The latest issue of the California Supreme Court Historical Society’s Newsletter is now available.
Our lead story is a riveting account of In re Marriage written by Court of Appeal Justice Therese M. Stewart. As a deputy San Francisco city attorney, Stewart led the team of lawyers arguing for marriage equality from the trial court up through the California Supreme Court. Stewart’s insider account, ten years after the Supreme Court found Proposition 8’s ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional, is an extraordinarily compelling read, mixing law, politics and her personal story.
Also in the spring/summer issue: Los Angeles appellate attorney Bob Wolfe continues his delightful exploration of the legal tales housed in some of downtown Los Angeles’ iconic buildings. Part 2 of the Downtown L.A. Legal History Walking Tour recounts cases from the early- to mid-20th century involving housing restrictions, obstruction of justice, Raymond Chandler, Edward Bellamy and more.
The issue also contains an account by San Francisco attorney Jim Brosnahan of his role in the California Supreme Court’s 1982 decision upholding the Victim’s Bill of Rights. To Brosnahan, the voter-passed initiative signaled a rejection of 1960s concerns with defendants’ rights and a move toward tougher criminal justice prosecution. Brosnahan, a former federal prosecutor, and his friend Ephraim Margolin challenged the measure, also known as Proposition 8, arguing that it violated the state constitutional provision barring multi-subject initiatives. Their loss and the measure’s passage ushered in a new law-and-order era in California and elsewhere.
We take note of the passing in November 2017 of legendary U.S. Appeals Court Justice Harry Pregerson with a moving account from his grandson, Bradley Pregerson, a deputy city attorney with the City of Los Angeles. Finally, San Francisco attorney Paul D. Fogel reviews The Case of Rose Bird: Gender, Politics and the California Courts by Kathleen A. Cairns. Fogel, who clerked for Chief Justice Bird, agrees with Cairns that the controversy over Bird, who lost her seat in the 1986 retention election along with two other justices, was the “opening salvo” in the “ongoing, bitter, and expensive war over control of the nation’s judicial system.”
We hope you enjoy this issue and as always, we welcome your comments at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For further information about the California Supreme Court Historical Society, go to htttp://www.cschs.org
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CALIFORNIA SUPREME COURT HISTORICAL SOCIETY
Fresno, CA 93726