Ginsberg’s impact on 1970s Oklahoma beer law – Tulsa, Oklahoma

Tulsa, Oklahoma 2020-09-24 14:07:25 –

OKLA. — The late U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was known for her battle against gender discrimination in federal law. One of her earlier cases, as a practicing attorney, featured a few Oklahoma State University students and a Stillwater convenience store.

Retired lawyer Curtis Craig tells 2 Works for You, his fraternity brother at OSU challenged an Oklahoma state beer law in the 1970s as part of a class assignment. The state statute said women in Oklahoma could purchase 3.2% alcoholic beer at the age of 18 but men had to wait until the age of 21.

Craig, a law undergrad at the time, decided to file a lawsuit against the state with Honk ‘n’ Holler owner, Carolyn Whitener, joining his side.

Craig and Whitener lost the challenges in state and appellate courts, but then American Civil Liberties Union lawyer Ruth Ginsburg noticed the case.

Craig said Ginsburg helped the team get their case in front of the Supreme Court in 1976. Ginsburg acted as co-counsel for the plaintiff and the Supreme Court ruled 7-2 the statute as unconstitutional.

Watch KJRH at 6 p.m. tonight to find out how Ginsburg helped shape Craig’s law career in the state of Oklahoma.

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