Call for a Liberal Bar

The history of progress in society is a story of struggle for better law. We do not achieve improvement merely by recording a vote of the people. Their action must be reduced from political principle to a legal rule or an institution. It has been one of the tasks of lawyers to translate the aspirations of our people into law, and into living institutions. In this their function has been vital to progress, and the call for their service is a continuing one.

Financial Monopoly: The Road to Socialism

President Roosevelt, in his message of April 29, 1938, called the attention of the Congress to a growing concentration in this country of private economic power, without equal in history. He said that this concentration is seriously impairing the economic effectiveness of private enterprise as a way of providing employment for labor and capital and as a way of assuring a more equitable distribution of income and earnings among the people of the nation as a whole.

Monopolies and the Courts

There is general agreement on the part of business men and their lawyers, as well as in government circles and among the consuming public, that the Antitrust Laws should be revised. But the group which speaks for the business interests is not motivated, in its desire for revision, by the same considerations as the others, nor does it have in view the same objective or seek to reach the same result in modifying the present enactments.

General Welfare and Industrial Prosperity

The most progressive communities of the United States are the ones that have the most delicate tasks of adjustment between old forms of government and new problems of social security and economic justice. Because the Illinois Municipal League is made up of representatives of the cities of one of the most progressive states of our Union, I have welcomed this opportunity to discuss with you some of the problems that vex all progressing administrations, whether federal, state, or city.

Striking at the Roots of Crime

This evening's meeting is called under most appropriate leadership. Your Presiding Officer (Mrs. Roosevelt) has not only evidenced a desire to improve the lot of her fellow citizens but also a long established interest in improving the methods of correcting their delinquencies. Few of you realize, I suspect, that Mrs. Roosevelt has probably visited personally as many prisons as any woman in America.

Progress in Federal Judicial Administration

We have heard much discussion about the declining of prestige of the bar, and about the proper place of the lawyer in the leadership of his community, state, and nation. But there can be no denial that it is the duty of the lawyers to lead in affairs affecting the courts of the land. The lawyer is peculiarly qualified to judge their work and to deal out criticism where it is due- and to do it with fairness.

Maryland at the Supreme Court Bar

So I shall ask you to bear with us while we indulge our lawyerly trait of discussing law suits. We shall prefer to discuss our own rather than to discuss those which some other men may have tried. In studying constitutional issues in the Supreme Court I became vaguely aware that Maryland has been one of the most frequent of its litigants and had participated in some of the most significant cases which have shaped our constitutional doctrine. I have taken this occasion to review the Supreme Court annals to see how well, by its record in litigation, Maryland has vindicated its designation as "The Free State".

Problem of the Administrative Process

There has been one disappointment in connection with my coming here. I had hoped that I would be able to bring with me and deliver the commission to Ryan Duffy as judge of the district court of the United States. (Applause) It would have been a great pleasure had the senate moved fast enough so that that could have been done. Those are minor disappointments, for I know the commission will arrive by mail in due time, and that while I will be denied the satisfaction of being present when he takes the oath, many of the rest of you will have that pleasure.

Product of the Present Day Law School

A canny old lawyer friend of mine made a practice of trying to explain his most complex legal problems to some intelligent- and, of course, patient- layman. He said he wanted to test his expert judgments by getting the reactions of an untrained mind.

Is Our Constitutional Government in Danger?

The Constitution of the United States, as written by our forefathers and ratified by the people themselves, is not beyond the understanding of the average citizen. In simple language it sets up a skeleton government, sketches its powers and limitations in a few great clauses, and in ten short amendments declares those fundamental rights which make up our freedom. It does not use technical terms, and it is all contained in about 4.500 words. Such brevity proves that it is not a mere lawyer's document. I urge you to study it.