Bowers V. Hardwick Paradigm Analysis

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Kuhn’s theory of scientific revolution and the paradigm are often applied only to the sciences. However, Kuhn’s theory can also be applied to the court of law. Kuhn’s paradigm lays the foundation as to how the precedent of Bowers v. Hardwick was over turned in the Supreme Court case Lawrence v. Texas. When this event took place a paradigm shift occurred. In order for a paradigm shift to occur there must first be an original paradigm or an accepted norm. There must then be an instance that deviates from this stranded norm followed by a time of unrest and confusion. Finally the norm will shift in an attempt to include what was previously viewed as abnormal. A paradigm has a lot of definitions. It is a theory about how something might work,…show more content…
Texas it was argued the case should be dismissed. It was contended the two men acted within their liberties as defined by the constitution. The constitution in itself is another paradigm. And as the gestalt principle shows us only one paradigm can be present at any certain time. Furthermore, the principle states “the subject of the gestalt demonstration shows that you cannot see a duck and a rabbit at the same time. It is one or the other you either see the rabbit or the duck (Kuhn 441/116).” In other words Lawrence v. Texas cannot be under both the paradigm of the Constitution and that of the Bowers v Hardwick case. All scientists “seem [to] attempt to force nature into the preformed and relatively inflexible box that the paradigm supplies” (Kuhn 419/ 24). However Lawrence v Texas no longer fit underneath just one paradigm. It was with this realization that the law stood in a state crisis. Lawrence v Texas channeled the paradigm of the constitution and stated, “the petitioners were free as adults to engage in the private conduct in the exercise of their liberty under the due process clause of the fourteenth amendment of the constitution” (Lawrence v Texas…show more content…
The regulation of the state regarding sex and sexual preferences changed. What had previously been accepted as the custom for years had now been altered. The overturn of Bowers v Hardwick changed the perspective in which the Lawrence v Texas case was viewed. This is much like how a “paradigm shift changes how scientists see the world of their research-engagement differently”(Kuhn 438/111). The precedent of Bowers v. Hardwick was overturned and with it all the laws that had some relation with sodomy and homosexuality - that were once solidly upheld- now had no foundation. Scientists who have just experienced a paradigm shift see the same data and experiments but with a different perspective. This perspective changes their outcomes and the way they relate fact to theory. Just like that the law now views all these laws differently due to the fact that there perspective has changed. When the case of Lawrence v Texas was brought to a close the head judge stated that the “state laws against bigamy, same sex marriage, adult incest, prostitution, masturbation, adultery, fornication, bestiality, and obscenity are…only sustainable in light of Bower’s validation of laws…[today] every single one of those laws is [now] called into question (Lawrence v. Texas 384/928).” A paradigm shift had occurred and this new perspective on homosexuality became the paradigm. Because the use of a paradigm

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