The States: Though the Heavens Fall

The constitution does not allow reasons of state to influence our judgement. God forbid it should! We must not regard political consequences, however formidable they might be; if rebellion was the certain consequence, we are bound to say, Justitia fiat, ruat coelum—Let justice be done, though the heavens fall.

—Lord Mansfield, Chief Justice of England (Rex v. Wilkes, 1768)

Beneath the rich, golden-toned sky that October brings to the Deep South, a pleasant morning coolness lingered on the University of Mississippi campus at Oxford. A bell signaled the end of 9 o'clock classes,...

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