Last updated on: 2/18/2011 | Author: ProCon.org

Alan M. Dershowitz, LLB Biography

Title:
Felix Frankfurter Professor of Law at Harvard Law School
Position:
Con to the question "Should the Words “under God” Be in the US Pledge of Allegiance?"
Reasoning:

“It worries me when we become like the Taliban. When we think we must be on the side of God. What about those of us who do not believe in a Supreme Being? Aren’t we good Americans? Can we accept a pledge that makes us accept a belief that not all of us subscribe to?…

Asking an atheist or an agnostic to pledge under God is exactly the same as asking us to pledge under Jesus. I as strongly reject the concept of God as I reject the concept of Jesus.”

Quoted in Ken Gewertz, “Heavyweights Battle over the Pledge of Allegiance,” Harvard University Gazette, Sep. 26, 2002

Theoretical Expertise Ranking:
    Experts
Individuals with JD's, or equivalent advanced degrees in fields relevant to government and constitutional law. Also top-level government officials (such as foreign leaders, US presidents, Founding Fathers, Supreme Court Justices, members of legislative bodies, cabinet members, military leaders, etc.) with positions relevant to government and constitutional law.
Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Felix Frankfurter Professor of Law, Harvard Law School, 1993-present
  • Recipient, The Soviet Jewry Freedom Award, Russian Jewish Community Foundation, 2007
  • Appellate Advisor, defense, O.J. Simpson’s murder trial, 1995
  • Professor of Law, Harvard Law School, 1967-1993
  • Criminal Appellate Lawyer, conviction overturn of Claus von Bülow, 1984
  • Recipient, William O. Douglas First Amendment Award for “compassionate eloquent leadership and persistent advocacy in the struggle for civil and human rights,” 1983
  • Recipient, William O. Douglas First Amendment Award, Anti-Defamation League (ADL), 1983
  • Recipient, Guggenheim Fellowship, 1979
  • Recipient, Honorary Doctorates in Law from Yeshiva University, Hebrew Union College, Monmouth College, University of Haifa, and Bar-Ilan University
  • Honored, New York Criminal Bar Association, for “outstanding contribution as a scholar and dedicated defender of human rights”
  • Assistant Professor of Law, Harvard Law School, 1964-1967
  • Clerk, US Supreme Court, Associate Justice Arthur Goldberg, 1963-1964
  • Clerk, US Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, Chief Judge David L. Bazelon, 1962-1963
  • Former Editor-in-Chief, Yale Law Journal
Education:
  • LLB, Yale Law School, 1962
  • AB, Brooklyn College, 1959
  • Attended Yeshiva University High School
Other:
  • Born: Sep. 1, 1938, Brooklyn, NY
  • Author of two novels: Just Revenge, 1999, and The Advocate’s Devil, 1994
  • Testified as a witness against President Clinton’s impeachment before the US House of Representatives Committee on the Judiciary, 1998
  • Former host of Dershowitz!, a syndicated radio talk show
  • Recipient, Freedom of Speech Award, National Association of Radio Talk Show Hosts, 1996
  • Named a Father of the Year by the National Father’s Day Committee, 1991
  • Recipient, Golden Plate Award, 1991
  • Visiting Professor of Law, Hebrew University, Jerusalem, Israel, 1988
  • Named John F Kennedy Memorial Fellowship, Fulbright New Zealand, 1987
  • Married to Carolyn Cohen, PhD (psychology)
  • At age 28, became the youngest full professor in Harvard Law School’s history, 1967
  • Former high school varsity basketball player
Quoted in:
  1. Is the United States a Christian Nation?