When the Supreme Court handed down its infamous Lawrence v. Texas decision (which banned anti-Sodomy laws) in 2003, opponents of the decision argued that this precedent would lead to attempts to legalize all manner of aberrant sexual practices. It looks like these critics turned out to be right. Time magazine reports:
In the landmark gay rights case of Lawrence v. Texas, critics warned that its sweeping support of a powerful doctrine of privacy could lead to challenges of state laws that forbade such things as gay marriage and bigamy. “State laws against bigamy, same-sex marriage, adult incest, prostitution, masturbation, adultery, fornication, bestiality, and obscenity are … called into question by today’s decision,” wrote Justice Antonin Scalia, in a withering dissent he read aloud page by page from the bench.
It turns out the critics were right. Plaintiffs have made the decision the centerpiece of attempts to defeat state bans on the sale of sex toys in Alabama, polygamy in Utah and adoptions by gay couples in Florida. So far the challenges have been unsuccessful. But plaintiffs are still trying. Even using Lawrence to challenge laws against incest.
Pandora’s box is open. Given the strong currents of modern culture, it will be very difficult to close it again.