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Your Weekly Constitutional
You are a part of the American Experiment.
Category: News & Politics
Location: Virginia, USA
Produced in partnership with James Madison's Montpelier, Your Weekly Constitutional is a public radio show featuring lively discussion of controversial constitutional topics, from Gay Rights to Gun Rights. Find us on Facebook and iTunes!
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We are a radio show about interesting and controversial issues involving the United States Constitution, issues like Gay Rights...


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August 28, 2015 07:33 AM PDT

We just can't seem to get away from the Religious Freedom Restoration Acts that various governments have enacted. What happens when one of those acts clashes with an antidiscrimination statute?

Strangely, the flashpoint issue seems to involve cake. Some conservative Christian bakers object to making wedding cakes for gay couples. Does religious freedom trump equality, or the other way around? Two constitutional values are at odds, although the legal issues, for now, are mostly statutory.

Join us for a lively discussion with David Wolitz of the University of Tennessee's College of Law, and Doug McKechnie, our First Amendment Guy.

August 21, 2015 04:39 AM PDT

Barbara Kingsolver, the best-selling, award-winning author, was recently asked to write an op-ed piece for the Manchester Guardian on the continuing controversy over the display of the Confederate Battle Flag. It took her only a day to compose her brief essay, and only a few hours for the responses to start pouring in from around the world.

Join us for a thoughtful discussion with one of the world's great writers.

August 14, 2015 06:38 AM PDT

No matter what you may have heard from your friendly neighborhood neo-Confederate, slaves did not like being enslaved, not even those with "good masters." One man born into the "peculiar institution" decided to do something about it, with tragic consequences. His name was Nat Turner.

Join us for a fascinating discussion of the most significant slave rebellion in American constitutional history with UNC law professor Al Brophy.

August 07, 2015 06:57 AM PDT

The British Constitution may undergo some major changes in the next year or so. Law professors William Walton and James Gray from Northumbria University at Newcastle upon Tyne recently popped in to discuss several pressing issues facing our British cousins:

Will Britain leave the EU? Lots of Britons want to.

Will Scotland secede? It could happen -- many Scots want to chart a separate course. And don't forget: they've got the nuclear submarines. Even more significantly, perhaps, they've got Sean Connery on their side.

Join us!

July 31, 2015 05:31 AM PDT

Chris Phillips is at it again: rousing the rabble by collecting various declarations - starting with our own Declaration of Independence - and putting them online. Not only that, he invites all of us to post our own declarations, which Stewart has already done.

Chris, the author of Socrates Café and Constitution Café, has been on the show several times because he's always making trouble and we always have a good time when he tells us about it.

After we finish our rabble-rousing, we spend a few minutes at Montpelier, visiting the ongoing work at the slave quarters and the newly-refurbished library where Madison conceived the Virginia Plan.

July 24, 2015 03:41 AM PDT

Why Tennessee? Why did the ratification of the 19th Amendment in August, 1920, come down to a Southern state that is not particularly noted for its progressive politics?

Perhaps it had something to do with a little-known incident three years earlier, in 1917, when suffragist leader Maud Younger insisted upon her First Amendment right to speak at a courthouse in Knoxville. Tennessee lawyers didn't support her at first, but, inspired by her courage, the Tennessee Bar eventually came around. Knoxville attorney Wanda Sobieski tells us the tale.

July 16, 2015 12:39 PM PDT

Nazis! In America! A nightmare that could never happen?

Nope - it did happen once. And Arnie Bernstein, author of "Swastika Nation," is here to tell us about it.

July 03, 2015 05:12 AM PDT

PolitiFact is a nonpartisan, Pulitzer-Prize-winning organization that checks out various claims made by politicians and pundits. You may have seen its famous Truth-O-Meter in your local newspaper or on your favorite news website.

Some of those claims are constitutional. And we expect more of them as the country ramps up for the 2016 elections. So we've invited PolitiFact reporter Lauren Carroll to help us hook up some of those politicians and pundits to the Truth-O-Meter.

This episode is a lot of fun. Join us!

June 26, 2015 09:02 AM PDT

Join us as we finish our fascinating discussion on Magna Carta with A.E. "Dick" Howard, one of the world's leading experts on the subject.

Sorry - no Monty Python clips this week, but lots of other interesting stuff.

June 19, 2015 10:16 AM PDT

A.E. "Dick" Howard is among the world's leading authorities on constitutional law and the Magna Carta. He's also articulate, informative and funny. And timely -- after all, the Magna Carta just turned 800 years old.

So join us for a lively and wide-ranging conversation on this foundational constitutional document. It'll be 800 years before we can do this again.

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