effort to show history really does repeat itself and highlight great
issues of our times, this book captures the essence of certain trials
that took place in the history of the United States and reminds us that
many issues of old are still with us, yet unresolved and subject to
great continuing public interest.
The author argues public perceptions of guilt or innocence are often
wrong and actually could have effected the results of famous
trials. Celebrity murders, governmental manipulation, death
penalty and civil rights issues provide some of the backdrop for
The guilt of famous accused ax murderess, Lizzi Borden, a white,
church-going maiden from England is compared with the terrorists Sacco
and Vanzetti. Murder of a child by other youths, Leopold and
Loeb, creates a forum to discuss the death penalty as argued by famous
trial lawyer Clarence Darrow. The death penalty as applied to
minors was only recently decided by the U.S. Supreme Court.
The Civil Rights Movement developing from the Scottsboro Boys trial and
World War II is analyzed. Military commissions and tribunals,
the treatment of Prisoners of War and enemy combatants are issues that
arise out of the Nuremburg trial. Social and religious
debates are dealt with in the Scopes Monkey trial, the right of choice
developed in Roe v. Wade and the special college admission case of
Bakke v. Regents of the University of California. Finally,
the impeachments and trials of Clinton and Johnson are compared.
This review of the last 100 years in the Courts wherein major issues,
many still with us, is enlightening and thought provoking.
Justice for All
Trials of the 20th Century
Daniel J. Lanahan J. D.