The Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment provides: “No State shall … deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” And now, the Supreme Court is poised to answer the question of whether this Clause requires States to license marriages between two people of the same sex. The best guess is that the Court will decide the question in late June. Does the Equal Protection Clause require States to license same-sex marriages, or will they decide that marriage should be between a man and a woman?
Chairman, National Organization for Marriage & Professor, Chapman Law
Founder & President, Freedom to Marry & Author, Why Marriage Matters
Professor, NYU Law & Author, Speak Now: Marriage Equality on Trial
Co-Author, What Is Marriage?
In April 2015, the P5+1, the 5 permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany, negotiated an interim nuclear accord with Iran. Among the key parameters: Iran’s enrichment capacity, enrichment levels, and stockpile would be limited; its Fordow site converted into a research center; and the Arak heavy water reactor redesigned. In return, the IAEA would gain greater access for inspections, and U.S. and EU sanctions would be lifted. Many in the U.S. fear that a deal as outlined would not go far enough and, instead of being a benefit, would strengthen Iran’s hand in the Middle East. Not to mention the important question of trust. Is this agreement a “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity” to halt nuclear proliferation, or does President Obama have this wrong?
Sr. Fellow, CFR & Fmr. White House Coordinator, Middle East, N. Africa, Gulf Region
Sr. Fellow, Hudson Institute & Fmr. Sr. Director, National Security Council
Exec. Dir., FDD & Dir., Center on Sanctions & Illicit Finance
Vice Chairman, Hills & Company & Fmr. Under Secretary of State
Smart technology grants us unprecedented, immediate access to knowledge and to each other-a ubiquitous and seamless presence in everyday life. But is there a downside to all of this connectivity? It's been said that smart technology creates dependency on devices, narrows our world to echo chambers, and impairs cognitive skills through shortcuts and distraction. Are smart tech devices guiding so much of our decision making that we are losing autonomy without even realizing it? Or are these concerns an overstatement of the negative effects of high-tech consumption?
Author, The Glass Cage: Automation and Us & The Shallows
Anthropologist & VP, Intel Corporation
Senior Researcher, Berkman Center & Author, Too Big to Know
Internet Entrepreneur & Author, The Internet Is Not the Answer
A recent Gallup poll found that Americans are still largely supportive of the death penalty, with 6 in 10 in favor as punishment for murder. Legal in 32 states, it has come under renewed scrutiny in light of several botched executions in 2014. At the heart of the debate are many complicated questions. Within a flawed criminal justice system, is it possible to know every person’s guilt with a sufficient degree of certainty? Does the fear of death reduce crime? Are there race and class biases in sentencing? Are some crimes so heinous in nature that punishment by death is the only appropriate measure, or is capital punishment always immoral? Should we abolish the death penalty?
Executive Director, National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty
Professor, New York Law School
Legal Director, Criminal Justice Legal Foundation
Co-Director, Innocence Project & Prof., Cardozo Law
The President has launched a sustained, long-term military campaign against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. But did he have constitutional power to do so? The Constitution carefully divides the war powers of the United States between Congress and the President. Article II provides that “The President shall be Commander in Chief.” But Article I provides that “The Congress shall have Power … To Declare War.” In this case, Congress has not declared war; the President ordered the attacks unilaterally. Did he exceed his authority and violate the Constitution?
VP, Cato Institute & Author, The Cult of the Presidency
Professor of Law, Yale University
Professor, Columbia Law School & Lecturer, Univ. of Texas at Austin
Asst. Prof., Cardozo Law & Fmr. Dir., Law & Security Program, Human Rights First