If you live in the state of Georgia it’s legal to carry your gun into church, but in some cities if you tried to buy a sex toy you’d be arrested.
In the small town of Sandy Springs just north of Atlanta a city ordinance prohibits anyone from buying sex dolls within city limits unless it’s been prescribed by a doctor and two residents have had enough. Melissa Davenport and Marshall Henry are suing the city over the ordinance. Davenport, 44, suffers from multiple sclerosis and the disease has severe repercussions on her nervous system and on her sex life, something that she’s found sex toys can help relieve. Marshall Henry is an artist who takes his inspiration from what Georgia lawmakers would call the obscene and wants to use sex toys in his work, as well as in his bedroom.
But Henry and Davenport are left without the option of buying the adult accessories they need or want without first going to a doctor and asking for a prescription for a sex toy. Though Davenport would surely be entitled she doesn’t feel that it is something that she should have to do and she’s challenging the code on the constitutional grounds of equal protection and privacy as they feel it causes the government to intrude on people’s intimate and private sexual activity. Neither Henry nor Davenport are seeking any compensation from the government but rather a reversal of the ordinance which currently carries a potential fine of up to $1000 and a jail term of up to one year hard labour, though to date no one has ever been charged or even arrested under this law.
A 25 minute drive from Sandy Springs lays Cobb County where another city ordinance has been challenged, this time by a local head shop This, That & the Other that was selling vibrators and dildos. The city tried to shut them down citing a law that prohibited the sale of sex toys as well as the advertising of them. The reaction of This, That & the Other was to file a suit against Cobb County disputing the law and eventually the case wound up in the appeals court. The court ruled that banning advertising on sex toys was ruled unconstitutional and lawyers for the plaintiff, as well as Georgia ACLU lawyer Gerry Weber, contend that if part of the obscenity law has been struck down then it renders the entire obscenity law null and void. Webber says that it means that the statue is now virtually useless across Georgia and that means that Melissa and Marshall should be free to buy sex toys without a prescription from stores that will now be legally allowed to sell them.
Some experts disagree with Weber and say it will just mean that you can advertise the sale of sex toys but not be legally allowed to sell them, a frustrating catch-22 for consumers and retailers alike. Currently the state attorney is reviewing the appeals court’s decision and is expected to shortly determine what its impact on the obscenity law will be. Until then it’s perhaps a good idea to stock up on batteries before there’s a big rush and find a reliable online sex shop outside of the state of Georgia.