A Short Blurb About How Antonin Scalia Might Actually Hate Me
The following Wespeak was collectively authored by a number of involved students, including the following: Virgil Taylor ’15, Ross Levin ’15, Nico Vitti ’12, Paul Blasenheim ’12, Zak Kirwood ’12, Cheryl Walker ’12, Meggie McGuire ’12, Mariama Eversley ’14, Isabelle Gauthier ’14, Josh Krugman ’14, Joseph Cribb ’13, Hannah Rubin ’13, Cesar Chavez ’15, Dan Fischer ’12, and Mica Taliaferro ’12. Though it may be written from a first-person perspective, it should be taken as a collective statement of these signers and the larger collective organizing dissent for Scalia’s arrival.
A lot has, can, and will be said about what sort of conservative voice Justice Scalia represents. Perhaps Mr. Roth is right that by “bringing intelligent conservative discourse to campus, we will increase our capacity to combat the idiot wind of know-nothing anti-intellectualism.” Perhaps indeed. We could use this space to address how Justice Scalia, to quote the Denver Post, “told a standing-room-only crowd of more than 500 Catholics to have ‘the courage to have your wisdom regarded as stupidity’ by society’s sophisticates” on Friday. But we won’t. That pair of quotes upset us as intellectuals. But as queers, this quote, from the Justice’s Lawrence v. Texas, 539 U.S. 558 (2003), dissent, upsets us:
“One of the most revealing statements in today’s opinion is the Court’s grim warning that the criminalization of homosexual conduct is ‘an invitation to subject homosexual persons to discrimination both in the public and in the private spheres.’…It is clear from this that the Court has taken sides in the culture war, departing from its role of assuring, as neutral observer, that the democratic rules of engagement are observed. Many Americans do not want persons who openly engage in homosexual conduct as partners in their business, as scoutmasters for their children, as teachers in their children’s schools, or as boarders in their home. They view this as protecting themselves and their families from a lifestyle that they believe to be immoral and destructive. The Court views it as ‘discrimination’ which it is the function of our judgments to deter. So imbued is the Court with the law profession’s anti-anti-homosexual culture, that it is seemingly unaware that the attitudes of that culture are not obviously ‘mainstream’; that in most States what the Court calls ‘discrimination’ against those who engage in homosexual acts is perfectly legal; that proposals to ban such ‘discrimination’ under Title VII have repeatedly been rejected by Congress…; that in some cases such ‘discrimination’ is mandated by federal statute,… (mandating discharge from the armed forces of any service member who engages in or intends to engage in homosexual acts); and that in some cases such ‘discrimination’ is a constitutional right, see Boy Scouts of America v. Dale, 530 U.S. 640 (2000).”
We do literally mean upset. It is hard for us to read that quote without a cathartic bad taste in our mouths and frustrated tears tempting our eyes. Call us “sissies.” Call us “faggots.” Call us “limp-wristed liberals.” Call us anything, but we cannot stand by without commenting on Justice Scalia’s unadulterated distaste for us. It is this very reason that we stand in marked opposition—not simply intellectually—but personally.
Justice Scalia has taken active steps towards undermining our personhood, active steps that we cannot ignore in any institutional attempt to expose us to his ideas.