Episode 6: When did the Supreme Court finally raise the bar for sex equality under the Constitution? In a case about beer.
In Oklahoma, women could buy 3.2% alcohol beer at 18, but men had to wait until they turned 21. Two fraternity brothers at Oklahoma State University teamed up with a co-owner of a local convenience store, the Honk n’ Holler, to challenge the law, and the case went all the way to the Supreme Court. The colorful “Ranger Fred” argued the case, with key support from Ruth Bader Ginsburg. It is in this case about beer that the Supreme Court finally provides a clear standard that applies when sex discriminatory laws are challenged under the Equal Protection Clause—by carving out a middle tier.
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