Here Are 67 Smiling Reasons Why Homophobia Still Exists in America


The year is 2014, President Barack Obama has publicly endorsed same-sex marriage, DOMA is dead, states around the nation are pushing to enact same-sex marriage laws — and gay sex is still symbolically illegal in Louisiana.

Yes, you read that right. Despite all of the progress made so far on LGBT rights, on Tuesday, Louisiana voted to uphold the state's anti-sodomy law, 67-27, despite it being ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court, in their landmark 2003 Lawrence v. Texas decision. 

In its decision, the court ruled that laws prohibiting sodomy seek "to control a personal relationship that, whether or not entitled to formal recognition in the law, is within the liberty of persons to choose without being punished as criminals."

Unless you live in Louisiana? 

In fact, in addition to Louisiana and Texas, Idaho, Utah, Michigan, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Kansas and Oklahoma have all maintained their own anti-sodomy laws, despite their direct conflict with the Supreme Court's decision. In three of these states — Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas — such anti-sodomy laws pertain exclusively to "homosexual conduct." 

The Louisiana bill in question, HB12, proposed to amend "crime against nature..." and was introduced in January by State House Representative Patricia Smith (D-Baton Rouge). Although it seems painfully obvious that there is no reason on Earth to maintain such a law, Smith's proposed bill was a direct response to the targeted arrests of gay men in her district who were profiled and lured by undercover police to agree to consensual sex. At least 12 men have been arrested in this "sodomy sting" since 2011, despite the fact that prosecutors refused to bring charges in every single case. 

Opponents who voted against the bill illogically claimed that its passage would make children more vulnerable to sexual predators. "Just because we decriminalize things doesn’t make it right," said State Representative Valarie Hodges (R-Denham Springs), adding that the vote was "a vote of conscience." This is the kind of offensive, backwards logic that has perpetuated damaging and scientifically disproved stereotypes about the LGBT community for decades. The difference? This vote took place this week, not in the 1930s.

Without further ado, here are the 67 different lawmakers, both conservative and liberal, who voted to make sure an unconstitutional, offensive and all-around absurd anti-gay law should remain on their state's books. 

1. Representative Bryan Adams 

2. Representative John F. "Andy" Anders 

3. Representative James K. Armes III 

4. Representative Taylor F. Barras 

5. Representative John A. Berthelot 

6. Representative Robert E. Billiot 

7. Representative Stuart J. Bishop 

8. Representative Chris Broadwater 

9. Representative Terry R. Brown 

10. Representative Henry L. Burns 

11. Representative Timothy G. "Tim" Burns 

12. Representative Thomas G. Carmody, Jr. 

13. Representative Stephen F. Carter 

14. Representative Simone B. Champagne 

15. Representative Charles R. Chaney 

16. Representative Patrick Connick 

17. Representative Gregory Cromer 

18. Representative Michael E. Danahay 

19. Representative Gordon E. Dove, Sr.

20. Representative James R. "Jim" Fannin 

21. Representative Raymond E. Garofalo, Jr. 

22. Representative Brett F. Geymann 

23. Representative Jerry Gisclair 

24. Representative Hunter V. Greene 

25. Representative Mickey J. Guillory 

26. Representative John E. Guinn 

27. Representative Lance Harris 

28. Representative Joe Harrison 

29. Representative Kenneth E. Havard 

30. Representative Cameron Henry 

31. Representative Bob Hensgens 

32. Representative Dorothy Sue Hill 

33. Representative Valarie Hodges 

34. Representative Frank A. Hoffmann 

35. Representative Paul Hollis 

36. Representative Frank A. Howard 

37. Representative Mike Huval 

38. Representative Barry Ivey 

39. Representative Robert A. Johnson 

40. Representative Sam Jones 

41. Representative Eddie J. Lambert 

42. Representative H. Bernard LeBas 

43. Representative Christopher J. Leopold 

44. Representative Joseph P. Lopinto III 

45. Representative Nick Lorusso 

46. Representative Sherman Q. Mack 

47. Representative Gregory A. Miller 

48. Representative John C. "Jay" Morris, III 

49. Representative James H. "Jim" Morris 

50. Representative J. Kevin Pearson 

51. Representative Erich E. Ponti 

52. Representative J. Rogers Pope 

53. Representative Stephen E. Pugh 

54. Representative Steve E. Pylant 

55. Representative H. Eugene Reynolds 

56. Representative Jerome Richard 

57. Representative Harold L. Ritchie 

58. Representative Clay Schexnayder 

59. Representative John M. Schroder, Sr. 

60. Representative Alan Seabaugh 

61.Representative Robert E. Shadoin 

62. Representative Scott M. Simon 

63. Representative Julie Stokes 

64. Representative Kirk Talbot 

65. Representative Jeff R. Thompson 

66. Representative Lenar L. Whitney 

67. Representative Thomas P. Willmott 

Image Credit (all): Louisiana State Legislature