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Author Topic: Failed Applicant Sues Bar Examiners Over Test Question on Gay Marriage  (Read 1093 times)

slacker

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Failed Applicant Sues Bar Examiners Over Test Question on Gay Marriage
Sheri Qualters
The National Law Journal
07-02-2007

A Massachusetts bar examination applicant who claims he failed the test because he didn't answer a question about homosexual marriage and parenting is suing the test administration agency, the state Supreme Judicial Court and four individual justices for constitutional violations.

In his pro se complaint, plaintiff Stephen Dunne seeks preliminary and permanent injunctions barring the defendants from considering the question in regard to his application to practice law and from enforcing the question in the current or future bar examinations. Dunne is also seeking a jury trial and unspecified compensatory and punitive damages. Stephen Dunne v. The Massachusetts Board of Bar Examiners, No. 07-11166 (D. Mass.)

Dunne claims his score of 268.866 on the November 2006 bar exam just missed the passing score of 270 points because he didn't follow the proscribed format for an unlawful question about gay marriage. Dunne said the question required applicants to "affirmatively accept, support and promote homosexual marriage and homosexual parenting." Dunne claims the defendants violated his First Amendment right to exercise his religion and violated the due process and equal protection clauses of the U.S. Constitution. He also claims their actions impose illegal state regulations on interstate commerce.

Supreme Judicial Court spokeswoman said the court couldn't comment on pending cases.

William F. Kennedy, the chairman of the Massachusetts Board of Bar Examiners, which administers the test, also declined to comment.

"The complaint is being reviewed; we have no comment at this time," Kennedy said.

http://www.law.com/jsp/law/LawArticleFriendly.jsp?id=1183107989917

xferlawstudent

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WTF is wrong with people.  This person missed the whole point of being a lawyer.  You are espousing views of others, not your own.  Whether you agree with gay marriage or not is utterly irrelevent.

This reminds me of the Pharmacists who refuse to fill prescriptions of birth control.

Gwiz

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Yea he was an idiot not to answer the way they wanted.  Just pass the d**mned test and then make what ever religous/political statements you want after.

He may have done this just to get attention, and 15 minutes of fame...
I wanna be a gunner when I grow up.

slacker

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I noticed he's representing himself. I'm surprised the ADF hasn't jumped into the fray.

KrazyMarcus

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Isn't it easier to retake the test than to sue the examiners?  I guess the guy was trying to made a point.  What a moron. 

xferlawstudent

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I wonder if he flatly refused to answer the question and left it blank or if he answered it an got it wrong.

It sounds like he refused to answer...

slacker

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If he'd answered in any way affirmative, he'd have been force to get married to someone of the same sex prior to being sworn in, I'm sure.

By the same reasoning, if you get an essay question about being a defense attorney in a murder trial, I'm sure you have to be in favor of murder to get that one right.

rhombot

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If he'd answered in any way affirmative, he'd have been force to get married to someone of the same sex prior to being sworn in, I'm sure.

By the same reasoning, if you get an essay question about being a defense attorney in a murder trial, I'm sure you have to be in favor of murder to get that one right.

wouldn't he have to gay-marry anyway, being as he lives in massachusetts?
case '09

Dr. Balsenschaft

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Why would you want everyone to know you failed the bar? Someone should kick this guy in the nuts.

coquita

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WTF is wrong with people.  This person missed the whole point of being a lawyer.  You are espousing views of others, not your own.  Whether you agree with gay marriage or not is utterly irrelevent.

This reminds me of the Pharmacists who refuse to fill prescriptions of birth control.

You expressed my thoughts exactly.