Illinois House Approves Lowering “Home Alone” Law From 14 to 12.

On April 3, 2019, the Illinois House overwhelmingly passed House Bill 2334 on a vote of 111-1, that would lower the age at which a child can be left at home without adult supervision.  HB 2334, which would amend the Juvenile Court Act of 1987,  would lower the age at which a child could be

Continue reading

HSUS: Protecting its Fox in the Hen House

In a stunning development, the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) chose this week to stand by CEO Wayne Pacelle amidst complaints of sexual misconduct and sexual harassment by HSUS employees.  Twenty-eight of HSUS’s 31 board members participated in a 7 hour telephone conference on February 2nd that culminated in a vote of 17-9

Continue reading

Pet Custody Comes to Illinois

Companion animals play an ever-increasing role in American society.  US pet industry expenditures were $38.5 billion in 2006 and nearly doubled to $66.75 billion in 2016.  According to the 2017-2018 APPA National Pet Owners Survey, 68% of US households own a pet, equating to 84.6 million homes. The strong emotional bond that binds people to

Continue reading

Virginia Bill Would Decriminalize Sex Outside of Marriage

Virginia is for Lovers? The State of Virginia currently has an antiquated statute on its books that makes it a misdemeanor to engage in sexual intercourse outside of marriage.  Conviction of fornication carries with it a $250 fine.  It states as follows: § 18.2-344. Fornication.  Any person, not being married, who voluntarily shall have sexual

Continue reading

US Senate Approves Gay Rights Bill

This afternoon, the United States Senate passed historic gay rights legislation in its approval of the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which would provide protections in the workplace to workers and job applicants who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender. Any private employer with more than 15 employees would be precluded from workplace discrimination based on sexual

Continue reading

Same-Sex Marriage in Illinois

On February 8, 2012, Illinois Representatives Greg Harris, Deborah Mell, Kelly M. Cassidy, and Ann Williams introduced an historic bill, House Bill 5170, entitled the Religious Freedom and Marriage Fairness Act (“HB 5170”). HB5170 seeks to amend 750 ILCS 75/1 et seq., otherwise known as the Religious Freedom Protection and Civil Union Act (the “Civil Union

Continue reading

Legislation and Acts of Irresponsibility

In 2009, the Illinois legislature introduced identical bills simultaneously in both the House and the Senate regarding the licensing of dog breeders.  The bills, as proposed, were problematic in multiple ways, ways that would adversely affect all dog breeders and would impose onerous burdens on responsible breeders as well as irresponsible breeders.  In spite of

Continue reading

Loving v. Virginia and Thoughts on Gay Marriage

In June 1958, Mildred Jeter, a black woman, married Richard Loving, a white man.  Although the newlyweds were residents of Virginia, they married in the District of Columbia because Virginia had a criminal statute that prohibited interracial marriages between a white person and a person of color in addition to a statutory provision that rendered

Continue reading