In 1958, when President Dwight D. Eisenhower proclaimed May 1 to be Law Day USA, he stated, “In a very real sense, the world no longer has a choice between force and law. If civilization is to survive, it must choose the rule of law.”
Each year the American Bar Association designates a Law Day theme to highlight an issue that is important. Although we have different roles, each of us who work in the courts contributes to insuring our community has a fair and effective system of justice. Sometimes we deal with difficult people, those who are under stress or with seemingly intractable problems. We might not get it right every time – after all, we are human.
The theme for Law Day 2017 is the 14th Amendment. Since its adoption, the 14th Amendment has been a key to liberty and freedom for a lot of people, but in the end, it is a document used by people like us to make our nation a better place. What we do is important, so in a sense Law Day is a celebration of our contributions to democracy.
About the 2017 Law Day Theme
The 14th Amendment: Transforming American Democracy
The 2017 theme provides the opportunity to explore the many ways that the Fourteenth Amendment has reshaped American law and society. Through its Citizenship, Due Process and Equal Protection clauses, this transformative amendment advanced the rights of all Americans. It also played a pivotal role in extending the reach of the Bill of Rights to the states. Ratified during Reconstruction a century and a half ago, the Fourteenth Amendment serves as the cornerstone of landmark civil rights legislation, the foundation for numerous federal court decisions protecting fundamental rights, and a source of inspiration for all those who advocate for equal justice under law.
Click here to learn more about the 14th Amendment through the Library of Congress.
Click here to listen to the audio news release.