Magazine March 9, 2020, Issue

Civil-Rights Law and the Rival Constitution

On the steps of the Lincoln Memorial during a civil-rights march on Washington, D.C., August 28, 1963 (Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division)
The Age of Entitlement: America Since the Sixties, by Christopher Caldwell (Simon & Schuster, 352 pp., $28)

There are many reasons the Right, in spite of the Republican Party’s electoral successes, steadily loses ground to the Left with each passing decade. The Left controls all the elite institutions that bestow praise and lay blame in America. It has a clarity of purpose, a resolve, and a ruthlessness that are generally lacking on the right. Most important though, it is the Left’s moral framework that is authoritative. Their pieties rule and are enforced by conservatives and liberals alike.

Nearly everyone in America either believes in or defers to the Left’s hierarchical politics of victimization. According to the country’s official

This article appears as “The Rival Constitution” in the March 9, 2020, print edition of National Review.

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David Azerrad — Mr. Azerrad is an assistant professor at Hillsdale College’s Van Andel Graduate School of Government in Washington, D.C.

In This Issue



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It will be something if 2020 ends up being a choice between a crass and vain New York City billionaire with an ugly Twitter habit and Donald Trump.

Column Calumny

When the Trump administration brought back the classical style to federal buildings, the pundit class went from zero to Hitler in record time.


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