Should The New Deal Policies Be Continued?

In establishing the Town Hall of Buffalo you are founding one of the basic institutions of democratic government, and I count it a privilege to help. The price of free government is that citizens must keep themselves informed and alert and critical of those in office. Our people need uncensored facts and undistorted information. But also they need the diversity of interpretation of events and the clash of opinion which helps to form individual judgments, the sum of which constitutes public opinion.

Address on Accepting Cardozo Award

I salute the courage of any group which dares award an honor to a living man- particularly one still in office- and in such times as these. When events so defy the guidance of established principles, who knows what caprice of individual conduct, what errors of judgment, what straying from principle may lie ahead to make you regret your choice? If I were on a board of award I should choose a living officeholder for honors only if he gave bond at once to retire and to keep silence while life should last.

Francis Biddle Honorary Address

I think it is some indication of the really revolutionary character of the New Deal that the Jacksons welcome the Biddles to Washington and the Biddles welcome the Jacksons to Philadelphia. I was willing to go a long way toward effecting this reconciliation and came here asking only a fair and open field, and supposing that Francis would not take advantage of my small-town background and imagination.

International Order

We are debtors to this captivating country and city, not only for a generous hospitality, but more importantly for an inspiring leadership. We lawyers from the United States value this opportunity to compare our own legal philosophy and institutions with those of other American commonwealths. You have no doubt been impressed with our modest habit of expounding our own law by a recital of some case we won.

FBI Police Academy Address

In extending congratulations to the graduates of the National Police Academy I will ask you to note and to take back to your respective communities three sets of facts which are very significant in view of the current generalities of praise and blame of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Mobilizing the Profession for Defense

Europe has resumed its ancient strife, and other peoples of the world are obliged to give considerations of defense and security first place in their thoughts. Our philosophy of government makes the law by which the physical forces of the nation are controlled quite as definitely a part of our defense program as the mobilization of the force itself. lawyers are again holding spring meetings under the auspices of our several legal societies to consider the state of our law.

The Federal Prosecutor

It would probably be within the range of that exaggeration permitted in Washington to saw that assembled in this room is one of the most powerful peace-time forces known to our country. The prosecutor has more control over life, liberty, and reputation than any other person in America. His discretion is tremendous. He can have citizens investigated and, if he is that kind of person, he can have this done to the tune of public statements and veiled or unveiled intimations.

Commencement Address at Albany Law School

It was a generation ago when the Albany Law School charitably honored me with a diploma of graduation. The school was then housed in an ancient State Street building, reputed once to have been consecrated as a church. Its façade suggested a piety that was not fully sustained by the student body. It is a matter of pride to us, who will always remain in debt to the Albany Law School, that its intervening years have been marked by steadily improving facilities and advancing standards.

A Square Deal for the Court

The Constitution is a short document; together with its amendments it is only about 10 pages long. This is much shorter than most of the important statues. It is also, I fear, shorter than is my written address tonight. Since the Constitution is so short, and since the founders of our nation realized they should not attempt to deal too specifically with the problems of the distant future, its commands are cast in very general language.

Statecraft Under a Written Constitution

On Tuesday evening, November 11, 1941 (Armistice Day), Justice Jackson delivered a lecture to assembled schoolboys in the Edith Memorial Chapel at The Lawrenceville School, a boarding school in central New Jersey. Jackson’s topics included the constitutional system in the United States of state and national governments, the importance of citizens understanding that complex federal system, and the role of public opinion in determining how government will function. Jackson’s speech demonstrates that he was still optimistic at this time, which turned out to be only one month before Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor and Germany’s declaration of war on the United States, that public opinion could exert control over any government (even Hitler’s) and prevent further war-making. Jackson’s speech, which “was generally acclaimed as the best heard here in a long time” according to the Lawrenceville School newspaper, subsequently was published in Men of Tomorrow: Nine Leaders Discuss the Problems of American Youth 51-67 (New York: G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1942) (Thomas H. Johnson, ed.). This collection contains, in addition to Jackson’s, Lawrenceville Forum lectures by Samuel Eliot Morison, Herbert Agar, Reinhold Niebuhr, James Phinney Baxter, John Erskine, Earnest A. Hooton, Arthur Krock and Pearl S. Buck.