The guiding principle of the post-war German legal order is human dignity, which stands symbolically at the very beginning of the modern German constitution, the Basic Law: (1) Human dignity shall be inviolable. To respect and protect it shall be the duty of all state authority. But what exactly is human dignity? In common-law countries, it's… Continue reading Human Dignity and Laser Tag
Maximilian Steinbeis, author of a recent book arguing for the legality of Angela Merkel's 2015 decision to open Germany's borders, addresses my post on the issue from a few days ago. Steinbeis begins his post: "An interesting example of the strategies with which some proponents of the illegality thesis [i.e., the argument that Merkel's decision… Continue reading More on the 2015 Refugee Crisis and the Rule of Law: A Response to Steinbeis
When can you post excerpts from or links to a newspaper article, pictures, or tweets online in Germany without fear of being sued? The answer is more complex than you might think, especially if you're used to the more freewheeling online culture of the United States or the UK. The Internet is abuzz with debate about… Continue reading Germany’s Tricky Copyright Laws and the Internet, Part I — News Articles and Photos
One of the longest-running controversies in German employment law started right here in my home city of Düsseldorf. A doctor working for a Catholic charitable hospital was fired in 2009 for re-marrying after a divorce, which violates Catholic doctrine. The doctor appealed, beginning an odyssey (g) through German and international courts which is still going… Continue reading Can Religious Institutions Hire and Fire based on Religious Doctrine?