• January 20, 2012

    by John Schachter

    Stephen Colbert gave new meaning to “Justice delayed is justice denied” when he interviewed a surprisingly game former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens. Colbert apparently didn’t realize (wink, wink) that Stevens had retired from the high court but reluctantly forges ahead with the interview nonetheless.

    The meat of the interview was a discussion of the court’s controversial Citizens United decision, coming up on its two-year anniversary. While Colbert insisted that corporations are exactly like people and deserving of all the same rights, Stevens parried quite effectively. “As with natural persons as well as corporate persons, some have different rights than others do,” Stevens explained. “The same rights don’t apply to everyone in every possible situation.”

    At 91 years, Stevens makes 90-years old Hollywood star Betty White seem old by comparison. His quick wit and sharp legal mind were on full display during the nearly 7-minute interview. The highlight? Colbert asked Stevens if there were any decisions he made that he later regretted. Said Stevens in response, “Other than this interview? I don’t think so.”

  • October 24, 2011

    By John Schachter

    Justice Antonin Scalia continues to dish out opinions on more than just constitutional law. The saucy Justice has once again waded into the controversial pizza wars with his recent opinion that Chicago-style deep-dish pizza “should not be called ‘pizza.’ It should be called ‘a tomato pie.’” The pizza originalist added, “Real pizza is Neapolitan. It is thin. It is chewy and crispy, OK?”

    In Scalia’s view, he’s just a “traditionalist” defending the ideas and ideals of pizza’s founding bakers. In a January interview with California Lawyer Scalia first held that New York pizza is “infinitely better” than Chicago deep dish or Washington, D.C. varieties.

    Scalia provided his latest slice of honesty last Tuesday at Chicago-Kent School of Law. Topping previous statements on the subject, Scalia did concede, “I do indeed like so-called ‘deep dish pizza.’ It’s very tasty.”

    In the January interview, Scalia also reiterated his belief that the 14th Amendment does not prohibit sex discrimination. Critics are, of course, accusing Scalia of going off half-baked. See what Tom the Dancing Bug had to say on the subjects.

    [picture credit Ruben Bolling]

  • July 28, 2011

    Georgetown University law professor Peter Edelman, a member of the ACS board of directors, recently appeared on Comedy Central’s Colbert Report to discuss America’s continuing struggle with poverty.  

    Edelman worked as a legislative aide for Senator Robert F. Kennedy and resigned his position as Assistant Secretary of Health and Human Services in the Clinton Administration in protest of the administration’s welfare reform plan.  Following an exchange about Xboxes (yes, Xboxes), Edelman responded to Colbert’s barbs about the invisibility of poverty by stating:

    There are six million people in this country whose only income is food stamps. Only income is food stamps, which is, for that family you were talking about, about 25% of the poverty line. And that’s all they have … The fact is, food stamps right now are really helping people in this country. We have 44 million people in the middle of this recession that are getting that help, and I’m glad we do.


    "Poor" in America - Peter Edelman
  • June 28, 2011

    Imagine a world in which the president must drive 500 miles to a designated "armed crisis center" before waging war, and women have the constitutional right to an abortion free of legal obstacles.

    This is "Counter-Earth," envisioned by Ruben Bolling in his latest "Tom the Dancing Bug" comic strip. View the rest of the frames from strip here.

    Bolling, a cartoonist with a law degree, participated in a panel discussion earlier this month at ACS's 10th Anniversary National Convention on nontraditional lawyers and their impact on the law. Watch video of that discussion here.

  • March 16, 2011

    As ACSblog has documented, Comedy Central's Stephen Colbert has devoted time and attention to constitutional rights over the years.

    Yesterday, he crammed all his best moments of constitutional reverence into a half-hour montage on some of our Constitution's most important amendments.

    On the Second Amendment, he rejoices, "I can get my 9mm faster than my size nines from Zappos."

    On the First Amendment: "Someone who makes $12,000 a year simply does not need air conditioning, a moon roof or freedom of speech. After all, they'll probably just use it to complain."

    And in a segment on the Fourteenth Amendment, commenting on a clip explaining that "we had no immigration law" in 1868, Colbert adds, "If there was immigration law, the Indians could have had us deported."

    Watch all of the clips here. And don't miss out on Colbert's special tribute to the amendment to which he has perhaps devoted the most air time: the 21st.