I have to admit that I really admired Antonin Scalia and was saddened to hear of his passing. He was an intellectual powerhouse, jovial, brash, careful, and careless. He was like a lot of interesting people--complex.
Many will likely remember him only for his sometimes stinging dissents, which I always read for a good laugh. Others will remember him only for his originalist views on the Constitution and still others will remember him only for voting one way or another on a case that mattered to them. A full account of the man, his life, and his legal scholarship, however, reveals a jurist who valued intelligent legal analysis, honesty, candidness, debate, and even humility.
Few know this, but he advocated for Elana Kagan to join the court,
He would sometimes send his dissent to his friend, Ruth Bader Gingsburg, to help her better articulate the majority view.
He traveled with Bryer to various colleges to discuss the court and how their diametrically opposed views helped the court. You can watch some of these talks on YouTube. They are wonderful.
He and RBD were best friends and their families often vacationed together.
He would take Kagan out shooting.
He had nine, yes 9, and one of his son’s, a priest, conducted his mass.
Charles Grassley, Chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee, posted on his website a wonderful litany of Scalia’s legal decisions. Scalia, as you will see, did much to protect the rights of those accused of crimes, including expanding 4th Amendment protections.
Justice Scalia lead an amazing life. He served the Court and his country with integrity.
You can read Senator Grassley’s post here: http://www.grassley.senate.gov/news/news-releases/justice-antonin-scalia-and-his-role-protecting-individual-liberties
You can read his 10 best lines of dissent here: http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2015/06/gay-marriage-supreme-court-scalia-dissent
John Paul Wright and Matt DeLisi
Professors of Crime and Criminology