Category federalism

Slavery, the Declaration of Independence, and the Massachusetts Declaration of Rights

All we say to America is, “Be true to what you said on paper.” –Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. (April 3, 1968) ***************************** Our nation began with what is and will ever remain one of the most eloquent pronouncements of natural right ever uttered: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are […]

Paristeria

That we live in an age of political hyperbole has been demonstrated too many times so as to be self-evident at this point. And this week is just another case-in-point. Yesterday, President Trump announced his decision to withdraw the United States from the non-binding, unenforceable (and probably illegal) Paris Climate Agreement. Based upon reactions from […]

The Privilege or Immunities Clause, Originalism, and Gender Equality

No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States . . . . U.S. Const., amend. XIV In 1873, in The Slaughter-House Cases and Bradwell v. Illinois, the Supreme Court took a sledgehammer to the idea that the Privileges or Immunities Clause of […]

Federalism 2: The Revenge

In 1993, Congress passed the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act. Among its various initiatives, it provided for the creation of a national background check system by which to screen prospective gun purchasers. This created a dilemma, however: the United States is a mess of separate and overlapping jurisdictions, and most crime is dealt with at […]