GAY MARRIAGE, SODOMY LAW TIMELINE
Sept. 17, 1998
Harris County sheriff's deputies, responding to a report of an armed intruder, burst into the apartment of John Lawrence. The tip is bogus, but deputies find Lawrence having sex with Tyron Garner. The men are handcuffed, taken to jail in their underwear and charged with violating Texas' Homosexual Conduct Law. After spending the night in jail, Lawrence and Garner plead no contest and are fined $200. They appeal.
June 8, 2000
A three-judge panel of the Houston-based 14th Court of Appeals strikes down the sodomy law 2-1. Prosecutors appeal to the entire nine-judge bench.
Vermont allows civil unions for same-sex couples.
Gay and lesbian couples in Massachusetts file state court lawsuit seeking the right to marry.
March 15, 2001
Entire 14th Court of Appeals rules 7-2 to uphold the law. Lawrence and Garner appeal.
April 17, 2002
Texas Court of Criminal Appeals, the state's highest court, refuses to hear the case. Lawrence and Garner appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.
June 26, 2002
New Jersey gay couples sue for marriage rights.
Dec. 2, 2002
Supreme Court agrees to hear the case of Lawrence and Garner.
March 26, 2003
Harris County District Attorney Chuck Rosenthal and Paul Smith, a lawyer with a New York-based gay rights law firm, the Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund, argue the case before the Supreme Court.
Gov. Rick Perry signs the Defense of Marriage Act, preventing Texas from recognizing same-sex marriage.
June 26, 2003 Supreme Court rules 6-3 that Texas' law violates the Constitution's privacy guarantee. The decision threw out the nation's remaining sodomy laws. Justice Anthony Kennedy, writing for the majority, says, "It is a promise of the Constitution that there is a realm of personal liberty which the government may not enter." Justice Antonin Scalia dissents and scolds his colleagues, writing, "The court has taken sides in the culture war," and predicts gay marriage will follow. Chief Justice William Rehnquist and Justice Clarence Thomas join the dissent, but Thomas writes a separate opinion, saying the law is "uncommonly silly" and if he were a member of the Texas Legislature he would vote to repeal it.
July 30, 2003
President Bush, asked his opinion of gay and lesbian people during a White House news conference, said Americans should respect gay people but draw the line at gay marriage. "I believe marriage is between a man and a woman, and I think we ought to codify that one way or the other, and we've got lawyers looking at the best way to do that."
Feb. 24, 2004
Bush announces he will back a constitutional amendment defining marriage as a right reserved strictly for heterosexuals. "The preservation of marriage rises to this level of national importance," he says.
The author writes: ruling 6-3 that government should stay out of everybody's bedroom except the government doesnt stay out of the bedroom. You cant hire a prostitute (yet you can hire a babysitter or pay someone to mow your yard). You can have sex with a woman but as soon as you pay her for the act it is a crime; so much for the actions of consenting adults.
Last June's historic ruling dramatically changed the way gay and lesbian people are treated under the law. It also galvanized both sides in an ongoing national debate over whether homosexuals are entitled to the same rights as heterosexuals when it comes to employment, housing, military service, marriage and adoption.
Remember this guy who was widely shouted down as spinning tales of fantasy?
The majority of Supreme Court justices may not be willing to admit it, but everyone else seems eager to acknowledge that the greatest near-term consequence of the Lawrence v. Texas anti-sodomy ruling could be the legalization of homosexual marriage. Although the court's majority opinion attempts to distance the ruling from the marriage debate, the dissenting justices say, "Do not believe it."
At least this article discussed Robert Royce Eubanks. This is the first time that the Houston Chronicle has devoted much ink to the third homosexual in this event. Unfortunately it glosses over accounts that Mr. Eubanks was in an abusive relationship with Mr. Garner.
Men whose sodomy case led to Supreme Court ruling keep low profile(Lawrence Garner Texas)
In 2000, the former roommate of Garner who called deputies to the apartment - and was later convicted of filing a false police report - went to court to obtain a protective order against Garner, accusing him of several beatings and a sexual assault.
Garner "punched me on my left eye two times" in January 2000, said Robert Royce Eubanks in an affidavit. Garner also beat Eubanks with a hose in 1999 while "using crack and drinking" and beat him with a belt in 1998, the affidavit said.
In May 1998, Garner "stabbed me on my right ring finger with a box cutter" and "grabbed a hot iron and burned me" and "then sexually assaulted me," Eubanks charged. A temporary protective order was granted, but the case apparently was dropped after Eubanks' lawyer withdrew, saying she could not locate him for a scheduled trial.
In the end, Mr Eubanks was murdered (October 17, 2000) and the case is unsolved. It is unclear when his court date was in relation to his murder.
None of this appears in the Houston Comicals account and gives the misperception that Mr. Eubanks is still alive and that Mr. Lawrence still holds a grudge against him.
"I bolted out of bed and shouted, `Thank you, God!' " he said.
God loves sinners but does not like it when we sin. The lesson of Sodom and Gomorrah is lost on this one.