McElroy Lecture explores human rights


University of Detroit Mercy School of Law hosted the 12th Annual McElroy Lecture on Law and Religion featuring John Witte Jr. (center), Jonas Robitscher Professor of Law and director of the Center for the Study of Law and Religion at Emory University, who spoke on "Rights, Resistance, and Revolution: The Historical Christian Foundations of Human Rights."  The lecture took place Wednesday, March 10, at Sts. Peter and Paul Jesuit Church in Detroit.  Welcoming Witte were (left to right) University of Detroit Mercy President Father Gerard Stockhausen, S.J. and Ph.D., and UDM School of Law Dean Lloyd Semple.  "I'm going to be talking about the history of rights. . . I¹ll be particularly interested in some of the sources and dimensions of human rights," Witte explained before the lecture. "My main thesis is that there is liberty before liberalism; there are human rights in place before there were democratic revolutions fought in their name. Point of fact, one of the traditions that I'm going to be talking about is the Calvinist tradition. . . By 1650, every right you find in the Bill of Rights the first 10 amendments to the Constitution ­ has already been defined, defended and died for by Calvinists." Photo by John Meiu.