familiar with the movement, the community or the literature, it is widely accepted and used to indicate any person whose sexual orientation is outside the dominant heterosexual paradigm and is challenging the oppressive social/political structures of heteronormative society. In the academic realm, Andrew Parker has defined queer as “a non-gender-specific rubric that defines itself diacritically not against heterosexuality but against the normative,”while Michael Warner uses the broader definition of “resistance to regimes of the normal.” Parker and Warner quoted from

As statistics continued to be collected and the queer movement grew in strength, nations were forced to recognize the plight of sexual orientation minorities both inside and outside their borders. The first recognition of foreign oppression of the queer community abroad came in 1993 when Canada established the right of homosexuals to claim asylum.[3] The United States followed suit the next year. Today, the two countries are joined by the United Kingdom, Israel and Australia. This step merely serves to recognize an existing international dilemma but does nothing to correct it.

The United Nations has long been silent. The first openly homosexual individual did not speak in the UN until 1992. He indicted the organization for its lack of representation and acknowledgement of the homosexual community.[4] It took eleven more years for the first resolution explicitly mentioning sexual orientation to be brought forward when Brazil brought a resolution on “Human Rights and Sexual Orientation”to the 59th meeting of the Commission on Human Rights.[5] Unfortunately, the Commission continues to table the issue, refusing to act against the coalition of the Vatican and many Third World nations. It appears that the UN’s doctrine of equality as entrenched in the jurisprudence of human rights has reached its stumbling block. Sexual orientation minorities do not qualify.

Over the course of the following pages, this paper challenges this belief. Beginning with the concepts of equality and minority status, it examines the historical evolution of equality to include new minority groups and traces developments in American jurisprudence and legislation as well as the regional legislation of the European Union. Through this examination, it establishes grounds for the expansion of the equality doctrine to sexual orientation minorities.


Although a complete review of the history of the philosophical debate surrounding the equality of man is outside the scope of this paper, the philosophical origins of equality and their influence over the legal progression are essential to an argument based on the idea of equality itself. To this end, this section recognizes two of the prominent philosophers of equality, their opinions and their influence in the beginnings of human rights legislation before moving on to a discussion of the equality doctrine in the international human rights legal norms that emerged in the 20th century and the definition of equality itself. This is by no means to be an authoritative review of the debate, but merely a glance at the works of two men who greatly shaped the literature and the legal texts that have followed.

Primary among philosophers of the rights of man is John Locke, who developed the theory of the natural rights of man, including life, liberty and property, in the 17th century. In his Second Treaties of Government, he argued that all men are born “…with a title to perfect freedom and uncontrolled enjoyment of all rights and privileges of the law of nature equally with any other man or number of men in the world…”[6] From this conclusion he followed with an argument that all men are therefore equal before all legal and government institutions, and that the institutions are established to further the substantive appreciation of man’s natural rights by all men without discrimination. This view greatly influenced the drafting of the Virginia Declaration of Rights, considered by many to be the first bill of rights of the modern era. Its first article stated:

That all men are by nature equally free and independent, and have certain inherent rights, of which, when they enter into a state of society, they cannot, by any compact, deprive or divest their posterity; namely, the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety.[7]

Written in 1776, the Virginia Declaration then had a great impact on the Declaration of Independence drafted later that year, as well as the Declaration of the Rights of Man and the Citizen. Even much later the influence of the wording of this preliminary declaration - and through it that of John Locke - is seen in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which will be discussed in more detail shortly.

Following on the influence of Locke and the events of the 18th century that colored his own life, the American Thomas Paine took a more legalistic approach to the topic of human rights. In his 1791 work, The Rights of Man, Paine came to three conclusions focusing on the equality of man and the nature of political associations. Like Locke, he argued that all men were born equal, but he further stated that they always continue to be equal.[8] The legal nature of his work focuses on the direct links of man’s rights and equality and the functions of political associations. First among these, he argues that the end goal of any such association is the preservation of these rights and resistance of oppression. Later works even went so far as to proscribe schemes of reform for the British government. Paine’s influence was found mainly on the personal level of such individuals as Abraham Lincoln and George Washington. The wide dispersion of Paine’s works incited many contemporary elites, like the latter, to actions that Paine perceived to be grave injustice. Paine viewed government as only a necessary evil to preserve the natural freedoms of man.

From this philosophical basis, equality has entered the human rights dialogue as a cornerstone to the substantive appreciation of all other rights, for if a person is not treated equally as others, then it must be assumed that at some level one of that individual’s rights is being infringed. As such, virtually every international, regional and national legal document (be they charters, conventions, constitutions or named in some other manner) begins with a statement of the premise of equality of all persons. In the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), which began the proliferation of international human rights in the modern era, this finds its expression in first clause of the preamble:

Whereas recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world…[9]

And then in Article 1:

All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.[10]

Article 2, which outlines the basis for antidiscrimination legislation, will be discussed in the next section. Through the auspices of the UDHR, the same belief in the equality of men has been incorporated in the other UN Conventions and the founding documents of regional human rights bodies.

This recognition of equality as the key to the enjoyment and enforcement of human rights creates an important question. What is equality? Before it is possible to discuss the extension of equality to a new community or examine its appreciation by any community, the essence of equality must be understood. At the very basic level, equality can be understood as treating like situations in a similar manner and conversely, not treating different situations in a similar manner.[11] The extensive jurisprudence on the subject illustrates that in practice this is not as simple as it sounds. Equality requires that individuals step away from their own personal prejudices and assess a situation in its pure form. For example, an employer should assess applicants based solely on their qualifications, as an ideal meritocracy dictates, and without regard to differentiating characteristics such as gender, race, sexual orientation or national origin. This must be done to the extent that the reason an applicant is chosen has nothing to do with anything other than they were best qualified for the position. Likewise, employers should offer equal salaries and benefits to employees who are employed in similar situations. Conversely, this does not mean treating different situations similarly. The doctrine of equality is not a promise of every individual receiving equal rewards in life; instead, it is a guarantee that every individual will be treated the same when he is in similar situations, such that no one is privileged over another person for any reason other than incomparable status. This qualified status would exist in a comparison such as that of an individual holding a doctorate to one with no college education; the individuals involved are not in similar situations due to the divergence of their education background and as such should not be treated similarly.

Minority Status

The difficulties in implementation of the equality doctrine have led to the designation of certain groups within global society as minorities and as such enjoying certain protections of antidiscrimination. This has manifested itself in what are deemed antidiscrimination clauses included in international, regional and national human rights documents. Under the UDHR, this takes the guise of the above-mentioned article 2, which reads:

Everyone is entitled to the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration without distinction of any kind, such as race, color, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status…[12]

This has provided the traditional format for antidiscrimination clauses and contains two elements illustrative of the forward-thinking mentality that can be attributed to the drafters. Though the clause contains a list of categories, it is prefaced by the “such as”and concluded with “other status,”which indicate that the list is not meant to be definitive but can adapt as the political culture evolves or new categories subject to discrimination arise. A simple glance at the list also shows that the categories are not ones that would by themselves give rise to an incomparable situation. The purpose of these clauses and the recognition of minority groups in general is to heighten the scrutiny of judicial proceedings, as the terms are defined in American legislation. Further insight into the purpose behind the granting of minority status - or suspect classification - can be found in the criteria used to term whether a group qualifies for the designation.

For simplicity of discussion, the American mechanism for suspect classification is the only one discussed here, but the general mechanism is similar across regions. Under the US Supreme Court there are seven requirements to be satisfied for designation as a suspect classification:

  1. they have suffered a history of intentional unequal treatment;
  2. the classification imposes on them a stigma that brands them as inferior;
  3. they have been the object of widespread prejudice and hostility;
  4. the unequal treatment they have suffered has often resulted from stereotyped assumptions about their abilities;
  5. they constitute a ‘discrete and insular minority’ whose political participation has been seriously curtailed because of prejudice;
  6. the basis of the classification in an immutable (and often high visible) personal characteristic that each such individual possesses;
  7. the characteristic is irrelevant to their ability to perform in or contribute to society (and to any legitimate public purpose).[13]

From these stipulations it can be deduced that suspect classification is meant to provide further protection against discrimination for members of groups that have historically suffered due to a shared, immutable characteristic. The characteristic in question is one that is part of the very definition of the group but has no bearing on their abilities otherwise; hence, it would not be possible to base an argument for incomparable situations on the said characteristic alone. As such, distinctions made between similar situations involving members of this group are clearly discriminatory and likely based upon a prejudice of the offending party.

With the above definition in mind, it is now possible to ask if sexual orientation minorities, i.e., any individuals identifying outside the dominant heterosexual paradigm, qualify as a suspect classification. Two cases of American jurisprudence will be discussed in detailed below, so here the discussion is only to form general support for the case that sexual orientation is indeed a suspect classification. The first four criteria can easily be satisfied by a cursory examination of the historical treatment of members of this minority group. Such an examination would serve to elaborate on the general pattern of discrimination and violence directed toward persons known to belong (or suspected of belonging to) a non-dominant category of sexual orientation.

Though queers are not without political power, as evidenced by the proliferation of interest groups with a sexual orientation focus or branch, their ability to exert political power remains severely limited. Stigmas attached to identification with this category have long prevented politicians from openly identifying as members of this minority group and has inhibited the efforts of openly queer candidates seeking election. Internationally, this can be seen in the number of national level representatives in four large democracies: the United States, three members of Congress; Australia, two senators; the United Kingdom, 15 members of Parliament (including 2 members of the Scottish Parliament and 1 member of the European Parliament); and Canada, six in the two legislative houses.[14] Queers are more underrepresented and exert less political influence than either racial minorities or women, the two groups that have served as the basis for the suspect classification doctrine.

Having satisfied criterion five, numbers six and seven focus on the quality of the shared characteristic itself. The immutability of homosexuality is debated in scientific circles, but this paper follows from the belief that it has widely, if not popularly, become accepted as a fact of nature through observation of homosexual activity in other species if nothing else. Criteria seven is the same as that under the equality doctrine: that differences in individual characteristics only matter if they establish an incomparable situation or status. As sexual orientation by itself does impact the other aspects of comparison, such as intellect or physical strength, it satisfies the seventh criterion and fulfills the requirements for suspect classification. Legally, the mere satisfaction of these requirements is not enough to guarantee the group receives this designation; this depends on the prevailing culture of jurisprudence.

Extending the Equality Doctrine

The basic statements of the equality doctrine were written long before the more inclusive statements of nondiscrimination. The evolution of that brought the world from the first to the second is well-documented. A comprehensive discussion of this process is outside the scope of this paper. Instead, a superficial reminder of the dynamic nature of the equality doctrine will serve to reinforce the changing ethos of global jurisprudence.

The pattern of the equality doctrine followed one akin to recognition of individual citizenship, and with it the right to vote, as the earliest statements of equality among men had a very specific group of men in mind: white men of property. As times changed through economic development patterns and men began to make a living on activities that were not based on land, this was extended to all white men of a certain age. Still, the distinctions of white and male remained. Through political upheaval and wars of liberation, this was extended to both men of other races and eventually, women. However, these groups did not, and arguably still have not, achieved full equality. The process of reaching this status has been more difficult than the passage of a law or amendment recognizing members of these categories as individuals of equal worth as all others. Recognition of these difficulties is manifested in the United Nations International Conventions on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination and of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, respectively. Over the years, other groups suffering from discrimination due to a shared characteristic have also been added to the list of internationally recognized suspect categories such as religious minorities, indigenous people, children, persons with disabilities, the aged and migrant workers, among others. This illustrates recognition within the international community that the equality doctrine and the concept of suspect classification under it are not static concepts. Instead, they evolve with the political culture as new categories emerge and show the need for recognition under law. One of the necessary steps to become an internationally recognized suspect category is recognition at the national level by several states; to this end, two cases from the US Federal Court system will now be examined.

In 1985, a non-tenured high school guidance counselor named Marjorie Rowland, who was suspended from her position and did not have her contract renewed, filed suit in US federal court on the basis of her Fourteenth Amendment right to equality. In the initial decision by a trial jury it was found that “[s]he was discharged merely because she is bisexual and revealed this fact to acquaintances at her workplace.”[15] This decision was then overturned by the Sixth Circuit and appealed to the Supreme Court, where it was denied certiorari. However, the dissent from this decision written by Justice William Brennan, joined by Justice Thurgood Marshall, offers broader implications for the jurisprudence of homosexuality. Throughout his decision, Brennan relies on the doctrine of equality and equates the treatment of the petitioner as necessitating a heightened level of scrutiny due to suspect classifications. In particular, he takes issue with the denial of certiorari:

[b]ecause determination of the appropriate constitutional analysis to apply in such a case continues to puzzle lower courts and because this Court has never addressed the issues presented…[16]

He further argues for extension of suspect classification to queers on the basis of Justice Burger’s dissent in Plyler v. Doe in which Burger wrote: “The Equal Protection Clause protects against arbitrary and irrational classifications, and against invidious discrimination stemming from prejudice and hostility.”[17] From this Brennan follows with his own judgment of the prevailing situation of queers:

Under this rubric, discrimination against homosexuals or bisexuals based solely on their sexual preference raises significant constitutional questions under both prongs of our settled equal protection analysis.[18]

Though he writes in dissent, Brennan starts a precedent for other judges to follow as they extend the doctrine of equality to encompass homosexuality. His reliance on the equality doctrine more than the First Amendment protection of free speech signaled the beginning of a transition in judicial thinking, creating a basis for sexual orientation as a classification analogous to race or sex.

In a 1989 case, Watkins v. the US Army, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit continued the transition begun by Brennan, solidifying the designation of sexual orientation as a suspect classification. Watkins had been discharged and refused re-enlistment despite exemplary service due to his homosexual status, which he had stated at the time of his enlistment. The court found that “[t]his is a case where equity cries out and demands that the Army be estopped from refusing to reenlist Watkins on the basis of his homosexuality.”[19] The concurring opinion of Judge Norris goes further stating plainly that “Watkins is entitled to relief because the Army denied him the equal protection of the laws by discharging and refusing to re-enlist him solely on the basis of his homosexuality.”[20]

Norris continues through his opinion to make distinctions between homosexual acts and homosexual orientation. These distinctions are important, as under US law at the time, homosexual acts such as sodomy remained largely illegal, but a person’s homosexual orientation provided no basis for discrimination or assumption of participation in illegal acts. The portion of the Army regulations in question were found to target homosexuality itself, taking statements of orientation as prima facie evidence that the individual had engaged in illegal activity and vice versa that statements of having engaged in such activities necessitated the holding of a particular sexual orientation.[21] This reading of the regulations in question enables Norris to find that

[i]n sum, the discrimination against homosexual orientation under these regulations is about as complete as one could imagine. The regulations make any act or statement that might conceivably indicate a homosexual orientation evidence of homosexuality; that evidence is in turn weighed against any evidence of a heterosexual orientation. It is thus clear in answer to my threshold equal protection inquiry that the regulations directly burden the class consisting of persons of homosexual orientation.[22]

This firmly places the question of sexual orientation in the category of suspect classification. In order to reaffirm his argument for heightened scrutiny with regard to this category, Norris provides a point by point analysis of the seven aforementioned criteria, finding each of them satisfied and designating sexual orientation as a suspect classification worthy of heightened scrutiny.[23] In doing so, he refutes a previously held belief that the Supreme Court decision in the 1986 Bowers v. Hardwick challenge to an anti-sodomy law precluded the designation of sexual orientation as a suspect classification; as he indicated, the basis of the Hardwick claim was not equal protection, leaving the question of suspect classification outwith the scope of the decision. This decision clarified the basis for suspect classification judgment and level of scrutiny due to cases of sexual orientation and equality. The ramifications of the case continue as Judge Norris’ opinion is still cited for its thorough examination of the requirements for suspect classification.

National and Regional Legislation: The United States and the European Union

As much as changes in jurisprudence influence the formal thinking about sexual orientation, they can do little for the instances of discrimination that go unrecognized and are not brought before a court for adjudication. These instances must be protected against by legislation at the local, national, regional, or international level. Since the day-to-day activities of companies and individuals outside a specific issue-public often take place without information about courtroom proceedings, it is necessary to examine where nations stand with respect to the possibilities for equal protection as outlined above.

The United States has a very mixed record with regard to the rights of sexual orientation minorities. In some respects the record is quite positive while in others some would call it appalling. Twenty-two states maintain sodomy laws on the books and in five of these the law applies only to homosexual couples, but in June 2003, the Supreme Court ruled that such laws are unconstitutional. Still, the remaining states have not deemed it worthwhile to repeal their constitution-violating laws. While only four states prevent homosexuals from adopting children, all except for one have laws against same-sex marriage.** Of the remaining 49 states, 39 do not recognize out-of-state same-sex marriage licenses, a recognition they happily extend to opposite-sex marriage licenses. And 19 states amended their constitutions to ban gay marriage as part of the 2004 election cycle.[24] This in many ways reflects an overriding homophobia among the general American populace; however, this should not be seen as forbidding any forward movement by the national government. As education increases and people become more aware of the plight of sexual orientation minorities, attitudes are slowly beginning to change. This is evidenced by the national outrage at the brutal murder of Wyoming college student Matthew Shepard in 1998, which facilitated the process of passing comprehensive hate crime bills.[25] To this end, September 2005 saw the passage of a comprehensive hate crimes bill by both the House and the Senate.[26] The version passed by the House even included explicit language inclusive of transgender individuals, a category often ignored in discussions of sexual orientation. Though the US still lacks Constitutional-level legislation for sexual orientation minorities, changes within national legislation and jurisprudence over the past five years show a growing political culture moving in that direction. However, any momentum will have to contend with large pockets of homophobia remaining in the country.

**These statistics should be understood to reflect only the status of same-sex marriage in the United State, not civil unions, which exist as a legal mechanism outside of marriage. Civil unions create a status of not single, yet not married, and confirm selected benefits of partnership equal to that of married spouses in some states. However, due to the nationwide Defense of Marriage Act [DOMA], the federal government is under no obligation to recognize civil unions. Currently, Massachusetts is the only state which recognizes same-sex marriages, while civil unions are possible in six states and Washington, D.C. Civil union statistics from Lambda Legal,

Lessons for the United States may come from the other side of the Atlantic, where the European Union (EU) has been working on expanding its doctrine of equality through antidiscrimination legislation for the past ten years. While the original European Convention provided very minimal protection for sexual orientation minorities under the concept of fundamental freedom, more recent legislation has steadily improved upon this beginning.[27] In the 1997 Treaty of Amsterdam the discrimination clause reads: “discrimination is prohibited on the grounds of sex, racial or ethnic origin, religion or belief, disability, age, or sexual orientation.”[28] This was further strengthened with the passage of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union in 2000. Article 21 of the Charter contains the most all-encompassing antidiscrimination clauses prohibiting

discrimination based on any ground such as sex, race, color, ethnic or social origin, genetic features, language, religion or belief, political or any other opinion, membership of a national minority, property, birth, disability, age or sexual orientation.[29]

The inclusion of sexual orientation in this clause is an example of top-down legislation at the regional level. At the time the clause was written, the majority of EU member-states did not have similar legislations protecting sexual orientation minorities from discrimination. However, the Charter was widely accepted and helped member-states with reluctant publics change their laws. An analogous strategy may be applied by the United States in prompting change from reluctant states and citizens. Passage of legislation at the national level while requiring a lot of political capital may spur needed reforms at lower levels of government in a shorter period of time than would be likely if the reforms had to come from the bottom.


As the above analysis shows, there is room in the equality doctrine for sexual orientation minorities. They do not have to rely solely on fundamental freedoms, rights to expression or privacy, or whatever names the corresponding national, regional or international guarantees take. Further, the precedents set by the American judicial system indicate that sex discrimination clauses do not need to be broadly interpreted to include sexual orientation. Quite to the contrary, sexual orientation can and should be afforded a separate designation of suspect classification distinct from that afforded to sex.

The path that activists have been taking to overturn laws to legalize homosexual activity should continue, as it is a key element in changing existing prejudice, but it is by no means the only avenue available. Passage of a comprehensive hate crimes bill in the United States that was even inclusive of the transgender community shows that the masses may be compelled into reform by the elite. European experience supports this at a broader level with the inclusion of sexual orientation in the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU despite the lack of inclusive legislation in many member states. A similar process could be pursued by likeminded central governments to quicken the pace of reform in their jurisdictions. Another path that must be continued is education. Once people are able to identify with an individual member of a minority group, it helps to mitigate existing prejudice that even the passage of law is unable to achieve.

An increase in action at the national and regional levels should push the international community in the form of the UN to take action. As stated at the beginning of this paper, the UN has been resisting making a statement on the rights of sexual orientation minorities since the topic was introduced by Brazil in 2003. This situation cannot be ignored. With its goal of promoting equality and peace for all citizens, the UN cannot afford to let the discrimination of sexual orientation minorities pass without comment. Lessons from both the limited measures of the United States and the more extensive ones of the European Union should guide the future efforts of the UN. The resistance of a minority of nations should be overlooked in favor of the citizens suffering within those nations and the UN should take a more progressive stance than it has been willing to do thus far. In an extension of President Harry S Truman’s statement, the UN should state that “When we say human, we mean all humans.”30 In a time of embracing diversity and democracy, no group should be excluded from the doctrine of equality simply as the consequence of an immutable characteristic. The possibility of extension exists; the door has been opened at both the national and regional levels. The only thing remaining is international action.

Notes & References

  1. Lambda, 10 Jan. 2006
  2. “Crime in the United States 2004,”Hate Crime, 7 Jan. 2006
  3. “Australia sets world precedent for gay asylum? Not at all,”Fathers for Life, 17 January 2006
  4. Douglas Sanders, “Getting Lesbian and Gay Issues on the International Human Rights Agenda,”Human Rights Quarterly 18, no. 1 (1996): p. 67.
  5. Human Rights Campaign, 12 Jan. 2006
  6. John Locke, The Second Treatise of Government (Indianapolis, IN: The Bobbs-Merrill Company, Inc., 1952) p. 48.
  7. “The Virginia Declaration of Rights,”Gunston Hall, 13 January 2006
  8. Thomas Paine, The Rights of Man (London: Everyman Press, 1969) p. 43.
  9. Walter Laquer and Barry Rubin, eds., The Human Rights Reader (New York: Meridian Books, 1990) p. 197.
  10. Ibid., p. 198.
  11. Rhona K. M. Smith, Textbook on International Human Rights (Oxford: Oxford UP, 2005) p. 185.
  12. Laquer and Rubin, p. 198.
  13. Robert Wintemute, Sexual Orientation and Human Rights: The United States Constitution, the European Convention and the Canadian Charter (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1997) p. 62-3.
  14. “Homosexual Rights around the World,”International Gay & Lesbian Human Rights Commission (11 December 2004), Brussels, Belgium, 12 December 2005
  15. Rowland v. Mad River Local School District, No. 470 U.S. 1009 (US Supreme Court, 22 April 1985) p. 2.
  16. Ibid., p. 1.
  17. Ibid., p. 3.
  18. Ibid., p. 3.
  19. Watkins v. US Army, No. 875 F.2d 699 (U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, 3 May 1989) p. 11.
  20. Ibid., p. 12.
  21. Ibid., p. 15.
  22. Ibid., p. 16.
  23. Ibid., p. 17-21.
  24. All cited statistics from “Homosexual Rights Around the World”unless otherwise indicated.
  25. Lambda.
  26. Human Rights Campaign.
  27. Wintemute, p. 142.
  28. Quoted in Smith, p. 185.
  29. Quoted in Smith, p. 186.
  30. Lambda.
ELAIN M. HENSLE is an M.A. candidate at the Bologna Center, pursuing a degree in conflict management and international economics with a specialization in quantitative methods and economic theory.