Is the consumption of liquor both a moral obligation and a sacred right?

I doubt it. But don’t tell that to a group known as “Ethereal Enigmatic Euphoric Movement towards Civilized Hedonism, LTD.” That group sued the State of Idaho in federal court: The Complaint alleges that Plaintiff is an organization comprised of individuals who believe that the “consumption of distilled spirits is both [a] moral obligation and sacred [...]

How tattoo parlors can fight the war on terror

Not too long ago, a tattoo parlor in Florida received this flyer from the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force. The flyer begins by stating, “[i]t is important to remember the application of body art, including symbols commonly associated with extremist ideology, may be an exercise of the right of free speech or expression.” It ends by stating “[i]t is [...]

Another unglamorous tale of a pawn star

How does one analyze an unreasonable search differently from an unreasonable seizure? Does it matter, analytically, whether a seizure was unwarranted as opposed to unreasonable? The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals has the answers. It issued this decision today which begins: PPS, Inc. (PPS), the owner of the EZ Cash Pawn Shop in Little Rock, Arkansas (EZ), [...]

Utah’s alcohol laws

In his article “Bars are about more than drinking,” Daniel Levin ponders Utah’s current private club laws.  Which, he notes, “are most often derided because they are so inconvenient and so irrational as to be maddening. But,” he believes, ”they are most offensive for their chilling effect on Americans’ constitutional right of free association.” Mr. Levin makes a [...]

Texas sexual device ban held unconstitutional

The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals just reviewed Texas’s obscenity statute, and here’s how the opinion begins: This case assesses the constitutionality of a Texas statute making it a crime to promote or sell sexual devices. The district court upheld the statute’s constitutionality and granted the State’s motion to dismiss for failure to state a [...]

The Government & Morality

It’s a debate that will never end: Should government judge morality for us? That’s the topic from this op-ed recently posted on MiamiHerald.com, discussing the plight of Sherri Williams and her sex toys case from Alabama. The government (we?) routinely answers morality questions with legislation. After all, both murder and theft are widely considered immoral, [...]

Good (and bad) things come in small packages

The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals issued this opinion yesterday. The case involves a retail novelty store, Dr. John’s, that sells a “range” of adult products. When the City of Roy (Utah) insisted that Dr. John’s submit to its sexually oriented business (SOB) licensing scheme, Dr. John’s launched a comprehensive challenge to the city’s SOB [...]

The USSC turns away sex toy case

Reuters reports here that the U.S. Supreme Court declined to grant certiorari and hear a sex-toy case arising out of Texas. “His attorney challenged the law as unconstitutional, claiming it violated the right to sexual privacy without government interference. The court, which rejected a challenge to a similar Alabama law last year, denied the appeal [...]