Sunday, August 14, 2011

Public Morality: Sex and Violence

You really can't help but click on an article with a title like The Ethics of Lust: Your Dildo May Be Illegal.  The article notes that sex toys are illegal in certain states.  And that in 2009, the Supreme Court of Alabama upheld such a law stating that “public morality can still serve as a legitimate rational basis for regulating commercial activity, which is not a private activity.”

I immediately thought of the Supreme Court decision striking down a California law banning the sale of violent video games to minors without parental consent because it is a violation of the manfacturer's free speech rights.

If public morality can serve as a rational basis for regulating commercial activity, aren't the people of a state as entitled to enact laws that represent their morals regarding violence or are "morals" only related to sex?  I realize that these are two different courts, but the two cases together reveal what a strange culture we have in America.