Washington Law Review


Dean Robert Post’s book—Democracy, Expertise, and Academic Freedom—reflects and requires serious thought about our First Amendment. This Essay addresses just two of the many interesting assertions Dean Post makes. The first is his claim that the advancement of knowledge in a democracy springs primarily from the knowledge that experts gather in discerning good from bad ideas, and that recognizing this value requires courts to develop criteria for determining which viewpoints are better in ongoing debates among experts. The second is Dean Post’s contention that the U.S. Constitution protects an individual right to academic freedom, which requires enforcing this right against academic institutions. The concern we have in each instance is with the role his theory assigns to courts in promoting some “experts” over others.

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