Though most constitutional scholars celebrate the civil rights movement, few have asked whether and to what extent the movement relates to current efforts of constitutional reform. Yet, the rise of direct action in the 1960s marked a bold realignment of the collective action, social movement frames of the civil rights struggle, a movement that has direct relevance to current constitutional battles, particularly over marriage and guns. As this Article will show, both the constitutional challenge to gun bans in Illinois and the constitutional challenge to California’s same-sex marriage ban have dealt with issues of frame alignment similar to those confronted by the civil rights movement in the 1960s. Yet, it is the Second Amendment litigation, ironically, that has most closely followed the movement’s attention to aligning legal claims with cultural trends.
Walker, Anders. Shotguns,Weddings, and Lunch Counters: Why Cultural Frames Matter to Constitutional Law. Florida State University Law Review, vol. 38, no. 345, 2011.