Lawrence v. Texas

June 1, 2003 • Legal Briefs

Texas’s Homosexual Conduct Law makes homosexual (and only homosexual) sodomy illegal. In this brief, Cato argues that the law is unconstitutional because the Fourteenth Amendment requires that state criminal laws clearly notify citizens of their coverage, that they not discriminate arbitrarily against classes of persons, and that they respect fundamental liberties. It traces the history of sodomy statutes, which have historically focused on predatory and public activities, not private and consensual ones. It further argues that the Texas law violates the Due Process, Equal Protection, and Privileges or Immunities Clauses of the Fourteenth Amendment.

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