Last edited: February 14, 2005

Family Pride Coalition Commends Supreme Court Decision in Texas Sodomy Case

Family Pride Coalition, June 26, 2003

Washington, DC—The Family Pride Coalition commends the United State’s Supreme Court ruling which struck down the Texas sodomy law by a vote of 6-3, saying the law was an unconstitutional violation of privacy and also violated due process guarantees.

The U.S. Supreme Court considered the constitutionality of the Texas “Homosexual Conduct” law, which criminalized oral and anal sex between consenting gay couples. Today’s ruling also overthrows sodomy laws in all 13 states where they had existed, and not just the four states—Texas, Kansas, Oklahoma and Missouri—that had discriminatory sodomy laws that only outlawed same-sex “sodomy.”

Lambda Legal argued the case—Lawrence and Garner v. Texas—before the United States Supreme Court. Justices Anthony Kennedy, John Paul Stevens, David Souter, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer and Sandra Day O’Connor voted in the majority. Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist and Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas dissented.

“Today, the Supreme Court ruled for fairness for all Americans,” said Aimee Gelnaw, executive director of the Family Pride Coalition. “After years of this antiquated law being applied with prejudice to gay and lesbian Americans, it can no longer serve as an unjust barrier to lesbians and gay men maintaining custody of their own children or becoming foster or adoptive parents.”

This year, the Family Pride Coalition was deeply involved in efforts to defeat three anti-gay foster care and adoption bills in Texas. The sodomy law was used as a reference point in arguments against allowing lesbian and gay Texans the opportunity to serve as foster and adoptive parents. Despite this opposition, all three measures were defeated.

The Family Pride Coalition is the only national non-profit organization dedicated to advancing the well being of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender parents and their families through mutual support, community collaboration and public understanding.

[Home] [News] [Lawrence v. Texas]