Louisiana Appeals Court Says Sodomy Laws Not Anti-Gay
November 23, 2002
New Orleans, Louisiana—Louisiana's Court of Appeals
has ruled that the state's 197-year-old sodomy law does not discriminate
against gays and lesbians.
The 4th Circuit Court of Appeal in a 2-1 ruling rejected arguments by
lawyers for the Louisiana Electorate of Gays and Lesbians.
The court ruled that the law against oral and anal sex does not violate the
right to privacy. The judges said the plaintiffs brought no evidence that the
"crime against nature" law discriminates against gays and lesbians.
The appeals court also sided with a lower court judge in not letting
witnesses testify as to the harmful effects of the law on gays and lesbians.
"This decision continues to put Louisiana outside the
mainstream," said John D. Rawls, an attorney for Louisiana Electorate of
Gays and Lesbians.
"We are still the only state whose courts deny a right to privacy to
its citizens, we are still the only state whose courts have upheld sodomy
laws, we are still back in the 18th century unfortunately," he said.
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