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? The Theatre of the World | Main | Star Wars vs. Star Trek ?

June 13, 2006

Equal Protection for Mutants

Ivan Ludmer considers possible mutant legislation in light of the 14th Amendment. Though he goes on to point out that determining equal protection under the Constitution is only the first step (via comments at Gen-X at 40).

The first question is what effects laws involving mutants might have. In the first movie, the government attempted to enact a mutant registration act, and subsequent movies suggested that the government might also attempt to deprive mutants of the ability to mutate, or the right to use the mutation. I will examine each in turn.

The clearest point of challenge to a mutant registration act would be the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment. The first question in Equal Protection analysis is, of course, what group is being classified and is it a suspect class? Here, the group being classified is 'mutants.' We have no precedent as to what level of scrutiny applies to classifications involving mutants, so we have to look to some tools the Supreme Court has traditionally used to determine that.

Posted by Ghost of a flea at June 13, 2006 11:19 AM