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Visiting lecturer questions Constitution

On November 5, 2013

The second lecture in the Amicus Curiae lecture series with Professor Louis Michael Seidman of Georgetown University questioned the Constitution Tuesday in the Marshall University Alumni Center.

Seidmam talked about his book “On Constitutional Disobedience,” which was published in 2012 as part of the Oxford University Press’ series on constitutional critiques. His book gained controversy because it questioned the Constitution.

Patricia Proctor, director of the Simon Perry Center for Constitutional Democracy and pre-law advisor, said she read about Seidman’s book and the surrounding controversy in the Chronicle of Higher Education.

“I think it’s valuable to question our democracy and think about new ideas just in case there is something we can improve upon,” Proctor said.

Students came to the event to learn about what Seidman had to say.

“He’s really knowledgeable about the stuff he’s talking about and its great hearing about everything he has studied and he has stern view on beliefs,” Wes Muncy, junior graphic design major, said. “I’m going to study more on this and study about what he said.”

The audience asked Seidman a variety of questions at the end of the lecture. Seidman said the questions made him think about the problem.

“I’m working on an article about the history of the American constitution skepticism,” Seidman said. “So it turns out that there are many incidents over the history of the country where important leaders have expressed doubts about the Constitution and disobeyed it. I want to create a coherent narrative about those events that rivals the standard narrative over constitutional worship.”

The event came to a close as Seidman gave an argument on why people should give up on the idea that they have an obligation to obey the Constitution of the United States, which prompted an audience discussion about the Constitution.

The event was livestreamed, and the next lecture in the series will happen Feb. 4 with Brian Dirck.

Justin DePamphilis can be contacted at depamphilis@marshall.edu.

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