Should federal judge Vaughn Walker have publicly come out of the closet before accepting a case that challenged California’s controversial Proposition 8, the ballot initiative that made same-sex marriage illegal? It’s a hot debate among ethicists—Walker, 67, declared the ban unconstitutional last August, and now his decision is being reviewed by an appeals court. "A judge should always disclose facts that are not publicly available ... to give the parties a chance to seek recusal," said one NYU law school professor. Other experts argue that federal law doesn't require such disclosure. Attorney General Kamala Harris, who disapproves of Prop 8, said that courts should never disqualify judges because of their race, gender, or religious affiliation. However, disqualifying bias has become increasingly common in recent years.