Comparison and Conclusion

Robert Wintemute

in Sexual Orientation and Human Rights

Published in print July 1993 | ISBN: 9780198264880
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191682841 | DOI:

Series: Sexual Orientation and Human Rights

Comparison and Conclusion

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This chapter argues that the contexts in which the three human rights instruments operate (the United States constitution, the European Convention on Human Rights, and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms), and the issues of sexual orientation discrimination that may arise under them, are sufficiently similar to permit a comparison. The comparison deals with the substantive (rather than procedural) aspects of human rights or anti-discrimination law. The level of organisation of the gay, lesbian, and bisexual communities in these countries is similar, as are the issues these communities are raising (for example, military employment, marriage or benefits for partners, parental rights). Perhaps a final (and most important) justification for this comparison is that litigants have begun to cite, before the U.S. Supreme Court, the European Court of Human Rights, and the Canadian Supreme Court, the other courts' decisions in the area of sexual orientation discrimination. This chapter assesses the relative merits of the three arguments (immutable status, sex discrimination, and fundamental choice), referring where appropriate to their success under the three instruments.

Keywords: United States; constitution; Europe; Canada; sexual orientation discrimination; sexual orientation; human rights; immutable status; sex discrimination; fundamental choice

Chapter.  16538 words. 

Subjects: Human Rights and Immigration

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