Upcoming Article: The Hard Case and the Good Judge: A Tribute to Michael Daly Hawkins

The Arizona State Journal will soon publish an article written by Thomas Healy, Professor of Law at Seton Hall Law School. Professor Healy clerked for Judge Hawkins during the 1999-2000 term. The article focuses on a dissent written by Judge Hawkins in Redding v. Safford School District.

The controversial dissent was not the “easy” way of analyzing the case but demonstrated the integrity of Judge Hawkins. The case dealt with the strip search of an eighth-grade student. The case seemed clear on a superficial level, but Judge Hawkins delved into the facts to reach a contrary conclusion.

Professor Healy commends the moderate tone adopted by Judge Hawkins recognizing the potential for reasonable minds to differ on such issues. Professor Healy also recognizes the value of the intense factual analysis undertaken by Judge Hawkins. Consideration of these facts and a sound walk-through of the pertinent evidence support the result reached in the dissent.

Professor Healy concludes that “[w]e all know the cliché that hard cases make bad law. But hard cases also make good judges.” This tribute goes a long way in demonstrating this assertion.