William & Mary Law Review Online
This paper embarks on an excursion through a number of the most vital constitutional rights cases, and other contexts as well, and seeks to show that the recurring judicial attempts to distinguish between core and peripheral areas within any given broad constitutional right are unnecessary and distracting. Intriguingly, the case for this conclusion varies significantly depending upon the nature of the general constitutional right in question. But the overall lesson is that courts should abandon their attempts to distinguish between core and peripheral areas of any given broad constitutional right. Courts should instead focus—directly or indirectly—on their best assessment of the purposes underlying, and the resulting scope and limits of, the broad constitutional right in question. Courts have, as well, a variety of alternative means of deciding any specific constitutional case that do not rely on inevitably vain attempts to distinguish between core and periphery.
Wright, R. George
"Core and Periphery in Constitutional Law,"
William & Mary Law Review Online: Vol. 64, Article 3.
Available at: https://scholarship.law.wm.edu/wmlronline/vol64/iss1/3