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Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Empathy for the Devil

I wanted to flag a significant new article by Thomas Colby (GW), titled In Defense of Empathy (forthcoming in Minn. L. Rev). Colby makes the first detailed defense of President Obama's conception of empathy--importantly by explaining what empathy actually is, how it is distinct from sympathy, and why empathy is, in fact, an important characteristic for judges to possess. He also explains how empathy is, in fact, the opposite of the umpire analogy, while being no less about the rule of law. I have touched on similar points before, but it is nice to see this get a full-fledged scholarly treatment. Definitely worth a look.

Posted by Howard Wasserman on December 4, 2012 at 09:31 AM in Article Spotlight, Howard Wasserman | Permalink


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I assume from this that the author is concerned about the kind of empathy deficient justices who supported forcing the sale of homes of lower middle class homeowners to benefit a large corporation (Kelo) and authorized prosecution of a women suffering a painful cancer because she grew marijuana for pain relief in full compliance with state law (Raich).

Posted by: Mark | Dec 4, 2012 6:23:47 PM

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