We the People: A Progressive Reading of the Constitution for the Twenty-First Century

Picador. Nov. 2018. 320p. notes. ISBN 9781250166005. $16; ebk. ISBN 9781250165992. LAW
With Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation to the Supreme Court in October 2018, the Court now solidly represents the conservative legal view. For Chemerinsky, a leading U.S. legal scholar and currently dean of the Berkeley School of Law, there exists an alternative perspective, one that reflects a progressive outlook on the law. Chemerinsky takes issue with the "originalist" ideals of the late Justice Antonin Scalia and others who argue that the Constitution must be interpreted only in the light of what was allegedly the mind-set of the Founding Fathers. Instead, the author believes that the Constitution is a living document that can only best be interpreted through the lens of contemporary thought and culture. He also places a great deal of importance on the Preamble to the Constitution, which inspired the title of this book, and its focus on liberty and justice.
VERDICT Those troubled by the Court's trending rightward can take solace in Chemerinsky's learned articulation of a different outlook. His valuable counterpoint to the current Court's dominant view is recommended for all collections.
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