Attacks on International Law on the Rise: A Response by Martha Davis and Johanna Kalb

Political and legal attacks on the use of international law, which includes human rights standards, continue to increase.  Oklahoma recently passed a measure prohibiting judges from referring to either international or Sharia law.  NESRI Board Chair, Professor Martha Davis, along with Johanna Kalb  published an issue brief on this question released by the American Constitution Society for Law and Policy.  The brief, entitled “Oklahoma State Question 755 and An Analysis of Anti-International Law Initiatives,” takes the Oklahoma initiative and places it within the larger context of intensifying political attacks on international law in the United States.   The brief details the harmful nature of these types of initiatives to the legal infrastructure in the United States, including weakening of federalism and undermining of judicial independence.  These attacks on international law also negate the critical role states must play in meeting fundamental human rights obligations within the United States.   


Read the brief at