WTF

Michigan Lawmakers Take Time Out of Busy Schedule to Criminalize Sex

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

Lawmakers in Michigan may not have the political wherewithal to save the state or the residents of Flint from the curse of dictatorial emergency management, but they did find time to reaffirm the state's commitment to ending the scourge of anal and oral sex.

The Michigan Senate has passed SB219, a bill which is ostensibly aimed at banning bestiality but also includes language criminalizing certain acts with humans.

For his part, sponsor Senator Rick Jones (R) says he won't try to remove that language because it would be too controversial.

The law makes it a felony for anyone to commit "the abominable and detestable crime against nature with mankind or with any animal." If the person is already a sex offender, violations are punishable by life in prison. [...]

This might seem like a great opportunity to finally remove the unconstitutional sodomy ban from the books, by simply striking the words "either with mankind or" from SB 219. However, Sen. Jones told The New Civil Rights Movement that such an amendment would jeopardize the whole bill. [...]

"But if you focus on it, people just go ballistic," he said. "If we could put a bill in that said anything that’s unconstitutional be removed from the legal books of Michigan, that’s probably something I could vote for, but am I going to mess up this dog bill that everybody wants? No."

There you have it. Republicans will not strike language that criminalizes sex acts among consenting adults because it would "mess up this dog bill."

State Senator Jones is essentially saying de-criminalizing sex is more controversial that reaffirming its criminality. And to be clear, this is a reaffirmation of a law that is already on the books. They've taken the time to update the language of the bill, but not to remove the phrase specifically including humans.

We can all agree that animal abuse is "abominable," but equating that with consensual sex among adults is also detestable.

Conservative lawmakers undoubtedly had gay couples in mind when they originally drafted the law, but gay couples are far from the only consenting adults who engage in these acts. I'm sure some of the lawmakers who voted for the bill partake quite regularly.