Based on congressional intent combined with commonly accepted psychiatric ideas of the time, the Supreme Court approved the Immigration and Naturalization Service’s policy of classifying gays and lesbians as ineligible for immigration.
Clive Michael Boutilier was a Canadian citizen who lived in the United States with his parents for several years. When he applied for citizenship in 1963, he admitted to an official of the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) that he had been arrested in 1959 on the charge of sodomy. Subsequently, at the request of the INS, he revealed in an affidavit that he had participated in homosexual encounters since the age of fourteen. Based on his affidavit, the Public Health Service classified him as a “psychopathic personality, sexual deviate.” In pursuance of the
By a 6-3 vote, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the INS decision to deport Boutilier. Writing for the majority, Justice
The legislative history of the Act indicates beyond a shadow of a doubt that the congress intended the phrase “psychopathic personality” to include homosexuals such as petitioner.
In a long and forceful dissent, Justice
Galloway, Donald. Immigration Law. Concord, Ont.: Irwin Law, 1997. Legomsky, Stephen. Immigration and the Judiciary: Law and Politics in Britain and America. New York: Oxford University Press, 1987. Luibhéid, Eithne. “Sexuality, Migration, and the Shifting Line Between Legal and Illegal Status.” GLQ 14, nos. 2-3 (2008): 289-313.
Gay and lesbian immigrants
Immigration and Nationality Act of 1952
Immigration and Naturalization Service, U.S.
Supreme Court, U.S.