Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia believes that women and gay people are not protected by the constitution from state mandated and enforced discrimination. (SF Chronicle)
The U.S. Constitution does not outlaw sex discrimination or discrimination based on sexual orientation, Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia told a law school audience in San Francisco on Friday.
“If the current society wants to outlaw discrimination by sex, you have legislatures,” Scalia said during a 90-minute question-and-answer session with a professor at UC Hastings College of the Law. He said the same was true of discrimination against gays and lesbians.
Scalia, a proponent of “originalism” believes that it doesn’t matter what the words of the Constitution say or even what a logical and consistent application would yield. Rather, it is what was in the minds of the white men who drafted that wording which matters.
And Scalia believes that when they wrote
No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.
they clearly did not intend for “any person” to include women or gay persons. So I guess we know how he’ll be voting in the upcoming cases which deal with the equality of gay citizens.
Since the “original intent” is required for Scalia to find that the US Constitution protects women and gay people, perhaps we should provide him with some original intent. Maybe Scalia would find it more convincing if Congress and the States amended the US Constitution to put the words “any person” in bold font.