The 2018 Honorable Clifford Scott Green Lecture
The Constitution Today
Presented By Akhil Reed Amar
APRIL 2, 2018 @ 4:00 PM
KLEIN HALL • DUANE MORRIS LLP MOOT COURT ROOM
For the first time in our lifetime-and for one of the few times in modern history-all four major federal institutions of power were in play in the last election. When the two national conventions met in 2016, Democrats had a real chance to win control of the House, Senate, Presidency, and Supreme Court. Instead, the Republicans swept the field and now control all four institutions, even though Donald Trump lost the (legally irrelevant) national popular presidential vote. In this talk, based in part on his recently released book, The Constitution Today, Yale Law Professor Akhil Reed Amar will discuss the constitutional significance of all this and will touch upon a wide range of modern cases and controversies-from gun control to gay rights, from the electoral college to campaign finance to filibuster reform. Come prepared to ask any question you like about America’s constitutional system-past, present, and future.
Akhil Reed Amar
Sterling Professor of Law and Political Science • Yale University
Akhil Reed Amar is Sterling Professor of Law and Political Science at Yale University, where he teaches constitutional law in both Yale College and Yale Law School. After graduating from Yale College, summa cum laude, in 1980 and from Yale Law School in 1984, and clerking for then Judge (now Justice) Stephen Breyer, Amar joined the Yale faculty in 1985 at the age of 26. His work has won awards from both the American Bar Association and the Federalist Society, and he has been favorably cited by Supreme Court justices across the spectrum in more than 30 cases—tops in his generation. He has regularly testified before Congress at the invitation of both parties; and in various comprehensive surveys of judicial citations and/or scholarly citations, he invariably ranks among America’s five most-cited legal scholars under age sixty. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and in 2008 he received the DeVane Medal—Yale’s highest award for teaching excellence. He has written widely for popular publications such as The New York Times, The Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, the Los Angeles Times, The Atlantic, and Slate. He was an informal consultant to the popular TV show, The West Wing, and his work has been showcased on more recent TV shows such as The Colbert Report, Charlie Rose, and The O’Reilly Factor. Professor Amar is the author of dozens of law review articles and several books, including The Constitution and Criminal Procedure: First Principles (Yale Univ. Press, 1997), The Bill of Rights: Creation and Reconstruction (Yale Univ. Press, 1998—winner of the YUP Governors’ Award), America’s Constitution: A Biography (Random House, 2005—winner of the ABA’s Silver Gavel Award), America’s Unwritten Constitution: The Precedents and Principles We Live By (Basic Books, 2012—named one of the 100 best nonfiction books of the year by The Washington Post), and The Law of the Land: A Grand Tour of our Constitutional Republic (Basic Books, 2015). His newest book, The Constitution Today: Timeless Lessons for the Issues of Our Era, was published in September 2016 and was named one of the top ten nonfiction books of the year by Time magazine. In February 2017 he received the American Bar Foundation’s annual Outstanding Scholar Award, and in April 2017 he received the Howard R. Lamar Award for distinguished service to Yale alumni.
PLANNING TO ATTEND?
This event is open to the general public and all Temple Law alumni, students, faculty, and staff.
Registration is required.
The Honorable Clifford Scott Green Lectureship
The Honorable Clifford Scott Green Lectureship was established in 2003 to perpetuate the civil rights legacy of Judge Clifford Scott Green LAW ’51 and to honor his distinguished service to Temple University. Judge Green was described as “an inspiration, a mentor, a teacher, a role model, and a friend to innumerable minority and non-minority law clerks, interns, and students.” Clifford Scott Green grew up in Philadelphia in a poor but close and supportive family. He fulfilled their aspirations for him by being the first in the family to finish high school, then college and law school. As a law student he distinguished himself with honors for the highest grades in constitutional law and conflicts of laws, and as an associate editor of the law review. In 1952, Judge Green joined the first African-American law firm in Pennsylvania, which later became Norris, Schmidt, Green, Harris, Higginbotham, and Brown.
Judge Green received numerous awards for his community service, integrity, and professional excellence, including the first Judge William Hastie Award from the NAACP Legal Defense Fund in 1985. In 2002, he was awarded the Spirit of Excellence Award from the American Bar Association Commission on Racial and Ethnic Diversity. He was appointed judge of the County Court of Philadelphia in 1964, and President Richard M. Nixon named him to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania in 1971, where he assumed senior status in 1988.
During 36 years on the federal bench, Judge Green presided over a number of notable cases, and was regarded as one of the most popular judges in the district. Green was a long-time adjunct professor at the law school, teaching evidence, criminal law and criminal procedure. In the early 1970s, he was instrumental in creating the Temple-LEAP mock trial competition for high school students. He was a founding member of the law school Board of Visitors and a member of the university’s Board of Trustees and, in 1997, he was awarded an honorary doctor of laws degree by the university.