Larry Craig better send openly gay activist Anthony Romero a “thank you” card.
Romero and his constitution loving friends at the American Civil Liberties Union issued a “friend of the court” brief in disgraced Idaho Senator Larry Craig’s defense. In a related-statement, ACLU executive director Romero said,
The real motive behind secret sting operations like the one that resulted in Senator Craigâ€™s arrest is not to stop people from inappropriate activity. It is to make as many arrests as possible â€“ arrests that sometimes unconstitutionally trap innocent people. If the police really want to stop people from having sex in public bathrooms, they should put up a sign banning sex in the restroom and send in a uniformed officer to patrol periodically. That works.
ACLU argues that Minneapolis police – and others across the nation – do not take significant steps to ensure targets are actually soliciting sex. Carnal invitations, they say, are protected by free speech laws and coppers must be 100% clear people are, in fact, paying for sex, rather than trolling for free.
Realizing critics will highlight Craig’s less-than-gleaming political record, Romero continues,
Senator Craig has not always been a great friend of civil liberties, but you shouldnâ€™t have to endorse the civil liberties of others to keep your own. Government should make public restrooms safe for all, but it should do so in a manner that is really designed to stop inappropriate behavior, rather than destroying the lives of people who might have no intention of doing anything illegal.
And, yes, our constitution even protects anti-gay politicians who were apparently living an elaborate lie. Bummer.