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Legal Roundtable: Are Missouri's Proposed Amendments Necessary?

James Cridland via Flickr

Two proposed amendments to Missouri's Constitution will appear on August's ballot, and they are raising questions among law enforcement officials, lawmakers and voters. 

The Missouri Supreme Court scheduled a hearing Monday on the proposed Amendment 5, which seeks to further protect the right to bear arms. Proponents say it will strengthen Missourians' rights. Critics say the amendment's language is misleading since there is already a Constitutional right to bear arms, and worry about "strict scrutiny." Our legal experts discuss how this and similar state amendments, including the right to farm amendment, have sprung up as a result of 2010's dog breeding proposition.

In our monthly legal roundtable, host Don Marsh talked with a panel of legal experts to explain these and other issues.

The panelists included: 

  • Mark Smith, associate vice chancellor and director of the Career Center at Washington University;
  • Bill Freivogel, director of the school of journalism at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale;
  • Timothy Belz, with Ottsen, Leggat & Belz in Clayton. Belz represents Sharpe Holdings in one of the Hobby Lobby related cases in Missouri.
Full audio: The Legal Roundtable discusses local effects of the Hobby Lobby decision, proposed amendments to Missouri's Constitution and legal responses to St. Louis' same-sex marriages.

Other topics included:

  • St. Louis' same-sex marriages, and what's next for both the city and the state;
  • The St. Louis Archdiocese abuse case settlement;
  • How the Supreme Court's ruling in the Hobby Lobby case, which allows some corporations to deny contraceptive coverage under Obamacare on grounds of religious liberty, will affect local cases;
  • And how the recent U.S. Supreme Court session will be remembered.

St. Louis on the Air provides discussion about issues and concerns facing the St. Louis area. The show is produced by Mary Edwards and Alex Heuer, and hosted by veteran journalist Don Marsh.

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