Just in time for Valentine’s Day! The completely ridiculous Texas sex toy ban is finally lifted:
A federal appeals court has struck down a seldom-enforced Texas law making it a crime to promote or sell sex toys.
The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, ruling in a case originally filed in federal court in Austin, found that the ban in the Texas penal code on selling or promoting obscene devices violates the right to privacy under the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
“Whatever one might think or believe about the use of these devices, government interference with their personal and private use violates the Constitution,” said the opinion in the case considered by a three-judge panel of the New Orleans-based court.
The opinion relied heavily on the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2003 decision in Lawrence and Garner v. Texas, which struck down a Texas law prohibiting private consensual sex among members of the same sex. That case established a broad constitutional right to sexual privacy.
Statutes banning the sale of sexual devices remain on the books in Mississippi and Alabama, but in Texas the Dildo Wars are over. Let the healing begin.
Some historical context, via patron saint of all Texas legislative absurdity, our late beloved Molly Ivins: