Freedom's Orphans

Contemporary Liberalism and the Fate of American Children

David L. Tubbs

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Sozialwissenschaften, Recht, Wirtschaft / Politikwissenschaft


Has contemporary liberalism's devotion to individual liberty come at the expense of our society's obligations to children? Divorce is now easy to obtain, and access to everything from violent movies to sexually explicit material is zealously protected as freedom of speech. But what of the effects on the young, with their special needs and vulnerabilities? Freedom's Orphans seeks a way out of this predicament. Poised to ignite fierce debate within and beyond academia, it documents the increasing indifference of liberal theorists and jurists to what were long deemed core elements of children's welfare.

Evaluating large changes in liberal political theory and jurisprudence, particularly American liberalism after the Second World War, David Tubbs argues that the expansion of rights for adults has come at a high and generally unnoticed cost. In championing new "lifestyle" freedoms, liberal theorists and jurists have ignored, forgotten, or discounted the competing interests of children.

To substantiate his arguments, Tubbs reviews important currents of liberal thought, including the ideas of Isaiah Berlin, Ronald Dworkin, and Susan Moller Okin. He also analyzes three key developments in American civil liberties: the emergence of the "right to privacy" in sexual and reproductive matters; the abandonment of the traditional standard for obscenity prosecutions; and the gradual acceptance of the doctrine of "strict separation" between religion and public life.



Freedom of speech, Liberalism, Adoption, Result, Public policy, Theory, Morality, Police power (United States constitutional law), Social status, Legislation, Bowers v. Hardwick, A Theory of Justice, Politics, Social movement, Uncertainty, Appellate court, John Stuart Mill, Robert P. George, Obscenity, Miller v. California, Isaiah Berlin, Jurist, Political philosophy, Right to privacy, Publication, Social issue, Intellectual, Original position, Precedent, Statute, Writing, Planned Parenthood v. Casey, Amendment, Constitutionality, Parent, Skepticism, The New York Times, Majority opinion, Social science, United States federal judge, Vulnerability, Critique, Adultery, Cambridge University Press, Civil liberties, Ronald Dworkin, Roe v. Wade, First Amendment to the United States Constitution, Disadvantage, George Kateb, Prejudice, Child pornography, Misdemeanor, Americans, Attempt, Hugo Black, Consideration, Eisenstadt v. Baird, Social liberalism, Spouse, Of Education, Jurisprudence, Institution, Marriage, Judiciary, Artificial insemination, Originalism, Requirement, Unenumerated rights, Feminism (international relations), Pornography, On Liberty, Suggestion, Prince v. Massachusetts, Constitutional law, Division of labour, Hicklin test, Legislator, State law (United States), Classical liberalism, The Closing of the American Mind, Utilitarianism, Deliberation, Representative democracy, Controversy, Prosecutor, Slavery, Individualism, Public morality, Griswold v. Connecticut, Political Liberalism, Mary Ann Glendon, Two Concepts of Liberty, Establishment Clause, Rights, Child support, Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, Liberal democracy, Criticism, Political science