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The unborn child: history, philosophy and religion

Abstract

All throughout history the unborn, and implicitly its protection, have been subject for academics and practitioners of various areas. The problem of the origin of the soul and the exact determination of the moment when it is united with the body was crucial in enabling us to define the exact moment when the human life begins, and, consequently, for providing proper protection for the unborn child. In this context visions of the Greek philosophers like Plato, Aristotle, Albertus Magnus and Thomas Aquinas, and of the Latin writer Tertullian, as well as Christian perspectives were analysed in order to identify the starting point of the human being to help determine the level of protection provided for the unborn in history. Finally, considering the fact that not even today has consensus been achieved concerning the beginning of human life, it was and still is difficult to provide proper legal protection for the unborn child, but in our opinion this is by far not impossible.

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Simion Bărnuţiu – Pioneer in the development of the law sciences and of the legal education in Romania

Abstract

The author analyses in this paper S. Bărnuţiu’s contribution to the establishment of the legal education and to the development of the sciences of the Law in the Romanian area during the mid-19th century. Adept of the natural law philosophy, ardent promotor of human and people’s rights, Bărnuţiu remains a personality of reference in the Romanians’ history not only for being the political leader and ideologist of the Transylvanian 1848 Revolution, but also for establishing the legal education at the University of Iasi by inspiring himself from the curriculum of the profile schools of law from the Western Europe. Having a unitary conception on the law and on the history of law, considering the law from a systemic perspective, Bărnuţiu contributed into the edification of a modern, constitutional, and democratic State in the united Romanian Principalities.

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A New Start for Perspectives on Federalism

Abstract

Perspectives on Federalism is closing its seventh year and its issue 2/2015 confirms the interdisciplinary nature of this intellectual enterprise. This issue is a very rich one, as it includes legal, historical and philosophical contributions. In spite of the evident diversities of these articles, we can identify three main connecting themes: latest developments in EU law, history of thought and European integration, and constitutional developments in national and supranational contexts.

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Provincializing Constitutions: History, Narrative, and the Disappearance of Canada’s Provincial Constitutions

Abstract

Constitutional scholarship in Canada since Confederation has been characterized by two primary narratives. The dualist narrative, which characterized constitutional scholarship between the late-nineteenth and mid-twentieth centuries, focussed on the parallel developments of provincial and federal constitutions. The monist narrative, which has become the dominant model of interpretation since the mid-twentieth century, focusses on the federal constitution as a singular foundation of constitutionalism in Canada. As a result of the shift from dualism to monism, provincial constitutions have become largely ignored in Canada and subsumed by the “mega-constitutional” politics of the federal constitution. This paper examines provincial constitutions to highlight the significant reorientation of constitutional scholarship in Canada over the past 150 years, which has become primarily focussed on post-Confederation constitutional history and written constitutionalism.

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Restorative Justice in the Conditions of the Slovak Republic

Summary

Nowadays, traditional criminal policy is facing its limits and is unable to cope with the rising criminality. Current criminal justice based on repressive approaches is unable to face serious obstacles and problems, namely in efficiency of punishment, poor protection of victims, and slow and overburdened criminal courts. New models of criminal judiciary based on principles of restorative justice have been unveiled while traditional systems of criminal justice are facing a serious crisis. The conception of restorative justice is one of the most modern and progressive of current approaches to criminal law that deserves to be implemented into the Slovakia criminal judiciary system. Author focused on punishments as home arrest, compulsory labour and financial penalty.

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Toward Natural Born Derivative Citizenship

Abstract

Senator Ted Cruz’s campaign for the Republican presidential nomination again raised the question whether persons who receive citizenship at birth to American parents abroad are natural born and eligible to the presidency. This article uses Supreme Court decisions and previously overlooked primary source material from the Founders, the First Congress and English and British law to show that they are not natural born under the doctrinal or historical meaning of the term. The relevant constitutional distinction is between citizenship acquired by birth or by naturalization, not at birth or afterward.

It argues further that a living constitutional theory cannot justifiably interpret the term more broadly because derivative citizenship statutes have long discriminated on grounds including race, gender, sexual orientation, and marital and socioeconomic status. The Supreme Court upholds them even though they would be unacceptable if applied to citizens because they merely discriminate against aliens. Moreover, many who assert presidential eligibility or other constitutional privilege for children born to American parents abroad intend to favor traditionally dominant groups or rely on political theories of bloodline transmission of national character that the Supreme Court used to justify its infamous decision in Dred Scott v. Sandford. No justifiable living interpretation can incorporate such discrimination or discredited political theories in qualifications for the highest office in the land.

The article examines the meaning of the term “natural born” in the broader context of similar discrimination in English and British law from which American law developed. It acknowledges the difficulty of reconciling centuries of derivative nationality law and practice with our highest constitutional ideals of equal protection of the law. It concludes by identifying threshold requirements for and a possible approach to developing a justifiable living constitutional interpretation of natural born derivative citizenship.

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The Emergence of Denmark’s Tax Treaty Network — A Historical View

Abstract

This contribution analyzes the origin and creation of Denmark’s tax treaty network in a historical perspective. The development of the Danish treaty network is studied through an international perspective and by discussing a number of milestone events. It is concluded that the general tendency has pointed toward a continuously growing Danish treaty network and also that the question on abuse of the treaties has become of greater concern during the past decades. Moreover, it is argued that the growing number and importance of Denmark’s tax treaties over time created a need for the Danish parliament to be more directly involved in the conclusion of new tax treaties.

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The Ethics of Reciprocity in the Light of the German and the English Charitable Sector and Emerging Trends in European Philanthropic Governance

Abstract

The lively debate about European cross-border donations and the European philanthropic landscape that has been started has seemingly reached a slight standstill since the global financial crisis and austerity plans are dominating the every day discussion. However, the European non-profit sector remains an area that is of crucial importance for the European labour market, the European Research Area, and most importantly, the participation of European civil society which directly influences questions of citizenship and European identity. The paper will compare the origin and legal framework of the English and the German charitable foundations and link it to the EU’s third sector where the European Foundation Centre (EFC) as a key representative for civil society actors in the non-profit area and the Commission play a pivotal role in the establishment of a European Foundation Statute (FE) that is meant to facilitate cross-border donations and non-profit activities throughout the EU. In the concluding part, the wider meaning of a strong third sector in the EU will be analysed.

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