Opinion2017-05-19T20:27:29-04:00

The following articles, except where noted, were originally published in the Keene Sentinel.

New “Anti-Riot” Laws Violate the First Amendment

The First Amendment prohibits the government for interfering with freedom of speech and of the press. It complements the right of free speech by protecting “the right of the people peaceably to assemble.” Civil rights proponents, anti-Vietnam War protesters, and Black Lives Matter supporters have the right to assemble [...]

Did Trump “Cause” the Injuries to Two Capitol Police Officers?

Not long after I got into law school, I decided I should read something about the law. Someone suggested “The Nature of the Judicial Process,” by Judge Benjamin Cardozo. According to that book, judges legislate “interstitially,” meaning that they fill in the gaps. It is how the common law [...]

Lying About the 2020 Election Produces Massive Lawsuits

“A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches” Book of Proverbs Over my 56 years as a trial lawyer, mostly representing parties in civil cases, I have seen the legal system from the inside. Like all human institutions, it is far from perfect. But the courts [...]

The Impeachment Trial and What Trump Failed to Do

This article originally appeared in the February 4, 2021 Concord Monitor. If the forthcoming impeachment trial of Donald Trump were taking place in a courtroom, the prosecutors could invoke the “law of the case” doctrine. What that means, in a real lawsuit, is that the Senate’s decision to allow [...]

The Post-Presidency and Title 18 of the U.S. Code

This article originally appeared in the December 2, 2020 Concord Monitor. I recently heard an interview with Andy Card, who served as Chief of Staff for President George W. Bush and later as president of Franklin Pierce University. In his opinion, soon-to-be president Joe Biden should “respect” his predecessor, [...]

There Are Laws for a Criminal Assault on America

I do not ordinarily begin my monthly column by quoting federal law, but this is not an ordinary month. 18  U.S. Code § 2385, makes it a felony to “advocate, abet, or advise” overthrowing the government. Whoever “helps” or “encourages” anyone to do so, can go to prison for [...]

Donald Trump and the Power to Pardon

This article originally appeared in the January 10, 2021 Concord Monitor. Will he or won’t he? Pardon himself, that is. The last president who considered pardoning himself, so far as we know, was Richard Nixon. However, according to an August 4, 1974, Justice Department opinion, “the fundamental rule that [...]

Religion and the Supreme Court During the Pandemic

Last July, by a vote of 5-4, the Supreme Court rejected the petition of a Nevada church seeking to overturn the Governor’s 50-person limit on attendance at religious services. Chief Justice Roberts joined the four liberal Justices—Ginsburg, Breyer, Kagan, and Sotomayor. Justice Alito dissented on the grounds that the [...]

Face Masks Should be the Law Across the Country

When I got my driver’s license, in 1955, seat belts had been invented, but cars didn’t have them. A federal law passed in 1968 required seat belts in all new cars, and beginning with New York in 1984, states passed laws requiring seat belt usage. Today, every state but [...]

The Republican Party and Patriotism in our Time

This article was originally published in the October 25, 2020 Concord Monitor. Elections belong to the people. Abraham Lincoln I turned 21 in 1960, the last year of Eisenhower’s second term. I went to City Hall in Claremont and registered as a Republican, following in the footsteps of my [...]

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