A philosopher in Paris, life lessons from Ruth Bader Ginsburg, and more. Check out five opinions trending online.
Liberal democracy and terror: A philosopher at Yale University muses about the meaning of liberal democracy as he lands in Paris to give a lecture but finds himself consumed by events surrounding the murders at Charlie Hebdo, including today’s development with authorities cornering the suspects inside a printing house northeast of the city. He writes in the New York Times:
“Liberalism is a political philosophy that has as its two chief ideals liberty and equality. In a liberal democracy, all citizens have equal power, because all are possessed of reason, and have the liberty to employ it in expression. In France, which has a right to be considered one of the modern birthplaces of the liberal democratic revolution, satire has long had a special role. Satire is the ultimate method by which reason can address power. With the use of satire, even those without control of resources can, with merely the use of a pen, bring figures of authority down to earth.” Read more.
The Olympics and the Constitution: The ACLU of Massachusetts tackles the subject of security if the Olympics come to Boston. Writing in the UK Guardian, Carol Rose and Kade Crockford offer their views on the potential clash between security and constitutional rights.
“If the Olympics come to Boston – and the US Olympic Committee, having chosen it as their contender to host the 2024 Summer Olympics, hopes they will – the government will likely treat it as a National Security Special Event. That means the Boston Police Department and the Massachusetts State Police would fall under the authority of the US Secret Service, Department of Homeland Security, and Federal Bureau of Investigation, which would be in charge of security operations. All people within the NSSE ‘security’ zone – possibly the entire Boston metro area and beyond – could lose a host of constitutional rights, including the right to protest on public land, and the right to not be searched or questioned absent any reasonable suspicion of wrongdoing.” Read more.
Solidarité forever: The cover of New Yorker magazine (upcoming for Jan. 19) is already online, and captures the momentous reaction to Charlie Hebdo – and the world’s solidarity – without words. No spoilers here: Check it out.
Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s lessons for a stay-at-home dad: Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg imparted some unexpected lessons to one of her law clerks, who was balancing the demands of a toddler and work and making a decision to become a stay-at-home dad. Writing for Atlantic.com, Ryan Park explains how he put his boss’s ideals into practice, and reflects on Ginsburg’s experiences as a young Harvard Law School student.
“Along with the Boss’s demographic isolation, she faced challenges at home that would have made most law students crumble,” Park writes. “Her daughter, barely a year old when law school began, occupied much of her free time. That free time became even scarcer after her husband Marty, also a Harvard Law student at the time, was diagnosed with cancer. Not only did the Boss care for and support Marty, she helped keep him up to speed in his coursework, taking his class notes and typing his papers — all the while rising to the very top of her class.” Read more.
Life-saving intervention for teen? The Connecticut Supreme Court ruled that a Connecticut teen can be forced to undergo chemo for her advanced Hodgkin’s lymphoma – thus potentially saving her life, writes Gregg Jarrett on FoxNews.com.
“To deny a child a beneficial, life-sustaining treatment constitutes child neglect,” Jarrett writes. “States have a duty to protect children from abuse and neglect. Courts rarely hesitate to step in where a child’s life is in danger.” Read more.Ellen Clegg is a member of the Globe staff. She tweets @ellenclegg.