Injustices : the Supreme Court's history of comforting the comfortable and afflicting the afflicted / Ian Millhiser.
New York : Nation Books, 
xv, 350 pages ; 25 cm
Formatted Contents Note
How the Civil War was undone The baron outside Chicago The two constitutions The price of a Coke You load sixteen tons and what do you get? Men feared witches and burnt women The bottom falls out The biggest damned-fool mistake I ever made Should we double our wealth and conquer the stars The truce Rigging the game The final word The Constitution has always been at war with Eurasia Epilogue : the gathering storm.
"Few American institutions have inflicted greater suffering on ordinary people than the Supreme Court of the United States. In this powerful indictment of a venerated institution, constitutional law expert Ian Millhiser tells the history of the Supreme Court through the eyes of everyday people who have suffered the most as a result of its judgements. The justices built a nation where children toiled in coal mines and cotton mills, where Americans could be forced into camps because of their race, and where women were sterilized at the command of states. The Court was the midwife of Jim Crow, the right hand of union busters, and the dead hand of the Confederacy. Nor is the modern Court a vast improvement, with its incursions on voting rights, its willingness to place elections for sale, and its growing skepticism towards the democratic process generally. America ratified three constitutional amendments to provide equal rights to freed slaves, but the justices spent 30 years largely dismantling these amendments. Then they spent the next 40 years rewriting them into a shield for the wealthy and the powerful. Similarly, the recent, nearly successful legal attack on Obamacare was in the spirit of early twentieth century decisions like Lochner v. New York and Hammer v. Dagenhart that treated the American people's right to govern themselves with great skepticism. Recently, cases like Citizens United allowed rivers of money to flood our democracy; and Shelby County tore out the heart of American voting rights law. These cases are hardly anomalies; they fit a pattern of justices placing powerful interests above the welfare of the general public. In the Warren Era and the few years following it, progressive justices restored the Constitution's promises of equality, free speech, and fair justice for the accused. But this era, Millhiser contends, was an historic accident. Indeed, if it wasn't for a several unpredictable events-such as a former Ku Klux Klansman's decision to become a passionate supporter of racial justice, or a fatal heart attack that killed the Chief Justice of the United States-Brown v. Board of Education could have gone the other way. In this book, Millhiser argues the Supreme Court does not deserve the respect it commands. To the contrary, it routinely bent the arc of American history away from justice"-- Provided by publisher.
Bibliography, etc. Note
Includes bibliographical references and index.
KF8748 .M475 2015
9781568584560 hardback 1568584563 hardback 9781568584577 (e-book)