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11 Years After Mandated By US Supreme Court, Alabama Court Strikes Down Anti-Sodomy Law

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On Friday an Alabama appeals court ruled the state’s ban on consensual same-sex intercourse unconstitutional. Prompted by the conviction of a man in 2010 and his subsequent yearlong incarceration, this decision (Dewayne Williams v. State of Alabama) comes 11 years after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled all anti-sodomy laws in the United States unconstitutional in the case Lawrence v. Texas.

By the time of Lawrence v. Texas in 2003, all but 14 states had removed their bans through legislative or judicial action. Yet, despite the Supreme Court ruling, Alabama is only the third state whose statute was overturned with the case to actually remove the anti-sodomy law from the books, along with Montana and Virginia.

LOOK: What Did Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal Say About Baton Rouge Illegal Arrests Of Gay Men?

Last year, the arrest of 12 men in East Baton Rouge Parish, Louisiana, attracted national attention. The incident substantiated claims that police were using the existing statute to target gay men for persecution, despite it being a clear violation of federal law. The district attorney refused to prosecute the man, saying the law was unenforceable, and the case was dropped. Nonetheless, moves to formally repeal the ban have since beendefeated.

States that still retain their anti-sodomy laws are Florida, Idaho, Kansas, Michigan, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas and Utah.

James McDonald is a Brooklyn-native currently based in Scotland. When not pouring through the letters of Mary, Queen of Scots in pursuit of an MLitt Scottish History degree at the University of Glasgow, you’ll find him typing away. To date, his writing has been featured in Haaretz, the Huffington Post, the Lambda Literary Review, Gayletter, Thought Catalog and The Outmost, with more (hopefully) on the way. Follow him@jamesian7 

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BAD PRESIDENT

Adam Schiff: ‘A President Cannot Pardon Himself’ and the ‘Constitution is Not a Suicide Pact’

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Adam Schiff

Intelligence Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) appeared on CNN Wednesday to discuss the pardon of Michael Flynn by President Donald J. Trump and the question arose regarding whether or not the president could, in fact, pardon himself.

“The Justice Department has taken the position that a president cannot pardon himself,” Schiff said. “It would ultimately be up to [the U.S. Supreme Court] to decide. The Constitution is not a suicide pact.”

Flynn was originally charged with admitting that he had misled investigators about details of his conversations with the Russian ambassador during Trump’s presidential transition.

Watch the video below.

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CORRUPTION

Trump Pardons Former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn

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President Donald J. Trump pardoned his former national security adviser Michael Flynn Wednesday. Flynn had previously pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI in December 2017.

Flynn was originally charged with admitting that he had misled investigators about details of his conversations with the Russian ambassador during Trump’s presidential transition.

Trump’s pardon of Flynn marks a full embrace of the retired general he had ousted from the White House after only 22 days on the job — and a final salvo against the Russia investigation that shadowed the first half of his term in office.

This story is developing.

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CORRUPTION

Ivanka Trump and Her Family Will Have a Rude Awakening When They Leave the White House

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President Donald J. Trump is about to leave the White House in less than eight weeks, which means he’s taking his entire brood with him to new post-White House life.  Among those seeking a new residence and career: his daughter, Ivanka Trump.

“When Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner first took jobs in the White House in 2017, they presumably assumed that eight years later, they’d return to New York and be crowned the king and queen not just of an exclusive social set but the city — nay, the entire globe. Vogue would put them on the cover of the September issue. Billionaires would beg them to sit on the boards of their companies to lend an air of credibility,” reporter Bess Levin wrote for Vanity Fair.

“Instead, they’re being unceremoniously booted out of the place after just four years, with significantly worse reputations than when they started,” Levin added. “To be clear, no one was falling all over themselves to get an audience with the couple before Donald Trump was inaugurated. But they weren’t reviled among the people whose opinions they presumably once and probably do still care about, with just a narrow portion of Manhattan reportedly looking forward to their return and an open invitation from Staten Island to take the ferry out and put down roots.”

Levin added that “a former friend of” Ivanka and Kushner told her Vanity Fair colleague, Emily Jane Fox, “Everyone with self-respect, a career, morals, respect for democracy — or who doesn’t want their friends to shame them both in private and public — will steer clear.”

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