George Anastaplo ~ Right of Revolution ~ RIP My Friend
George Anastaplo ~ Right of Revolution ~ RIP My Friend
Before I made the acquaintance of George Anastaplo I saw him walking down the street in Chicago’s Hyde Park neighborhood.
There was something about him that caught my eye… something about the way that he walked and the way that he smiled… there was something about his spirit… there was something that I wanted to capture.
George has what I like to call ‘The Magic Mojo.’
I wanted to pop him right there on the street but I was late in getting to a very special dinner with some great friends.
I had to let the urge go.
I regretted my artistic inaction the moment I passed him on the street there.
Fortunately the regret would be short lived.
In one of those funny little twists of fate that life seems to lay on me… when we got to the dinner George ended up being seated right next to me.
He’s a fascinating guy.
A great storyteller, I really enjoyed the conversation that we shared as we sat there at the table.
‘While most lawyers go through an entire career without getting the opportunity to argue before the U.S. Supreme Court, George Anastaplo did so without entering the legal profession—and then, he likes to say, he retired.’ ~ Maria Kantzavelos, Chicago Daily Law Bulletin, April 25, 2011, page 1
George completed his undergraduate degree in only one year at the University of Chicago.
It took me longer than that to pay my overdue library fines from freshman year.
In 1951 he graduated at the top of his law school class.
I would have liked to have sat next to him.
In 1964 George completed his doctorate at the University of Chicago’s Committee on Social Thought.
Since then he’s written more than 20 books on a multitude of subjects.
"A longtime Loyola University Chicago School of Law professor who today teaches courses in constitutional law and jurisprudence, Anastaplo became an eclectic scholar and teacher" ~ Maria Kantzavelos
‘Fifty years ago Sunday, on April 24, 1961, the U.S. Supreme Court rendered a decision that affirmed the decision of the Illinois Supreme Court to deny Anastaplo admission to the Illinois bar because he refused to answer questions asked by the bar’s character committee about political associations.’ ~ Maria Kantzavelos
When George graduated from law school and he interviewed for admission into the Illinois Bar Association he had to be questioned in front of the ‘character committee’ they asked ‘do you think a communist should be admitted into the bar of this state?’
‘Well, why not?’
Then they asked George if he was now or was ever a member of the Communist Party.
George didn’t feel that he should answer that question and because of that conviction they wouldn’t give him admission into the Illinois Bar and he couldn’t practice law even though the dude graduated at the top of his class. Hmmmmph.
‘Had he gone along with the process, things could have turned out differently for Anastaplo, who was being considered for a position at one of the big law firms in town.’ ~ Maria Kantzavelos
But that didn’t stop the fiesty twenty five year old.
He fought over the next ten years, ultimately laying out his case in front of the United States Supreme Court.
He argued there as a lawyer without a license!
‘In 1954 petitioner, George Anastaplo, an instructor and research assistant at the University of Chicago, having previously passed his Illinois bar examinations, was denied admission to the bar of that State by the Illinois Supreme Court. The denial was based upon his refusal to answer questions of the Committee on Character and Fitness as to whether he was a member of the Communist Party.’ ~ 366 U.S. 82 IN RE ANASTAPLO
‘The ensuing lengthy proceedings before the Committee, at which Anastaplo was the only witness, are perhaps best described as a wide-ranging exchange between the Committee and Anastaplo in which the Committee sought to explore Anastaplo’s ability conscientiously to swear support of the Federal and State Constitutions, as required by the Illinois attorneys’ oath, and Anastaplo undertook to expound and defend, on historical and ideological premises, his abstract belief in the ‘right of revolution,’ and to resist, on grounds of asserted constitutional right and scruple, Committee questions which he deemed improper. The Committee already had before it uncontroverted evidence as to Anastaplo’s ‘good moral character,’ in the form of written statements or affidavits furnished by persons of standing acquainted with him, and the record on rehearing contains nothing which could properly be considered as reflecting adversely upon his character or reputation or on the sincerity of the beliefs he espoused before the Committee. Anastaplo persisted, however, in refusing to answer, among other inquiries, the Committee’s questions as to his possible membership in the Communist Party or in other allegedly related organizations. ~ 366 U.S. 82 IN RE ANASTAPLO
Thereafter the Committee, by a vote of 11 to 6, again declined to certify Anastaplo because of his refusal to answer such questions, the majority stating in its report to the Illinois Supreme Court:
‘his (Anastaplo’s) failure to reply, in our view, obstructs the lawful processes of the Committee, prevents inquiry into subjects which bear intimately upon the issue of character and fitness, such as loyalty to our basic institutions, belief in representative government and bona fides of the attorney’s oath and results in his failure to meet the burden of establishing that he possesses the good moral character and fitness to practice law, which are conditions to the granting of a license to practice law.
‘We draw no inference of disloyalty or subversion from applicant’s continued refusal to answer questions concerning Communist or other subversive affiliations. We do, however, hold that there is a strong public interest in our being free to question applicants for admission to the bar on their adherence to our basic institutions and form of government and that such public interest in the character of its attorneys overrides an applicant’s private interest in keeping such views to himself. By failing to respond to this higher public interest we hold that the applicant has obstructed the proper functions of the Committee. We cannot certify the applicant as worthy of the trust and confidence of the public when we do not know that he is so worthy and when he has prevented us from finding out.’
At the same time the full Committee acknowledged that Anastaplo ‘is well regarded by his academic associates, by professors who had taught him in school and by members of the Bar who know him personally’; that it had ‘not been supplied with any information by any third party which is derogatory to Anastaplo’s character or general reputation. ~ ~ 366 U.S. 82 IN RE ANASTAPLO
THE DISSENTING OPINION
‘United States Supreme Court
366 U.S. 82
IN RE ANASTAPLO
No. 58. Argued: December 14, 1960. — Decided: April 24, 1961.
CERTIORARI TO THE SUPREME COURT OF ILLINOIS.
Mr. Justice BLACK, with whom THE CHIEF JUSTICE, Mr. Justice DOUGLAS and Mr. Justice BRENNAN concur, dissenting.
The petitioner George Anastaplo has been denied the right to practice law in the State of Illinois for refusing to answer questions about his views and associations. I think this action by the State violated rights guaranteed to him by the First and Fourteenth Amendments. The reasons which lead me to this conclusion are largely the same as those expressed in my dissenting opinion in Konigsberg v. State Bar of California, 366 U.S. at page 56, 81 S.Ct. at page 1010. But this case provides such a striking illustration of the destruction that can be inflicted upon individual liberty when this Court fails to enforce the First Amendment to the full extent of its express and unequivocal terms that I think it deserves separate treatment.
The controversy began in November 1950, when Anastaplo, a student at the University of Chicago Law School, having two months previously successfully passed the Illinos Bar examination, appeared before the State’s Committee on Character and Fitness for the usual interview preliminary to admission to the Bar. The personal history form required by state law had been filled out and filed with the Committee prior to his appearance and showed that Anastaplo was an unusually worthy applicant for admission. His early life had been spent in a small town in southern Illinois where his parents, who had immigrated to this country from Greece before his birth, still resided. After having received his precollege education in the public schools of his home town, he had discontinued his education, at the age of eighteen, and joined the Air Force during the middle of World War II-flying as a navigator in every major theater of the military operations of that war. Upon receiving an honorable discharge in 1947, he had come to Chicago and resumed his education, obtaining his undergraduate degree at the University of Chicago and entering immediately into the study of law at the University of Chicago Law School. His record throughout his life, both as a student and as a citizen, was unblemished.
The personal history form thus did not contain so much as one statement of fact about Anastaplo’s past life or conduct that could have, in any way, cast doubt upon his fitness for admission to the Bar. It did, however, contain a statement of opinion which, in the minds of some of the members of the Committee at least, did cast such doubt and in that way served to touch off this controversy. This was a statement made by Anastaplo in response to the command of the personal history form: ‘State what you consider to be the principles underlying the Constitution of the United States.’ Anastaplo’s response to that command was as follows:
‘One principle consists of the doctrine of the separation of powers; thus, among the Executive, Legislative, and Judiciary are distributed various functions and powers in a manner designed to provide for a balance of power, thereby intending to prevent totally unrestrained action by any one branch of government. Another basic principle (and the most important) is that such government is constituted so as to secure certain inalienable rights, those rights to Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness (and elements of these rights are explicitly set forth in such parts of the Constitution as the Bill of Rights.). And, of course, whenever the particular government in power becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it and thereupon to establish a new government. This is how I view the Constitution.’
When Anastaplo appeared before a two-man Subcommittee of the Committee on Character and Fitness, one of its members almost immediately engaged him in a discussion relating to the meaning of these italicized words which were substantially taken from that part of the Declaration of Independence set out below. This discussion soon developed into an argument as Anastaplo stood by his statement and insisted that if a government gets bad enough, the people have a ‘right of revolution.’ It was at this juncture in the proceedings that the other member of the Subcommittee interrupted with the question: ‘Are you a member of any organization that is listed on the Attorney General’s list, to your knowledge?’ And this question was followed up a few moments later with the question: ‘Are you a member of the Communist Party?’ A colloquy then ensued between Anastaplo and the two members of the Subcommittee as to the legitimacy of the questions being asked, Anastaplo insisting that these questions were not reasonably related to the Committee’s functions and that they violated his rights under the Constitution, and the members of the Subcommittee insisting that the questions were entirely legitimate.
The Subcommittee then refused to certify Anastaplo for admission to the Bar but, instead, set a further hearing on the matter before the full Committee. That next hearing, as well as all of the hearings that followed, have been little more than repetitions of the first. The rift between Anastaplo and the Committee has grown ever wider with each successive hearing. Anastaplo has stead-fastly refused to answer any questions put by the Committee which inquired into his political associations or religious beliefs. A majority of the members of the Committee, faced with this refusal, has grown more and more insistent that it has the right to force him to answer any question it sees fit to ask. The result has been a series of hearings in which questions have been put to Anastaplo with regard to his ‘possible’ association with scores of organizations, including the Ku Klux Klan, the Silver Shirts (an allegedly Fascist organization), every organization on the so-called Attorney General’s list, the Democratic Party, the Republican Party, and the Communist Party. At one point in the proceedings, at least two of the members of the Committee insisted that he tell the Committee whether he believes in a Supreme Being and one of these members stated that, as far as his vote was concerned, a man’s ‘belief in the Deity * * * has a substantial bearing upon his fitness to practice law.’
It is true, as the majority points out, that the Committee did not expressly rest its refusal to certify Anastaplo for admission to the Bar either upon his views on the ‘right of revolution,’ as that ‘right’ is defined in the Declaration of Independence, or upon his refusal to disclose his beliefs with regard to the existence of God,  or upon his refusals to disclose any of his political associations other than his ‘possible’ association with the Communist Party. But it certainly cannot be denied that the other questions were asked and, since we should not presume that these members of the Committee did not want answers to their questions, it seems certain that Anastaplo’s refusal to answer them must have had some influence upon the final outcome of the hearings. In any case, when the Committee did vote, 11-6, not to certify Anastaplo for admission, not one member who asked any question Anastaplo had refused to answer voted in his favor.
The reasons for Anastaplo’s position have been stated by him time and again-first, to the Committee and, later, in the briefs and oral arguments he presented in his own behalf, both before this Court and before the Supreme Court of Illinois. From a legal standpoint, his position throughout has been that the First Amendment gave him a right not to disclose his political associations or his religious beliefs to the Committee. But his decision to refuse to disclose these associations and beliefs went much deeper than a bare reliance upon what he considered to be his legal rights. The record shows that his refusal to answer the Committee’s question stemmed primarily from his belief that he had a duty, both to society and to the legal profession, not to submit to the demands of the Committee because he believed that the questions had been asked solely for the purpose of harassing him because he had expressed agreement with the assertion of the right of revolution against an evil government set out in the Declaration of Independence. His position was perhaps best stated before the Committee in his closing remarks at the final session:
‘It is time now to close. Differences between us remain. I leave to others the sometimes necessary but relatively easy task of praising Athens to Athenians. Besides, you should want no higher praise than what I have said about the contribution the bar can make to republican government. The bar deserves no higher praise until it makes that contribution. You should be grateful that I have not made a complete submission to you, even though I have cooperated as fully as good conscience permits. To the extent I have not submitted, to that extent have I contributed to the solution of one of the most pressing problems that you, as men devoted to character and fitness, must face. This is the problem of selecting the standards and methods the bar must employ if it is to help preserve and nourish that idealism, that vital interest in the problem of justice, that so often lies at the heart of the intelligent and sensitive law student’s choice of career. This is an idealism which so many things about the bar, and even about bar admission practices, discourage and make unfashionable to defend or retain. The worthiest men live where the rewards of virtue are greatest.
‘I leave with you men of Illinois the suggestion that you do yourselves and the bar the honor, as well as the service, of anticipating what I trust will be the judgment of our most thoughtful judges. I move therefore that you recommend to the Supreme Court of Illinois that I be admitted to the bar of this State. And I suggest that this recommendation be made retroactive to November 10, 1950 when a young Air Force veteran first was so foolish as to continue to serve his country by daring to defend against a committee on character and fitness the teaching of the Declaration of Independence on the right of revolution.’
The reasons for the Committee’s position are also clear. Its job, throughout these proceedings, has been to determine whether Anastaplo is possessed of the necessary good moral character to justify his admission to the Bar of Illinois. In that regard, the Committee has been given the benefit of voluminous affidavits from men of standing in their professions and in the community that Anastaplo is possessed of an unusually fine character. Dr. Alexander Meiklejohn, Professor of Philosophy, Emeritus, at the University of Wisconsin, for example, described Anastaplo as ‘intellectually able, a hard, thorough student and moved by high devotion to the principles of freedom and justice.’ Professor Malcolm P. Sharp of the University of Chicago Law School stated: ‘No question has ever been raised about his honesty or his integrity, and his general conduct, characterized by friendliness, quiet independence, industry and courage, is reflected in his reputation.’ Professor Roscoe T. Steffen of the University of Chicago Law School said: ‘I know of no one who doubts his honesty and integrity.’ Yves R. Simon, Professor of Philosophy at the University of Chicago, said: ‘I consider Anastaplo as a young man of the most distinguished and lofty moral character. Everybody respects him and likes him.’ Angelo G. Geocaris, a practicing attorney in the City of Chicago, said of Anastaplo: ‘His personal code of ethics is unexcelled by any practicing attorney I have met in the state of Illinois.’ Robert J. Coughlan, Division Director of a research project at the University of Chicago, said: ‘His honesty and integrity are, in my opinion, beyond question. I would highly recommend him without the slightest reservation for any position involving the highest or most sacred trust. The applicant is a rare man among us today: he has an inviolable sense of Honor in the great traditions of Greek culture and thought. If admitted to the American Bar, he could do nothing that would not reflect glory on that institution.’
These affidavits and many more like them were presented to the Committee. Most of the statements came from men who knew Anastaplo intimately on the University of Chicago campus where Anastaplo has remained throughout the proceedings here involved, working as a research assistant and as a lecturer in Liberal Arts and studying for an advanced degree in History and Social Sciences. Even at the present time, he is still there preparing his doctoral dissertation which, understandably enough, is tentatively entitled ‘The Historical and Philosophical Background of the First Amendment of the Constitution of the United States.’
The record also shows that the Committee supplemented the information it had obtained about Anastaplo from these affidavits by conducting informal independent investigations into his character and reputation. It sent agents to Anastaplo’s home town in southern Illinois and they questioned the people who knew him there. Similar inquiries were made among those who knew him in Chicago. But these intensive investigations apparently failed to produce so much as one man in Chicago or in the whole State of Illinois who could say or would say, directly, indirectly or even by hearsay, one thing derogatory to the character, loyalty or reputation of George Anastaplo, and not one man could be found who would in any way link him with the Communist Party. This fact is particularly significant in view of the evidence in the record that the Committee had become acquainted with a person who apparently had been a member of a Communist Party cell on the University of Chicago campus and that this person was asked to and did identify for the Committee every member of the Party whom he knew.
In addition to the information it had obtained from the affidavits and from its independent investigations, the Committee had one more important source of information about Anastaplo’s character. It had the opportunity to observe the manner in which he conducted himself during the many hours of hearings before it. That manner, as revealed by the record before us and undenied by any findings of the Committee to the contrary, left absolutely nothing to be desired. Faced with a barrage of sometimes highly provocative and totally irrelevant questions from men openly hostile to his position, Anastaplo invariably responded with all the dignity and restraint attributed to him in the affidavits of his friends. Moreover, it is not amiss to say that he conducted himself in precisely the same manner during the oral argument he presented before this Court.
Thus, it is against the background of a mountain of evidence so favorable to Anastaplo that the word ‘overwhelming’ seems inadequate to describe it that the action of the Committee in refusing to certify Anastaplo as fit for admission to the Bar must be considered. The majority of the Committee rationalized its position on the ground that without answers to some of the questions it had asked, it could not conscientiously perform its duty of determining Anastaplo’s character and fitness to be a lawyer. A minority of the Committee described this explanation as ‘pure sophistry.’ And it is simply impossible to read this record without agreeing with the minority. For, it is difficult to see what possible relevancy answers to the questions could have had in the minds of these members of the Committee after they had received such completely overwhelming proof beyond a reasonable doubt of Anastaplo’s good character and staunch patriotism. I can think of no sound reason for further insistence upon these answers other than the very questionable, but very human, feeling that this young man should not be permitted to resist the Committee’s demands without being compelled to suffer for it in some way.
It is intimated that the Committee’s feeling of resentment might be assuaged and that Anastaplo might even be admitted to the Bar if he would only give in to the demands of the Committee and add the requested test oath to the already overwhelming proof he has submitted to establish his good character and patriotism. In this connection, the Court says: ‘We find nothing to suggest that he would not be admitted now if he decides to answer, assuming of course that no grounds justifying his exclusion from practice resulted. In short, petitioner holds the key to admission in his own hands.’ However well this familiar phrase may fit other cases, it does not fit this one. For the attitude of the Committee, as revealed by the transcript of its hearings, does not support a belief that Anastaplo can gain admission to the Illinois Bar merely by answering the Committee’s questions, whatever answers he should give. Indeed, the Committee’s own majority report discloses that Anastaplo’s belief in the ‘right of revolution’ was regarded as raising ‘a serious question’ in the minds of a majority of the Committee with regard to his fitness to practice law and that ‘certain’ members of that majority (how many, we cannot know) have already stated categorically that they will not vote to admit an applicant who expresses such views. Nor does the opinion of the Illinois Supreme Court indicate that Anastaplo ‘holds the key to admission in his own hands.’ Quite the contrary, that court’s opinion evidences an almost insuperable reluctance to upset the findings of the Committee. Certainly, that opinion contains nothing that even vaguely resembles the sort of implicit promise that would justify the belief asserted by the majority here. And, finally, I see nothing in the majority opinion of this Court, nor in the majority opinions in the companion cases decided today, that would justify a belief that this Court would unlock the door that blocks his admission to the Illinois Bar if Anastaplo produced the ‘key’ and the state authorities refused to use it.
The opinion of the majority already recognizes that there is not one scrap of evidence in the record before us ‘which could properly be considered as reflecting adversely upon his (Anastaplo’s) character or reputation or on the sincerity of the beliefs he espoused before the Committee,’ and that the Committee had not received any "information from any outside source which would cast any doubt on applicant’s loyalty or which would tend to connect him in any manner with any subversive group." The majority opinion even concedes that Anastaplo was correct in urging that the questions asked by the Committee impinged upon the freedoms of speech and association guaranteed by the First and Fourteenth Amendments. But, the opinion then goes on to hold that Anastaplo can nonetheless be excluded from the Bar pursuant to ‘the State’s interest in having lawyers who are devoted to the law in its broadest sense .’ I cannot regard that holding, as applied to a man like Anastaplo, as in any way justified. Consider it, for example, in the context of the following remarks of Anastaplo to the Committee-remarks the sincerity of which the majority does not deny:
‘I speak of a need to remind the bar of its traditions and to keep alive the spirit of dignified but determined advocacy and opposition. This is not only for the good of the bar, of course, but also because of what the bar means to American republican government. The bar when it exercises self-control is in a peculiar position to mediate between popular passions and informed and principled men, thereby upholding republican government. Unless there is this mediation, intelligent and responsible government is unlikely. The bar, furthermore, is in a peculiar position to apply to our daily lives the constitutional principles which nourish for this country its inner life. Unless there is this nourishment, a just and humane people is impossible. The bar is, in short, in a position to train and lead by precept and example the American people.’
These are not the words of a man who lacks devotion to ‘the law in its broadest sense.’
The majority, apparently considering this fact irrelevant because the State might possibly have an interest in learning more about its Bar applicants, decides that Anastaplo can properly be denied admission to the Bar by purporting to ‘balance’ the interest of the State of Illinois in ‘having lawyers who are devoted to the law in its broadest sense’ against the interest of Anastaplo and the public in protecting the freedoms of the First Amendment, concluding, as it usually does when it engages in this process, that ‘on balance’ the interest of Illinois must prevail. If I had ever doubted that the ‘balancing test’ comes close to being a doctrine of governmental absolutism-that to ‘balance’ an interest in individual liberty means almost inevitably to destroy that liberty-those doubts would have been dissipated by this case. For this so-called ‘balancing test’-which, as applied to the First Amendment, means that the freedoms of speech, press, assembly, religion and petition can be repressed whenever there is a sufficient governmental interest in doing so-here proves pitifully and pathetically inadequate to cope with an invasion of individual liberty so plainly unjustified that even the majority apparently feels compelled expressly to disclaim ‘any view upon the wisdom of the State’s action.’
I, of course, wholeheartedly agree with the statement of the majority that this Court should not, merely on the ground that such action is unwise, interfere with governmental action that is within the constitutional powers of that government. But I am no less certain that this Court should not permit governmental action that plainly abridges constitutionally protected rights of the People merely because a majority believes that on ‘balance’ it is better, or ‘wiser,’ to abridge those rights than to leave them free. The inherent vice of the ‘balancing test’ is that it purports to do just that. In the context of its reliance upon the ‘balancing test,’ the Court’s disclaimer of ‘any view upon the wisdom of the State’s action’ here thus seems to me to be wholly inconsistent with the only ground upon which it has decided this case.
Nor can the majority escape from this inconsistency on the ground that the ‘balancing test’ deals only with the question of the importance of the existence of governmental power as a general matter without regard to the importance of its exercise in a particular case. For in Barenblatt v. United States the same majority made it clear that the ‘balancing test’ is to be applied to the facts of each particular case (360 U.S. 109, 79 S.Ct. 1093): ‘Where First Amendment rights are asserted to bar governmental interrogation resolution of the issue always involves a balancing by the courts of the competing private and public interests at stake in the particular circumstances shown.’ Thus the Court not only ‘balances’ the respective values of two competing policies as a general matter, but also ‘balances’ the wisdom of those policies in ‘the particular circumstances shown.’ Thus, the Court has reserved to itself the power to permit or deny abridgement of First Amendment freedoms according to its own view of whether repression or freedom is the wiser governmental policy under the circumstances of each case.
The effect of the Court’s ‘balancing’ here is that any State may now reject an applicant for admission to the Bar if he believes in the Declaration of Independence as strongly as Anastaplo and if he is willing to sacrifice his career and his means of livelihood in defense of the freedoms of the First Amendment. But the men who founded this country and wrote our Bill of Rights were strangers neither to a belief in the ‘right of revolution’ nor to the urgency of the need to be free from the control of government with regard to political beliefs and associations. Thomas Jefferson was not disclaiming a belief in the ‘right of revolution’ when he wrote the Declaration of Independence. And Patrick Henry was certainly not disclaiming such a belief when he declared in impassioned words that have come on down through the years: ‘Give me liberty or give me death.’ This country’s freedom was won by men who, whether they believed in it or not, certainly practiced revolution in the Revolutionary War.
Since the beginning of history there have been governments that have engaged in practices against the people so bad, so cruel, so unjust and so destructive of the individual dignity of men and women that the ‘right of revolution’ was all the people had left to free themselves. As simple illustrations, one government almost 2,000 years ago burned Christians upon fiery crosses and another government, during this very century, burned Jews in crematories. I venture the suggestion that there are countless multitudes in this country, and all over the world, who would join Anastaplo’s belief in the right of the people to resist by force tyrranical governments like those.
In saying what I have, it is to be borne in mind that Anastaplo has not indicated, even remotely, a belief that this country is an oppressive one in which the ‘right of revolution’ should be exercised. Quite the contrary, the entire course of his life, as disclosed by the record, has been one of devotion and service to his country-first, in his willingness to defend its security at the risk of his own life in time of war and, later, in his willingness to defend its freedoms at the risk of his professional career in time of peace. The one and only time in which he has come into conflict with the Government is when he refused to answer the questions put to him by the Committee about his beliefs and associations. And I think the record clearly shows that conflict resulted, not from any fear on Anastaplo’s part to divulge his own political activities, but from a sincere, and in my judgment correct, conviction that the preservation of this country’s freedom depends upon adherence to our Bill of Rights. The very most that can fairly be said against Anastaplo’s position in this entire matter is that he took too much of the responsibility of preserving that freedom upon himself.
This case illustrates to me the serious consequences to the Bar itself of not affording the full protections of the First Amendment to its applicants for admission. For this record shows that Anastaplo has many of the qualities that are needed in the American Bar. It shows, not only that Anastaplo has followed a high moral, ethical and patriotic course in all of the activities of his life, but also that he combines these more common virtues with the uncommon virtue of courage to stand by his principles at any cost. It is such men as these who have most greatly honored the profession of the law-men like Malsherbes, who, at the cost of his own life and the lives of his family, sprang unafraid to the defense of Louis XVI against the fanatical leaders of the Revolutionary government of France -men like Charles Evans Hughes, Sr., later Mr. Chief Justice Hughes, who stood up for the constitutional rights of socialists to be socialists and public officials despite the threats and clamorous protests of self-proclaimed superpatriots -men like Charles Evans Hughes, Jr., and John W. Davis, who, while against everything for which the Communists stood, strongly advised the Congress in 1948 that it would be unconstitutional to pass the law then proposed to outlaw the Communist Party -men like Lord Erskine, James Otis, Clarence Darrow, and the multitude of others who have dared to speak in defense of causes and clients without regard to personal danger to themselves. The legal profession will lose much of its nobility and its glory if it is not constantly replenished with lawyers like these. To force the Bar to become a group of thoroughly orthodox, time-serving, government-fearing individuals is to humiliate and degrade it.
But that is the present trend, not only in the legal profession but in almost every walk of life. Too many men are being driven to become government-fearing and time-serving because the Government is being permitted to strike out at those who are fearless enough to think as they please and say what they think. This trend must be halted if we are to keep faith with the Founders of our Nation and pass on to future generations of Americans the great heritage of freedom which they sacrificed so much to leave to us. The choice is clear to me. If we are to pass on that great heritage of freedom, we must return to the original language of the Bill of Rights. We must not be afraid to be free’
‘ if a government gets bad enough, the people have a ‘right of revolution.’ ~ George Anastaplo
That’s why I like you George… what you just said right up there… you’re a principled man and a patriot… you’re a fiesty guy indeed as the following exchange points out…
This is from the transcript of the committee questioning George…
‘Commissioner Mitchell: When you say ‘believe in revolution,’ you don’t limit that revolution to an overthrow of a particular political party or a political government by means of an election process or other political means?
‘Mr. Anastaplo: I mean actual use of force.
‘Commissioner Mitchell: You mean to go as far as necessary?
‘Mr. Anastaplo: As far as Washington did, for instance.
‘Commissioner Mitchell: So that would it be fair to say that you believe the end result would justify any means that were used?
‘Mr. Anastaplo: No, the means proportionate to the particular end in sight.
‘Commissioner Mitchell: Well, is there any difference from your answer and my question?
‘Mr. Anastaplo: Did you ask-
‘Commissioner Mitchell: I asked you whether you thought that you believe that if a change, or overthrow of the government were justified, that any means could be used to accomplish that end.
‘Mr. Anastaplo: Now, let’s say in this positive concrete situation-I am not quite sure what it means in abstract.
‘Commissioner Mitchell: I will ask you in detail. You believe that assuming the government should be overthrown, in your opinion, that you and others of like mind would be justified in raising a company of men with military equipment and proceed to take over the government of the United States, of the State of Illinois?
‘By shaking your head do you mean yes?
‘Mr. Anastaplo: If you get to the point where overthrow is necessary, then overthrow is justified. It just means that you overthrow the government by force.
‘Commissioner Mitchell: And would that also include in your mind justification for putting a spy into the administrative department, one or another of the administrative departments of the United States or the government of the State of Illinois?
‘Mr. Anastaplo: If you got to the point you think the government should be overthrown, I think that would be a legitimate means.
‘Commissioner Mitchell: There isn’t any difference in your mind in the propriety of using a gun or using a spy?
‘Mr. Anastaplo: I think spies have been used in quite honorable causes.
‘Commissioner Mitchell: Your answer is, you do think so?
‘Mr. Anastaplo: Yes.
‘Commissioner Baker: Let me ask you a question. Are you aware of the fact that the Department of Justice has a list of what are described as subversive organizations?
‘Mr. Anastaplo: Yes.
‘Commissioner Baker: Have you ever seen that list?
‘Mr. Anastaplo: Yes.
‘Commissioner Baker: Are you a member of any organization that is listed on the Attorney General’s list, to your knowledge? (No answer.) Just to keep you from having to work so hard mentally on it, what organizations-give me all the organizations you are affiliated with or are a member of. (No answer.) That oughtn’t to be too hard.
‘Mr. Anastaplo: Do you believe that is a legitimate question?
‘Commissioner Baker: Yes, I do. We are inquiring into not only your character, but your fitness, under Rule 58. We don’t compel you to answer it. Are you a member of the Communist Party?’
George lost the case at the US Supreme Court but it was his principled approach to not answering the question in the first place and his ten year battle to overcome the ramifications of that refusal that earned him the respect of many who respect a person who lives a principle centered life.
He never would practice law, but he would become a passionate and inspiring teacher according to many.
He’s been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize twelve times.
And they sat him down for dinner next to ‘Viewminder’ a street photographer… who was only nominated for the Peace Prize once… by himself.
Crowned ‘The Socrates of Chicago’ George has written more books than some of the people I know have read…
"He has written books and articles analyzing the influence of Greek literature on American politics, on the Thinker as Artist, and the Artist as Thinker, on the O. J. Simpson trial, on lights at Wrigley Field, on McCarthyism, on hate speech, on lawyers, on judges, on the Bible, on ethics, on Abraham Lincoln, on the remodeling of Soldier field, and I have only touched the surface of his eclecticism. ~ ‘George Anastaplo’ by Abner Mikva
George Anastaplo I admire you.
You saw something that was wrong and you refused to be a part of it…
Even if that meant it would create difficulty in your life and in your pursuit of the career that you studied so long and hard for.
You stood true to your convictions.
You stood up for what you believe in.
You never backed down.
You’re an inspiring man and a patriot George Anastaplo.
They outta give out a prize for that.
Faces on the street
35mm 1.8 SOOC with a ping of contrast
By Viewminder on 2011-07-09 09:36:49
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5 Books You Must Read For Success,Happiness and Peace BEFORE You DIE |Books That'll Change Your Life
In this video, our team has present top 5 books you must read for SUCCESS, HAPPINESS and PEACE before you die. This video and books are for Everyone no matter whether you’re a booksworm (Books lovers) , a student, a housewife, a working professional, an entrepreneur, or anyone who wants some Motivation, Energy, Positivity, Inspiration in their life.
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Nitish Arora is one of the millions who have struggled, failed and progressed in search of success, happiness and satisfaction. Like any middle class person, he too was a group of vague dreams and a blurred vision of his goals in life. All had a hopeless learning attitude to hold him.
Going through the ups and downs, it was a time that taught him the true meaning of his life and he is now an airline PILOT and serves his nation. Captain Nitish Arora has decided to TEACH and INSPIRE everyone to succeed in their life so that they can fulfill their dreams.
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