Morality Provides 'Rational Basis' for Sex Toy Ban

Jane Roe, a 38-old single woman who finds sexual intercourse extremely painful, rediscovered the joy of sex after buying a vibrator at an adult "toy party."

So did a 61-year-old man with erectile dysfunction, who uses sex aids to satisfy his wife. Ditto for the middle-aged couple that claims an assortment of sexual devices restored "trust, dialogue, and understanding" to what had been their crumbling marriage.

Alabama argued that it was crucial that the court affirm states' right to legislate based on ideas of public morality, even when the law arguably encroaches on private, consensual conduct. The state had warned the court that striking down the sex toy ban would open a Pandora's Box of constitutional litigation that could jeopardize prohibitions on gay marriage, adult incest, prostitution, obscenity, bigamy, polygamy, adultery, necrophilia and even some illicit drug statutes.

"The great majority of Americans think the legislature ought to be able to tackle those issues," says Kevin Newsom, Alabama's solicitor general.

staff Writer

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