What Do Gay Marriage and Obamacare Have in Common?

Two Cases Before the Supreme Court Point to the Long-Running Battle Between States Rights and Federal Authority

I don’t drink champagne, but if the Supreme Court strikes down state bans on gay marriages this month, I might pop open a bottle in celebration. As a newspaper editorial writer and editor, I’ve been waiting a long time for this one, having fought two publisher bosses in two different cities, going back to the mid-1990s, to editorialize in favor of gay marriage. I won the second fight, but barely, at The Los Angeles Times, some nine years ago.

A Court decision that relies on our federal constitution to legalize …

Was Fred Phelps Democracy’s Necessary Evil?

You Don’t Have to Like the Man or the Westboro Baptist Church, But Their Antics Strengthened the First Amendment for All of Us

It has been written that the safeguards of liberty have often been forged in controversies involving not very nice people. If that is true—and the facts support the premise—then the …

What the Devil Is Up With People Who Believe in Satan?

When Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia Professed a Belief In Lucifer, It Caused Gasps and Titters Among the Elite. But His Point Should Be Taken Seriously.

When U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia recently told New York magazine that he believed in the devil, some readers seemed to view this statement as further proof that Scalia …

Go Ahead: Keep Your Marriage Secret

In California, Confidential Marriage Is a Proud 135-Year-Old Tradition, and the Supreme Court’s Prop 8 Ruling Might Give It New Relevance

Pssst. Wanna know a secret?

I’m going to let you in on confidential marriage, an only-in-California concoction that is little known but deeply relevant to today’s debates about marriage.

Confidential marriage is …

Legal Journalist-Turned-Scholar Henry Weinstein

A Mustard Maven With a Conscience

Henry Weinstein is a professor of law and literary journalism at UC Irvine; previously, he spent 30 years as a Los Angeles Times reporter, much of it covering legal affairs …

Supreme Court Journalist Linda Greenhouse

What I Don’t Miss About The New York Times

Linda Greenhouse covered the U.S. Supreme Court for The New York Times between 1978 and 2007. Currently, she is the Knight Distinguished Journalist in Residence and Joseph Goldstein Lecturer in …