Forty-five years ago, the Supreme Court struck down state prohibition of interracial marriage. At the time, 16 states had laws outlawing marriage between a man and a woman of different races (many more had prohibited interracial marriage at some period before repealing these statues).
In Loving v. Virginia, 388 U.S.1, 12 (1967), the Court unanimously held Virginia’s anti-miscegenation statute unconstitutional:
Marriage is one of the “basic civil rights of man,” fundamental to our very existence and survival. . . . To deny this fundamental freedom on so unsupportable a basis as the racial classifications embodied in these statutes, classifications so directly subversive of the principle of equality at the heart of the Fourteenth Amendment, is surely to deprive all the State’s citizens of liberty without due process of law. The Fourteenth Amendment requires that the freedom of choice to marry not be restricted by invidious racial discriminations. Under our Constitution, the freedom to marry, or not marry, a person of another race resides with the individual, and cannot be infringed by the State.
As reported in the ABA Journal, a new documentary about the Loving case, The Loving Story, will premier on HBO today.
Happy Valentine’s Day!
Today marks the 200th anniversary of Charles Dickens’ birth. Dickens, of course, was a prolific chronicler of English law and legal institutions—-warts and all. Dickens’ descriptions of the law and lawyers often did not paint a rosy picture. See this recent New York Times Op-ed piece.
But two centuries later, Dickens remains an influential voice in the legal world. His books are referenced in hundreds of law review articles. Last Term, Chef Justice Roberts began an opinion quoting Bleak House. Stern v. Marshall, 564 U.S. _, 131 S. Ct. 2594, 2600 (2011).
Happy Bicentennial Charles Dickens!
At a recent event sponsored by the Harvard Law School American Constitution Society, HLS Professor Lawrence Lessig, author of Republic Lost: How Money Corrupts Congress and a Plan to Stop It and Jeff Clements, author of Corporations Are Not People shared their views on the the aftermath of Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission. A video of this discussion is available here.
Two years ago today, the Supreme Court issued its decision in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, 558 U.S. 809 (2010). Justice John Paul Stevens read his blistering dissent from the bench.
Be sure to watch Stephen Colbert’s hilarious interview with Justice Stevens where they discuss this decision and other topics.
This morning the U.S. Supreme Court granted certiorari in Arizona v. United States, No. 11-182. The Court will review the decision of the Ninth Circuit, available here, upholding a preliminary injunction against sections of Arizona’s Immigration Law, S.B. 1070.
On April 26, 2011, the U.S. Supreme Court presented amendments to the Federal Rules of Evidence to Congress. Those revisions became effective on December 1. The amended rules are available here.
Hat Tip Wisblawg.
In orders issued this morning, the Supreme Court agreed to review three cases that address the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Public Law 111-48.
Please see Scotus Blog for a full explanation of the Court’s orders.
With the publication of his new memoir, retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens has been participating in a number of interviews. Some interesting conversations include an appearance on C-Span and interviews with NPR’s Terri Gross and Nina Totenberg.
His new memoir, Five Chiefs, is available in the law library.
The United States Supreme Court began its new term today. The tradition of starting the term on the first Monday in October dates back to 1917.
For more information about the Court’s docket, including oral argument dates, please consult the Supreme Court Website.
What is the most important tool for attorneys? According to members of the United States Supreme Court: good writing.
Law Prose, a provider of CLE Seminars, has made videos available of eight Supreme Court Justices interviewed in 2006 and 2007. The justices share their views on legal writing and advocacy. Transcripts are also available here.