One of the most terrifying prospects of Donald Trump becoming president is he will be shaping the Supreme Court for potentially decades to come.
And while he may have called marriage equality ‘settled law’, this doesn’t mean he won’t elect conservative justices that will overturn the ruling on social progress made on LGBTI, abortion and women’s rights.
On a list of 21 potential Supreme Court nominees, the most vehemently homophobic is William H Pryor Jr.
LGBTI advocacy group Lambda Legal have called Pryor the ‘most demonstrably anti-gay judicial nominee in recent memory’.
In 2005, when he was expected to be nominated to the US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, they said Pryor ‘repeatedly shown clear hostility to the rights of lesbians, gay men, bisexuals, transgender people and those with HIV – and also to women, people of color, disabled people and others.’
In 2004, he also cast the deciding vote against Florida allowing same-sex couples to adopt children.
They noted how in 2003, when Pryor served as Alabama’s attorney general, Pryor defended Texas law criminalizing consensual gay sex in a private home and argued states should be able to prosecute LGBTI people as criminals.
In the brief, he made comparisons between the rights of gay people and ‘prostitution, adultery, necrophilia, bestiality, possession of child pornography, and even incest and pedophilia’.
‘This Court has never recognized a fundamental right to engage in sexual activity outside of monogamous heterosexual marriage, let alone to engage in homosexual sodomy,’ he wrote. ‘Such a right would be antithetical to the “traditional relation of the family” that is ‘”as old and as fundamental as our entire civilization.”‘
Pryor said Texas’ citizens ‘need to be protected’ from gay sex as it may have ‘severe physical, emotional, psychological, and spiritual consequences, which do not necessarily attend heterosexual sodomy’.
‘[There was] no fundamental right to engage in homosexual sodomy just because it is done behind closed doors,’ he said.
‘Because homosexual sodomy has not historically been recognized in this country as a right — to the contrary, it has historically been recognized as a wrong — it is not a fundamental right.’