Friday, January 4, 2013

About as good a reason as I can think of for immediately firing a tenured law professor...

Professor Louis Michael Seidman at the Georgetown School of Law:

Let’s Give Up on the Constitution
AS the nation teeters at the edge of fiscal chaos, observers are reaching the conclusion that the American system of government is broken. But almost no one blames the culprit: our insistence on obedience to the Constitution, with all its archaic, idiosyncratic and downright evil provisions...
Our obsession with the Constitution has saddled us with a dysfunctional political system, kept us from debating the merits of divisive issues and inflamed our public discourse. Instead of arguing about what is to be done, we argue about what James Madison might have wanted done 225 years ago. 
As someone who has taught constitutional law for almost 40 years, I am ashamed it took me so long to see how bizarre all this is. Imagine that after careful study a government official — say, the president or one of the party leaders in Congress — reaches a considered judgment that a particular course of action is best for the country. Suddenly, someone bursts into the room with new information: a group of white propertied men who have been dead for two centuries, knew nothing of our present situation, acted illegally under existing law and thought it was fine to own slaves might have disagreed with this course of action. Is it even remotely rational that the official should change his or her mind because of this divination?

I was waiting for this. Liberals have shown utter disdain for the Constitution for a very long time now, and now this a**hole-- a law professor at a major law school-- is proposing that we formalize it. Chuck the Constitution in the garbage.

A law professor who proposes ignoring the Constitution is analogous to a doctor who proposes killing patients or a pilot who proposes crashing airliners.

If we can chuck the Constitution, surely we can chuck little things like tenure, academic freedom, etc.

Professor Seidman should be fired immediately. He should never be allowed near a law student again. 

83 comments:

  1. Michael,

    You did read the article in full, didn't you? Or perhaps not. You must have missed the part where he noted that there was no chance of Americans giving up on the Constitution any time soon. Or even abrogating most of it.

    Actually, to me the article seems an interesting discussion point. His points seem much more reasonable than the claims of a certain neurosurgery professor who reckons that part of the brain can be destroyed by the insertion of a ventricular shunt without any sequelae. As evidence that the mind is independent of the brain.

    Such a neurosurgeon I wouldn't want to be anywhere near medical students.

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    1. "You did read the article in full, didn't you?"

      Of course not, because then he would have seen the author never actually said we should chuck the Constitution in its entirety. But Egnor can't let facts get in the way of his idolatry and worship of the sacred text.

      Strict originalism is at complete odds with the common law system practiced in former British colonies. Anyone who applies it to the US Constitution demonstrates their incompetence in regard to the history of law. Yes that includes Scalia.

      Delete
    2. [Of course not, because then he would have seen the author never actually said we should chuck the Constitution in its entirety.]

      I see. What you propose is a Constitutional cafeteria, where our rulers pick and choose which laws to obey and which to burn.

      Heck, if you can pick and choose, why not pick the "no tenure protection for Professor Seidman" option. I don't want to do away with tenure entirely, just for law professors who want to pick and choose Constitutional law.

      Delete
    3. Dr. Egnor,

      Tenure proceedings at Georgetown are none of your fucking business.

      Hoo

      Delete
    4. The hell they aren't. When law professors work to do away with the Constitution, that effects me and those I love. It is absolutely my business, and Mike's, and everyone else's.

      And if it's legitimate for him to try and take away my rights, it's certainly legit for me to try and take away his privileges.

      Delete
    5. More power to you, Mr. Deuce!

      What are your plans? Submit a petition to the White House? March on Georgetown University? Telephone the Georgetown President and threaten not to go to school there?

      Enquiring minds want to know.

      Hoo

      Delete
    6. Actually, there's a plan: (http://planet.infowars.com/resistance/ousting-georgetown-law-professor-louis-michael-seidman)

      "You can email this academic prick at

      seidman@law.georgetown.edu
      edueidman@law.georgetown.edu

      You can also email the Chief of Staff at Georgetown University Joseph Ferrara at jaf@georgetown.edu and express your concerns over this issue. You can also email the Hoya Nespaper for the Georgetown University, and write your concerns or just email them your letter at http://www.thehoya.com/feedback"

      Delete
    7. The Constitution is fungible. Academic tenure is sacred.

      Delete
    8. The Constitution is fungible.

      It actually is. The Constitution is not holy writ. It is changeable, and has been changed. Not only that, it's meaning is mutable, because how we view certain things has changed. At one point people considered "separate but equal" to be consistent with the equal protection of the law. Now we do not. The Constitution didn't change, but our view of it did. The same is true of many other sections.

      Delete
    9. No, we still believe in separate but equal in this country, just as long as it's white people being excluded from black turf, not the other way around. Blacks are super-separatists. They just don't like it when they're told they can't belong. They like it very much to tell others the same thing.

      You are making Dr. Egnor's point for him, though. Why is the Constitution open to change but tenure is written in stone?

      Joey

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  2. Dr. Egnor demonstrates a fine understanding of academic freedom in this post. He does not like this professor's views, so let's fire him!

    Hoo

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    1. I certainly don't like his views, and I just want to treat him according to the legal theory with which he proposes to treat us.

      No Constitutional protections, no tenure protections.

      Seems obvious enough.

      Delete
    2. Dr. Egnor,

      Your legal theory is cute, but als very naive.

      Academic tenure does not come from the US Constitution. It is an academic privilege, not a right.

      Hoo

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    3. Thanks for the legal education. Then tenure has even less claim to enforcement.

      Fire the bastard, like yesterday.

      If he is to hired back, it should only be for the pleasure of firing him again.

      Delete
    4. Dr. Egnor,

      Not being enshrined in the US Constitution, academic tenure is not guaranteed by the US government. I agree with you on that.

      Academic freedom of Professor Seidman is guaranteed by Georgetown University. See Section III.D.3 of the faculty handbook. I am sure that you have a similar guarantee from Stony Brook and view your mental contortions in this post as disingenuous.

      Hoo

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    5. You lefties are such cowardly vermin.

      You assert that the Constitution isn't worth the paper its written on, but that your precious little tenure protections are Holy Writ.

      My disgust with the Left knows no bound.

      Delete
    6. Dr. Egnor,

      You are not making any sense. Tenure has nothing to do with the US Constitution. It is guaranteed by the university where a tenured faculty member works. Tenure regulations are not a Holy Writ. They are a merely binding contract. An outsider like you or me has no power to force Georgetown to fire Prof. Seidman.

      You can continue with this silly rant. It is entertaining for us.

      Hoo

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    7. P.S. The "precious little tenure protections" are mine as much as they are yours. Last time I checked you were a tenured faculty member at Stony Brook. I am sure you value your academic freedom.

      Hoo

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    8. [Last time I checked you were a tenured faculty member at Stony Brook. I am sure you value your academic freedom.]

      I value my Constitutional freedoms a heck of a lot more than I value my academic freedom.

      I find it amusing that you evade my blindingly obvious point: when a law professor asserts that the Constitution need not be obeyed, why then should his tenure protections be obeyed?

      Delete
    9. Somehow the academic tenure system in Israel seems to work just fine, despite the fact that Israel has no constitution.

      In a system without tenure, a university that starts offering tenure would suddenly become quite attractive.

      Delete
    10. I don't give a shit about Israel's tenure or constitution. No a shit.


      I care a lot about our Constitution, and any f*cking law professor who advocates ignoring it needs to find other employment.

      He is in precisely the same moral category as a doctor who advocates using medicine to kill people and a pilot who advocates crashing planes.

      This a**hole Seidman needs to be fired and disbarred. Now.

      Delete
    11. Dr. Egnor,

      You are having a brain fart. You need to step away from the keyboard, take a long breath, and reread Prof. Seidman's piece.

      Prof. Seidman does not advocate ignoring the Constitution. This paragraph from his article alone should disabuse you of this silly notion:

      This is not to say that we should disobey all constitutional commands. Freedom of speech and religion, equal protection of the laws and protections against governmental deprivation of life, liberty or property are important, whether or not they are in the Constitution. We should continue to follow those requirements out of respect, not obligation.

      There is more, so read on. This, in particular, is quite relevant:

      If we acknowledged what should be obvious — that much constitutional language is broad enough to encompass an almost infinitely wide range of positions — we might have a very different attitude about the obligation to obey. It would become apparent that people who disagree with us about the Constitution are not violating a sacred text or our core commitments. Instead, we are all invoking a common vocabulary to express aspirations that, at the broadest level, everyone can embrace.

      Debates about the US Constitution are nothing new. The Constitution has never been viewed as written in stone. The very fact that it has had 27 amendments since its adoption is a testimony to that.

      Hoo

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    12. It's more than a bit ironic that you would trample on the professor's first amendment rights.

      Firing professors for not toeing the party line - where have we heard that before?

      Delete
    13. Herr Professor says we have no First Amendment rights.

      We need to fire a lot more professors.

      Delete
    14. He emphatically does not.

      This is not to say that we should disobey all constitutional commands. Freedom of speech and religion, equal protection of the laws and protections against governmental deprivation of life, liberty or property are important, whether or not they are in the Constitution. We should continue to follow those requirements out of respect, not obligation.

      Take a deep breath. Step away from the keyboard. Avoid seeing patients for the rest of the day.

      Hoo

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    15. O.B.L.I.G.A.T.I.O.N.

      If there is not obligation to obey the Constitution, there will be no respect.

      Without obligation, the Constitution is merely a bunch of suggestions.

      Why do you hate the Constitution so?

      Delete
    16. Dr. Egnor,

      We do not hate the Constitution. We simply do not fetishize it as you do.

      The Constitution is an important document, but it is not ideal. This is why it gets amended once in a while.

      Hoo

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    17. Leftists are *always* liars -- and in this case I mean 'liar' in the Biblical sense, encompassing betrayal and murder.

      Delete
    18. >>The Constitution is an important document, but it is not ideal. This is why it gets amended once in a while.<<

      True, but this law professor isn't calling for amending it. He thinks it should simply be ignored. Luckily for him, he's winning on that front. The Constitution is ignored every day, by both parties. Enumerated powers? What the heck is that?!

      I see that he still pays lips service to free speech and free exercise of religion. I wonder why those should be sacrosanct? What if Obama has a brave new vision that can't be hindered by the suggestions of a bunch of stupid old white males who have been dead for almost two centuries, don't know the situation we're in now, and used to own slaves? Like, for example, what if Obama really wanted to force employers to provide birth control? Why should the pesky Constitution stop him? The founders also didn't understand that in a diverse society, we can't tolerate quote-unquote hate. People might feel bad and hurt themselves or other people. We need to protect people's feelings!

      Hoo: The snippet you provided is called lip service. He knows that people kind of like their first amendment freedoms, so he has to pretend that they're not up for grabs, even though they are.

      JQ

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    19. >>If we acknowledged what should be obvious — that much constitutional language is broad enough to encompass an almost infinitely wide range of positions — we might have a very different attitude about the obligation to obey.<<

      Translation: A skilled debater can make the Constitution say whatever he wants it to say. It can mean anything.

      When the Constitution means anything, it means nothing at all.

      JQ

      Delete
    20. JQ, you say that Prof. Seidman's words about the First Amendment are no more than "lip service." What is your opinion based on? Did Prof. Seidman indicate elsewhere that he does not respect the freedom of speech or protection of property? Or do you simply suspect that he does?

      Hoo

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    21. If they're not lip service he doesn't provide any good reason why one governmental limitation from old white men dead two hundred years is binding while another is not.

      And I know a bullshitter when I see one.

      Just read the quote, and tell me that this man really cares about my first amendment rights.

      >>If we acknowledged what should be obvious — that much constitutional language is broad enough to encompass an almost infinitely wide range of positions — we might have a very different attitude about the obligation to obey.<<

      In other words, every clause of the Constitution, no matter how straightforward, is endlessly malleable. Why then not the protections of the First Amendment? >>Congress shall make no law<< can be reinterpreted to mean Congress shall make any law they please. The right to keep and bear arms can be interpreted away. The right to a speedy and public trial. Why not? Cruel and unusual punishment. Some people have a different interpretation you know. No one is really wrong because the language of the Constitution is open to limitless interpretations.

      This is what lip service means. They say they adhere to the Constitution but they simply have a quote-unquote different interpretation. If someone said that we should bring back slavery, surely no one would believe that that person has a different interpretation of the Thirteenth Amendment. We would think that he wants to flagrantly violate the Thirteenth Amendment. But if the Thirteenth Amendment is >>broad enough to encompass an almost infinitely wide range of positions<< than the we might >>have a very different attitude about the obligation to obey.<<

      JQ

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    22. [Did Prof. Seidman indicate elsewhere that he does not respect the freedom of speech]

      Seidman is a maven of Critical Legal Studies, which is an approach to legal intepretation that endorses manipulation of law to serve political purposes. It is closely related to Critical Race Theory, which focuses particularly on banning "hate speech", which is merely a method of circumventing First Amendment protections for freedom of speech.

      So to answer your question, Dr. Hoo, Seidman does not respect freedom of speech. That's actually the main point of his attack on the Constitution. People who are free to disagree are an enormous impediment to progress in Critical Legal Studies.

      Delete
    23. @JQ: The parts they like are legally binding, and they mean what they ay they mean. The parts they don't like are, as you said, endlessly malleable.

      Although I can't really think of a part of the Constitution that they like. Liberals like to talk a lot about equal protection under the law, but they don't even believe in that. For them, equal means white males get the shaft because we're the bad guys and they deserve it. We're so "privileged." I guess that one's endlessly malleable too.

      Okay, the parts that they like are the parts that judges invented out of thin air--the right to birth control pills, abortion, and butt sex. Those are absolutely inviolable, non-negotiable, and never to be surrendered.

      The Torch

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    24. "The 'precious little tenure protections' are mine as much as they are yours."

      I think that what you're saying is that tenure is not to be taken lightly, that if it means anything at all, it has to be honored. It's not to be tossed out the window when it becomes convenient to do so.

      Which is essentially what I'm saying about the constitution. If it means anything it has to be followed, not just when it's convenient.

      This prof shouldn't be fired for saying this, even if he doesn't have tenure.

      TRISH

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    25. TRISH:

      [This prof shouldn't be fired for saying this...]

      I respectfully disagree. I'm quite serious about wanting him fired (obviously he won't be fired. In fact, this is a career boost).

      Any lawyer, let alone a law professor, who advocates ignoring the Constitution is on a moral and professional par with a doctor who advocates killing patients and a pilot who advocates crashing passenger airliners.

      When you look back at horrendous political events-- the rise of the Nazis in Weimar, the victory of the Bolsheviks under the Czar and in the Kerensky government, the rise of Mao, etc, you see a constant pattern: the bad guys made their agenda obvious, and they could have been stopped if decent people had stood up and demanded that they be stopped.

      Seidman is a very dangerous man, and he speaks for quite a few dangerous men, many of whom are tenured professors, etc.

      A law professor who seriously advocates disobeying the Constitution should be disbarred and fired. No mercy.

      Although this prick won't be punished at all, the cabal he speaks for needs to understand that we will fight hard to stop them.

      Delete
    26. He's not a Bolshevik, Dr. Egnor. He's just another professor who thinks highly of himself and decided to say what a lot of them actually believe and would probably tell you if they thought you were friendly to them--that the US Constitution is anachronistic and its very purpose, the restrain government, is at odds with their long terms goals.

      If the constitution means anything it must be honored. Ditto tenure.

      TRISH

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    27. Let us see.

      Prof. Seidman is for freedom of speech. Prof. Egnor is against.

      Oh well.

      Hoo

      Delete
  3. "I was waiting for this."

    I fully expect the "liberals" on the Supreme Court to formally declate the US Constitution to be "unconstitutional" (*) -- they've already explicitly done it in practice; for instance, when they take into account foreign laws and court rulings when interpreting our Fundamental Law.

    (*) Recognizing, or course, that despite 200+ years of doing so, the document itself does not give the courts any authority to declare what is and is not constitutional.

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  4. When you look back at horrendous political events-- the rise of the Nazis in Weimar, the victory of the Bolsheviks under the Czar and in the Kerensky government, the rise of Mao, etc, you see a constant pattern

    Yes indeed, including the unlawful firing and murdering of professors with 'incorrect' opinions. Haven't you learned anything from history?

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    1. Troy, you're right.

      TRISH

      Delete
    2. Ms. TRISH,

      Let me say that you have my respect for voicing an unpopular opinion on this here blog.

      Hoo

      Delete
    3. Thank you, TRISH. Good to see some mutual agreement for a change.

      Delete
    4. @troy:

      [Yes indeed, including the unlawful firing and murdering of professors with 'incorrect' opinions. Haven't you learned anything from history?]

      Wow. I'm being lectured on totalitarianism by a Leftist. It's like being lectured on gun violence by Adam Lanza.

      I don't recall advocating the "murder" of Comrade Seidman. Correct me if I'm wrong.

      I most certainly don't advocate the "unlawful" firing of the prick. Seidman is the one with disdain for the law, not me. In suggesting that tenure be thrown out the window, I was satirically pointing out Seidman's hypocrasy.

      I do however emphatically encourage the lawful firing of Herr Seidman. Tenure is not absolute. Gross deliberate betrayal of professional ethics may well fall outside of tenure protection-- rigging grades, serious sexual transgressions with students, serious advocacy of criminal acts inconsistent with professional standards.

      You must remember that advocacy of ignoring Constitutional law is advocacy of a criminal act-- by definition. The Constitution is the basis for law.

      Obviously Seidman should not be arrested, because advocacy of crime does not generally itself constitute crime.

      But advocacy of crime certainly is rational basis for removal from a teaching position in a law school, and for disbarment.

      I point out that tenure generally only protects salary, not position. Even if his tenure requires that he be paid, he can be paid to clean toilets.

      Delete
    5. So why would it be lawful to fire Seidman because of what he wrote in the Times? You didn't make a case for that at all. There are lawful ways to change the constitution or even to get rid of it. Did Seidman advocate unlawful ways to get rid of the constitution? Next time think before you let your emotions get the better of you.

      Delete
    6. @troy:

      [So why would it be lawful to fire Seidman because of what he wrote in the Times?]

      Why would it be unlawful? It is not a Constitutional matter. If Georgetown wants to take action, it's between Georgetown and Seidman. A law professor advocating ignoring the Constitution may well fall outside of tenure protection, just as a medical professor who advocated harming patients intentionally may not be protected by tenure.

      Professionals are held to higher standards than regular professors.

      [There are lawful ways to change the constitution or even to get rid of it. Did Seidman advocate unlawful ways to get rid of the constitution?]

      Of course he advocated an unlawful way to get rid of the Constitution: he advocated that legislators and licensed lawyers and judges who take oaths to uphold the Constitution start ignoring it. That is as "unlawful" as it gets-- in fact, it's an ultimate example of "unlawful". In the same way that if a cop ignored the Constitution when he broke into your house, ransacked your belongings without a warrant, and beat you up would be "unlawful".

      Seidman did not advocate "changing the Constitution". Changing the Constitution via consitutional processes is entirely lawful. It's been done lawfully many times.

      Seidman advocated that lawyers and judges and legislators IGNORE the Constitution, which is as unlawful as it gets.



      Delete
    7. Dr. Egnor,

      If what Prof. Seidman did is "unlawful," should he not be prosecuted in a court of law, rather than the court of public opinion? Your thinking is one big incoherent mess.

      Hoo

      Delete
    8. Actually, Seidman may well have broken the law. If he is a licensed attorney, he took an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution (I believe that all states have such an oath as part of admittance to the bar).

      He violated his oath as a licensed attorney, and civil action could be taken against his law license.

      On the matter of his tenure protections, one can advocate unlawful acts without necessarily exposing oneself to prosecution. If a professor of medicine advocated intentionally torturing patients, or a professor of architecture advocated building buildings that were intended to collapse, neither advocacy would ordinarily constitute a crime, unless the professor actually engaged in a conspiracy to actually do the acts in question.

      But the medical or architectural school would certainly be justified in trying to remove the a**hole from its faculty, and I doubt that tenure would preclude removal in such cases. There are limits to what tenure will protect.

      What this a**hole advocates is quite analogous.

      Delete
    9. Actually, Seidman may well have broken the law.

      Not even close.

      If he is a licensed attorney, he took an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution (I believe that all states have such an oath as part of admittance to the bar).

      Lawyers in most states take an oath to "support" the Constitution. Writing about ignoring the Constitution is not a failure of this duty, mostly because it is protected first amendment speech, which a bar oath cannot overturn.

      For the record, Seidman is one of the most respected Constitutional scholars in the country. Having guys like you outraged by what he says is hilarious. You're intellectual paramecia compared to him on this subject.

      Delete
    10. If he wrote a NYT op-ed advocating walking into elementary schools and shooting children with an AR15, would that warrant removal from the law school faculty or action against his law license?

      Delete
    11. [For the record, Seidman is one of the most respected Constitutional scholars in the country. Having guys like you outraged by what he says is hilarious. You're intellectual paramecia compared to him on this subject.]

      All the more reason to fire and disbar the piece of sh*t.

      Advocacy to break the law on a massive scale would be troubling coming from a piss-ant lawyer with no credibility.

      It is very dangerous coming from a "respected scholar".

      We expect more, not less, from the prick.

      Delete
    12. All the more reason to fire and disbar the piece of sh*t.

      Of course, if you want to cripple your law faculty, that would be a great idea. He'd be hired by another law school within minutes. Hours if he took his time to sort through the competing offers.

      The problem you are facing is that you have a more limited grasp of the Constitution and the law than a freshman high school student. And you're trying to play in the big leagues. And you look as stupid as a little leaguer trying to compete in Yankee Stadium would look.

      Delete
    13. This man should not hold a position of respect. The fact that he does just show that academe is in parlous state.

      Ward Churchill was fired. He can be too.

      Delete
    14. This man should not hold a position of respect.

      And you've based this conclusion on your extensive reading of his academic resume? Or your knee jerk reaction to a snippet of a longer article proffered by someone whose legal acumen is equivalent to a grade school student's?

      Any law school would be delighted to have Seidman on their faculty because of his extensive body of legal scholarship on the U.S. Constitution.

      Delete
  5. I don't know what college you went to, Dr. Egnor, but mine was filled with left-wing radicals who said a lot worse things than this. It was one endless theater of the absurd. Hating America and praising murderous dictators was pretty much par for the course. You act so shocked.

    TRISH

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    1. I went to Columbia, which has more than its share of Lefties. Interestingly I didn't encounter them: the humanities courses I took (we had a core curriculum in the humanities) had fair and even slightly conservative/libertarian professors, who I really admired. I was a biochem major, so I may have encountered more left nuts if I had been a history major,etc.

      I am shocked not because a Leftie professor says something outrageous, but because a professor at a PROFESSIONAL school-- a law school-- made a very public plea for sedition.

      When a lawyer is admitted to the bar, he/she is held to actual professional standards. The bar exam contains questions on the Constitution, and I'm sure "irrelevant" is not one of the correct answers. I would imagine that lawyers take an oath to uphold the Constitution as part of their admission to the bar. The President swears to uphold the Constitution when he takes the oath of office, and do (as far as I know) all federal officials. I took an oath to protect the Constitution when I joined the army at 17.

      Seidman advocates sedition. There needs to be a very emphatic response, and he needs to separated from our legal system.

      Delete
    2. This has distinctive echoes of McCarthyism.

      Hoo

      Delete
    3. Firing a law professor who says that the Constitution should be ignored is "McCarthyism"?

      Would firing a professor of medicine who says that anatomy and germ theory should be ignored be "McCarthyism". or merely upholding rudimentary educational and professional standards?

      Delete
    4. @Hoo:

      And I point out that the protections that accused individuals claimed from McCarthy-type inquisitions (which I emphatically support against communists, nazis,etc) were Constitutional protections. They pled the Fifth.

      Pinkos used the Constitution to hide from accountability for their acts. Now that they have secure positions in power, they want to do away with the Constitution.

      All is according to plan.

      Delete
    5. @hoo:

      [Prof. Seidman is for freedom of speech. Prof. Egnor is against.]

      There is no actual free speech issue here. The First Amendment is not involved, because Georgetown is a private institution. The government would only arrest Seidman if he made an anti-Mohammed YouTube video.

      As far as academic free speech goes, it ends where professional competence and integrity begins. I am not free to teach my med students that the brain has three frontal lobes, or that malaria is caused by bad air. Nor am I free to teach my students that the major indication for an operation is to make money, or to hurt the patient as much as possible.

      Why, then, should Seidman be free to teach (publicly advocate) that the Constitution be ignored?

      Delete
    6. @TRISH:

      [He's not a Bolshevik,]

      Yes he is. In this sense:

      In any large movement, there are the vanguards, the drones, the idealogues, etc. In Germany, Baeumler and Rosenberg were ideologues who prepared the way for the more practical atrocities Nazism. They undermined law (including the Weimar Constitution, which was a major target of the radicals on all sides), and undermined civic traditions, religious mores, etc. The Bolskeviks and their predecessors in Russia had very influential ideologues-- Kautsky, Plekhanov, Trotsky.

      A mass movement is like a body (cf St Paul), and each part of the body has a role to play.

      Seidman is playing his role as legal theorist for the post-Constitutional United States.

      If you are not chilled, you're not paying attention.

      Delete
    7. Let's not get carried away here, doctor. You actual remind me of some of the uglier creatures I've encountered on the Left. This Seidman is wrong, wrong, wrong, but let's use our voices to counter his, rather than gagging him. I agree that there's no constitutional right at stake here; private employers can fire people for what they say. But that doesn't mean that they have to or they should

      JQ

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    8. JQ:

      I don't agree.

      There are really three issues here:

      1) Could action be taken against Seidman (against his job or law license)

      The answer is yes, I think. Advocacy of ignoring the Constitution by government officials is a very serious breech of legal ethics. It would be the same if a law professor advocated against prosecuting whites for killing blacks. Inciting public officials to ignore the Constitution is a major transgression for a law professor and a licensed attorney.

      2)Will action be taken against him.

      Obviously no.

      3) Should action be taken against him.

      Depends on how important you think the Constitution is, and how much of a threat Seidman and the faction he represents poses to it.

      My answer is "a lot" and "a lot".

      You don't seem to agree, which surprises me.

      May I suggest that in a generation or two, when Seidman's spawn are teaching lawyers to ignore the Constitution, and legislators and executives have endorsed his vision of post-Constitutional America, and judges are no longer enforcing the Bill of Rights, you will be a little late to post a complaint.

      They probably won't let you have internet in the re-education camp anyway.

      Delete
    9. @JQ:

      I most emphatically don't recommend "gagging him".

      He may speak in any forum he can find. He already has the New York Times, and I would fight to the death to defend his right to publish his op-ed.

      I ask that he be fired for professional malfeasance, not gagged.

      Firing a professor of architecture for advocating the construction of buildings intended to collapse and kill people is not "gagging", it is faculty housekeeping, which is needed quite often.

      Holding Seidman to professional legal standards (and not ignoring the Constitution is a professional legal standard) is not gagging.

      Is.not.gagging.

      Keep the issue straight. I am not advocating his arrest. I am advocating his accountability as a law professor and licensed attorney.

      Delete
    10. You can try to dress it up, Dr. Egnor, but your intent is quite clear: you wish to repress a political view that you do not like.

      This won't work. It does not even work here, with a largely sympathetic audience (not counting Dr. Troy and me). You might want to listen to your commentators, rather than pound the keyboard.

      Hoo

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    11. (pounding keyboard):

      @Hoo:

      Indeed. There are intents all around. Your intent (and that of your brownshirt buddies-- troy, KW) is to shelter this prick because you share his views, although don't have the balls or intellect to defend them openly.

      The intent of our freedom-loving commentors (TRISH, JQ) is, in my view, a misguided but very well-intentioned effort to be fair.

      My intent is to remove a very dangerous man who is teaching perhaps the most dangerous idea in our constitutional democracy from a position of teaching in a major law school and from the practice of law. I obviously don't like his views, but I point out that advocacy that government officials ignore the Constitution is not a mere political view. It is a professional legal opinion, that meets the definition of sedition quite nicely.

      There are opinions that professors in professional schools should not be allowed (by the law school) to teach. A law professor teaching that the Constitution should be ignored by officials sworn to uphold it is one of those opinions.

      There are opinions that licensed professionals should not be allowed to advocate and keep their license. A lawyer advocating that the Constitution should be ignored by officials sworn to uphold it is one of those opinions.

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    12. Dr. Egnor,

      Pardon me for pointing out the obvious, but it is you who is acting like a brownshirt this time. You are trying to silence a political view with which you disagree. This is mind-boggling.

      Hoo

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    13. I am not trying to silence a political view. Seidman may write op-eds, publish books, do interviews, write the Democrat Party Platform to his heart's content.

      I am objecting to a law professor publicly advocating illegal acts. Last I checked, government officials ignoring the Constitutional was illegal.

      Delete
    14. Last I checked, government officials ignoring the Constitutional was illegal.

      Seidman is a law professor working for a private institution who wrote an editorial that was published in a privately owned newspaper. In exactly what manner is he a "government official"?

      Delete
    15. I was referring to the government officials he was encouraging to ignore the Constitution. He wasn't encouraging private citizens to ignore the Constitution, because private citizens are not sworn to obey the Constitution.

      In fact, though, a licensed lawyer is a official of the court.

      Delete
    16. A lawyer is an "officer of the court", but that is not a government official. Neither is that a position that obligated him to somehow not speak on topics, even if his suggestions may not be legal.

      And ignoring the law, or advocating breaking the law is not necessarily illegal. Look up "jury nullification" one of these days.

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    17. @anon:

      "And ignoring the law, or advocating breaking the law is not necessarily illegal."

      Here. I'll put my reply through Google Translate from English to "Moron", to help you understand.

      Seidman did not break the law by stating his opinion. He did recommend that millions of other government officials break the law in a profound way. That is obvious reason for him to be dismissed from his position as a LAW professor and have sanctions taken against his LAW license.

      Comprendo?

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    18. He did recommend that millions of other government officials break the law in a profound way.

      I see you didn't actually look up what jury nullification is - a practice of explicitly ignoring and breaking the law, and why juries doing so is perfectly acceptable.

      That is obvious reason for him to be dismissed from his position as a LAW professor and have sanctions taken against his LAW license.

      You have no idea what is appropriate for a law professor to teach. Are there times when it is appropriate to break the law? Yes, there absolutely are. And every bar association says as such.

      But keep up with your uneducated stupidity. It makes the moron label attach itself very firmly to you.

      Delete
  6. How did getting rid of the constitution become “taking away our rights”? The entire notion of getting rid of the constitution is ludicrous unless one presumes its replacement by a better one. What’s all the fuss? Is it true that no conservatives here can imagine a constitution better than the one we have? I certainly can.

    -KW

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    1. We can get rid our Constitution any time we want, and quite legally and properly, by constitutional means-- amendments, holding a Constitutional Convention, etc. I have no objection in principle to such ideas, and by definition they are legal viewpoints. Professors of law and lawyers should most certainly be allowed to discuss such ideas freely.

      Seidman did not advocate getting rid of the Constitution through legal means. He advocated that the Constitution be IGNORED by the very officials who take oaths to protect and defend it.

      Amending the Constitution, even radically, even in a way that destroys it, is entirely legal, if the rules for amendment are followed. It is a legitimate legal opinion. Not one with which I agree, but entirely legal and protected.

      IGNORING the Constitution by judges, justices of the Supreme Court, lawyers, legislators, presidents etc is illegal, and perhaps the most serious crime I can imagine in our constitutional system.

      Do you understand the difference between amending the Constitution and ignoring it? One is legal. The other is illegal.

      Delete
  7. Has anyone noticed in his wikipaedia entry that prof. seidman was born in Pyongyang, North Korea?

    I know this is irrelevant.

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    1. Pyongyang?

      Heh.

      Manchurian Candidate/Law professor?

      Delete
    2. @Hoo, KW, troy:

      Are school boards under any obligation to comply with Constitutional law on the teaching of intelligent design?

      Would refusal to comply with court rulings on the Constitutional issues involved be illegal?

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    3. Relax Mike,

      It seems to me that Seidman isn't calling upon people to disregard your constitution. He thinks maybe it's time to get rid of some of it. By lawful means of course.

      Over here in Holland, we had a major overhaul of our constitution in 1983. A lot of outdated stuff got removed and lots of new articles were added. Among the stuff removed was the illegality of Catholics to have processions. That dated back to the time when Protestant Holland had won the 80 year war against the Catholic Spanish oppressors back in the 17th century. Of course, a long time before removing that particular article, Catholics were allowed to have processions, because that article was ignored.

      The point being, maybe Seidman has a point that outdated parts of the constitution are in need of being removed or changed.



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    4. @troy:

      [It seems to me that Seidman isn't calling upon people to disregard your constitution. He thinks maybe it's time to get rid of some of it. By lawful means of course.]

      He said they should ignore it. He did not say amend it.

      Changing the Constitution is fine, and obviously legal if the amendment process is followed.

      That is not what Seidman meant. The law professor and licensed attorney advocated that government officials who are sworn to obey the Constitution ignore the Constitution. Break the law, that is.

      [Over here in Holland, we had a major overhaul of our constitution in 1983. A lot of outdated stuff got removed and lots of new articles were added. Among the stuff removed was the illegality of Catholics to have processions. That dated back to the time when Protestant Holland had won the 80 year war against the Catholic Spanish oppressors back in the 17th century. Of course, a long time before removing that particular article, Catholics were allowed to have processions, because that article was ignored.

      The point being, maybe Seidman has a point that outdated parts of the constitution are in need of being removed or changed.]

      Grist for the mill. Constitutional amendments, or a new Constitutional Convention, are lawful things reasonable people can debate.

      Ignoring the Constitution is unlawful, and is the opposite of legally amending it.

      Seidman is a professional and an educator who advocates breaking the law.

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  8. "IGNORING the Constitution by judges, justices of the Supreme Court, lawyers, legislators, presidents etc is illegal, and perhaps the most serious crime I can imagine in our constitutional system."

    It is, indeed, the most serious crime: treason. One need not imagine anything.

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    1. Yep. And I think that the batshit liberal obsession with gun control is related to this.

      Armed citizenry will be the last thing standing between the Left and post-Constitutional America, and they're trying to take care of it early.

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    2. Ah yes, the “gun nuts shooting up all the liberals” fantasy. Bad news, in the fantasy land you inhabit liberal evolutionary biologist professors develop an anti-redneck bio weapons that destroys he God gene and restore rationality to the land.

      -KW

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