The Austin Lawyer Chapter of the American Constitution Society presented:
Constitution in 2020: Economic and Social Rights in the 21st Century
William E. Forbath
Lloyd M. Bentsen Chair in Law, Associate Dean for Research, University of Texas School of Law; Contributing Author, The Constitution in 2020
As the second decade of the 21st century unfolds, it seems to many as if social and economic rights in the United States have reached their nadir. Wage growth continues to decline while economic inequality continues to rise to the point where thousands upon thousands took to the streets throughout the country (and the world) to protest the actions of the “1%.” Labor unions have come under withering attacks from seemingly all sides while legislation designed to strengthen them fail to garner the necessary legislative support. And yet, if not deemed unconstitutional by the Supreme Court, the Affordable Care Act promises to provide health insurance for tens of millions of previously uncovered Americans by 2014. Faced with this mixed backdrop, what is the future of social and economic rights in the 21st century. Professor William Forbath of the University of Texas School of Law discussed this and other topics. Professor Forbath has written extensively of matters of social and economic rights as well as constitutional history.