On Tuesday, the Montana Senate voted, finally, to erase our “anti-sodomy law” which makes it an imprisonable crime to be gay. Although invalidated by our state supreme court in 1997, the law has remained on our books because Republicans have always refused to go along with efforts to scrap it.
But yesterday, SB 107, a measure to strike the offensive language from our statutes finally passed the senate. That said, the vote was far from unanimous. Ten Republicans voted no.
The New York Times is reporting that despite being unenforceable, irrelevant and ridiculously out of date, Kansas sodomy laws are being kept on the books by Governor Sam Brownback. Excerpt:
Image via Wikipedia
Gov. Sam Brownback created the Office of the Repealer to recommend the elimination of out-of-date, unreasonable and burdensome state laws that build up in any bureaucracy over time.
For gay men and lesbians, there seemed one particularly obvious candidate: Kansas Statute 21-3505.
That would be the “criminal sodomy” statute, which prohibits same-sex couples from engaging in oral or anal sex. The law was rendered unenforceable nearly a decade ago by a United States Supreme Court ruling, but it remains enshrined in the state’s legal code.
But on Friday, when Mr. Brownback, a conservative Republican, released a list of 51 laws to recommend to the Legislature for repeal, the sodomy statute was not among them.
The decision, despite public and private lobbying, has angered gay leaders here. “We were pretty much the first in line with our request to have this unconstitutional ban on gay and lesbian relations repealed,” said Thomas Witt, chairman of the Kansas Equality Coalition.
“This isn’t just some archaic law that’s sitting on the books and isn’t bothering anyone,” Mr. Witt continued. “It’s used as justification to harass and discriminate against people, and it needs to go.”
Mr. Brownback, who is a vocal opponent of same-sex marriage on religious grounds, declined to comment, and his spokeswoman would not say whether he would support repealing the law against same-sex sodomy, a misdemeanor that officially carries a prison sentence of up to six months.
It’s simple hate, bigotry and discrimination. As I’ve said before, these Christianist conservatives don’t give a shit about human rights, they don’t give a shit about science and they don’t give a shit about gay people.