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William C. Altreuter
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Thursday, May 24, 2018

As I have said repeatedly, now is an interesting time to be teaching Constitutional Law. One of themes I tried to emphasize this past semester is the necessity of understanding the role that norms and values have in our legal system. It's a subject that I frequently think about: something as basic as the understanding that a statement made under oath should be treated more seriously than an ordinary statement depends on a belief that this is a shared value, for example, as mundane as it sounds, is essential for the courts to operate. Every day, all over the country, tattered courtroom Bibles are employed as a sort of social polygraph. Why does this work? Clap hands if you believe. Good piece here from Five Thirty Eight.

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