In Montana, sodomy was considered a crime punishable with up to10 years in jail and a $50,000 fine until the law was declared unconstitutional by the Montana Supreme Court in 1997.
Such laws on a national scale have been considered unconstitutional since 2003. However, 13 states, including Montana, have yet to take the sodomy laws in question off the books.
Montana is also the first state to pass a bill which permits roadkill to be cooked and served.
Known as the “you kill it, you grill it” law, this bill passed through the legislature with ease, but the same lawmakers put up a fight when it came time to decriminalize same-sex intercourse.
“Sex that doesn’t produce people is deviant” Republican Dave Hagstrom said when voting to repeal the bill, as reported by the Independent Record.
Though heterosexual couples can have sex with no plan to reproduce, their relations are not deemed deviant or unnatural. “If you are over the age of 55, you don’t help serve the Government’s interest in regulating procreation…” Justice Kegan stated in the Supreme Court hearing on California’s Proposition 8 hearing.
On Tuesday, a vote was held to repeal the law in Montana that establishes the unconstitutionality of criminalizing same-sex relations.
After an intense and emotional debate, the Montana House voted 64-36 to uphold the initial ruling which bans the criminalization of those same-sex relations. The bill needs to be signed by Montana’s Governor Steve Bullock before it becomes official.
The 2003 Lawrence v. Texas case made the criminalization of sodomy unconstitutional nation-wide. However, according to The New Civil Rights Movement, 13 states (12 not including Montana) outlawed sodomy between any people (gay or straight).
Those states include: Idaho, Utah, Michigan, North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana. States where sodomy laws apply only to gay people are: Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas.