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Babeland Toy Store
Customer Service: (888) 289-8423
Customer Service: (888) 289-8423
texasAs if giving the entire state of Texas a huge Valentine's Day gift, it was ruled today by the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that the 35 year old Texas state law that outlawed the sale or promotion of "obscene devices" was a violation of citizens' privacy rights established by the Fourteenth Amendment. The ruling in Reliable Consultants v. Earle is a huge step in overcoming the criminalization and persecution of sexual pleasure and exploration in the United States, especially the South.Citing Lawrence v. Texas, the 2003 Supreme Court case that overturned sodomy laws, the 2 to 1 ruling states:
Just as in Lawrence, the state here wants to use its law to enforce a public moral code by restricting private intimate conduct. This case is not about public sex. It is not about controlling commerce in sex. It is about controlling what people do in the privacy of their own homes because the state is morally opposed to a certain type of of consensual private intimate conduct.
Growing up in Texas, I remember the first time I walked into a sex toy store and saw a wall of "anatomically correct condom demonstration models" (aka dildos) and "personal massagers" (vibrators). Discussing which toy to get with any worker in the store was an awkward phraseology dance of needing to "educate a friend on condom application" or "looking for relief from a sore, ummm, neck?" The lack of information that was available from these companies by law was how I found Babeland.com. It was a welcome relief to find a company promoting sex-positivity and providing their customers with open and honest information about the products that were being sold.When I started working at Babeland, I often joked with our customers from Texas how anyone possessing 6 or more "models" or "obscene devices" could be charged as a "dealer" under Texas state law. Talking to people that weren't from the South about these laws, I was often met with complete disbelief and a comment very similar to Justice Thomas M. Reavley's opinion, "whatever one might think or believe about the use of these devices, government interference with their personal and private use violates the Constitution."As a Texan and a Sex Educator, I have to say that this decision is monumental and I tip my hat to all the people that have fought long and hard for citizens' rights to sell, purchase, or own sex toys.Happy Shopping, Y'all!