Repealing unconstitutional laws

Often time, politicians on one side or another will oppose a law because they say it is “unconstitutional,” or propose its repeal for similar reasons thereto. But rarely will the law actually be indisputably unconstitutional. Ten years ago, the Supreme Court ruled in Lawrence v. Texas that this State’s law against homosexual sodomy was a violation of the 14th amendment. The law against “homosexual conduct,” however, stayed on the books.

Now, there finally may be some momentum to get ride of this taint on our State. As former State Representative Debra Danburg mentioned, the effort to get ride of this ridiculous law dates back to 1975, when Mickey Leland first proposed legislation to repeal the statute. It went nowhere, as did a similar effort by John Whitmire in 1993.

However, today, the Senate Criminal Justice Committee voted 5-0 (still waiting on roll calls) to repeal this law, from a proposal by Jose Rodriguez. Republicans have jumped on the bandwagon of support simply in an effort to clear out the state code. The law is not legally enforceable, but this will be a good symbolic gesture to acknowledge the humanity of homosexuals.

2 thoughts on “Repealing unconstitutional laws

  1. Really excited to see this as a possibility for the future. I’m actually in the middle of writing a paper on the potential for marriage equality within Texas, and as a part of this I read through portions of the Texas Penal Code. I was really shocked it hadn’t been taken out.

  2. Pingback: Senate committee votes to repeal state sodomy law – Off the Kuff

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