Friday, January 30, 2009

Justice Scalia at Duke: did the N&O and H-S miss the story?

First, excerpts from The Chronicle’s brief story about Justice Scalia’s address and other activities at Duke Law School yesterday; then my comments.

The Chronicle begins - - -

Justice Antonin Scalia dispelled some media portrayals of the Supreme Court and described his judicial views in an address at Duke Thursday.

Scalia spoke to a group of approximately 200 students and spectators in the School of Law's Star Commons.

"The press likes to paint the court to make it more interesting, as if we're all on each other's throats. Nine scorpions in a bottle," he said. "It's not that at all."

Scalia, an originalist interpreter of the Constitution, believes that freedom of speech and press under the First Amendment protect all forms of communication.

"The two are fairly understood as standing for all expression and communication," he said.

Scalia responded with humor to one question concerning the free speech of exotic dancing.

"I like it," he joked, adding that it does not fall under the protection of the First Amendment. "I draw a line there, I don't think that means communication."

Scalia, who has conservative views, referred to liberal-leaning Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg as the closest of his colleagues.

Having served under former chief justice William Rehnquist, Scalia said he has not seen much change in the way the Supreme Court operates under Chief Justice John Roberts.

"Not really much, he hasn't run it much differently from Rehnquist," he said.

After Justice Scalia's address, he visited classes, talked to student groups and served in a panel of judges for the final round of Moot Court Board's 2009 Dean's Cup Competition. …

The rest of the story’s here.



I searched the online Raleigh News & Observer and Durham Herald Sun sites and could find nothing on Justice Scalia’s appearance at Duke.

I’m away from Durham now so I couldn’t search their print editions.

Both newspapers say they’ll survive in the changing and increasingly competitive news reporting world because, to a large extent, of the breath, depth and quality of their local news reporting.

A Supreme Court justice’s address at Duke Law School and his subsequent participation in a Q&A, visit to classes and service as a Moot Court competition judge are important, newsworthy local events.

But both newspapers appear to have failed to cover them.

If you see Scalia coverage by either paper, please let me know so it can report it.

Regarding Scalia’s description of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg as “the closest of his colleagues:”

I know they are close friends who, among other things, share a love of opera. As part of a fundraising event some years ago, the sang together in the chorus of one of Washington’s major opera companies.

I’ve been told the justices and their spouses have dinner together each New Years Eve, but I don’t know that for a fact.

Can anyone shed light on the matter?


Anonymous said...

Here's something from the Wall Street Journal's 12/27/2007 Law Blog...

This New Year’s Eve, as they have done for more than two decades, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Justice Antonin Scalia will join with their spouses and another couple or two at the Ginsburgs’ large Watergate apartment. After the caviar and wine, they may dine, as they have in the past, on something Scalia has bagged on one of his hunting trips.