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(OBIT) Defendant in landmark sodomy ruling was not motivated by politics (Lawrence v. Texas case)
Houston Chronicle ^ | Sept. 14, 2006, 12:05AM | By ZEKE MINAYA

Posted on 09/14/2006 8:53:47 AM PDT by weegee

1967 TYRONE GARNER 2006

Defendant in landmark sodomy ruling was not motivated by politics

The key civil liberties victory for gays was 'fight against all odds'

Tyrone Garner, whose arrest in violation of Texas sodomy laws led to a challenge before the Supreme Court and an eventual victory that struck down such statutes across the country, died after a lengthy illness, friends said Wednesday. He was 39.

Garner, who died Monday of meningitis in a Houston-area hospital, was openly gay but not politically active when he chose to fight his arrest in court, said his lawyer, Mitchell Katine.

"He was very shy and did not like to speak publicly," Katine said. "But privately he was very happy to be part of the civil rights fight for gay and lesbian people."

One of the greatest civil liberties victories for gay Americans began with a petty grudge.

On Sept. 17, 1998, Garner was in the home of John Lawrence in defiance of the wishes of his partner at the time, Robert Eubanks. Eubanks called the Harris County Sheriff's Office and told authorities that a crazed gunman was in the house.

"I think he was jealous," Garner said of Eubanks in a 2004 interview with the Houston Chronicle.

Two deputies arrived and found the door unlocked and Garner and Lawrence having sex. The pair was arrested and charged with "homosexual conduct," a misdemeanor that made it a crime for same-gender couples in Texas to have sex, even in private. They spent several hours in jail before posting $200 bond.

Lawrence and Garner were approached by Katine and the New York-based Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund. Lawrence wanted to challenge the arrest, but Garner was initially reluctant.

"I didn't think we'd win," Garner told the Chronicle. "I didn't enjoy being outed with my mugshot on TV. It was degrading to me."

They pleaded no contest in criminal court and took their case to the state appellate level, where they lost. In 2002 their case landed before the U.S. Supreme Court.

"He decided to fight against all odds," Katine said of Garner. "We lost at every level in Texas, and the only place we won was the Supreme Court."

The court ruled 6-3 in favor of Lawrence and Garner, deciding that the Texas law violated the Constitution's privacy guarantee. The decision also struck down the remaining similar laws that were still on the books in 13 states.

In the opinion for the majority, Justice Anthony Kennedy wrote:

"The petitioners are entitled to respect for their private lives. The State cannot demean their existence or control their destiny by making their private sexual conduct a crime. Their right to liberty under the Due Process Clause gives them the full right to engage in their conduct without intervention of the government."

Paul Scott, the executive director of Equality Texas, a gay rights advocacy group based in Austin, said that Garner's victory set the stage for the battle over same-sex marriage.

"I think sometime people don't realize how great a victory it was," Scott said. "In many states sodomy laws were used to deny people custody of their children, it affected employment and sometimes was used to prevent people from seeking legal redress because they were considered criminals."

Scott said that a great debt was owed to Garner.

"Anyone having to be the public face of this issue would have had to go through some hard times," Scott said. "It took a lot of courage to fight."


TOPICS: Extended News; News/Current Events; US: Texas
KEYWORDS: abunchofbaloney; activistcourt; chuckrosenthal; culturewar; homosexualagenda; houston; judicialtyranny; lawrencevtexas; medialies; mediarationalizing; roberteubanks; sodomy; texas; totalbs; tyronegarner; yeahright
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Robert Eubanks had also filed abuse charges against Tyrone and was murdered (assault) in an unsolved crime before the case against Tyrone ever went to trial.
1 posted on 09/14/2006 8:53:51 AM PDT by weegee
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To: weegee

Gee, I wonder how he got that "lengthy illness." And, what, exactly, was this "lengthy illness?"


2 posted on 09/14/2006 9:01:35 AM PDT by JRios1968 (9-11, 5 years later...NEVER forget!)
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To: weegee
"The petitioners are entitled to respect for their private lives."

Fine. I just wish they'd keep their "private lives" private, and quit trying to make us think they're "normal" and we're all homophobes.

3 posted on 09/14/2006 9:08:24 AM PDT by hsalaw
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To: JRios1968
Gee, I wonder how he got that "lengthy illness." And, what, exactly, was this "lengthy illness?"

Here the thread from earlier today.

***Garner had been suffering from meningitis***

Man Involved In Landmark Gay Rights Case Dies

4 posted on 09/14/2006 9:09:08 AM PDT by Arrowhead1952 (The media and the democrats are the biggest supporters of the terrorists.)
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To: Arrowhead1952

And just how did he get meningitis? Nevermind, I don't think I want to know...


5 posted on 09/14/2006 9:10:40 AM PDT by JRios1968 (9-11, 5 years later...NEVER forget!)
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To: weegee
And some more background...

Men whose sodomy case led to Supreme Court ruling keep low profile(Lawrence Garner Texas) (Dallas Morning News via Philly.com Thu, Jun. 26, 2003)

The secrecy served the interests of the movement, said Ray Hill, a pioneering gay rights advocate in Houston, who knows both men. "They are not the kind of people that the lawyers want to comment on this case," Hill said. "They were never a couple. . . . They are not articulate."

It was neither man's first brush with the law when a Harris County sheriff's deputy, responding to a romantic rival's false report of a man with a gun, entered the apartment at the Colorado Club on Sept. 17, 1998, and found the men engaged in sex.

For Garner, Harris County court records list arrests for assault, drunken driving and possession of a small amount of marijuana. Department of Public Safety records show only two convictions for assault, in 1995 and 2000.

Lawrence has two convictions for drunken driving and one for murder-by-automobile in 1967.

[snip]

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.

And the city has redesigned their website so the old link to the HPD case on Eubanks death (one of two names he used) is broken.

6 posted on 09/14/2006 9:12:29 AM PDT by weegee (Remember "Remember the Maine"? Well in the current war "Remember the Baby Milk Factory")
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To: 1riot1ranger; Action-America; Aggie Mama; Alkhin; Allegra; American72; antivenom; Antoninus II; ...

Houston PING


7 posted on 09/14/2006 9:13:44 AM PDT by weegee (Remember "Remember the Maine"? Well in the current war "Remember the Baby Milk Factory")
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To: weegee
The only people I have sympathy for here are the two cops who suspecting an armed suspect had to walk in and see this.

Would have burned my eyes out.

8 posted on 09/14/2006 9:20:17 AM PDT by Last Dakotan
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To: JRios1968
And just how did he get meningitis? Nevermind, I don't think I want to know...

A little squeamish? Shopping cart, door handle, anything someone with a bacterial infection might have touched and deposited germs on. Or possibly as a secondary infection following an upper respiratory infection or ear infection.

9 posted on 09/14/2006 9:23:36 AM PDT by ahayes (My strength is as the strength of ten because my heart is pure.)
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To: ahayes

Maybe a weakened or non-existant immune system??


10 posted on 09/14/2006 9:35:02 AM PDT by JRios1968 (9-11, 5 years later...NEVER forget!)
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To: weegee
Hmmm.....I seem to remember that the sodomy case was politically motivated. I think I read about it on a thread here at FR. The cops get there, and find the 2 guys going at it. They refused to stop buggering long enough to even acknowledge the law-enforcement officers who were responding to a call, so they were arrested (presumably after being either pried apart or having a hose turned on them?).
11 posted on 09/14/2006 9:38:40 AM PDT by Sans-Culotte ("Thanks, Tom DeLay, for practically giving me your seat"-Nick Lampson)
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To: JRios1968

Possibly, but a weak immune system doesn't suddenly magically appear bacteria on you. You asked how he got it, I told you.


12 posted on 09/14/2006 9:46:53 AM PDT by ahayes (My strength is as the strength of ten because my heart is pure.)
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To: ahayes

you didn't say anything about the most obvious route of transmission or does fecal stew kill meningitis?


13 posted on 09/14/2006 9:50:50 AM PDT by bigfootbob
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To: ahayes

Well, when the article says he had a "lengthy" illness, I wouldn't call that "suddenly magically appear(ing) bacteria." Anywho, we're all speculating, one way or the other. Thanks!


14 posted on 09/14/2006 9:51:05 AM PDT by JRios1968 (9-11, 5 years later...NEVER forget!)
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To: JRios1968

"Come on everybody we've got quilting to do."


15 posted on 09/14/2006 9:52:02 AM PDT by dfwgator
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To: bigfootbob

Your ignorance regarding medicine is duly noted.


16 posted on 09/14/2006 9:52:59 AM PDT by ahayes (My strength is as the strength of ten because my heart is pure.)
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To: dfwgator

How about a little lemonade on the porch?


17 posted on 09/14/2006 9:54:44 AM PDT by JRios1968 (9-11, 5 years later...NEVER forget!)
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To: ahayes
Your arrogance is breathtaking. I'll bet you consider smoking worse behavior than...
18 posted on 09/14/2006 10:02:30 AM PDT by bigfootbob
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To: weegee
Robert Eubanks had also filed abuse charges against Tyrone and was murdered
(assault) in an unsolved crime before the case against Tyrone ever went to trial.


Two more ticks in that column of folks living the gay lifestyle...
with longevity significantly below the average.

Unless Eubanks was a geezer.
19 posted on 09/14/2006 10:04:14 AM PDT by VOA
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To: bigfootbob

It wearies me when people are so knee-jerk emotional that they make silly comments like supposing meningitis is transmitted through anal sex. It was a silly comment. If you don't like having your silly comments pointed out, perhaps you should hit the web and find out what bacteria cause meningitis and how it is transmitted before making wrong medical pronouncements.


20 posted on 09/14/2006 10:15:52 AM PDT by ahayes (My strength is as the strength of ten because my heart is pure.)
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To: Sans-Culotte

In that case, why didn't Texas try them for resisting arrest instead of for the crime of sodomy?


21 posted on 09/14/2006 10:19:29 AM PDT by HostileTerritory
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To: ahayes

Do people have meningitis for long periods? I thought death was pretty quick.


22 posted on 09/14/2006 10:19:32 AM PDT by justshutupandtakeit (If you believe ANYTHING in the Treason Media you are a fool.)
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To: justshutupandtakeit

Yep, he probably had AIDs, but he certainly didn't catch the meningitis from anal sex!


23 posted on 09/14/2006 10:20:12 AM PDT by ahayes (My strength is as the strength of ten because my heart is pure.)
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To: ahayes

That may have just finished him off if he indeed had AIDS.


24 posted on 09/14/2006 10:21:17 AM PDT by justshutupandtakeit (If you believe ANYTHING in the Treason Media you are a fool.)
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To: Sans-Culotte

I remember something like that too. I think the officers stated that they thought it was staged, and they were set up.
Walking into the residence, the caller stood out of the way to let the officers thru and witness the episode. It was something screwy like that. The whole thing was contrived to get a case before the courts.

The folks at lonestartimes.com should probably have the info on that. Houston based blog. They started as watchdogs of the Houston Chronicle.

I always thought the Chronicle just followed thru with mindless reporting without giving the inside information.

This is just another instance where the courts have been used to advance a specific cause thru illigitimate cases.
1.) 1930s ruling restricting the 2nd amend.
2.) Roe V Wade
3.) this one comes to mind..


25 posted on 09/14/2006 10:21:39 AM PDT by urtax$@work (we have faced tenacity before....& The Best kind of Memorial is a BURNING Memorial)
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To: justshutupandtakeit

Yes, bacterial meningitis is bad enough if your immune system's intact. :-p


26 posted on 09/14/2006 10:24:11 AM PDT by ahayes (My strength is as the strength of ten because my heart is pure.)
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To: bigfootbob

I want to apologize. I've noticed recently I've been irritable with people here when I normally wouldn't be. I think I'm letting stress in real life carry over into my virtual interactions. I ought to have just explained how meningitis is transmitted instead of being rude to you. I will keep an eye on myself for a while so I don't myself make knee-jerk judgments of people I haven't spoken to before. I'm sorry I was rude to you.


27 posted on 09/14/2006 10:58:57 AM PDT by ahayes (My strength is as the strength of ten because my heart is pure.)
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To: Sans-Culotte

I assume that they were arrested for not obeying the officers since the "crime" itself carried a fine but no jail time.


28 posted on 09/14/2006 11:03:21 AM PDT by weegee (Remember "Remember the Maine"? Well in the current war "Remember the Baby Milk Factory")
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To: HostileTerritory

Matters not, the men pleaded no contest to the sodomy charge and then appealed to overturn the law.

And DA Chuck Rosenthal said that he didn't necessarily support the law (against same sex sodomy) but that he "had" to enforce the laws of the state (of course he'll still prosecute you as a felon if you are LEGALLY driving with a gun in your car as approved by the legislature).

Chuck Rosenthal (R) hasn't gotten my vote in years.


29 posted on 09/14/2006 11:06:18 AM PDT by weegee (Remember "Remember the Maine"? Well in the current war "Remember the Baby Milk Factory")
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To: ahayes

He also had a history of drug use (abuse) and that may have also compromised his body's ability to deal with toxins.


30 posted on 09/14/2006 11:07:09 AM PDT by weegee (Remember "Remember the Maine"? Well in the current war "Remember the Baby Milk Factory")
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To: ahayes

What's unusual is how political correctness makes it okay to identify someone as having meningitis (and when a student has spinal meningitis, the school is rapidly identified and people are encouraged to seek testing in they may have come in contact with him) but we had a couple people die of a particularly nasty strain of West Nile Virus (this one attacks the central nervous system) and the authorities said that because of medical confidentiality, we could only know the county (not even the location) even though 2 people have died already and the disease can be spread by mosquittos.


31 posted on 09/14/2006 11:10:38 AM PDT by weegee (Remember "Remember the Maine"? Well in the current war "Remember the Baby Milk Factory")
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To: ahayes

You are assuming it was bacterial meningitis. I don't think I have ever heard of bacterial memingitis lasting 6 months.


32 posted on 09/14/2006 11:10:59 AM PDT by Kozak (Anti Shahada: " There is no God named Allah, and Muhammed is his False Prophet")
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To: Kozak

I assume it was bacterial meningitis because it is much more deadly than viral meningitis. I don't assume that he was sick with meningitis for 6 months.


33 posted on 09/14/2006 11:12:33 AM PDT by ahayes (My strength is as the strength of ten because my heart is pure.)
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To: ahayes

"Garner, 39, died early Monday at a Houston hospital, said Mark Roy, a spokesman for Lambda Legal in New York City. Garner had been suffering from meningitis and had been in his brother's care for the past six months.

"Over the last few months, he lost the use of his legs from meningitis," Roy told The Associated Press. "


The differential diagnosis would be viral (ie HIV), TB or Fungal.


34 posted on 09/14/2006 11:18:10 AM PDT by Kozak (Anti Shahada: " There is no God named Allah, and Muhammed is his False Prophet")
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To: Kozak

I read "died Monday of meningitis," didn't see it was long duration.


35 posted on 09/14/2006 11:20:04 AM PDT by ahayes (My strength is as the strength of ten because my heart is pure.)
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To: ahayes

You might want to reread your post 18 and reflect.


36 posted on 09/14/2006 11:22:19 AM PDT by Kozak (Anti Shahada: " There is no God named Allah, and Muhammed is his False Prophet")
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To: ahayes

Sorry, make that 20....


37 posted on 09/14/2006 11:22:54 AM PDT by Kozak (Anti Shahada: " There is no God named Allah, and Muhammed is his False Prophet")
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To: Kozak

Eh?


38 posted on 09/14/2006 11:24:16 AM PDT by ahayes (My strength is as the strength of ten because my heart is pure.)
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To: ahayes
Yea, he got it from a door handle, a back door handle.
39 posted on 09/14/2006 11:27:11 AM PDT by stevio (Red-Blooded Crunchy Con American Male (NRA))
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To: ahayes
I want to apologize.

Kudos. Nice to see honorable behavior.

40 posted on 09/14/2006 11:29:12 AM PDT by LexBaird (Another member of the Bush/Halliburton/Zionist/CIA/NWO/Illuminati conspiracy for global domination!)
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To: LexBaird

Thanks, I prefer it when it's not necessary. ;-)


41 posted on 09/14/2006 11:31:17 AM PDT by ahayes (My strength is as the strength of ten because my heart is pure.)
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To: bigfootbob

Kozak points out that he suffered with meningitis for six months, so it wasn't bacterial meningitis but possibly viral meningitis caused by the HIV virus, so he may actually have caught meningitis by this route in a circuitous fashion, making me doubly wrong!


42 posted on 09/14/2006 11:36:59 AM PDT by ahayes (My strength is as the strength of ten because my heart is pure.)
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To: ahayes

TB and fungal meningitis are also high on the list of things people get as secondary infections from AIDS.


43 posted on 09/14/2006 11:44:12 AM PDT by Kozak (Anti Shahada: " There is no God named Allah, and Muhammed is his False Prophet")
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To: ahayes
I have to give you credit. It takes a stand-up person to make amends for being testy. Best Regards.
44 posted on 09/14/2006 11:45:58 AM PDT by bigfootbob
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To: bigfootbob

No problem and thank you.


45 posted on 09/14/2006 11:48:58 AM PDT by ahayes (My strength is as the strength of ten because my heart is pure.)
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To: JRios1968

From the web, Medical Microbiology:

"Retroviruses

Human immunodeficiency virus can cause acute and progressive CNS disease. HTLV-I causes chronic spastic paraparesis in a small number of infected persons."

One of many possibilities along with other STDs or simple bacterial infection.


46 posted on 09/14/2006 11:57:51 AM PDT by Old Professer (The critic writes with rapier pen, dips it twice, and writes again.)
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To: Kozak

I would think TB would be the least likely just because TB is not very common in the US. From my reading HIV meningitis is very common in people who are HIV positive and often kind of comes and goes multiple times. Cryptococcal meningitis is common and often fatal. My guess is that would be the most likely, what do you think?


47 posted on 09/14/2006 12:00:54 PM PDT by ahayes (My strength is as the strength of ten because my heart is pure.)
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To: justshutupandtakeit

Baacterial menigitis is rather quick if not treated immediately; retroviruses can linger on.


48 posted on 09/14/2006 12:03:43 PM PDT by Old Professer (The critic writes with rapier pen, dips it twice, and writes again.)
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To: Sans-Culotte

AND - they had tried to get cops to come before and witness their sodomy just to get a case going. This was not their first attempt.

The article is a lie.


49 posted on 09/14/2006 12:19:02 PM PDT by little jeremiah
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To: Grampa Dave

I wonder about the writer of this article...

(I'd do some research but we're super busy right now...)


50 posted on 09/14/2006 12:20:19 PM PDT by little jeremiah
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