Anti-LGBT Lawyer Appointed to Seat in NY Circuit of Appeals

Steven Menashi has a history of being anti-gay and now has a lifelong seat in NY’s Second Circuit of Appeals. Image via

Recently, the US Senate pushed anti-LGBT lawyer Steven Menashi through into New York’s Second Circuit of Appeals despite protests from Democrats, according to Lambda Legal.  

The Second Circuit of Appeals, historically, was liberal-minded but the appointing of Menashi caused the group to flip and it now has a Republican majority, potentially spelling trouble for LGBT rights in New York. That is a distinct possibility, as Menashi’s past has revealed that he holds animosity towards LGBT people and people living with HIV, as shown by some of his writings. 

In 2000, he wrote an opinion piece stating that having separate dorms for LGBT people in college where they can feel safe from homophobia and have their identities affirmed is hypocritical in that LGBT people also wanted to be able to be openly gay in the military, although, in his own words, that the “‘Don’t ask, don’t tell’ policy promotes unit cohesion'” even though it was definitely a discriminatory policy. Thankfully the policy was repealed in 2011, but Menashi’s writing on his thoughts on LGBT housing shows a fundamental misunderstanding of the difference between creating a safe space for LGBT people and excluding them from serving their country. 

He has also praised a book for its warning of “normalizing” gender-reassignment surgery as a way of ignoring reality, and in the same article says that lesbianism is “a flight from reality.” Menashi also said that the ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges will only make “political fights more bitter,” showing a clear objection to marriage equality. 

Obviously Menashi is unable to put aside his personal bias against LGBT people so how can anyone expect him to serve in the Second Circuit of Appeals without favoring anti-LGBT policies? His appointing presents a very real danger to the future of LGBT rights in New York, and it is my hope that someone sees this and removes him from his position, but I doubt that that will happen. 

Source: Lambda Legal

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