“From wherever you stood, the opposing side offered respectable, credible views. In today's fractured culture the evening struck a blow for civility.”
- The Huffington Post
The Constitution provides that "All legislative powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States," and it goes on to grant Congress a robust-and fearsome-list of powers. James Madison assumed that "[i]n republican government, the legislative authority necessarily predominates," and he cautioned that the legislative department may tend to "draw all power into its impetuous vortex." But modern politics and law seem to tell a quite different story. With executive orders, administrative regulations, creative interpretations of federal statutes, and executive agreements with other nations, it may seem that the President, not Congress, is, in effect, wielding the most potent legislative power. Indeed, the Supreme Court is currently poised to decide whether President Obama's unilateral immigration actions usurped Congress's power and flouted his duty to "take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed." But some argue that this is nothing new: they say that the President is not exercising legislative power; he is simply exercising his well-established executive discretion. Is Congress still the most powerful branch, or is this the era of the imperial presidency? Has the President usurped Congress's legislative power?
Director, Constitutional Law Center & Professor, Stanford Law School
Professor, New York University School of Law
Professor, University of Chicago Law School
Chief Counsel & Policy Director, Judicial Crisis Network
Whether in America’s state game lands or the African bush, hunting has become one of the most hotly debated issues in the media and online. Internationally, the killing of Cecil the lion triggered a firestorm of criticism over trophy hunting rules and regulations. Central to the debate here in the U.S. is the white-tailed deer. Its overpopulation has caused millions of dollars in property damage, over browsing in forests, and the spread of Lyme disease. Many believe that regulated hunting can be an effective way to manage healthy populations of deer and other wildlife. And with the funds raised from legal hunting—the purchase of permits in Africa, licenses and taxes here in the U.S.—hunters have contributed significantly to conservation efforts on both public and private lands. But hunting’s critics question whether big game revenues really benefit local communities and whether hunting could ever be a humane way to maintain equilibrium and habitats. Is hunting wrong? Or are hunters conservationists?
Editor-in-Chief, Field & Stream
CEO & President, The Humane Society of the United States
CEO, Born Free USA & Born Free Foundation
COO, Humanitarian Operations Protecting Elephants
The auto industry, agriculture, the energy sector. What do they have in common? These industries benefit from government subsidies in the form of loans, tax breaks, regulation, and other preferences. Critics from the left and right say that not only do these subsidies transfer wealth from taxpayers to corporations, they distort the markets and our economy. Proponents say that government has an important role to play in launching innovation via strategic investment, and its support helps American companies thrive. Do we need subsidies, or is this corporate welfare?
Former Lobbyist & Author, Capitol Punishment
Vice Chair of Climate & Sustainable Urbanization, Paulson Institute
Co-Founder, New America
Assoc. Prof., Fordham Law & Author, Corruption in America
As technology rapidly progresses, some proponents of artificial intelligence believe that it will help solve complex social challenges and offer immortality via virtual humans. But AI’s critics say that we should proceed with caution. That its rewards may be overpromised, and that the pursuit of superintelligence and autonomous machines may result in unintended consequences. Is this the stuff of science fiction? Should we fear AI, or will these fears prevent the next technological revolution?
Internet Entrepreneur & Author, The Internet Is Not the Answer
Executive Director, Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies
Transhumanist, Entrepreneur & Author, Virtually Human
Computer Scientist & Author, Who Owns the Future?
Protests have erupted on university campuses across the country. To many, these students are speaking out against racial injustice that has long been manifested in unwelcoming, sometimes hostile environments. But to critics, their demands have gone too far, creating an atmosphere of intolerance for opposing or unpopular points of view. Are the protestors silencing free speech, or are they just trying to be heard? And are the universities responding by defending free speech, or by suppressing it?
Writer & Lawyer
Exec. Dir., Center for the Study of Race & Equity in Education, UPenn
Professor of Philosophy, Yale University
Professor of Linguistics, Columbia University