|March 11, 2005|
Perilous Times named 2004 Los Angeles Times Book Prize Finalist
Perilous Times: Free Speech in Wartime from the Sedition Act of 1798 to the War on Terrorism, by Geoffrey Stone, the Harry Kalven, Jr. Distinguished Service Professor in the Law School, has been named a Finalist in the Los Angeles Times 2004 Book Prizes.
A study of civil liberties in time of national emergency, Perilous Times explores six pivotal national emergencies in the history of the United States: the passage of the Alien and Sedition Acts in 1798, the Civil War, World War I, World War II, the Cold War, and the Vietnam War.
“A careful look at our own history shows that when faced with the pressures, anxieties and fears of a wartime climate, we have tended repeatedly to err on the side of restricting civil liberties, in a way that may have seemed appropriate and reasonable at the time, but which later we frequently came to regret,”
Though Stone readily acknowledges that “the threat of terrorism is real and we expect our government to protect our safety,” he pointed to words of Justice Louis Brandeis to guide us today: “Those who won our independence…knew that… fear breeds repression” and that “courage is the secret of liberty.
“Those, I think, are the two most fundamental insights for us to bear in mind,” Stone concluded.
Last modified at 06:19 PM CST on Friday, March 11, 2005.
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