California has its very own “kill the gays” ballot measure thanks to a rabidly homophobic lawyer by the name of Matt McLaughlin. He did what any citizen has to do to propose a ballot measure, and paid a $200 fee and provided a legal copy of his proposal to the proper authorities. His proposal, called the Sodomite Suppression Act, literally advocates for killing LGBT people. McLaughlin’s proposal says that gay sex is “a monstrous evil that Almighty God. . . commands us to suppress on pain of utter destruction.” Thanks to this extreme view, apparently death is the only acceptable way to handle offenders, so McLaughlin’s ballot measure says that all gay people must be be put to death by “bullets to the head or by any other convenient method.”
Now, of course there’s no way something like this could become law. Murder is illegal, after all, and the Lawrence vs. Texas Supreme Court decision made all sodomy laws null and void. However, stopping McLaughlin’s insane measure from going forward and being published and circulated for signatures isn’t going to be as easy as it should be. See, the problem is that California law prohibits attorneys general from interfering with ballot measure proposals. The reasoning behind this is perfectly justifiable, as it keeps people from blocking measures they don’t like for political purposes. However, as usually happens with the law of unintended consequences, the same law protects nutty proposals like Matt McLaughlin’s gay execution measure.
California lawmakers are currently working on a way to keep crackpot initiatives like McLaughlin’s from going forward, but have yet to reach a consensus. The really unfortunate part of all of this, though, is that this crazy bigot will keep his law license and face no consequences, as what he is doing is protected under the First Amendment, despite its murderous intent.
Let this situation serve as a warning, California and other states. This sort of insanity has no place in our democratic process, and it makes a mockery of our legal system. Please do something to make sure this can never happen again.