And there may be one…
The sentiment expressed in the post’s title, which has been used as the title of a newspaper comic strip created by Al Fagaly and Harry Shorten, commonly comes to mind when one complains about a situation that seems unfair or patently stupid. “The law” in the United States is made up of two distinctive sources: court decisions of first impression and later ones modifying them, together making the “common law,” and statutes, which are enacted by legislative bodies. The phrase typically refers to this latter source.
Statutory law affects each of us in some way every day. Obeying speed limits, paying taxes, avoiding littering — these are all responses to statutes and ordinances that establish requirements for participating in society. Law students and lawyers do well by learning how to research the history of a given set of laws, i.e., how the sausage got made. To that end, please check out this week’s library display on statutory interpretation, and consider the following resources:
- Mastering Statutory Interpretation, available online in the Lexis OverDrive Study Aids.
- Legislation and Statutory Interpretation, available online in the West Academic Study Aids.
- Federal Legislative History Guide by Ron Jones.
- The Legislative Process Overview, a video from the Library of Congress.
- ProQuest Legislative Insight
- Sutherland Statutes and Statutory Construction, available online on Westlaw and in the Law Library Stacks at KF425 .S57.
Upcoming Research Training Sessions
- Library & Lexis Lunch & Learn
- Researching Paper Topics with Susan Boland and Ashley Russell
- Thursday, February 1st, 12:15 – 1:15 P.M. in Room 302
- Lunch & Lexis points, please R.S.V.P. by January 30th!
- Legislative & Statutory Interpretation with Susan Boland
- Thursday, February 1st, 3:00 – 4:00 P.M. in Room 306