Rights in Front of Our Eyes: Positive American Rights and the American Constitutional Tradition
11 Pages Posted: 23 Oct 2014
Date Written: October 21, 2014
This is a review of Emily Zackin’s Looking for Rights in All the Wrong Places: Why State Constitutions Contain America’s Positive Rights. Zackin challenges the popular tendency to focus on the U.S. Constitution’s protection of negative rights enforceable against the government, while neglecting the many state constitutional texts that contain a robust positive rights tradition. The book serves as a historical corrective, as Zackin makes the case for taking seriously America’s oft-neglected state constitutions and the positive rights they embrace — in particular, rights relating to education, labor, and environmental protection.
Keywords: State constitutional law, positive rights, negative rights, American constitutional history
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