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Two recent cases raise significant issues that blur the line between sexual orientation and gender discrimination. In Johnston v. Univ. of Pittsburgh of the Commonwealth Sys. of Higher Educ., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 41823 (W.D. Pa.), the court held that the University’s policy of requiring students to use sex-segregated bathroom and locker room facilities based on students’ natal or birth sex, rather than their gender identity, does not violate Title IX’s prohibition of sex discrimination. In Videckis v. Pepperdine Univ., 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 51140 (C.D. Cal.), the court dismissed plaintiffs’ Title IX claim with leave to amend. In doing so, however, the court noted that “the line between discrimination based on gender stereotyping and discrimination based on sexual orientation is blurry, at best, and thus a claim that Plaintiffs were discriminated against on the basis of their relationship and their sexual orientation may fall within the bounds of Title IX.”
Write 1-2 pages discussing the following questions:
Do you agree with the decision in the Johnston case?
Is there a blurred line between sexual orientation and gender stereotyping for gender discrimination (Title IX or equal protection) purposes?
Conduct some (quick) research (one or two articles max) that speak to this issue. Is there a clear answer to these questions? Are we on a path to delineating a clear answer? If not, what can we do to change course?