The Infamous Dred Scott Case

Also: Finding 'Uncommon Ground'


In Justice Denied, our newly released podcast episodeHumankind takes a deep dive into what many regard as the most shameful U.S. Supreme Court ruling ever. It was the 1857 case of an enslaved man named Dred Scott. In a 7–2 ruling, the chief justice wrote that African Americans have “no rights” that white Americans must respect. We hear from Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Eric Foner that this legal case added to tensions that culminated in the Civil War.

Also, on the podcast, check out Uncommon Ground, our story about women in the Boston area who formed a confidential dialogue group to discuss abortion. They included the local leaders of the pro-choice and pro-life communities — people who distrusted each other. They came together only in the wake of an act of terrorism. This is the tale of how unlikely friendships can develop even at a time of polarization.

All of which is relevant as America prepares to select a new justice for the Supreme Court.

As always, we welcome your thoughts on our programs.

Best wishes,

David Freudberg
Host of Humankind

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