Laypersons vs. specialists
MAULE.Prof.Law at LAW.VILL.EDU
Thu Mar 5 21:40:34 PST 1998
Eugene Volokh <VOLOKH at LAW.UCLA.EDU> writes
> But do scientists have a *constitutionally* privileged status?
> If the great majority of biologists say that this-and-such is a
> viable scientific theory, but Phil Johnson and a bunch of legislators
> disagree, must courts defer to the biologists? Or should they
> find the biological facts themselves? Or should they conclude that,
> regardless of how much more reliable we normally find biologists to
> be, legislatures may not be required to defer to the biologists'
Given their respective track records, I wonder if we (or the
courts) ought to ascribe any deference per se to scientists or
theologians. At best, one can treat them as "experts" but that ought
to permit examination of qualification, methodology, reputation, and
bias, and ought to permit introduction of "experts" with competing
views. After all, isn't the question one of "WHICH biologists?"
Professor of Law
Villanova University School of Law
Villanova, PA 19085
maule at law.vill.edu
(610) 519 - 7135
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