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Articles by David Hudson

Why I Care About Prisoner Rights

by David L. Hudson, Jr.

A friend recently asked: “Why do you care and write so much about prisoner rights? After all, they’re convicted criminals.” The question came after the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Brown v. Plata that dealt with overcrowded prisons and terrible medical and mental health care ...

Remembering the High Point of Prisoner Rights

by David L. Hudson, Jr.

Thirty-seven years ago, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Procunier v. Martinez, 416 U.S. 396 (1974), a ruling that has since proven to be the high-water mark for prisoner rights.

On April 29, 1974, the high court invalidated California Department of Corrections regulations that allowed sweeping ...

Ruling Against Expression is No Music to Prisoners’ Ears

??by David L. Hudson, Jr.?

“Prison walls do not form a barrier separating the inmate from the protections of the Constitution.” So wrote Justice Sandra Day O’Connor in the 1987 decision Turner v. Safley. But the statement has often proved an empty incantation in courts across the country, as prisoners’ ...

Turner v. Safley: High Drama, Enduring Precedent

Turner v. Safley: high drama, enduring precedent

By David L. Hudson Jr.

First Amendment scholar


When one thinks of famous litigants or important First Amendment decisions, the name Leonard Safley and the case Turner v. Safley do not immediately spring to mind. That's because Leonard Safley was a Missouri ...