Justice Antonin Scalia, who loves to take his judicial philosophy on tour, made an appearance yesterday at Yale. He made the usual case in favor of an originalist interpretation of the Consitution, in an address to the Yale Political Union.
An account of his speech appears in the YDN. Here are the two best quips:
“I have no idea what the evolving standards of decency are,” Scalia said. “I am afraid to inquire.”
“[Because of originalism] I cannot do the wicked conservative things I would want to do to this society,” Scalia said.
Nino got some love from the audience:
“He’s a brilliant man and he certainly showed that off tonight,” [student Sam] Purdy said. “I don’t think he was just putting up smoke and mirrors … I left thinking he’s less of a conservative nut.”
So he’s still “a conservative nut” — just not as big. Maybe a pistachio rather than a walnut.
The article closes with another backhanded compliment:
Regardless of whether they agreed with his views, many students said Scalia’s witty and at times self-deprecating rhetoric was a departure from the somewhat villainous reputation the justice carries with liberals.
“He was fun, for a conservative,” Chris Wihlidal ’09 said.