Wednesday, October 26th, 2016

Before you write that tuition check


I think some law students should request a refund. A Georgetown Law School professor has actually suggested in an op-ed in the New York Times that we should just abandon following the Constitution:

Our obsession with the Constitution has saddled us with a dysfunctional political system, kept us from debating the merits of divisive issues and inflamed our public discourse. Instead of arguing about what is to be done, we argue about what James Madison might have wanted done 225 years ago.

As someone who has taught constitutional law for almost 40 years, I am ashamed it took me so long to see how bizarre all this is. Imagine that after careful study a government official — say, the president or one of the party leaders in Congress — reaches a considered judgment that a particular course of action is best for the country. Suddenly, someone bursts into the room with new information: a group of white propertied men who have been dead for two centuries, knew nothing of our present situation, acted illegally under existing law and thought it was fine to own slaves might have disagreed with this course of action. Is it even remotely rational that the official should change his or her mind because of this divination?

It’s not surprising that the New York Times thought this a worthy addition to the op-ed page. After all, this is the same newspaper that regularly publishes Thomas Friedman’s love affair with Chinese-style dictatorship.

But shouldn’t this left-wing quackery lower the standing of Georgetown’s law school? And should we wonder that this law school produced someone like Sandra Fluke who has no respect for freedom of religion as long as she gets whatever she wants?

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