It’s ironic that in the very same period that the East Coast is experiencing a hurricane and a rare strong earthquake, we commemorate two “earth shaking” historic events. On August 18, 1920, women won a years-long fight for suffrage with ratification of the 19th Amendment; and on August 28, 1963, hundreds of thousands of Americans spoke out for jobs and freedom at the March on Washington led by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Anyone old enough to remember Brown v. Board of Education, Roe v. Wade and Bush v. Gore knows how important the U.S. Supreme Court is. Now comes Wal-Mart v. Dukes, in which the Supreme Court will hear arguments March 29 on whether 1.6 million women who work for the giant retailer will be able to sue the company as a group for pervasive gender discrimination throughout its operations. The ability to file a class action has historically been critical to the enforcement of civil rights law, and many eyes will be focused on this important case.