Societal Issues Amounting from Stair Decisis

Societal Issues Amounting from Stair Decisis

Societal Issues Amounting from Stair Decisis


Institutional Affiliation


Societal concern arrived by using the Stair Decisis principle


Determining the conclusion of acase is normally an uphill task for the judges’ panel since the minority factor has with time lost influence. Consequently, the law changes but historical conclusions do not seize to exist. For this reason, the concept of Stair Decisis has gradually lost significant relevance and failed to offer satisfactory results in relation to most rulings. This is relevant based on the case of Lawrence v. Texas and Bowers v. Hardwick situation. Judges who were presiding over Lawrence v. Texas (2003) ignored the conclusions of Texas and Bowers (1986) whilst the circumstances were the same. The commencing research will attempt to present the constitutional conflicts created by the concept Stair Decisis. The study will prove that it is not legitimate to conclude a case based on the concept of Stair Decisis since cases changes with a change of pieces of legislation. Consequently, the study will prove that conclusion of cases using Stair Decisis will naturally attract societal issues.


Lawrence v. Texas against Bowers v. Hardwick

Registered as 539 U.S 558 (2003) is a landmark decision by the U.S Supreme Court. The court six against three ruling sought to repeal the Texas law on Sodomy. The law was integral in overturning the 1986 law Bowers v. Hardwick, which challenged a Georgia statute of sexual privacy. The 2003 ruling expressed that the Georgia ruling did not view the liberty of interest narrowly. The lead Judge Lawrence was backed by numerous laws, which criminalized sodomy between the consenting adults to act in private regardless of any sexual affiliation that the two were affiliated to. The case attracted serious scrutiny of public attention and, as a result, friends of the court filed charges scrutinizing the legitimacy and integrity of the court. Fillings were commonly from gay right advocates who hoped that further legal advances would automatically result to a consequence (Burgess, 2006, pp. 402).

Coleman and Cheurprakobkit (2009) argue that, the judgment presided by justice Harry Blackmun assessed that the issue revolved on the right to privacy. Blackmun’s dissent reprimanded the court for its obsessive focus on homosexual activity and on aggregate refusal to consider the broad principles entrenched in the constitution in relation to the privacy issue. Further to this, there was the reference that examined the traditional religious taboos of morality against the development of the Sodomy ideologies. In this case, there was a heated debate related to the legitimacy of secular legislation that depended on whether specified a specific justification beyond on the conformity to religious doctrine.

Stair Decisis

The doctrine of Stair Decisis has been evolutionary in American legal system. Stair decisis involves two similar issues, which are brought to a court and attracts similar or different ruling. The ruling is based on the precedent that court pursued. A precedent can be based on a ruling being pursued by a previous argument. However, based on Stair Decisis, it is notable that a given form of jurisprudence seeks to analyze, explain, criticize and classify law bodies with a given jurisprudence. Jurisprudence can further be based on contemporary knowledge, religion, economics, social sciences or literature. Additionally, a jurisprudence seek to reveal the moral, culture and historical basis of given legal concept. Finally, jurisprudence focuses in finding the answer to abstract questions, for instance, what propel a given pattern of judgment.

Societal factors emerging from this case

It should be noted that, deliberating on sexual case is normally an uphill task for most juror panel. This is notable on Lawrence v. Texas and Bowers v. Hardwick cases where at which; the appellate bench was unable to provide a coherent, unified judgment (Burgess, 2006, pp. 403). The Supreme Court abandoned Lawrence v. Texas case based on the principle of fundamentality too restrictive. The court was at a deadlock since similar cases were presented earlier in the court. In fact, the court could not have mentioned reference to Bowers v. Hardwick situation. The public applauded the court’s reticence in denying overruling for the earlier decision.

It should be noted that when constitutional rights are at play, there is a standing and great risk to be set against reason before the courts postpone the recognition of a full implication of the decisions of principles. Risk of injustice by far large threatens the integrity of the court than failure to commence on a given judgment. Consequently, constitutional timing affects not only the dogma of efficiency surrounding the judiciary, but the livelihood of the people surrounding a given jurisdiction. In the two cases, waiting for seven years meant that homosexual citizens were to live for another and more an irretrievable segment of their lives. In fact, for the seven years, homosexual were heavily regarded as second-class citizens (Hooghe and Meeusen 2013, pp. 259). On the other hand, lives did not pause during the passive, pragmatic virtues of drape themselves in epigrams.

American constitution has with time evolved from a constitutional contribution to political morality. For this reason, several factors propelled the Supreme Court to abandon the case. Firstly, the partnership is structured wand made based on the moral constitution guaranteeing individuals the prerequisites of full membership. Secondly, democracy is not a simple majority rule but the act of partnership and proposition of self-government structures. In other words, even a minority, such as the homosexual counted and their contribution to building a general American society cannot be ignored. Thirdly, based on the second point, it is positive to note that citizens are commitment to the constitution and the law, and this enforces the guaranteeing of equal citizenship. However, a vicious political environment will naturally challenge the equal presentation. Largely, the constitution does not regulate politics surrounding the faithful implementation of such laws (Coleman and Cheurprakobkit 2009, pp. 258).

Today’s approach to stare decisis invites the public to overrule an erroneous decision precedent, which includes intensely divisive decision, and its foundations have been eroded by consequent decisions. Secondly, such an approach does not guarantee proper jurisdiction on substantial and continuing criticism in relation to the subject. This does not induce an individual to act on societal reliance as scheme to justify an immoral act. In fact, counsels against an overturning ensure that the majority rule has no disposition to overrule the satisfaction of these conditions or either to the same degree as Bowers. A preliminary digression observation about a prior factor will naturally not withstand a court analysis.

Edwards, M. (2009, pp. 1134) establishes that how the juror interprets these changes in policy in relation to sodomy statues is different from what a group like Christian conservative could expect. Again, the question revolves is how influential are gay movements to pressure legislators into abandoning anti-sodomy laws. On the other hand, how will the larger anti-gay activist feel if the legislators abandon these laws? Mobilization effort will naturally play a crucial law. Per se, it should be noted that mobilization efforts would naturally take politicians of the day under siege.

Moreover, (Burgess, 2006, pp. 407) argues that, based on nemesis of societal factors, the framers of the constitution understand that public empowered by the media will not forget on the conclusion of each of the two cases. Consequently, there more effective, practical guaranty against arbitrary and unreasonable government than it is required in the principles of law which official seeks to impose against a minority group. Alternatively, there lacks proper openings of the doors of arbitrary action and so effectively as what allows officials to choose who to and who not to apply the legislation.

In fact, this law as applied to private, consensual conduct is unconstitutional under the stipulations; for instance, Equal Protection Clause which by far large differentiates the laws distinguishing homosexuals and heterosexuals. At this point, Justice Thomas joins Justice Scalia in what they assess as an unconditional imposition against minority groups. Thomas argues, “I do believe that…..we should be consistent rather…..than manipulative in invoking the doctrine.” This presents the technical indifferences that the court was facing by the time of imposing the law. Thomas further argues “Today’s opinion in support of reversal does not bother to distinguish …or indeed…..even bother to mention…..the paean to stare decisis…..”(Burgess, 2006, pp. 404) This demonstrates the reluctance part of the court in implementing the law equally to all jurisdictions. On the other hand, the chief justice Warren E Burger was quick to cite ancient roots and Traditionalism as a consequent factor that should be considered to reframe an infamous crime against nature. According to Burger, sodomy should be considered worse than rape and, therefore, favoring the law and neglecting the equality stance.


Therefore, dropping the two cases was for the greater good of the two panels since ethics played a crucial role in building democratic institutions by that time. The Texas statute, for instance, undeniably seeks to further the belief of its citizens that forms of sexual behavior are immoral and unacceptable. These sections does not favor a particular party, but further clarifies that fornication, adultery, incest, obscenity, bestiality, and incest as grievous crimes that should be punished in line with common law.

This ruling is based Bowers 196, who further clarified on the legitimate interest of the state. The ruling focused on the necessity of private individual rights as crucial factors that legislators should focus on. The panel concluded that, “the court today reaches the opposition conclusion. The Texas statute was legitimate. The Texas statute argued, “Further, no legitimate state interests can justify its intrusion into the private life of an individual.” Therefore, for purpose of constitutionalism and interest of each conflict party, it is necessary to institute that, SODOMY IS ILLEGAL IF THE PARTIES INVOLVED ACTED IN PUBLIC.” This way, interests of all parties will be addressed.


Burgess, S. (2006). Queer (Theory) Eye For The Straight (Legal) Guy: Lawrence V. Texas’

Makeover Of Bowers V. Hardwick. Political Research Quarterly, 59(3), 401-414.

Coleman, E., & Cheurprakobkit, S. (2009). Police hiring and retention of sexual minorities in

Georgia and Texas after Lawrence v. Texas. Journal of Criminal Justice, 37(3), 256-261.

Edwards, M. (2009). The sodomy cases: Bowers v. Hardwick and Lawrence v. Texas. Choice

Reviews Online , 47(02), 1132-1134.

Hooghe, M., & Meeusen, C. (2013). Is Same-Sex Marriage Legislation Related to Attitudes

Toward Homosexuality?. Sexuality Research and Social Policy, 10(4), 258-268.