7 Geo. J. Gender & L. 115 (2006)
The Right to Define One's Own Concept of Existence: What Lawrence Can Mean for Intersex and Transgender People

handle is hein.journals/grggenl7 and id is 125 raw text is: ARTICLES
THE RIGHT TO DEFINE ONE'S OWN CONCEPT OF
EXISTENCE: WHAT LAWRENCE CAN MEAN FOR
INTERSEX AND TRANSGENDER PEOPLE
CHAI R. FELDBLUM*
I. THE LIBERTY INTEREST RECOGNIZED IN LAWRENCE ..................    119
II. THE MEANING OF LAWRENCE'S LIBERTY INTEREST FOR INTERSEX AND
TRANSGENDER PEOPLE   .................................            124
A. DEFINING ONE'S SEXUAL AND GENDER SELF ..............           124
B. THE NEED FOR AFFIRMATIVE GOVERNMENT ENGAGEMENT .....          127
C. IMPLICATIONS FOR INTERSEX PEOPLE ....................         130
D. IMPLICATIONS FOR TRANSGENDER PEOPLE ................           136
INTRODUCTION
One of the remarkable contributions that scholarship can play in the
development of legal doctrine is the construction of the meaning of a Supreme
Court case. The roundtable, Living with Lawrence, which was hosted by the
Georgetown Journal of Gender and the Law in 2005 and whose transcript of
proceedings is reproduced in this volume, is part of that construction: what does
the Supreme Court's opinion in Lawrence v. Texas' mean for the future of the
lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) movement?
The construction of a case, of course, entails not only an analysis of what the
Court says in its opinion-for example, about liberty, substantive due process
analysis, or morality-but also an analysis of the social preconditions necessary
for the Court's result, the social movements the Court's opinion reflects, and the
possibilities for the future that the opinion offers.
My part in the construction of the meaning of Lawrence goes towards
possibilities for the future. As I attempted to do in brief during the roundtable
discussion, I want to explore how the Court's reasoning in Lawrence, coupled
* Professor of Law, Georgetown University Law Center. Many thanks to Nan Hunter for reading this
piece and helping me make it better and for supporting and challenging me generally; to Michael Boucai
and Robin West, for some wonderful conversations; to Cheryl Chase, Mara Keisling, Lisa Mottet,
Jennifer Levi, Shannon Minter, and Paisley Currah for making a difference in the lives of intersex and
transgender people and for teaching me what I know in these areas; to Amy Simmerman and Alyssa
Rayman-Read for research assistance beyond the call of duty; and to the editors of the Georgetown
Journal of Gender and the Law in both 2005 and 2006 for caring about gender and sexuality and for
supporting innovative roundtables and scholarship.
1. Lawrence v. Texas, 539 U.S. 558 (2003).

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