Alabama Supremes uphold criminalization of sex toy sales; store owner will continue to sell them
No local dildo-buying for you, Alabamians — you have to point and click to order online (guess the courts haven’t quite figured how to stop that bit of business).
The Alabama Supreme Court on Friday upheld the state’s ban on the sale of sex toys, but Love Stuff, the Hoover store that filed the challenge, has no plans to stop selling the devices.
While people have the right to use the devices in private, the Legislature has the right to ban public distribution of those products, the court majority ruled in a 7-2 decision.
…”Public morality can still serve as a legitimate rational basis for regulating commercial activity, which is not a private activity,” Associate Justice Michael F. Bolin wrote in the majority opinion.
…”As the 11th Circuit pithily and somewhat coarsely stated: `There is nothing `private’ or `consensual’ about the advertising and sale of a dildo,’” the majority opinion said.
Every time I go to Birmingham, when we go to the airport we pass Love Stuff, the
sex toy adult novelty store in this case and I wonder how this store managed to skirt by the ridiculous legislation in Alabama that bans the sale of sex toys. Clearly it’s been doing business while its case has been winding through the courts. Sherri Williams said this in an earlier interview about the situation:
“My motto has been they are going to have to pry this vibrator from my cold, dead hand. I refuse to give up,” she said.
Alabama’s anti-obscenity law, enacted in 1998, bans the distribution of “any device designed or marketed as useful primarily for the stimulation of human genital organs for anything of pecuniary value.”
The law does not ban the possession of sex toys, and it does not regulate other items, including condoms or virility drugs. Residents may legally buy sex toys out of state for use in Alabama, or they may buy sexual devices in Alabama that have a “bona fide medical” purpose.
So are people going to need to go to court to find out which sexual devices are legal to sell as medical devices? After all, a good Reverend down in Montgomery, Reverend Gary Aldridge (who was a colleague of Jerry Falwell), sadly managed to reach the hereafter engaging in kink that didn’t involve “sex toys” as the court sees them:
An Alabama minister who died in June of “accidental mechanical asphyxia” was found hogtied and wearing two complete wet suits, including a face mask, diving gloves and slippers, rubberized underwear, and a head mask, according to an autopsy report.