Skip to comments.Absurd Federal Appellate Court Ruling About Why Sodomy Is A Constitutional Right, But Incest Is Not
Posted on 12/29/2011 9:29:23 PM PST by stevelackner
In Lawrence v. Texas (2003) the Supreme Court invalidated Texass sodomy law as violating the United States Constitution. The case involved two adults who, with full and mutual consent from each other, engaged in sexual practices common to a homosexual lifestyle. Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote for a majority of the Court that there are other spheres of our lives and existence, outside the home, where the State should not be a dominant presence. Freedom extends beyond spatial bounds. Liberty presumes an autonomy of self that includes freedom of thought, belief, expression, and certain intimate conduct. The instant case involves liberty of the person both in its spatial and more transcendent dimensions. The Supreme Court therefore ruled that [t]heir right to liberty under the Due Process Clause gives them the full right to engage in their conduct without intervention of the government. That Lawrence v. Texas serves only, regardless of the merits of its outcome, to utterly abuse the original meaning of the Constitution is beyond doubt.
But more importantly, Justice Antonin Scalia pointed out in his dissent that the logical extension of Lawrence v. Texas should be the elimination of laws against adultery, incest, polygamy, bestiality, and more once morality alone can no longer serve as the basis for legislation. State laws against bigamy, same-sex marriage, adult incest, prostitution, masturbation, adultery, fornication, bestiality, and obscenity are sustainable only in light of validation of laws based on moral choices. Every single one of these laws is called into question by todays decision, Scalia warned.
Scalia's logic is quite sound, and federal courts have since had to face just such arguments. Now exactly these sorts of cases testing Scalias prediction have indeed appeared before the federal appellate courts with Lawerence v. Texas as the argument of the criminal defendant as to the unconstitutionality of their conviction. On December 8, 2011 the Sixth Circuited Court of Appeals decided the case of Lowe v. Stark County Sherriff. Paul Lowe was criminally convicted of incest in the State of Ohio for engaging in sexual conduct by means of sexual intercourse with his 22-year old stepdaughter. Lowe argued in part that the Ohio Supreme Court unreasonably applied federal law as clearly established by the Supreme Court in Lawrence v. Texas because that Court framed the issue as `whether [Mr.] Lowe is guaranteed a fundamental right to engage in sexual intercourse with his consenting adult stepdaughter, rather than framing the issue more broadly as the recognition of the right, as between consenting adults, to engage in private sexual conduct. In other words, just as the Supreme Court protected homosexual sodomy by clearly stating there is a broad right to sexual autonomy and privacy, the sex in this case should also be protected given that it is between consenting adults. The argument is impeccably logical (resulting directly from the Supreme Court decision being inherently absurd).
So how did the Sixth Circuit respond, not wanting to set a precedent that would be the first step in Constitutionalizing incest? As to the substance of Lowes claim, the Court responded, assuming that Lawrence clearly established a fundamental right and/or a higher standard of [judicial] review, we hold that neither the right nor standard is implicated in the present case. But how can that be? Are these not two adults who, with full and mutual consent from each other, engaged in sexual practices in accord with freedom beyond "spatial bounds" and liberty "spatial and more transcended dimensions"? What happened to the Supreme Courts hallowed and sanctified autonomy of self?
The Court in Lowe then stated that [i]n this regard, we agree with the Seventh Circuit's decision in Muth v. Frank [(2005)] concluding that [g]iven . . . the specific focus in Lawrence on homosexual sodomy, the absence from the Court's opinion of its own `established method' for resolving a claim that a particular practice implicates a fundamental liberty interest, and the absence of strict scrutiny review, there was no clearly established federal law that supports [the defendant's] claim that he has a fundamental right to engage in incest free from government proscription. This is a shameful cop out by two federal appellate courts. To simply state that the Supreme Court case is limited to its facts is to pretend that no overarching constitutional principle was in fact announced by the Supreme Court. Supreme Court cases are precedent because the legal principles therein must be applied to new facts in new cases that will arise in the lower courts. The facts must otherwise be logically distinguished, or else any case could be decided by a mere announcement saying these facts are not identical to the one the Supreme Court decided.
After this blanket and nonsensical quote from a sister appellate court, the Sixth Circuit then attempts to engage in distinguishing this case on its facts. It argues that the stepparent-stepchild relationship is the kind of relationship in which a person might be injured or coerced or where consent might not easily be refused, regardless of age, because of the inherent influence of the stepparent over the stepchild. But in the case of consenting adults in Lowe, by the very fact that they are consenting and legally able to do so as adults, on what basis can the government interfere with sexual autonomy of self? What about, in the words of Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, the supposed respect the Constitution demands for the autonomy of the person in making these choices? In fact, the charge in this case was not rape! Rape by definition is the crime involving sexual coercion or lack of consent. Incest by definition is the crime involving sexual contact between relatives (as defined by State statute). Incest has nothing to do with coercion or lack of consent as a matter of application in law. If there was evidence that the stepfather had coerced the aged 22 stepdaughter into having sex, or that the 22 year old lacked the ability to consent, a rape charge would be more than sufficient to confront that in the same way it does in other cases of rape.
Next, the Sixth Circuit declares that the State of Ohio's interest in criminalizing incest is far greater and much different than the interest of the State of Texas in prosecuting homosexual sodomy because Ohio's paramount concern is protecting the family from the destructive influence of intra-family, extra-marital sexual contact. Why does the government have the right to protect the family in the case of consenting adults in line with Lawrence? This cannot mean protect the stepdaughter, because she consented as did the two homosexual partners in Texas. And protected against what? I guess the family needs to be protected against a certain type of [f]reedom [that] extends beyond spatial bounds in all its "transcendent dimensions." The fact is that the Supreme Court was so broad in its ruling in Lawrence that the distinctions are bound to be based on this kind of nonsense.
In fact, the Sixth Circuit rules that Ohio has an interest in protecting all families against destructive sexual contacts irrespective of the particular factual family dynamic. So immediately after making a feeble argument that is large on unexplained categorical statements and little on actual reasoning or explanatory power, in reliance on a factual distinction, the Court then says that we can now ignore certain other facts in this case by making a categorical statement that they do not matter. This is the kind of judiciary the Supreme Court with its unconstitutional decisions has bequeathed us.
The fact is that the Supreme Court was so broad in its ruling in Lawrence in its flowery language surrounding sexual autonomy of self that the distinctions that the lower courts are forced to make are bound to be nonsensical. To avoid Scalias foreshadowed logical outcome to the Supreme Courts sodomy ruling also resulting in constitutionalizing incest and every other form of private sex between consenting adults, the appellate courts have been coerced to engage in legal acrobatics to factually distinguish one form of sexual contact from another, without even very insightful reasoning. As if the job of a federal judge is in accord with the 14th Amendment to arbitrarily determine what type of sex is worthy of Constitutional protection (and search for reasons why one form of sex happens to be different than gay sex that the Supreme Court has arbitrarily held to be protected acts).
Let me be clear, I am not advocating that incest be constitutionally protected. I am pointing out the absurdity of the Supreme Courts sodomy ruling forcing these distinctions be made regarding incest in the first place in order to somehow still maintain the supremacy of the Supreme Court. All I can therefore say is that these decisions seem to indicate a stepparent-stepdaughter relationship between the lower federal courts and the Supreme Court of the United States. They are certainly in the kind of relationship in which a judge might be coerced or where consent to absurd higher rulings cannot easily be refused, regardless of their devotion to common sense and original meaning, because of the inherent influence of the Supreme Court over the lower courts in forcing agreement with their illogical rulings.
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Gingrich is 100% correct about the activist judges and courts. They need to be brought down!!
Romney will simply kiss their asses.
What is being discussed is in the framework that the rule of our government has turned from being based on the morality as seen by the Founders and in our Constitution to being based on opinions by judges with questionable morals
Yes and Mitt’s behavior is a protected by the Constiution!
I suppose placemark.
"I was in support of holding the judges accountable before I was against it."
What a load of hogwash. The Republican Party is in dire straits if an idiot like this can be one of the Party's Presidential frontrunners. The GOP needs a good cleaning out of the rot and decay before the entire Party is brought down. If Myth Romney manages to steal the nomination, I truly believe that the GOP will disintegrate and go the way of the Whigs.
Adult stepdaughter? Just wondering how many think that should be a crime. Paging Woody Allen and Morgan Freeman.
When these activist judges get through, incest will be a constitutional right and so will murder, rape and sex with children. Newt was right.
I knew about Woody, but what about Freeman?
Gingrich is not just about saying judges need to be “brought down.” He has said they should be impeached. That should not be controversial at all, it is explicitly provided for as a power of Congress in the Constitution, as explained originally by Alexander Hamilton in Federalist No. 81. The idea of subpoenaing judges, and if need be arresting them to enforce the power to bring them before Congress to testify, is more unprecedented and controversial, but is still nonetheless about bringing them before Congress to testify about their own rulings so that Congress can be informed before impeaching the judge. That itself does not seem altogether terribly radical to me. Federalist No. 81 states:
“It may in the last place be observed that the supposed danger of judiciary encroachments on the legislative authority, which has been upon many occasions reiterated, is in reality a phantom. Particular misconstructions and contraventions of the will of the legislature may now and then happen; but they can never be so extensive as to amount to an inconvenience, or in any sensible degree to affect the order of the political system. This may be inferred with certainty, from the general nature of the judicial power, from the objects to which it relates, from the manner in which it is exercised, from its comparative weakness, and from its total incapacity to support its usurpations by force. And the inference is greatly fortified by the consideration of the important constitutional check which the power of instituting impeachments in one part of the legislative body, and of determining upon them in the other, would give to that body upon the members of the judicial department. This is alone a complete security. There never can be danger that the judges, by a series of deliberate usurpations on the authority of the legislature, would hazard the united resentment of the body intrusted with it, while this body was possessed of the means of punishing their presumption, by degrading them from their stations. While this ought to remove all apprehensions on the subject, it affords, at the same time, a cogent argument for constituting the Senate a court for the trial of impeachments.”
Yeah well after the 3 branches are finished it’ll likely be the only freedoms we have.
Nicely done contrast and dissection of the two rulings. Your summation was inspired. I hope the SCOTUS chokes on your highlighting of their irrationality.
I will first say I haven’t given this a minute of thought until I came to this thread. With that said, my knee jerk reaction is that I’m actually rather surprised it is a crime. Isn’t the thrust (poor word choice) behind incest laws that there are underlying biological/genetic “safety” issues?
I thought anti incest laws were to prevent two people who were too close genetically from running the risk of producing defective offspring. In the case of Step relatives this genetic issue does not exist, so the measure for judgement should be age and consent.
“Romney will simply kiss their asses.” True, but only after he has thoroughly brushed his teeth and gargled; so he will be minty fresh!
Yeah; try expressing the truth about the gangsta's, 4th generation welfare, etc., and you will wind up charged with a "Hate Crime", "Racism", etc.
The only place Kennedy supports this idea of "Freedom" is when it comes to faggots and dykes, or other Progressive, Family-destroying "interpretations".
The Morgan Freeman thing was an incestuous affair with a step-granddaughter - beginning when she was 17 - and lasting for at least ten years. His 1st wife of 20 something years (the girl's grandmother) was reported to have left him for that reason. There were also reports that he was doing a Woody and marrying her.
The internet was full of photos of the 2 together at the time.
which is foreplay for sodomy.
“He has said they should be impeached. That should not be controversial at all, it is explicitly provided for as a power of Congress in the Constitution,...”
Yes...and his statements regarding such activist judges gave me great hope. Am I correct in my belief that speaker Gingrich is the ONLY candidate who has obviously thought about this particular manner of handling activist judges and brought it to our attention?
The Left certainly would fear a Gingrich presidency.
Technically, sex with his step daughter would not be incest as there was no genetic connection, morally it might be considered fornication. I’m surprised the arguement was not put forth on those grounds...ala the Woody Allen defense!
I always thought incest was sex between two blood relatives.
Step children are not blood relatives. Although I believe that having sex with step kids is wrong,it is more pedophile rape, than incest, unless those step kids are adults.
If they are adults and consent or even start the ball rolling it is not rape or incest, just bad judgement, and bad morals.
“Consent” is the key word here.
They argue that as long as the act has consent, it should be allowed.
If you agree with that, you fall into their trap.
Because, the next step is to lower the “age of consent” like they have done in Europe and other countries....to as low as 14 years old......even 12 years old in places like Mexico.
At that point, pedophilia becomes legal....which is the ultimate goal.
Genetically and LEGALLY are 2 different matters. Today, in most, if is not all states, it is only based on the legal relationship! (Unless you're a celebrity with the right connections.)
In a society where divorce and remarriage puts a large percentage of children under the authority of step parents, blood relationships do not form the basis of many/most families. Incest laws today try to protect all the children in a family.
One big question is where the cutoff age should be. Another is whether a step parent should be allowed to start grooming a step child below the age of consent for a sexual relationship once the become of age.
This kind of judiciary will be part of the reason the nation will split and needs to split.
Perverts, you live here. All others who believe in the sanctity of marriage between a man and woman, those who believe that kids are not sexual objects of desire, that copulating with animals is evil, you should live here.
Ohio Rev. Code § 2907.03(A)(5) makes it a crime to “engage in sexual conduct with another, not the spouse of the offender, when . . . [t]he offender is the other person’s natural or adoptive parent, or a stepparent, or guardian, custodian, or person in loco parentis of the other person.”
Incidentally, Lowe did also argue, in addition to his Constitutional claim, that there was a “clear legislative intent to have the law apply to children, not adults,” but that was dismissed by the federal courts as well. I instead focused not on the statute itself, and statutory arguments, but on the Constitutional reasoning used to arrive at the result.
I guess Ingraham said it best in her book "Shut up and Sing"
Meanwhile, if the guy had never married the mom, no law would have been broken if he had decided to switch to the adult daughter.
What if it had been an adult stepson? Is ancestral sodomy okay under Lawrence v. Texas?
Give the homo flitting fairy fascists fits and vote for Rick Santorum!
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