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Time Magazine: Scalia Was Right

John on April 10, 2007 at 10:20 am

Hard to believe, but Time magazine now admits conservative Justice Scalia was right about the repercussions of Lawrence v. Texas. The occasion of this crow-eating is a case out of Ohio in which Lawrence is being used to challenge laws against incest:

When the Supreme Court struck down Texas’s law against sodomy in the summer of 2003, in the landmark gay rights case of Lawrence v. Texas, critics warned that its sweeping support of a powerful doctrine of privacy could lead to challenges of state laws that forbade such things as gay marriage and bigamy. “State laws against bigamy, same-sex marriage, adult incest, prostitution, masturbation, adultery, fornication, bestiality, and obscenity are … called into question by today’s decision,” wrote Justice Antonin Scalia, in a withering dissent he read aloud page by page from the bench.

It turns out the critics were right. Plaintiffs have made the decision the centerpiece of attempts to defeat state bans on the sale of sex toys in Alabama, polygamy in Utah and adoptions by gay couples in Florida. So far the challenges have been unsuccessful. But plaintiffs are still trying, even using Lawrence to challenge laws against incest.

In Ohio, lawyers for a Cincinnati man convicted of incest for sleeping with his 22-year-old stepdaughter tell TIME that they will make the Lawrence decision the centerpiece of an appeal to the Supreme Court. “Our view of Lawrence is a fairly narrow one, that there is a Constitutional right under the 14th Amendment’s due process clause that says private consensual activity between adults cannot be criminal,” said J. Dean Carro, the lead lawyer for Paul D. Lowe, the former sheriff’s deputy sentenced in 2004 to 120 days in jail after pleading no contest to incest.

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Category: Marriage & Family |

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