Why we should hope for the best, prepare for the worst
There’s an old adage that advises people to hope for the best, but prepare for the worst.
With the U.S. Supreme Court now dominated by a conservative majority that apparently has no shame in overturning well-established rulings that protect civil liberties, members of the LGBTQ+ community would be wise to start preparing.
That’s because Justice Clarence Thomas, in his concurring decision supporting the overturning of Roe v. Wade, has already called for the Court to revisit previous decisions striking down laws that prohibit contraception, same-sex sodomy between consenting adults, and same-sex marriage.
A key component of all those advances in civil liberties is the right to privacy, which is not stated explicitly in the Constitution, but has been a fundamental part of U.S. law since 1965. That’s when the Court, in a case challenging a Connecticut statute outlawing the use of contraception, found that the “fundamental constitutional guarantees” protected by the Bill of Rights encompass a right to privacy.
It was only seven years ago, in Obergefell v. Hodges, that a more enlightened majority on the Supreme Court relied, in part, on that precedent in making its landmark decision legalizing same-sex marriage. Chief Justice John Roberts, along with Justices Thomas and Samuel Alito, were all opposed. Now, with three staunchly conservative justices nominated by Donald Trump on the Court, they form a solid majority.
That does not bode well for the LGBTQ+ community.