US Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, has given an interview to New York Magazine, in which he discusses his position on gay rights.
In the interview, Justice Scalia insists that he does not personally have a problem with gay people. but says that he believes Americans have the right to oppose gay rights if they so wish.
When asked about his grandchildren’s position on equal marriage, he said: “I don’t know about my grandchildren. I know about my children. I don’t think they and I differ very much. But I’m not a hater of homosexuals at all.”
In the rare interview, he said he “suspects” he has friends who are gay, but that none had ever come out to him.
Despite never explicitly saying he opposed gay rights, Scalia has been criticised in the past for his voting record on LGBT issues.
Justice Scalia, has, however, given statements such as saying that he does not believe the US constitution protects the right to engage in “homosexual sodomy”.
In 2003, he wrote a dissent disagreeing with the majority vote to strike-don the state of Texas’ sodomy law.
In it, he wrote: “Many Americans do not want persons who openly engage in homosexual conduct as partners in their business, as scoutmasters for their children, as teachers in their children’s schools, or as boarders in their home.”
He continued to say that Americans have the right to “protect themselves and their families from a lifestyle that they believe to be immoral and destructive.” He told New York Mag he’d write that statement again, but not because he “personally” thinks homosexuality is immoral.
“Americans have a right to feel that way,” he continued.
The US Supreme Court in June ruled in favour of equal marriage in two crucial cases, striking down a key section of the Defense of Marriage Act, and California’s Proposition 8.