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State lawmaker believes anal sex isn’t ‘good for the body or the mind’

Steve Hickey is pastor at Church at the Gate and a state legislator. He was diagnosed this fall with pulmonary fibrosis.
Steve Hickey is pastor at Church at the Gate and a state legislator. He was diagnosed this fall with pulmonary fibrosis.
Photo credit: Elisha Page / Argus Leader

A lawmaker in the state of South Dakota has decided to question the risks of anal sex in defending his stance against same-sex marriage. According to the Huffington Post on Thursday, South Dakota Republican state Rep. Steve Hickey (R-Sioux Falls) penned a letter to the editor of a local paper encouraging medical advice on the dangers of anal sex.

The letter, yet to be published, was posted on Hickey’s Facebook page. In the letter, titled “A One Way Alley for the Garbage Truck”, the lawmaker questions both the physical and mental risks of anal sex as a way of suggesting that homosexuality carries health risks. Acknowledging that some of the content in the letter would not make it publishable, Hickey makes a couple of crude comparisons in his quest to find medical evidence to back up his concerns.

In the letter he pens, “certainly there are board-certified doctors in our state who will attest to what seems self-evident to so many: gay sex is not good for the body or mind. Pardon a crude comparison but regarding men with men, we are talking about a one-way alley meant only for the garbage truck to go down. Frankly, I’d question the judgment of doctor who says it’s all fine.”

Hickey penned the letter after a lesbian couple announced their plans to file a legal challenge against the state’s gay marriage ban passed in 1996. South Dakota is one of only four states with no pending lawsuits challenging the constitutionality of the ban. So it is fair to say that the challenge ruffled the feathers of Hickey, a pastor and an opponent of same-sex marriage. He acknowledges in the letter progress of marriage equality but also attributes homosexuality as being the historical decline of civilization.

He goes on to write, “This indeed is a matter of being on the wrong side of history considering that historically, homosexuality has been a notable marker of the downfall of past civilizations, not their rise. It’s not hate for a physician to speak up about something that is harmful to human health.”

Hickey then questions the morality of a nation that he says is progressing “away from the foundation” it was built on. But it is also a nation built on equality and fairness and not what someone does in the privacy of their own home. Using anal sex as a focus to his argument against same-sex marriage loses its bearing (if it had one in the first place), because first he is focused on man to man sex and secondly homosexual couples are not the only ones engaging in anal sex. And what about lesbians? The full letter can be read here.

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