Rep. Barney Frank (D., Mass.) is citing Justice Scalia’s dissent in Lawrence v. Texas (2003) to justify calling the justice ”homophobic.” Says the congressman: “If you read his opinion, he thinks it’s a good idea for two consenting adults who happen to be gay to be locked up because he is so disapproving of gay people.” Frank concedes that not all opponents of same-sex marriage are homophobic. For example, he does not so label Justice Clarence Thomas.
Scalia’s dissent does not, in truth, endorse the idea of locking people up for consensual gay sex. It maintains that the idea is constitutionally permissible, not that it is “good.” Justice Thomas joined Scalia’s allegedly homophobic opinion even while filing a concurrence in which he said that he considered the law to be a bad one.