Safe Stall Sex: The Larry Craig Defense
Taking a position that will delight horny, late-night bar patrons everywhere, the American Civil Liberties Union is arguing that people who have consensual sex in bathroom stalls in public places have a reasonable expectation of privacy and thus a 1st Amendment right to engage in a little sumpin'-sumpin'.
Citing a 38-year-old case as precedent, the ACLU took this position in the Sen. Larry Craig (R-Idaho) toe-tap case. The ACLU filed a brief yesterday on Craig's behalf in Minnesota, the scene of Craig's infamous sex-sting adventure last year. The senator (yes, he is still in office despite promising to resign last year) is fighting to overturn his own guilty plea on disorderly conduct charges and now has card-carrying ACLU lawyers helping to argue his case. What a country!
I don't know what's richer: that the political future of an archly conservative Republican senator is now in part dependent on an organization that has provided cheap punchlines for Republicans for a generation, or that Minnesota actually has case law that holds that sex in a public restroom bestows upon its participants some sort of privacy right. In any event, I can't wait for Craig to be "ungagged" by his lawyers so he may share his views on the matter.
Of course, the ACLU's motives differ from Craig's: The organization argues that the "sting" operation that ensnared Craig is itself unconstitutional because it seeks to criminalize private conduct (stall sex). Anthony Romero, executive director of the ACLU, said last September: "If the police really want to stop people from having sex in public bathrooms, they should put up a sign banning sex in the restroom and send in a uniformed officer to patrol periodically. That works."
Let the late-night jokes begin.
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