When we are given a new law, it’s almost always a big deal. Maybe the law is changing, maybe it’s just a new way to make a living, or maybe it’s just a new way to do something we’ve always wanted to do. Regardless of how the law is explained to us, it always has the biggest impact on our lives.
The best law I have ever seen is the one created by a woman named Mary. Mary was a slave in the mid-eighteenth century. She had a slave who she loved and wanted to free, but it was difficult. Mary was constantly at odds with her owner, and the only way to free the slave was to prove the slave’s innocence. Mary proved the slave could not be innocent, but she was imprisoned and tortured by her owner until she admitted her guilt.
It is probably not a coincidence that Mary, the founding of the US Constitution, was a woman and was herself a slave. She was the first woman to be elected to a state legislature for New York. And, of course, she was the first one to write the bill that made it possible for the federal courts to have jurisdiction over slaves.
Mary also created the legal system that allows African Americans to be citizens in this country. Her writings made it possible for people to be granted citizenship. You can read some of her writings at the Women’s Rights Archives at the National Constitution Center.
I’ve been a judge and jury member for many years, and I’m still amazed by how little I know about the law. I just did a quick search on Google, and found this recent article about the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to decide whether it is appropriate to require women to obtain permission from their husbands before they have sex.
I think it is totally right to require wives to obtain permission before having sex with their husbands, but it also makes perfect sense that there are some married women who don’t want their husbands to know that they have sex with others. For instance, I know a married woman who doesn’t want her husband to see her having sex with other married women, because she understands that it is illegal for her to do so, and that it breaks her marriage vows.
The law does have some justification though. I think that the argument that women should not be able to have sex with other women is because that kind of behavior is frowned upon, and that it is the women who are acting immorally. There is also the argument that women who are married should not have sex with other women because they are in a different class from other married women.