February 7 in LGBTQ History

1977: The U.S. State Department lifts its ban on the employment of LGBT people and announces that it will consider gay applicants on a case-by-case basis going forward.

1978: The Oklahoma State House of Representatives passes a so-called “Teacher Fitness” statute, which allows local school boards to fire homosexual teachers or any teacher “advocating . . . encouraging or promoting public or private homosexual activities.”  The National Gay Task Force later files suit to challenge the law’s constitutionality.

2012: The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in California rules 2–1 that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional because it violates the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. In the ruling, the court said, the law “operates with no apparent purpose but to impose on gays and lesbians, through the public law, a majority’s private disapproval of them and their relationships.”

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