Blogger Classically Liberal shows how codifying the morality of the day (“societal justice”) can give you laws that abuse a slowly changing demographic of victims. With support of Christians, England at one time had criminalized homosexuality; but now that most brits openly accept it, England’s remaining Christians and their speech are becoming targets for abuse by today’s laws.
The desire to use the law to impose one’s morality has to be a human thing because it seems to have been pretty universal. Some have well-meaning reasoned intentions, but many want prohibitions simply because it’s wrong to let gays marry, use “drugs”, watch dirty movies, gamble, use alcohol, be gay, allow women to vote, marry out of race, education your slave… How morality shifts.
What if instead you had law based on the unchanging principle of positive personal liberty? Would society collapse in an orgy of sex, drugs, and Adult Swim marathons? We kinda tried this. The U.S. Constitution was radical in that it mostly limited the behavior of the government rather than of the individual, not that the Good Old Days of the U.S. were the golden age of personal liberty.
As the author of Last Call noted on Fresh Air, Prohibition was the first Amendment really limiting personal conduct, and we later got rid of it. I don’t drink, but I’ll have a sugary rum drink in celebration when DOMA falls.