Constitution Day Jumpstart

It’s 2012. Do you know where your Constitution is?


It’s September 17, which means it is also Constitution Day: the day on which the delegates to the Constitutional Convention met in Philadelphia in 1787 to sign the document that would enumerate, in general, those rights and freedoms that we purport to hold so dear. With each passing year, the Constitution means less and has less power and effect and thus, the importance of understanding it and its intent and its protections grows stronger. Here are some stories from the weekend that you should read with the Constitution in mind:

  • The Ninth Circuit hears re-argument en banc in a challenge to California’s DNA upon arrest law. [My post on the original 9th Circuit decision.]
  • Popehat has this deliciously titled post about the First Amendment, damages awards and their chilling effect on speech: Schadenfreude Is Not A Free Speech Value.
  • A 13-year old Florida boy is facing murder and sexual assault charges as an adult, exposing him to life in prison. He’s thirteen. Think of the children.
  • EvidenceProf continues his analysis of Giles, forfeiture by wrongdoing and transferred intent, analyzing a case currently pending in the Oregon Supreme Court.
  • The Atlantic has this interesting article questioning the continued importance of Justice Scalia.
  • There’s also this lengthy, powerful piece on Terrance Williams’ clemency request in Pennsylvania. Make sure you read it in its entirety. For the TL;DR version, here‘s a NYT piece.
  • Prosecutors across the country get their hands dirty by joining with scam debt collectors to threaten people. Scott Greenfield has more.
  • This post at The Agitator uses the example of a West Virginia teacher, acquitted of sexual assault charges after a retrial, to question prosecutorial immunity and wonder how the woman can piece her life back together.
  • Ken Lammers gives us all tips on how to put together the perfect opening statement.
  • Finally, in the WTF news story of the day, Facebook takes down the City of New Haven’s Facebook page because Facebook.

Now go say a silent prayer to your favorite Amendment.

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