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Justice Scalia's Gay Marriage Advice: 'Ask the Nearest Hippie'

The conservative's latest turn of phrase in his gay-marriage dissent made a splash on social media.
Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.
Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia.Haraz N. Ghanbari / ASSOCIATED PRESS

One line in Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia's dissent on gay marriage captured the public imagination after Friday's historic decision.

"Ask the nearest hippie."

The conservative was skewering the argument that marriage brings with it freedoms such as expression, intimacy and spirituality.

"Who ever thought that intimacy and spirituality [whatever that means] were freedoms?" he wrote. "And if intimacy is, one would think that Freedom of Intimacy is abridged rather than expanded by marriage. Ask the nearest hippie."

Read the Supreme Court decision

The suggestion immediately made a splash on Twitter, with commenters suggesting it become a T-shirt slogan or wondering what decade Scalia was living in.

The line quickly spawned a hashtag — #askthenearesthippie — and the inevitable Twitter account @nearesthippie.

At the Huffington Post, staffers were inspired by Scalia's advice to ask an actual hippie, rocker David Crosby, who happened to be in their office.

"I think he's slagging gays and hippies," said Crosby. "I don't think he understands either one."

Scalia is known for his memorable turns of phrase. In Thursday's dissent from the decision upholding Obamacare subsidies, he quipped, "We should start calling this law SCOTUScare." He also tossed in a few colorful flourishes, referring to the majority's reasoning as "jiggery-pokery" and "pure applesauce."