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The president of the International Rescue Committee calls for commitment that will build community from the ruins of conflict.
Every liberal democracy has laws or codes against hate speech-except the United States. For constitutionalists, regulation of hate speech violates the First Amendment and damages a free society. Against this absolutist view, Jeremy Waldron argues powerfully that hate speech should be regulated as part of our commitment to human dignity and to inclusion and respect for members of vulnerable minorities. Causing offense-by depicting a religious leader as a terrorist in a newspaper cartoon, for example-is not the same as launching a libelous attack on a group's dignity, according to Waldron, and it lies outside the reach of law. But defamation of a minority group, through hate speech, undermines a public good that can and should be protected: the basic assurance of inclusion in society for all members. A social environment polluted by anti-gay leaflets, Nazi banners, and burning crosses sends an implicit message to the targets of such hatred: your security is uncertain and you can expect to face humiliation and discrimination when you leave your home. Free-speech advocates boast of despising what racists say but defending to the death their right to say it. Waldron finds this emphasis on intellectual resilience misguided and points instead to the threat hate speech poses to the lives, dignity, and reputations of minority members. Finding support for his view among philosophers of the Enlightenment, Waldron asks us to move beyond knee-jerk American exceptionalism in our debates over the serious consequences of hateful acts.
Should judges in United States courts be permitted to cite foreign laws in their rulings? In this book Jeremy Waldron explores some ideas in jurisprudence and legal theory that could underlie the Supreme Court's occasional recourse to foreign law, especially in constitutional cases. He argues that every society is governed not only by its own laws but partly also by laws common to all mankind (ius gentium). But he takes the unique step of arguing that this common law is not natural law but a grounded consensus among all nations. The idea of such a consensus will become increasingly important in jurisprudence and public affairs as the world becomes more globalized.
When property rights and environmental legislation clash, what side should the Rule of Law weigh in on? It is from this point that Jeremy Waldron explores the Rule of Law both from an historical perspective - considering the property theory of John Locke - and from the perspective of modern legal controversies. This critical and direct account of the relation between the Rule of Law and the protection of private property criticizes the view - associated with the 'World Bank model' of investor expectations - that a society which fails to protect property rights against legislative restriction is failing to support the Rule of Law. In this book, developed from the 2011 Hamlyn Lectures, Waldron rejects the idea that the Rule of Law privileges property rights over other forms of law and argues instead that the Rule of Law should endorse and applaud the use of legislation to achieve valid social objectives.
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