Constitutional

19 EpisodesProduced by The Washington Post

With the writing of the Constitution in 1787, the framers set out a young nation’s highest ideals. And ever since, we’ve been fighting over it — what is in it and what was left out. At the heart of these arguments is the story of America. As a follow-up to the popular Washington Post podcast “Presi… read more

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Ourselves and our posterity

February 12th, 2018

56:04
In the "Constitutional" finale, we address listener questions about the history--and future--of the nation's governing document.

The First Amendment

January 29th, 2018

53:31
Why do First Amendment rights trump nearly every other right in America? Thank Jehovah's Witnesses.

Privacy

January 15th, 2018

46:40
How should the Constitution's privacy protections be translated for a new era? This is a question before the Supreme Court today, but it was also a question that captivated a justice appointed to the Supreme Court 100 ye…

Prohibition

January 1st, 2018

54:38
The passage and then repeal of the 18th Amendment, banning alcohol in America, highlighted the pitfalls of trying to legislate against vice.

Taxes

December 18th, 2017

43:41
Congress today faces the same question it faced a century ago when creating the modern tax system: What kind of society should America be?

The common defense

December 4th, 2017

50:57
One intention the framers had when creating the U.S. Constitution was to “provide for the common defense.” But who shoulders that duty has not always been so clear.

War

November 20th, 2017

42:44
What was the original point of the Second Amendment? We examine its colonial and revolutionary roots—plus its quiet companion, the Third Amendment—with renowned American history scholar Gordon Wood.

Love

November 6th, 2017

40:08
The words "marriage" and "love" appear nowhere in the U.S. Constitution. Yet 50 years ago, the Supreme Court issued a decision that would embed those concepts in the heart of the document itself.

Fair punishment

October 23rd, 2017

52:28
"There is so much feeling of racial injustice around the issue of punishment. And you have to understand that those feelings have a history -- and that history is Parchman Farm."

Fair trials

October 9th, 2017

47:59
In 1963, the Supreme Court ruled in Gideon v. Wainwright that states must offer a defense attorney to all poor people accused of crimes. The decision transformed the concept of fair trials in America, but left major chal…
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