Entries by William C. Duncan

Judicial review: Are we doing it wrong?

The theory of judicial review — giving courts the ability to invalidate legislation that they believe conflicts with constitutional guarantees — rests on the assumption that the courts will be effectuating the overriding will of the people of the United States as expressed in their Constitution. There is some evidence that the Framers of the […]

How is this not an example of ‘compelled speech’?

Justice Antonin Scalia has noted how normal legal rules have been inexplicably distorted or even ignored in order to protect the U.S. Supreme Court’s indefensible decision on abortion. This “abortion distortion” has led the court to uphold restrictions on how ordinary citizens may protest at clinics that would have been unthinkable for anti-war or other […]

The violent persecution of Christians in the Mideast

With all of the (appropriate) concern about religious liberty conflicts developing in the United States, we must not forget the persecution and slaughter of Christians in other parts of the world. The situation in Iraq and the Middle East, for instance, is horrifying. Nearly 7,000 have been forced from their homes and live as refugees […]

Justice Thomas on liberty and dignity

Although it has received less attention than the more comprehensive opinion of Chief Justice John Roberts and the wittier and more and biting opinion of Justice Antonin Scalia, Justice Clarence Thomas’ dissent in the recent marriage case contains powerful insights into a divide between those who are promoting the cause of moral revolution and those […]

2 moms on birth certificate? Case highlights 2 pressing needs

In their recent marriage decision, the Supreme Court justices voting for redefinition were so focused on adult interests in securing the government’s approbation of their relationships, that they appeared not to recognize the decision would soon have significant implications for the interests of children. An early implication of the decision is evident in a recent […]

It’s all about me

Invoking vague catchphrases and platitudes about the autonomous self, a bare majority of the U.S. Supreme Court ruled this morning that the 14th Amendment contained a hitherto unknown requirement that each state redefine marriage to include same-sex couples. This requirement, Justice Anthony Kennedy said, comes from “rights that allow persons, within a lawful realm, to […]

Happy Father’s (and Mother’s) Day

For 30 years, Edgar Guest wrote a poem a day for the Detroit Free Press. Hs cross-town “rival” Anne Campbell at the Detroit News wrote six poems a week for 20 years.* They both wrote about many things, as one would have to with that kind of an output, but a lot about children and […]

A child’s perspective

Our laws and broader policies have a complicated relationship with the interests of children. On the one hand, children typically have no formal role in making law. They may even be excluded, for policy reasons, from weighing in on matter that directly affect their lives. For example, state laws do not give children a voice […]