OUR CONSTITUTION: Tool or Testament by Beryl Harold Levy

OUR CONSTITUTION: Tool or Testament

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Dr. Levy first takes four leading jurists (Marshall, Taney, Brandeis and Holmes) as examples of the traditions of the Supreme Court, in relation to the temper of their times and the elasticity of our Constitution. This does not pretend to be a history of the Court; or a scientific study of the Constitution, but rather a plea for a Court reflecting progress and reconstruction. He advises strengthening the presumption of the constitutionality for commercial and social legislation, the relaxing of the presumption for civil liberty suppression. ""The Court must try to preserve our civil liberties and assure freedom for diversity of thought and social experiment and minority pressure. It must protect our precedural rights...It must keep the balance between national and state governments...It must mediate between state and state and between the various branches of government. There is no earthly need for the Court's seeking new fields to conquer."" To this end he urges the role of judicial self limitation.

Pub Date: Jan. 20th, 1941
Publisher: Knopf