Family at the Birth of American Constitutional Order
Brandon, Mark E.
In recent years, a number of observers of American politics, law, and society have decried what seem to be fundamental shifts in the structure and function of the family. According to some, these shifts, perhaps reinforced by libertarian rulings from the nation's highest court, now threaten the stability and maybe the survival of the political order. One of the most visible signs of libertarianism from the Supreme Court, at least in the realm of the family, was Griswold v. Connecticut, which addressed the constitutionality of a state's policy prohibiting use of certain contraceptives. In the climactic paragraph of his opinion for the Court in Griswold, Justice Douglas located a right to contraception in a specific institution--the marital family.