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Georgia Law Review


natural law, Constitution, positivism, Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr.


I do not dispute the philosophical validity of the theory of natural rights. Indeed, I support much, if not most, of the principles embodied in that theory. What I wish to discuss is that to which Dr. Vieira claims to have limited his discussion, viz., the belief that history, specifically American constitutional history, provides a sufficient base to support a natural rights theory. His attempt to find historical support is an instructive example of how ideology can distort the data of history and cause it to be portrayed in a strange and unreal light. Beyond that, Vieira's historical method also weakens the logical framework of his argument.


A response to Edwin Vieira, Rights and the United States Constitution: The Declension from Natural Law to Legal Positivism, 13 Georgia Law Review 1447 (1979)