Tyrone Garner’s Lawrence v. Texas

Dale Carpenter’s Flagrant Conduct: The Story of Lawrence v. Texas has been roundly greeted with well-earned praise. After exploring the book’s understanding of Lawrence v. Texas as a great civil rights victory for lesbian and gay rights, this Review offers an alternative perspective on the case. Built from facts about the background of the case that the book supplies, and organized in particular around the story that the book tells about Tyrone Garner and his life, this alternative perspective on Lawrence explores and assesses some of what the decision may mean not only for sexual orientation equality but also for equality along the oftenintersecting lines of gender class, and race. Lawrence emerges in this light not as a singular victory for lesbian and gay civil rights, or perhaps even for civil rights more generally, but as a complexly mixed opinion about and for equality in society and under law.