Essay : Sodomy Laws and their Effect on Gay People

By Philip Chandler

This essay describes the treatment of gay men and lesbians at the hands of our legal system over the course of the past two decades, touching upon various constitutional claims that have been made by activists within our community as part of the ongoing effort to secure full equality under the law. This essay also explores some of the implications of recent Supreme Court and appellate court decisions bearing upon these claims, and outlines what the author perceives to be a positive trend in the development of several areas of constitutional jurisprudence that directly impact our community. The essay will explore the ramifications of decisions relating to due process, equal protection, and First Amendment rights.

In 1986, the US Supreme Court, ruling in the case of Bowers v. Hardwick, 478 U.S. 186, handed down a decision that dealt a massive setback to the efforts of gay and lesbian Americans to secure the right to engage in intimate sexual relations with members of the same sex. In this closely watched case, a deeply divided Court held that the right to privacy under the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment (which it had previously recognized in a string of cases dealing with reproduction, contraception, and familial relationships) did not apply to homosexual conduct, even when that conduct occurred in the privacy of the bedrooms of gay and lesbian Americans. In short, the Court held that the states could criminalize sexual activity between members of the same sex. This ruling was laced with invective and contempt, referring to the plaintiff as a "practicing homosexual" and mocking his claim that the Constitution protected his right to engage in "consensual sodomy" as "at best, facetious."

The majority opinion, authored by Justice White, was joined in a concurrence by then-Chief Justice Burger, who wrote one of the most gratuitously vicious opinions ever handed down by a member of the Federal bench. Chief Justice Burger went out of his way to point out that homosexuality was punishable by the death penalty under Roman law, and that it had been condemned by British legal scholars as "the infamous crime against nature." To strike down state "sodomy" statutes on constitutional grounds would have been, in Burger's mind, "to cast aside millennia of moral teaching."

This decision represented a blatant example of the sacrifice of constitutional principle to political expediency. As legal scholars have repeatedly pointed out, it is not the responsibility of the US Supreme Court to reflect on the soundness of Roman law. It is the responsibility of the Court to adjudicate the constitutionality of statutes implicated in cases brought before it by examining those statutes in the light of strictures placed on legislative bodies by the Constitution of the United States.

The tone of Bowers was as important as the result. The Court made it clear that it held gay men and lesbians in contempt. This tone was not lost on the lower federal courts, many of which cited Bowers in contexts utterly unrelated to the narrow holding expressed in this decision. It should be remembered that the Court's holding in Bowers was limited to the issue of whether or not the right to privacy previously developed by the Court in a string of cases dealing with familial and sexual relationships also protected consensual gay sex acts performed in private. Nevertheless, lower courts up and down the country interpreted Bowers as a mandate to create a "gay exception" to the Constitution. The collateral damage associated with this ruling radiated throughout the lives of gay Americans. Bowers was used to deprive gay parents of custody of their own children on the grounds that gay parents were unconvicted criminals. Bowers was similarly used to deny gay men and lesbians the right to adopt or to serve as foster parents in several states. Bowers was used to deny gay men and lesbians the privilege of serving in this nation's armed forces on an equal footing with heterosexuals. Bowers was invoked by legislative bodies in (frequently successful) efforts to prevent the adoption of laws and policies that would protect gay people from discrimination in employment, housing, credit, and public accommodations. The damage done by Bowers appeared to have no limits. In one case decided by the US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit in 1997, the state of Kentucky actually argued that Bowers permitted the police to harass and selectively arrest a woman merely because she was perceived to be a lesbian. (This claim, mercifully, was rejected by the Sixth Circuit.)

Bowers has been the target of sustained criticism, both within the United States and in other countries. Since Bowers was handed down in 1986, several state supreme courts have found independent state constitutional grounds on which to base decisions striking down state "sodomy" statutes. A decision by a state supreme court striking down a state statute on state constitutional grounds cannot be reviewed by the US Supreme Court, provided the decision rests on state constitutional law and provided the state constitution in question does not deprive citizens of any of the rights guaranteed them by the US Constitution. Courts in nations as far away as South Africa have attacked Bowers as a naked exercise of raw political power. Our neighbors to the North have decided a string of cases in favor of gay people based on the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and have taken swipes at the US Supreme Court's analysis in Bowers. In short, this decision has been viewed by many courts, both in this country and abroad, to be one of the US Supreme Courts most embarrassing and humiliating failures.

Nine years after Bowers was handed down, the US Supreme Court indicated what some constitutional scholars considered to be a softening of its position relative to the rights of gay and lesbian Americans. Ironically, this shift in tone occurred in the context of a decision in which the gay plaintiffs lost their case (Hurley v. Irish-American Gay Group, 515 U.S. 557 (1995)). The South Boston Allied War Veterans Council was authorized by the City of Boston to host that city's annual St. Patrick's Day-Evacuation Day Parade. In 1993, this council refused to allow members of the Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Group of Boston (GLIB) to march under their own banner in an expression of pride in their Irish heritage. GLIB filed suit in state court, alleging that the denial of their right to march in the parade constituted a violation of a state law that prohibited discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation in places of public accommodation. Both the trial court and the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts found in favor of GLIB, holding that the antidiscrimination law entitled them to march in the parade and that this law did not, in this context, conflict with the First Amendment rights of members of the Council. The Council appealed to the US Supreme Court, which held that the First Amendment rights of members of the Council had indeed been violated, reversing the decision of the lower courts.

Conservatives hailed this decision as a victory for their cause. One New York City columnist, Ray Kerrison, penned a particularly vitriolic diatribe in which he claimed that the movement for equal rights for gay Americans had finally been exposed for the sham that he believed it to be. What these conservatives overlooked, however, was the tone of the decision, as well as the rationale on which the Court based its holding. Had social conservatives looked less to the immediate result of this decision than to the substance of the Court's rationale, they may have decided not to pop the champagne corks. The fact that this opinion was unanimous should also have given them pause.

The naked contempt so evident in Bowers was not to be found in Hurley. Instead of sneering references to "practicing homosexuals," the court offered a respectful analysis of the constitutional arguments advanced by the gay, lesbian, and bisexual plaintiffs. More importantly, the Court held that the statement "I am gay" constitutes an expressive utterance protected by the First Amendment. The Court held, in an eminently reasonable opinion, that the First Amendment also protected the right of the parade organizers not to express a particular point of view, and that the First Amendment rights of the parade organizers would be violated were they to be forced to include a gay-positive message in their parade. In short, the Court expressed surprising sympathy for the message of the gay plaintiffs, but held that the First Amendment's ban on compelled speech prohibited the Commonwealth of Massachusetts from forcing the parade organizers to include that particular message in the context of what the Court considered to be an essentially private parade.

One year later, the Court handed down an astonishing and powerful ruling in what has become one of the most controversial cases in the Court's equal protection jurisprudence.

By the early 1990s, gay men and lesbians had succeeded in securing limited protections, in a limited number of jurisdictions, from both public sector and private sector discrimination in employment, housing, credit, and public accommodations. These protections usually took the form of state laws and local ordinances that included sexual orientation as a characteristic that could not be taken into account when making such decisions as whether to hire or fire employees, rent apartments to prospective tenants, or serve persons in places of public accommodation (e.g., restaurants and hotels). Gay men and lesbians won these protections in the time-honored American tradition of lobbying legislative bodies and by making the case for such protections at the ballot box. In short, activists seeking equal rights for gay people employed the democratic process in an effort to seek passage of legislation that would secure those rights. As has been pointed out by numerous constitutional scholars, participation in the democratic process lies at the heart of the American political experience. It is firmly in the national tradition to vote on issues of public significance, and the democratic process is considered to be the mechanism whereby most matters of public policy are ultimately decided, with the exception of matters implicating certain fundamental rights that exist independent of the outcome of the electoral process (it is for this reason that we have a Bill of Rights).

Upon observing that gay men and lesbians were winning partial victories by invoking the democratic process, cultural conservatives decided to change the democratic process itself in such a manner as to permanently exclude gay men and lesbians from equal participation in that process. As the vehicle for this attempt at restructuring the political process, the hard right selected the State of Colorado, which (like several other states) permits direct amendment of its state constitution through the ballot initiative and referendum process. Several localities within the State of Colorado (including such cities as Denver and Boulder) had passed local ordinances prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. The executive branch had also issued an order prohibiting such discrimination in state employment. All of this had been done in accordance with the normal give and take of electoral politics. These issues were presented to the voters and decided either at the ballot box or by elected officials (e.g., the governor).

Dissatisfied with the results of this process, the hard right (spearheaded by an organization named Colorado for Family Values) placed a proposed constitutional amendment on the ballot in a 1992 statewide referendum. Amendment 2 would have had the immediate effect of repealing every statute, regulation, ordinance, and policy protecting gay people from discrimination in both the public and the private sectors throughout the State of Colorado. Amendment 2 would have had the "ultimate effect" of permanently prohibiting the State of Colorado (or any of its branches, departments, agencies, political subdivisions, municipalities, or school districts) from ever again enacting such measures. Thus, Amendment 2 would have permanently restructured the political process in the State of Colorado by identifying one class of persons and permanently removing from that class of persons, and that class of persons alone, the right to petition their government for redress of grievances. One form of discrimination, and only one form of discrimination, would have been identified by Amendment 2, and all consideration of its redress would have been permanently removed from consideration by the normal political processes.

Amendment 2 was adopted on November 3, 1992, by a vote of 53.4% to 46.6%. Several aggrieved gay men and lesbians, as well as several municipalities, immediately sought and obtained a preliminary injunction from the District Court for the City and County of Denver to stay the enforcement of the Amendment pending a trial on the merits.

As pointed out by attorneys who attacked the measure, the breadth of this state constitutional amendment was staggering. Gay and lesbian Coloradans, and only gay and lesbian Coloradans, would have been left without any remedy (short of changing the state constitution) in the face of discrimination, without regard to the nature or severity of the discrimination they faced. Coloradans had for all intents and purposes granted themselves an unrestricted license to discriminate against their gay citizens. Immediately following the adoption of the Amendment, activists from rural areas reported incidents of restaurant owners and innkeepers hanging signs from their windows bearing such legends as "No Queers Served Here."

The State of Colorado appealed the issuance of the preliminary injunction to the Colorado Supreme Court, asking that it be lifted pending the outcome of the trial on the merits. The Colorado Supreme Court sustained the preliminary injunction, finding that Amendment 2 was presumptively unconstitutional and instructing the trial court to subject Amendment 2 to "strict scrutiny" -- the most demanding level of judicial review usually reserved for those cases in which the challenged legislation either impacts on a "suspect class" or impacts on the exercise of a right deemed by the courts to be "fundamental." It became clear at this point that Amendment 2 would not be looked on favorably by the Colorado courts. The Colorado Supreme Court had relied upon a string of US Supreme Court voting rights cases and other precedents involving discriminatory restructuring of governmental decisionmaking to find that Amendment 2 implicated a fundamental right to equal participation in the political process, and that Amendment 2 probably violated that right insofar as it burdened its exercise by gay men, lesbians, and bisexuals. The Colorado Supreme Court grounded the finding of this right in its analysis of cases implicating the Fourteenth Amendment's Equal Protection Clause.

The State appealed the affirmation of the preliminary injunction by the Colorado Supreme Court to the US Supreme Court, which denied certiorari. The case was then tried before the District Court for the City and County of Denver, which found that Amendment 2 could not meet the burden of strict scrutiny and was therefore unconstitutional under the standard set by the Colorado Supreme Court. The District Court issued a permanent injunction prohibiting the state from enforcing Amendment 2, following which the State took an appeal of the permanent injunction to the Colorado Supreme Court. Finding no reason to alter its previous holdings, the Colorado Supreme Court sustained the trial court's issuance of the permanent injunction. The State then took an appeal directly to the US Supreme Court, which granted certiorari.

The grant of certiorari greatly concerned many gay rights activists who, given the Court's prior ruling in Bowers, were concerned that the Court would use this case to deal a further blow to the efforts of gay Americans to advance their fight for equal treatment under the law.

Yet it soon became apparent that the respectful approach taken by the Court in Hurley may not have been an aberration. During oral arguments before the Court on October 10, 1995, six of the nine Justices indicated, in the form of pointed questions posed to the solicitor-general of the State of Colorado, discomfort with the state's position and legal arguments. Justice Sandra Day O'Connor commented on the sheer breadth of the Amendment. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg referred to the Amendment as the "thou shalt not have access" Amendment. Justice Kennedy asked whether any statute or state constitutional amendment as sweeping in its exclusion of an entire class of persons from the political process as that worked by Amendment 2 had ever before been passed in the nation's history. Activists seeking equal rights for gay people were cautiously optimistic, mindful of the dangers involved in trying to predict how the Court would rule based on the content of oral arguments alone.

The decision came down on May 20, 1996 (Romer v. Evans, 517 U.S. 620). It was authored by Justice Kennedy, and it took legal scholars by surprise.

By a six to three vote, the Court held that Amendment 2 violated the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The majority opinion was sweeping, broad, and forceful. What surprised legal scholars most was the rationale adopted by the Court in upholding the ruling of the Colorado Supreme Court. Whereas the state court had based its ruling on its holding that the Amendment violated the fundamental right of gay and lesbian citizens to participate equally in the political process, the US Supreme Court based its ruling on its holding that the Amendment was not rationally related to the furtherance of any legitimate state interest. In short, the US Supreme Court held that Amendment 2 could not survive rational basis review. This was surprising, in that adoption of the rational basis standard almost always results in victory for the state. Just three years before the Romer decision came down, the Court had indicated (in Heller v. Doe, 509 U.S. 312 (1993)) that it would be very reluctant to strike down any statute under equal protection considerations unless that statute implicated the exercise of a fundamental right or burdened a "suspect class." In Romer, the Court appeared to backtrack on this decision, making Romer one of a handful of cases in which the Court had invalidated a statute on the grounds of total irrationality.

Gay people have not been deemed a "suspect class" by the US Supreme Court (although several lower Federal courts, as well as several of the Federal courts of appeals, have indicated their willingness to adopt this classification). Furthermore, the Romer court explicitly distanced itself from the political participation theory advanced by the Colorado Supreme Court. Instead, the Court held that Amendment 2 was clearly intended to be a vehicle to effectuate "animus" towards gay men and lesbians. The Court further held that the desire to effectuate animus towards gay men and lesbians could never constitute a legitimate state interest. Hence, Amendment 2 could not be sustained under the rational basis test, which holds that a statute that neither burdens a "suspect class" nor implicates the exercise of a fundamental right will be upheld provided it bears some rational relationship to a legitimate state interest. In arriving at the conclusion that Amendment 2 was intended to effectuate animus towards gay men and lesbians, the Court relied upon the sheer breadth of the Amendment, noting that this breadth was "so discontinuous with the reasons offered for it that the amendment seem[ed] inexplicable by anything but animus toward the class that it affec[ted]."

Equally surprising was the tone of the ruling. Proponents of Amendment 2 had repeatedly claimed that the rights sought by the gay and lesbian community (i.e., protection against discrimination) constituted "special rights." The Court disagreed with this proposition, stating the following:

"We find nothing special in the protections Amendment 2 withholds. These are protections taken for granted by most people either because they already have them or do not need them; these are protections against exclusion from an almost limitless number of transactions and endeavors that constitute ordinary civic life in a free society."

Coming from a court which had, just ten years earlier, sneered at the constitutional claims of a gay man who had been arrested for having sex in his own bedroom, these words were nothing less than staggering in their implications.

What does this bode for the future of those same-sex "sodomy" statutes that remain on the books? It is important to bear in mind that the Romer court explicitly held that a desire to effectuate animus towards gay men and lesbians could never constitute a legitimate state interest. What are same-sex "sodomy" statutes intended to do? Most legal scholars would argue that such statutes are intended to express a societal disapproval of homosexuality (i.e., to express animus towards gay men and lesbians). In addition, what should be made of the fact that the Romer majority did not make even passing reference to Bowers? Many legal scholars interpret this as a clear signal from the Court that Bowers should no longer be relied upon by the lower courts as good decisional law in cases dealing with the rights of gay people. Thus, many legal scholars believe that the Court may have gone a long way towards silently overruling Bowers.

Associate Justice Antonin Scalia, writing for the dissent, was anything but silent. He launched into a vitriolic diatribe, the first sentence of which, through the choice of words employed, had many people wondering what could possibly have possessed him to allude to the autobiography of a well-known German national, written several decades ago, in which the author described his kampf ("The Court has mistaken a Kulturkampf for a fit of spite...."). Scalia worked himself up into a frenzy, accusing the Court of placing the prestige of that institution behind the proposition that "opposition to homosexuality is as reprehensible as racial or religious bias." In passages eerily reminiscent of writings all too well known to this world, Scalia inveighed against the homosexual "problem" faced by the citizens of Colorado, noting that gay men and lesbians tended "to reside in disproportionate numbers in certain communities," where they possessed "political power much greater than their numbers, both locally and statewide." He expressed outrage at the "enormous influence in American media and politics" enjoyed by gay men and lesbians, and railed against the fact that gay men and lesbians "care about homosexual rights issues much more ardently than the public at large," essentially claiming that the tendency on the part of gay Coloradans to invoke the democratic process more readily than their heterosexual counterparts constituted a distortion of the process itself. One wonders how it could have escaped Scalia's attention that, in a country where people vote their policy preferences into law under a "one man, one vote" system, members of one particular group of citizens can never possess "disproportionate" political power unless members of other groups of citizens choose to abdicate their own power. One also wonders whether Scalia would ever apply a similar analysis to the behavior of fundamentalist Christians, who certainly care about their issues (e.g., forcing mandatory school prayer down the throats of the rest of us, outlawing reproductive choice for women) "much more ardently than the public at large." Perhaps one could be forgiven for harboring some degree of cynicism towards this analysis, given the selectivity of its application and the transparency of its logic.

In short, Scalia argued that power should remain in the hands of those who already possessed it. He went so far as to rely upon the Court's holding in an ancient case that has long since been overturned. In Davis v. Beason, 133 U.S. 333 (1890), the Court sustained a territorial statute that deprived those who advocated polygamy of the power to vote. The Court has long since ruled that the expression of politically unpopular ideas is protected by the First Amendment, implicitly overruling this century-old decision. No matter to Scalia -- he cited this case extensively, opining that Amendment 2 was intended to "preserve traditional sexual mores."

The majority opinion in Romer was also noteworthy for its classification of gay people in terms of status as opposed to conduct. Bowers treated gay men and lesbians as a group defined in terms of sexual conduct alone. Romer, on the other hand, recognized the existence of homosexual status and was written with the implicit understanding that gay men and lesbians are defined in terms of who they are as opposed to what they do. The authors of Amendment 2 made reference to both status and conduct in an apparent attempt to thwart any attempt to limit the application of Amendment 2. While the overbreadth of this classification certainly did not help its chances of surviving judicial review, it is apparent from the majority's analysis that the Court saw through the artificiality of this attempt to define gay men and lesbians in terms of the sum of a number of sex acts. The majority held that the references to both status and conduct in the text of Amendment 2 merely reflected an attempt on the part of the Amendment's authors to ensure that gay men and lesbians would be deprived of equal protection regardless of how they were identified by the Court. The majority rejected this attempt, holding that Amendment 2 was "a status-based enactment divorced from any factual context from which we could discern a relationship to legitimate state interests; it is a classification of persons undertaken for its own sake, something the Equal Protection Clause does not permit." Finally, the majority opined that "Amendment 2 classifies homosexuals not to further a proper legislative end, but to make them unequal to everyone else. This Colorado cannot do. A State cannot so deem a class of persons a stranger to its laws."

This was the nail in the coffin for adherents to the position that homosexuality is merely a reflection of behavioral choice. The Supreme Court of the United States, holding that class legislation is obnoxious to the provisions of the Fourteenth Amendment, settled this issue in the majority's ringing peroration. The signal was sent to the lower courts -- gay men and lesbians comprise an identifiable class of persons under the Court's equal protection jurisprudence, and can seek protection from discrimination, just like any other group of Americans, by petitioning their state legislatures or other governmental entities for redress of grievances.

The status / conduct distinction infuriated Scalia, who returned again and again to Bowers, bemoaning what he considered to be the fact that its holding had been greatly damaged, if not destroyed, by the Romer Court's framing of the Amendment 2 analysis in terms of sexual orientation and status. Perhaps we should thank him for his intemperate and overbroad comments, since they will doubtless come back to haunt him when portions of his dissent are cited in subsequent cases dealing with the rights of gay people. His statement that the Court had "place[d] the prestige of this institution behind the proposition that opposition to homosexuality is as reprehensible as racial or religious bias" stands as a monument to sloppy and overbroad writing.

Just as the Court's narrow holding in Bowers inflicted incalculable collateral damage to the gay community, the first ripple effects of Romer's much broader holdings are now making themselves felt to the benefit of that community. The following section discusses the growing body of case law that has arisen in the wake of Romer.

In 1996, the US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit -- a scholarly and conservative court -- revived a lawsuit filed by Jamie Nabozny, who had been beaten, urinated upon, and mock-raped by other male students at his high school in Ashland, Wisconsin. One such beating put him in the hospital, where he had to undergo surgery to repair intestinal injuries caused by being kicked repeatedly in the stomach for ten minutes. Nabozny was openly gay, and it was this characteristic that made him the target of sustained abuse at the hands of his peers. His complaints to school administrators went unheeded -- on several occasions, he was told that he should expect such behavior in the light of his insistence on being open about his sexual orientation. Exhausted and depressed, Nabozny dropped out of school and moved to Minneapolis, where he was diagnosed as suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Shortly thereafter, Nabozny filed suit against several school officials and against the school district under 42 U.S.C. sec. 1983, claiming, inter alia, that his Fourteenth Amendment right to equal protection under the law had been violated. He claimed, in essence, that he had been discriminated against by the school officials and by the school district on the basis of his sexual orientation. It is important to note that he claimed a constitutional violation, not a statutory violation.

The district court granted summary judgment in favor of the defendants, dismissing all of Nabozny's claims. Nabozny appealed to the Seventh Circuit, which handed down its decision on July 31, 1996 (Nabozny v. Podlesny). The Seventh Circuit reversed the district court and remanded the case for trial, holding that Nabozny had stated a legitimate claim of equal protection violations on the basis of sexual orientation and gender. The court opined that "[t]here can be little doubt that homosexuals are an identifiable minority subjected to discrimination in our society." Adopting the standard of rational basis review, the court held that it was "unable to garner any rational basis for permitting one student to assault another based on the victim's sexual orientation." As was to be expected, the defendants trotted out Bowers, causing the court to observe (in dictum) that "Bowers will soon be eclipsed in the area of equal protection by the Supreme Court's holding in Romer v. Evans."

Although the court did not rely on Romer in reaching its decision, it was apparent that this circuit considered Romer to be a watershed case that would soon result in the demise of Bowers. In reaching this conclusion, the Seventh Circuit may have taken its cue from the Romer court's failure to so much as mention Bowers in the majority opinion. This is consistent with the observation that the Supreme Court very seldom directly overrules its earlier decisions, usually preferring to undermine decisions with which it no longer agrees through a process of neglect combined with the opening of new lines of constitutional analysis.

Nabozny subsequently took his case to trial, where the parties settled before the jury reached a verdict. Nabozny received over nine hundred thousand dollars in damages.

A number of similar cases have since been filed, and several school districts have reacted to these legal developments by tightening their antidiscrimination policies to prohibit harassment on the basis of sexual orientation.

Not all circuits have moved as rapidly as the Seventh Circuit. One circuit in particular is notorious for its homophobia and for its stubborn refusal to apply Supreme Court equal protection jurisprudence to gay rights cases. The Sixth Circuit has twice upheld a Cincinnati charter amendment almost identical to Colorado's Amendment 2, even in the face of a remand from the Supreme Court with instructions to reconsider its first ruling in the light of Romer. The first ruling was characterized by an elucidation of equal protection analysis which can at best be described as bizarre and confused, causing the Seventh Circuit (Nabozny) to comment on the analytical incompetence of the Sixth Circuit in this regard. The second ruling, in a clumsy effortto save face, upheld the charter amendment by adopting a narrowing construction of the statute that appears totally at odds with the plain language of the statute. The Sixth Circuit appears unwilling to budge, and the Supreme Court has refused to take further action, citing prudential considerations relating to the circumstances under which the Supreme Court is willing to intervene in cases where statutory construction remains at issue (as in this case). Further litigation is therefore likely to focus on compelling the Sixth Circuit to abide by its narrow construction of the charter amendment.

(to be continued)

Philip Chandler (PhilipC152 domain aol.com) is a computer software consultant living in New York City.

A more recent analysis is on Chandlerís blog, here.

Copyright 1999 by Philip Chandler. Reprinted with permission.