norml21 - Page 67

Page 67 Previous , Next , Original Image
Return to Index

 regulatory measures furthering health and safety, carries with it
 the peculiar stigma that heightens the potentially repressive
 effect of such restrictions on individual behavior and choice°
 Empirical justifications for the exercise of the coercive power
 of the state are particularly difficult to ascertain where the
 power exercised is broadly defined by such terms as public
 health, safety, welfare and morals.
 Defining the limits of the police power in terms of
 "rational '_ versus the _arbitrary _' exercise of governmental
 authority does not readily enable us to draw with precision a
 manageable and predictable standard for both legislative action
 and judicial review that would neither preclude an examination of
 the legislative facts or render legislative decision-making
 susceptible to the excessive application of judicial prejudices
 and values°
 If legislatures are to act responsibly, and courts are to be
 neutral and objective in their review of legislation under the
 broad police power, then the capacity to <[raw distinctions
 between the permissible and impermissible exercise of the
 criminal sanction becomes crucial. To say, as did the Supreme
 Court of Washington in Citz of Spokane v_Bostrom, 12 Wash. Appo
 114, 528 P.2d 500 (1974)_ that there is no requirement that the
 Court find facts justifying the ordinance is to abdicate, in
 practice, any review of legislation, it is the right of the

Previous , Next , Return to Index