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The Logic Of Rick Santorum

Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum’s point about a pending Supreme Court case challenging state anti-sodomy laws seems hardly remarkable. The senator said: “If the Supreme Court says that you have the right to consensual [homosexual] sex within your home, then you have the right to bigamy, you have the right to polygamy, you have the right to incest, you have the right to adultery, you have the right to anything.” If the United States constitution is deemed to protect against general state laws prohibiting homosexual sex on the ground that it is consensual, then other consensual sex would also seem similarly protected, even if one could arguably reject out of hand the concept of consensual incest. Yet the crescendo of criticism from liberal quarters that followed Santorum’s comments, simply ignored the issue of their
reasonableness and focused rather on the supposed reactionary slight to an “alternative lifestyle,” to be lumped together with “really terrible activity.”

It is not de rigueur these days to take morally principled positions, and we suspect that the Supreme Court will reverse a 1986 decision upholding anti-sodomy statutes. But we predict that this brouhaha will be viewed years from now as yet another signpost in our descent from any notion of societal standards to anything and everything goes unless someone is directly and palpably harmed. That is, as Linda Chavez wrote in a recent article in the Washington Times, “Either the constitution protects the right of consenting adults to do whatever they desire in private or it does not.”

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