Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Supreme Court Strikes Down Gay Sex Ban
AP via Yahoo ^ | 6/26/03 | AP

Posted on 06/26/2003 7:25:57 AM PDT by jethropalerobber

Supreme Court Strikes Down Gay Sex Ban

WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court struck down a ban on gay sex Thursday, ruling that the law was an unconstitutional violation of privacy.

The 6-3 ruling reverses course from a ruling 17 years ago that states could punish homosexuals for what such laws historically called deviant sex.

The case is a major reexamination of the rights and acceptance of gay people in the United States. More broadly, it also tests a state's ability to classify as a crime what goes on behind the closed bedroom doors of consenting adults.

Thursday's ruling invalidated a Texas law against "deviate sexual intercourse with another individual of the same sex."

Defending that law, Texas officials said that it promoted the institutions of marriage and family, and argued that communities have the right to choose their own standards.

The law "demeans the lives of homosexual persons," Justice Anthony M. Kennedy wrote for the majority.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Front Page News; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: gay; homosexual; lawrence; scalia; scotus; sodomy
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first previous 1-5051-100101-150151-200 ... 251-298 next last
To: ellery
But why does whether an act is consensual or not serve to determine whether a law against it is constitutional or not?
101 posted on 06/26/2003 8:45:13 AM PDT by aristeides
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 97 | View Replies]

To: bvw
I expected this ruling, but not on these grounds. I thought the law would be ruled unconstitutional under the rationale of equal protection. The Texas law applied only to homosexuals, but heterosexuals could engage in the same acts without it being illegal.

But the fact that the court based the ruling on the "constitutional right to privacy", rather than equal protection is troubling.

It reaffirms that constitutional right that isn't visible in the words that were written by our Founders. If anything, this reaffirms Roe v. Wade, which was based on the same concept.

I'm not nearly as bothered by the ruling than by the legal rational used to get there. This has vast implications, I believe, although I haven't had the opportunity to read the case yet.

102 posted on 06/26/2003 8:45:40 AM PDT by Dog Gone
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 45 | View Replies]

To: najida
I for one am in favor of multiple husbands... One to dance with One to fix things One to talk to One to shop with And one for sex ;)

and one to cook for you!

103 posted on 06/26/2003 8:46:20 AM PDT by ellery
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 73 | View Replies]

To: Dog Gone
Great quote from the Scalia dissent: "To tell the truth, it does not surprise me, and should surprise no one, that the Court has chosen today to revise the standards of stare decisis set forth in Casey. It has thereby exposed Casey's extraordinary deference to precedent for the result-oriented expedient that it is."

Thus the stage has been set for the overturning of Roe.

104 posted on 06/26/2003 8:48:15 AM PDT by aristeides
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 102 | View Replies]

To: DonaldC
That is not the purpose of the law. Sorry! You're just flat wrong!
105 posted on 06/26/2003 8:49:15 AM PDT by jayef
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: DonaldC
I should add to clarify, that the right to privacy can not override law, except where that law is a direct violation of that right. ie. a law that requires folks to submit to residential searches. That's what Thomas was getting at in his short addendum to Scalia's dissent. I haven't seen that yet, but I'm sure that's what Scalia will say also.
106 posted on 06/26/2003 8:49:58 AM PDT by spunkets
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 51 | View Replies]

To: ellery
"No, that was one of the main issues: in Texas sodomy was legal between a man and a woman, but illegal between two people of the same sex. However, the court seemingly did not overturn the law on this equal protection basis."

But if this is based on the ever elusive unwritten constitutional right to privacy how do you maintain that a child and an adult do not have that same right to violate the law as long as their doing it behind closed doors?

107 posted on 06/26/2003 8:51:07 AM PDT by Taxbilly
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 85 | View Replies]

To: rvoitier
Where's the 10th Amendment?

Which Amendment is that one again? I don't seem to remember which one that is? Oh, that's ancient history. Haven't had a Tenth Amendment since oh, about 1865. As I've said elsewhere the Republic is now officially dead, welcome to the Empire

108 posted on 06/26/2003 8:51:18 AM PDT by billbears (Deo Vindice)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: jethropalerobber
The law "demeans the lives of homosexual persons,"

So do their acts...

109 posted on 06/26/2003 8:51:51 AM PDT by lepton
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Owl_Eagle
The doors are now open for bigamy, prostitution, and incest! Hooray! I can hardly wait to tell my sister!

Actually, you have picked offenses, which historically have been considered far, far less egregious. Bigamy--that is what we would call bigamy--is perfectly legal in many societies. Prostitution always carried a stigma, but was legal in most societies--American included--up until the beginning of the 20th Century, when it was outlawed so that the Police could force health checkups on the girls.

Incest, of course, is differently defined in different States and cultures. While I know of no society where wedding a parent is accepted, the Greek dynasty in Egypt--Cleopatra--accepted brother sister nuptials as a norm. Of course, I guess on the last point, I have made no point; because the Greeks also accepted Homosexuality for long periods. But it is certainly a more serious matter than bigamy or prostitution. (And more deviant, still, than incest.)

I have not read the Court's decision; so I will not go any further. It sounds as though it leaves the door open for prosecution of people who do not keep their deviant conduct private. And that, after all, is the real crux of the moral political dilemma. Just about every State has its own equivalent of the 4th Amendment. Privacy rights are usually being protected, except under very unusual circumstances. So this may do little, if it is confined to people who sincerely seek to keep their actions private; but it does highlight, once more, how important it is that we keep Leftists off of the Federal Bench.

William Flax Return Of The Gods Web Site

110 posted on 06/26/2003 8:52:03 AM PDT by Ohioan
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: jimt
I have a gay homosexual step-son that I love dearly, we have a close respectfull relationship.
I have 3 young grandson's in boy scouts...and I am real angry about what is going on there...
This issue affects me personally...I like the dissenting justices comments which reflect my own opinion.
111 posted on 06/26/2003 8:52:41 AM PDT by OREALLY
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 94 | View Replies]

To: MHGinTN
Your hatred is just beautiful. God loves you! God hates fags! That's the ticket.
112 posted on 06/26/2003 8:53:21 AM PDT by jayef
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 32 | View Replies]

To: The Old Hoosier
"Nope. The precedent will help the court force state legalization of bestiality and other deviant sex acts as well, not to mention prostitution."

Too late. Bestiality in private is legal in Texas. See section 21.07 at http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/statutes/pe/pe0002100.html
113 posted on 06/26/2003 8:53:49 AM PDT by jde1953
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: jethropalerobber
Slippery slope for consensual incest and bestiality, I mean sex with personal property. Arguably NO different.
114 posted on 06/26/2003 8:55:23 AM PDT by Clint N. Suhks
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: ellery
In the first case, it was consensual, but not legal. In the latter, it is illegal and also by definition non-consensual.

The age of consent is arbitrary as proven by the differences in state laws and national laws.

115 posted on 06/26/2003 8:57:09 AM PDT by Taxbilly
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 97 | View Replies]

To: aristeides
Yeah, you're right. We know that some things that go on behind closed doors will always be regulated/prohibited (murder, etc.)...so there needs to be a coherent standard for what behind-closed-doors activites should be regulated, and what activities should not. Right now, it seems to be up to judges' whims: if the standard is victimless activites by consenting adults, then drugs should be legalized, too, and prostitution, and on and on. But that's clearly NOT the standard across the board.

That's why we ought to return to fundamentals: all these issues should be the province of the states, as long as they don't violate the Constitution. Of course, that will never happen.
116 posted on 06/26/2003 8:57:14 AM PDT by ellery
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 95 | View Replies]

To: aristeides
THat's the way those guys operate. They have visions and whatever they can do to transform reality into those visions, they will do. Hence the long passage through rambling rubbish.
117 posted on 06/26/2003 8:57:19 AM PDT by spunkets
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 46 | View Replies]

To: Reagan is King
Yet another reason why we need to make sure we get (and keep) a larger Senate majority in 2004 so we can get some REAL conservative justices on the bench instead of the milquetoast liberal justices put on there by both Democrap and previous Repulican administrations.

Conservative/liberal? How about just "literate"?

118 posted on 06/26/2003 8:57:45 AM PDT by lepton
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 35 | View Replies]

To: Eagle Eye
How many homo acts did the law stop?

How many homo acts did early American colonial laws against such behavior stop? I don't know, but the notion that Tony Kennedy and four other Federal judges can dictate suddenly after over 200 years that such laws are unconstitutional is the real irony of the celebration of this decision as a victory of "Freedom" and a blow against "Big Government". The Constitution has longed ceased to have any meaning to those who wish to be enslaved by a triumvirate of five federal judges.

Cordially,

119 posted on 06/26/2003 8:58:26 AM PDT by Diamond (What ever happened to the 10th Amendment?)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 37 | View Replies]

To: Eagle Eye
But guess what? Even God Almighty gave man free will to choose life or death. God doesn't stop them, who and why should the government?

Wow...sophistry.

120 posted on 06/26/2003 8:58:41 AM PDT by lepton
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 37 | View Replies]

Comment #121 Removed by Moderator

To: aristeides
But why does whether an act is consensual or not serve to determine whether a law against it is constitutional or not?

It doesn't (or at least, shouldn't). I was just opining on why this ruling does not seem to open the door for pedophilia ('though it does seem to create a precedent for prostitution, etc.)

122 posted on 06/26/2003 9:00:30 AM PDT by ellery
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 101 | View Replies]

To: Dog Gone
The legal rationale shoulod be comforting. If it were based on equal protection, it could be used as a springboard to legalize gay marriage. Since it was based on the right to privacy, it likely cannot.

P.S. - For you textualists out there, read the 9th Amendment. The Constitutional protections we enjoy are not limited to the Bill of Rights. The Founders intended ALL natural rights to be protected. Not abortion rights and the liberal prenumbra rights that were invented. But rights such as the general right to privacy and, most importantly, the right to own property. If more conservatives would take this view instead of the view of a narrow constitutional interpretation, we could render the entire welfare state unconstitutional with one swift opinion.
123 posted on 06/26/2003 9:00:42 AM PDT by Texas Federalist
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 102 | View Replies]

To: aristeides
Link to Scalia's dissent.

It's wonderful reading (as usual). The problem is that I doubt the people it's aimed at are smart or literate enough to get more than an uneasy impression he's lampooning them.

124 posted on 06/26/2003 9:01:02 AM PDT by Right Wing Professor
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: Dog Gone
Agreed, Dog Gone. I see an equal protection argument here, as well...but not a "privacy" one.
125 posted on 06/26/2003 9:01:53 AM PDT by ellery
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 102 | View Replies]

To: NewJerseyRepublican
Really, when you think about it, what's more worrisome -- the idea of two people having sex in the privacy of their own home or the government bursting in to your bedroom in the middle of the night to make sure you're only having sex with your wife and, of course, in the proper missionary position?

Do you have some illusion that that is part of the circumstance in this case? The police had (mistaken) probable cause, that the ruling here does not in any way affect their being able to pursue.

126 posted on 06/26/2003 9:03:26 AM PDT by lepton
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 48 | View Replies]

To: Eagle Eye
Well, what's the problem in getting rid of an ineffective, virtually unenforcable law?

See Justice Thomas' dissent. He nailed this question in a short paragraph.

127 posted on 06/26/2003 9:03:58 AM PDT by Right Wing Professor
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 37 | View Replies]

To: Phantom Lord
I have a number of problems with legalized prostitution-
 
    First, how would you feel about a brothel opening in your neighborhood?  Personally, that's not something that appeals to me.
    Second, would you enjoy having to explain to your kids (assuming you have them) what's taking place at a brothel that's advertised or openly conducting business?
 
    However my primary opposition to it is that it dehumanizes the prostitute and I'd rather not have my country turn into a place where we turn a blind eye to or attach moral relativism to things like that.  But, hey, that's just me.
 
    To answer you question directly, I'm opposed to the two being combined.
 
   

Owl_Eagle

”Guns Before Butter.”

128 posted on 06/26/2003 9:04:01 AM PDT by South Hawthorne ("It is unlikely there'll be a reduction in the wages of sin.")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 93 | View Replies]

Comment #129 Removed by Moderator

To: Taxbilly
The way I read it, it's based on private, consensual activities -- the assenting judges make this point again and again. Otherwise, it would also legalize serial killing and anything else one does in private. That's not to say I agree with the legal argument for this ruling -- I don't. I'm just relating why I don't think this creates precedence for pedophilia.
130 posted on 06/26/2003 9:05:15 AM PDT by ellery
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 107 | View Replies]

To: jimt
Oh really? ... go read what Justice Scalia has to say about the monumental paradigm shift this wrongheaded ruling unleashed!
131 posted on 06/26/2003 9:05:36 AM PDT by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support from someone. Promote Life Support for others.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 47 | View Replies]

To: jethropalerobber
"The condemnation has been shaped by religious beliefs, conceptions of right and acceptable behavior, and respect for the traditional family. -Kennedy"

And now is further reinforced by understanding of causes and methods of disease transmission, and other social ills.

132 posted on 06/26/2003 9:06:44 AM PDT by lepton
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 54 | View Replies]

To: Eagle Eye
Well, what's the problem in getting rid of an ineffective, virtually unenforcable law?

The Problem is that the Court is not suppose to decide the effectiveness of a law but the constitutionality. If you don't like a law then change the law at the state house.

The government shouldn't be policing what CONSENTING ADULTS do in their own homes. It's called Freedom.

Interesting that you define freedom as as handful of un-elected judges overturning the laws passed by the elected representatives of the people.

133 posted on 06/26/2003 9:07:15 AM PDT by Sci Fi Guy
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 37 | View Replies]

To: ellery
There's no such thing as voluntary sex between an adult and a minor, as a minor cannot legally consent...

Though oddly enough, many states consider minors able to consent to have sex with other minors.

134 posted on 06/26/2003 9:07:46 AM PDT by lepton
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 55 | View Replies]

To: Paradox
Sounds good to me. And no, I am not a homo-loving libertine. I hate their political agenda and oppose it where I can. I am not much in favor of their social agenda either. But I cannot support the government banning behaviour between consenting adults. And yes, add in all the loony consenting behaviour that you will ("oh yeah? Well what about people who want to stick breadsticks in each others eyes to pop their eyeballs out, what about that? Huh? HUH?"), I'd say people have a right to it.

What about people who want to keep open sewage pools in their yards?

135 posted on 06/26/2003 9:10:09 AM PDT by lepton
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 62 | View Replies]

To: Taxbilly
The age of consent is arbitrary as proven by the differences in state laws and national laws.

Very true -- just another support for the fact that these issues belong to the states. Actually, it's no different from pornography, the definition of which legally varies from community to community. Basically, if a community wants to legalize gay marriage, etc., they should be allowed to do so. If a community wants to make sodomy illegal (as long as it's illegal for everyone - equal protection), they should be able to do that too. That's the genius of our republic. Sigh.

136 posted on 06/26/2003 9:10:12 AM PDT by ellery
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 115 | View Replies]

To: jethropalerobber
I'm surprised no one made an argument against legalizing sodomy for medical reasons and that it has (and still is) the catalyst for AIDS. So many of our tax dollars are WASTED on this disease that is caused by men screwing each other in this deviant way... where's THAT argument in this case????

137 posted on 06/26/2003 9:10:12 AM PDT by rocky88
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: jayef
I am decidedly intolerant of deviant behavior that impacts all of society. Homos wish, no, DEMNAD to be perceived special based on their sexual proclivities. That's nonsense. Hate? No, disgust over human trash is more like it. Their chosen behavior is corrupting, individually and of society. I am intolerant of such deviancy.
138 posted on 06/26/2003 9:11:08 AM PDT by MHGinTN (If you can read this, you've had life support from someone. Promote Life Support for others.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 112 | View Replies]

To: The Red Zone
Unfortunately the court can't add to the arguments that were brought before it. It can only choose among them.

That's not entirely true. They can't add to the case, but they can certainly add to the arguments, and regularly do so.

139 posted on 06/26/2003 9:11:38 AM PDT by lepton
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 67 | View Replies]

To: ellery
"did not overturn the law on this equal protection basis."

Perhaps that's for the best. Equal protection (OK for heterosexuals = OK for homosexuals) would open the door to gay marriage, yes?

140 posted on 06/26/2003 9:11:52 AM PDT by robertpaulsen
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 85 | View Replies]

To: trebor
Not legalize, but decriminalize. I am opposed to govt 'permission. The whole gay marriage thing would not exist if it wernt for the govt granting licensese for people to get married. License implies permission.

Great point bump! Marriage should be a religious, not civil institution.

141 posted on 06/26/2003 9:12:40 AM PDT by ellery
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 121 | View Replies]

To: lepton
"Though oddly enough, many states consider minors able to consent to have sex with other minors."

And, oddly enough, it's the most conservative states that usually have the lowest ages of consent...
142 posted on 06/26/2003 9:13:50 AM PDT by NewJerseyRepublican
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 134 | View Replies]

To: Paradox
I respect this guy more and more. I know many liberals accuse him of just being Scalia's house-n*gger..

Thomas' rulings are clear and concise. His judgement eloquent. Occasionally I disagree with him, but he doesn't do the O'Connor "paint and spaghetti thrown at the wall" technique of opinion-writing.

143 posted on 06/26/2003 9:14:21 AM PDT by lepton
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 74 | View Replies]

To: robertpaulsen
If I read Kennedy's opinion correctly, he doesn't say that the Texas law could not also have been overturned on the equal protection ground, merely that the court chose to confront the due process argument instead (because deciding the case on equal protection grounds would not make clear that sodomy laws were constitutional if they prohibited both homo- and heterosexual sodomy)>

So it's not clear that the Supreme Court would not entertain the equal protection argument for gay marriage in a future case.

144 posted on 06/26/2003 9:15:29 AM PDT by aristeides
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 140 | View Replies]

To: NewJerseyRepublican
Sounds about right. Sodomy laws are pointlessly unenforcable in the first place. Anything that takes the federal government out of our private lives is fine by me.

Actually this case puts the federal government in your lives. The Court inserting the federal gov't into a matter which should have been up for the people of texas to decide. This decision weakens the ability of a state to govern itself.

145 posted on 06/26/2003 9:16:22 AM PDT by Sci Fi Guy
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 38 | View Replies]

To: Sci Fi Guy
Limbaugh is making your point right now.
146 posted on 06/26/2003 9:17:02 AM PDT by aristeides
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 145 | View Replies]

To: lepton
Though oddly enough, many states consider minors able to consent to have sex with other minors.

Smile -- that is odd! I don't know the laws behind this -- are minors really legally allowed to have sex with each other? Or is it a case where it's illegal, but not prosecuted? (This question does not apply to instances where parents grant their minor children persmission to get married -- that's different.)

147 posted on 06/26/2003 9:17:20 AM PDT by ellery
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 134 | View Replies]

To: drjimmy
Yeah. It was a real bummer when slavery was done away with.

Was actually done away with the right way...by Constitutional Amendment - not by the spontaneous ruling/whim of the courts. Slavery was a wrong, but it was Constitutional - so what's your point?

148 posted on 06/26/2003 9:20:49 AM PDT by lepton
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 96 | View Replies]

To: rocky88
I'm surprised no one made an argument against legalizing sodomy for medical reasons and that it has (and still is) the catalyst for AIDS.

That argument sets a precedent for a huuuuuge number of scary government programs, e.g., it definitely supports forcible vaccination, would probably speed the looming nationwide ban on smoking (second-hand smoke, doncha know), etc., etc.

149 posted on 06/26/2003 9:21:55 AM PDT by ellery
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 137 | View Replies]

To: rocky88
look for an STD occurance spike in six months.
150 posted on 06/26/2003 9:22:01 AM PDT by longtermmemmory
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 137 | View Replies]


Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first previous 1-5051-100101-150151-200 ... 251-298 next last

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson