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Constitution’s Resiliency Is a Strength, Professor Tells LMU Students

David Glazier, professor of law at Loyola Law School, marked Constitution Day and Citizenship Day on Thursday, Sept. 17, by explaining his faith in the U.S. Constitution’s resiliency. His address, “The Constitution and the War on Terror,” surveyed the legal limits of executive power and the role of constitutional law in conducting the “war on terror.”

On the 222nd anniversary of the day the U.S. Constitution was signed, Glazier told the crowd of political science and history students at Loyola Marymount University that he knows September brings to mind for most Americans the attacks on Sept. 11. But, he said, he hopes that in years to come Constitution Day will become a more prominent part of the national calendar.

“The Constitution is capable of addressing many of the events and circumstances of modern life,” said Glazier, who is the author of the forthcoming William and Mary Law Review article “Playing by the Rules: Combating al-Queda Within the Law of War.” “The authors of the Constitution couldn’t imagine a world of jet planes and buildings where 25,000 people go to work, but they wrote the Constitution with enough flexibility to apply to today’s circumstances.”

Glazier’s presentation took place when U.S. political leaders are still debating the status and legal protections afforded to “enemy combatants” and detainees.

He went on to say he believes that the rights and protections guaranteed in the Constitution should help guide U.S. treatment of detainees and that violating the rights of prisoners wasn’t sanctioned.

Before attending the University of Virginia Law School, Glazier served 21 years as a U.S. Navy surface warfare officer. He commanded the U.S.S. George Philip, served as the Seventh Fleet staff officer responsible for the Navy-Japan relationship, was the Pacific Fleet officer responsible for the Navy-China relationship, and participated in U.N. sanctions enforcement against Yugoslavia and Haiti.

Constitution Day and Citizenship Day, once known as Citizens Day, became a federal day of observance in 2004 and commemorates the day the U.S. Constitution was signed in 1787.

Posted Sept. 17, 2009