THE LAW: Sin & Criminality

Forty-three states provide some form of criminal penalty for adultery, but in a sample year the nation's police made only 267 adultery arrests,* many of which never went to trial. There is a fairly well-founded impression that the incidence of adultery greatly exceeds the number of arrests. Since adultery laws are not enforced, should they be expunged from the statute books? Last week a group of the nation's most distinguished lawyers and judges, gathered in Washington's Mayflower Hotel for the American Law Institute's annual meeting, gave their answer: yes.

One of the purposes of the American Law Institute, founded 32...

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