April 23, 2003
Republicans are the anti-sex party, and somehow I don't see that as a winning political strategy, leaving aside the dubious merits of Puritanism for a second.
Maybe I've been in Madison, Wisconsin, too long, but my sense of things is that people like to have sex, and they don't want John Ashcroft or Rick Santorum to tell them what kind they can have.
Santorum, the junior Republican Senator from Pennsylvania, came out against "consensual sex" the other day. Here's what he said: "If the Supreme Court says that you have the right to consensual sex within your home, then you have the right to bigamy, you have the right to incest, you have the right to adultery. You have the right to anything."
This was in the context of the pending Supreme Court case brought by two gay men in Texas who were arrested for having sex in their home. Currently, 13 states outlaw gay sex, and nine of those outlaw oral and anal sex if heterosexuals are doing it. So if you're in Texas, Idaho, Utah, Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, and most Southern states, you better lock your bedroom doors and close the shutters!
Santorum raises a red herring about incest, by the way, since no one is proposing legalizing that. And if states enforced laws against adultery, the stockades would be full. Hester Prynne, anybody? Gay rights activists and civil libertarians make a simple argument: What consenting adults do behind closed doors is their own business.
Republicans used to clamor for the government to get off our backs. Now they invite it into our bedrooms.
But hey, if they want to be the party that's opposed to oral sex, that's fine by me. They'll lose in a landslide.