29 Tex. Tech L. Rev. 775 (1998)
Book Review

handle is hein.journals/text29 and id is 785 raw text is: THE MOST WONDERFUL WORK.. . OUR CONSTITUTION
INTERPRETED. By Thomas E. Baker.
West Publishing Company, St. Paul, Minnesota. 1996 ($29.95).
Reviewed by James B. 0 'Hara
Thomas E. Baker, the Alvin R. Allison Professor of Law at Texas Tech
University' and a well-known specialist in constitutional law, has given us a
very unusual and rather special book. In his preface, Professor Baker laments
the sterile, even mindless character of much constitutional comment, and he
recalls that Madison, Hamilton and Jay wrote The Federalist Papers2 with a
well-informed popular audience in mind.' This book addresses a similar
Professor Baker takes major constitutional themes and illustrates them
with selections of decisions by the Supreme Court. Many of the texts chosen
are gems from our past, often elegant and eloquent, written by the justices as
judicial opinions. The opinions themselves are edited, but expertly so, with
citations, Latin phrases, and legal jargon omitted.
This reviewer is struck positively by many of the features of this fine
book. First, the selection of cases is wide-ranging. Chisholm v. Georgia,4 the
Court's first constitutional case is the first case in the book,5 but there are also
cases from the Court's October 1994 and October 1995 Terms. The cases
chosen reflect modem or recurring issues. The thoroughly repudiated Dred
Scott' is not to be found, nor is Roe v. Wade,' probably because the Court
abandoned its trimester approach to abortion in Planned Parenthood v. Caseys
and subsequent litigation. But the great cases are for the most part included:
* Professor James B. O'Hara, a member of the Maryland Bar, is Special Assistant for Executive
Programs at the Sellinger School of Business and Management, Loyola College in Maryland.
1. James Madison Chair and Director, Constitutional Law Resource Center at Drake University
School of Law beginning Fall 1998.
2. ALEXANDER HAMILTON ETAL., THE FEDERALIST (Robert B. Luce, Inc. 1976) (1787-88).
ix (West Publishing Co. 1996).
4. 2 U.S. (2 DalI.) 419 (1793), overruled by U.S. CONST. amend. XI.
5. See BAKER, supra note 3, at 9-16.
6. See, e.g., United States v. Lopez, 514 U.S. 549 (1995) (holding the Gun-Free School Zone Act
unconstitutional); McIntyre v. Ohio, 514 U.S. 334 (1995) (holding unconstitutional an Ohio statute that
prohibited the distribution of anonymous campaign literature); Romer v. Evans, 517 U.S. 620 (1996)
(invalidating Colorado constitutional amendment that proscribed laws to protect gays, lesbians, and
bisexuals from discrimination). See BAKER, supra note 3, at 165-71 for a discussion of United States v.
Lopez; 386-96 for a discussion of McIntyre v. Ohio; 628-38 for a discussion of Romer v. Evans.
7. Dred Scott v. Sanford, 60 U.S. (19 How.) 393 (1856).
8. 410 U.S. 113 (1973), modified, Planned Parenthood v. Casey, 505 U.S. 833 (1992).
9. 505 U.S. 833 (1992).

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