Wednesday, February 2, 2022

In Memoriam: Lino Graglia (1930-2022)

Professor Graglia taught for fifty years at the University of Texas School of Law, where he was only recently emeritus.  The Texas memorial notice is here.

I was Lino's colleague for 13 years, and like many who disagreed with him about almost every political question, I found him to be a very congenial colleague, who never shed his roots as an Italian-American kid from New York City.   One amusing anecdote on that score:  Lino, being a staunch conservative, was also a really staunch anti-communist (I remember him praising John Silber for firing the communists on the faculty at Boston University!).  However, Lino had nothing but fond recollections of Vito Marcantonio, the radical congressman from Manhattan, who was well-known in Lino's youth.

UPDATE:   Professor Tom Baker (FIU) kindly shared the following amusing anecdote from Professor Graglia's article, "The Open-ended Clauses of the Constitution," 11 HARV. J. & PUB. POL’Y 87, 87 (1988).

The topic I have been assigned * * * reminds me of a conversation I had a little while ago with a professor of classics. After telling me how much he enjoyed teaching Thucydides, he expressed the view that it was terrible that law professors should be paid more than professors of classics. I told him the reason for this was clear: In his line of work he gets to read Thucydides while in mine I get to read Harry Blackmun, and surely he would agree, that is worth a few bucks. When I read Thucydides, I noted, I don’t get paid either.

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