Can the federal government make you eat your fruits and vegetables? Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan seemed to think so, saying that while it sounded like “a dumb law” such a diktat could be constitutional. In other words, Kagan believes in judicial restraint, or the idea that dumb laws should be dealt with at the ballot box and not via the courts. But does the Constitution empower the Supreme Court to actively protect individual rights from the whimsy and overreach of lawmakers?
The debate over judicial restraint vs. judicial activism is at the heart of Reason Senior Editor Damon Root’s Overruled: The Long War for Control of the U.S. Supreme Court.