About | HeinOnline Law Journal Library | HeinOnline Law Journal Library | HeinOnline

14 Or. L. Rev. 520 (1934-1935)
A Proposal for Enactment of a Law Creating a Misdemeanor to be Known as False Swearing

handle is hein.journals/orglr14 and id is 528 raw text is: A DISCUSSION OF CERTAIN PROPOSALS OF THE
Hilton Prize Contest*
April 18,1935
In my haste I said, all men are liars. These worlds spoken by King
David might well have been uttered in a moment of exasperation by
one of our present-day judges. Lying is a frailty of human nature
to which we all are subject, and which we too often seek to condone.
There is a prevalent idea in everyday life that, if a lie does not result
in positive injury to someone, it is harmless. This attitude of leniency
toward falsehoods has its counterpart in the field of the law. The
sanctity of the oath has proved to be a poor reminder indeed that vir-
tue is its own reward; nor has this time-honored ritual suppressed this
vice common to all humanity. It would be nothing short of heresy to
advocate the abolition of the administration of oath; yet, unless some-
thing drastic is done to check the present impression that every wit-
ness is privileged to lie like a gentleman, this custom of abstracting
the so-called truth by calling upon the Almighty will continue to be
but a hollow ceremony.
The belief that a man who lies under oath commits a perjury for
which he is likely to be punished is merely a delusion. The late Judge
Joseph E. Corrigan, of the Court of General Sessions, New York City,
once stated that perjury occurred in more than ninety per cent of
the cases which appeared before his court. Justice Philip I. McCook
of the New York Supreme Court stated that out of 251 cases tried
before him in 1927, there were 33 miscarriages of justice directly
traceable to perjury.' The existence of the problem of improvident
* An annual prize of .$50.00 is offered by Frank R. Hilton, an attorney of
Portland, Oregon, for the best oral discussion by a student of a legal subject
suggested by the faculty of the School of Law. A second prize of $25.00 is offered
by the School of Law.
t Second-year student, School of Law, University of Oregon, winner of
the first prize.
'William M. Wherry, A Study of the Organization of Litigation in the
Supreme Court of New York County (1931) 8 N. Y. U. L. Q. Rgv. 640, 658.
[ 520 ]

What Is HeinOnline?

HeinOnline is a subscription-based resource containing thousands of academic and legal journals from inception; complete coverage of government documents such as U.S. Statutes at Large, U.S. Code, Federal Register, Code of Federal Regulations, U.S. Reports, and much more. Documents are image-based, fully searchable PDFs with the authority of print combined with the accessibility of a user-friendly and powerful database. For more information, request a quote or trial for your organization below.

Short-term subscription options include 24 hours, 48 hours, or 1 week to HeinOnline.

Contact us for annual subscription options:

Already a HeinOnline Subscriber?

profiles profiles most