In 2003 the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Lawrence v. Texas in struck down laws prohibiting anal and oral sex. However this has not prevented the state of Mississippi from disgracefully continuing to persecute those who partake in anal and oral sex.Although anal and oral sex is no longer illegal, Mississippi still has laws on its books requiring transgressors to register as sex offenders. And f you think that this is just some weird anachronism, that couldn’t possibly still be enforced, then think again. Five victims of this law have filed a class action against Mississippi.
They are suing Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood and others in the state’s administration and investigatory agencies for:
Continu[ing] to enforce its criminal statute prohibiting sodomy, titled Unnatural Intercourse, Miss. Code Ann. Â§97-29-59, by requiring people convicted of Unnatural Intercourse to register as sex offenders and follow myriad, onerous prescriptions on their everyday life pursuant to Mississippi’s sex offender registry law, Miss. Code Ann. Â§45-33-21 et seq … Mississippi also requires individuals convicted of violating sodomy prohibitions in other jurisdictions (whether or not those prohibitions are registerable offenses in the original jurisdiction) to comply with Mississippi’s registration law.
The suit goes on to detail the indignities those branded as sodomites must go through to comply with Mississippi’s criminal code, including having their photos and personal information displayed on publicly accessible sex offender websites, file changes of address with the state, being forced to disclose all online user names and identities not only to the state but to potential employers, as well as the names and addresses of employers and schools attended–and being barred from certain areas such as campgrounds and beaches where young children may be present.
The reason the five plaintiffs have filed their suit as a class action is, according to the Complaint, that:
The putative class is so numerous as to render joinder impractical. There are dozens of individuals statewise who must register as sex offenders solely or in part because of a conviction for Unnatural Intercourse or a conviction considered to be an out-of-state equivalent.