Saturday, October 22, 2005

Idiot Kansas Law

In Kansas, a case involving the discrepancy between laws covering gay sexual activity and that of straight sexual activity was settled by a rational Kansas Supreme Court. Matthew Limon was 18 when he had sex with a 14-year old boy in 2000. For this, he was sentenced to 17 years in prison. Had he had sex with a 14-year old girl, the max he would have received was 15 months.

A Kansas appeals court, in a 2-1 decision upheld this miscarriage of justice. Fortunately, yesterday the Kansas Supreme Court ruled that the vastly different penalties violated the federal Constitution's equal protection clause. Still, Matthew Limon spent four more years in prison than he should have.

Beyond that, the thinking of one of the appeals judges and the Kansas state attorney general are troubling, to say the least. In the appeals court ruling against Limon, judge Henry W. Green Jr., said the Kansas law not only promoted "traditional sexual mores," "the traditional sexual development of children," marriage, procreation and parental responsibility, but also helped protect minors from sexually transmitted diseases, which he said were more generally associated with homosexual than with heterosexual activity. Where Judge Green came up with that medical tidbit is anybody's guess.

Just as troubling is the argument by Kansas attorney general Phill Kline, who stated in his brief that ruling for Matthew Limon would "begin a toppling of dominoes which is likely to end in the Kansas marriage law on the scrap heap." He also added that:

"Sexual desires rather than communal and historical sensitivities would then define the marital relationship, allowing such combinations as three-party marriages, incestuous marriages, child brides and other less-than-desirable couplings."

This is the same attorney general who is hassling abortion providers in Kansas for confidential medical records in a fishing expedition that underage girls are receiving illegal abortions in the state.

Kline has said he does not expect to appeal the ruling to the U.S. Supreme Court. If Harriet Miers gets confirmed, I think all bets are off.

2 Comments:

Blogger Jenny S-G said...

Fortunately, I think the liklihood that Miers is confirmed is incredibly slim . . . .

9:22 AM  
Blogger Rod Carveth said...

I hope you are right. She is a mediocre choice at best.

I was surprised that Bush didn't appoint his accountant to be head of the Federal Reserve.

2:11 PM  

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