A fan objects to a giveaway that benefited all women 18 or older, and files suit, claiming illegal sex discrimination.
The then-Los Angeles Angels' May 2005 Mother's Day promotion was intended to honor all mothers in attendance, and included a "Baseball Mom" essay contest, a scoreboard display of fans kissing their mothers, and the selection of a mother as honorary public address announcer. But a male fan objected to a tote-bag giveaway that benefited all women 18 or older (done since ticket-takers had no way to tell which fans were mothers), and filed suit, claiming illegal sex discrimination.
A state appeals court in December not only rejected Michael Cohn's objections to the promotion, it charged that Cohn had gone to the game to stir up a lawsuit. The Fourth District Court of Appeal relied on the state Supreme Court's unanimous 1985 ruling that barred "ladies' night" discounts at bars and car washes, saying price-cutting for women discriminates against men and perpetuates sex stereotypes that harm both genders. That's not true of a Mother's Day giveaway, even one that is extended to all women in attendance, the appeals court ruled. The gifts were based on motherhood, not gender, said the ruling, and did not reduce ticket prices for women. "Gift giving is not the same as usurping rights," Justice Kathleen O'Leary wrote.