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Scalia Defends Anti-Gay Comments in Response to Student Question

The U.S. Supreme Court will hear Prop 8 and DOMA cases. Obviously no one knows the outcome, but Justice Antonin Scalia provided yet another indication about his perspective on LGBTs, and they remain decidedly in the anti-LGBT side of things.

At an appearance at Princeton University, freshman Duncan Hosie questioned Scalia about his dissenting opinion in Lawrence v. Texas (a 2008 decision which struck down a Texas anti-sodomy law), in which he equated laws banning sodomy to laws banning murder and bestiality.

Via Metro Weekly, Scalia’s response to Hosie:

‘If we cannot have moral feelings against homosexuality, can we have it against murder? Can we have it against other things?’ Scalia asked, adding that he was not equating homosexuality to murder but the similarities to the bans on both.

‘It’s a reduction to the absurd. … I don’t think it’s necessary but I think it’s effective,’ Scalia said, according to The Daily Princeton.

‘I’m surprised you weren’t persuaded,’ he added.

Apparently Scalia thinks his “moral feelings” are a good basis for interpreting the Constitution.

MetroWeekly also reports that in responding to Hosie, Scalia once again emphasized his perspective (perhaps based on his moral feelings) that the Constitution

… isn’t a living document. It’s dead, dead, dead, dead.’

Not just kind of dead. Really, really dead. And yet, Scalia added:

‘My Constitution is a very flexible one. … There’s nothing in there about abortion. It’s up to the citizens. … The same with the death penalty.’

In Scalia’s dissenting opinion to the Lawrence v. Texas decision, he

… accused the court of signing onto the ‘so-called homosexual agenda’ directed at ‘eliminating the moral opprobrium that has traditionally attached to homosexual conduct.’

Scalia added, in part, ‘If moral disapprobation of homosexual conduct is ‘no legitimate state interest’ … what justification could there possibly be for denying the benefits of marriage to homosexual couples?’

I well remember the many smiles that resulted from that question. And I’ll predict that Scalia will do his moral feelings best to deny marriage equality.

(Antonin Scalia photo via SCOTUS)

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3 Responses to Scalia Defends Anti-Gay Comments in Response to Student Question

  1. Cujo359 December 13, 2012 at 11:08 pm #

    “If we cannot have moral feelings against homosexuality, can we have it against murder?” – Justice Scalia

    To me, the issue isn’t moral feelings, it’s harm. I know what harm murder does to the victims. I don’t see where there are victims of homosexuality, much less what harm there might be. Society as a whole isn’t harmed, either. It’s pretty clear that our reproductive success isn’t dependent on not allowing overt homosexuality.

    Before my society goes to the trouble and expense of creating and enforcing laws, it needs to bear the burden of showing that there is enough harm done by whatever is being prohibited or regulated that it’s worth the expense and the lives that are affected or ruined by that enforcement.

    So, no, it’s not the same thing. It’s not even close.

    There I go, stating the obvious again. ;)

    • Joyce Arnold December 14, 2012 at 10:13 am #

      Please, Cujo, keep stating the obvious :)

    • secularhumanizinevoluter December 14, 2012 at 7:44 pm #

      “To me, the issue isn’t moral feelings, it’s harm.”

      I wonder if Scalia would be concerned about the “harm” RELIGION does to people? ESPECIALLY the fundamentalist…with a heavy emphasis on MENTAL…variety so popular in the repugnantklan/teabagger mob? Or how about the Catholic Church and it’s enabling and covering up of child rapists for all these decades…not to even MENTION the Inquisition.

.... a writer is someone who takes the universal whore of language
and turns her into a virgin again.  ~ erica jong