Posts Tagged ‘Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes’

Here is a double-barreled shotgun on the United States Supreme Court. No, this is not a call to arms for Amendment 2 zealots, gun anarchists, and the tea bag deluded; they may all return to their reinforced and camouflaged bunkers. The shotgun is a metaphor for the focused scholarship of two books on different Supreme Court topics. The book subtitles are important: The Great Dissent: How Oliver Wendell Holmes Changed His Mind—and Changed the History of Free Speech in America, by Thomas Healy, a professor at Seton Hall Law School; and A Wild Justice: The Death And Resurrection Of Capital Punishment In America, by Evan J. Mandery, a professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice.

Both are carefully researched, well written, and free of polemic. There seems to be nothing involving the Supreme Court that is too old or irrelevant to the current personalities on the Bench, their judicial thinking, and the issues that are never at rest in our court system.

If you think weighing the Bench down with incompetence, or perhaps more charitably with mediocrity, is a new problem, read on. Buy yourself both books, and marvel at how well we survive. Charles Marlin

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