The Institute for Justice Center for Judicial Engagement is hosting a law student essay contest! Entries are due no later than February 6, 2012.
Here’s some background info from IJ:
For too long, the public debate over the role of the judiciary in American society has been consumed by a battle between two empty slogans: “judicial activism” and “judicial restraint.”
The Institute for Justice’s Center for Judicial Engagement seeks to change that debate: Judges should not be “activist” (which is too often simply a code word for “a judge whose decision the speaker does not like”), nor should they be “restrained” (which is too often simply code for complete judicial abdication). Instead, judges should be engaged—engaged in the process of applying the law to the actual facts of the case before them, including constitutional cases.
The Center’s law student essay contest seeks to reward the best law student writing designed to persuade the general public of the virtues of judicial engagement.
Entrants should write an essay of no more than 2,000 words.
In an essay aimed at a popular audience, discuss the role of the courts in American government and the differences among judicial engagement, judicial activism, and judicial abdication.
Recent debates over the role of the courts in reviewing legislative enactments have focused heavily on terminology: specifically, whether we should be most concerned with courts that engage in “judicial activism” or whether, as the Eleventh Circuit wrote in striking down portions of the Affordable Care Act, in cases of legislative overreach, “the Constitution requires judicial engagement, not judicial abdication.”
Winners will be those who most clearly and persuasively articulate the principles and importance of judicial engagement. Further explanation of those principles and their application can be found at www.ij.org/cje<http://www.ij.org/cje>.
First prize will be a $3,000 award, along with a free trip to Washington, D.C. to receive your prize at IJ’s headquarters; second prize will net a $1,000 award; and third prize $500.
How to Enter & Deadline
Students should email a Word version of their essay (no PDFs) to email@example.com no later than February 6, 2012. Late entries will not be considered. The Institute for Justice will announce winners by mid-April of 2012.