Why one Maryland senator fought to repeal his state’s anti-sodomy law

Jun 28th, 2023

This month marks the 20th anniversary of Lawrence v. Texas, the landmark U.S. Supreme Court case that invalidated anti-sodomy laws nationwide. Twelve states still have anti-sodomy laws on their books, but this year Maryland repealed part of its sodomy statute, specifically a provision against “perverted and unnatural sex acts.” MCASA led advocacy efforts for the successful bill, which sought to remove this archaic language which criminalizes consensual sexual activity between adults, and was historically used to intimidate the LGBTQ+ community.

Legislative sponsor Maryland state Senator Clarence Lam recently spoke with LGBTQ Nation about the law, and why he spearheaded its repeal. We appreciate Senator Lam's valuable leadership on this issue, and thank him for recognizing MCASA's contribution to these efforts. 

"[MCASA] too recognized that this is not appropriate, and survivors and victims of sexual assaults should be able to seek justice appropriately under other parts of the law that don’t discriminate against certain types of individuals."

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MCASA advocates annually in Annapolis for legislation that promotes justice for survivors of sexual violence, accountability for offenders, and protection for the general public. To learn more about MCASA's advocacy efforts in Annapolis, visit our website.

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