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					Bonham and the
  Conundrum
        Bonham’s Case


Facts




                     Question:
                What are the facts of
                    the case?
Facts of
Bonham
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                 Bonham’s Case


Facts

  • Dr. Bonham wants to be a physician
  • To do that, he has to go to the Royal Academy of
  Physicians (“medical school”)
   what medicine is like back then

  • “leeches,” “blood letting” (today, “alternative healing?”)
  • To be given a license for this, you had to be admitted to
  the college – something that not all people had the right or
  opportunity to do
  • Bonham bypasses the college and starts doing it himself
                 Bonham’s Case

                                              Question:
Facts                                   What happens next?
  • Dr. Bonham wants to be a physician
  • To do that, he has to go to the Royal Academy of
  Physicians (“medical school”)
   what medicine is like back then

  • “leeches,” “blood letting” (today, “alternative healing?”)
  • To be given a license for this, you had to be admitted to
  the college – something that not all people had the right or
  opportunity to do
  • Bonham bypasses the college and starts doing it himself
                  Bonham’s Case


Facts
 • The college can act as the police and can arrest you and
 punish you. (The academy polices violators).
    -- no understanding of separation of powers
    modern analogy: The ABA arresting people for
    practicing law without a license, and then punishing
    them for it
    Or, perhaps, Wright State Medical School arresting
    (there is no such thing as an ABA yet)
        “Professional goon squad”
                  Bonham’s Case


Facts
 • The college can act as the police and can arrest you and
 punish you. (The academy polices violators).
    -- no understanding of separation of powers
    modern analogy: The ABA arresting people for
    practicing law without a license, and then punishing
    them for it
    Or, perhaps, Wright State Medical School arresting
    (there is no such thing as an ABA yet)
                                         Question:
        “Professional goon squad”   What is the holding in
                                         the case?
prior question

 holding
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                 0
                Bonham’s Case


Holding

  Maxim: “No man can be his own judge.”
     • The college cannot prosecute this matter because it is
     both the charging entity, punishing entity and entity that
     is interested in preserving the medical field
     • In essence, don’t use the Roger Goodell model
     • In essence, an argument for separation of powers

                             Question:
            What does he say in the decision about the
          importance of common law in the legal system?
                   Bonham’s Case


The Importance of the Common Law

  “The common law and common reason are one”
  -- The Common Law controls Acts of Parliament

Lord Coke --

And it appears in our books, that in many cases, the common law
will controul acts of parliament, and sometimes adjudge them to be
utterly void: for when an act of parliament is against common right
and reason, or repugnant, or impossible to be performed, the
common law will controul it, and adjudge such act to be void; and,
therefore, in 8 E. 3. 30 a. b.”
                  Bonham’s Case


The Implications of the decision

   -- Courts have judicial review?
   -- Parliament cannot violate fundamental justificatory law
   (fundamental natural law?)

     Caveat:       No English Revolution yet
      • Case decided in 1610.
      • No serious thought yet in England that Parliament is
      sovereign
      (still, an act of parliament required consent by the King.
      Voiding the law was still voiding “the sovereign will”)
                  Bonham’s Case


The Implications of the decision

   -- Courts have judicial review?
   -- Parliament cannot violate fundamental justificatory law
   (fundamental natural law?)

     Caveat:      No English Revolution yet
                                       Questions:
      • Case decided in 1610.
                                  Was this case correctly
      • No serious thought yet in England that Parliament is
      sovereign                         decided?

      (still, an act of parliament required consent by the King.
      Voiding the law was still voiding “the sovereign will”)
prior question

 was it
correctly
                 0
decided
                 0
                 0
Another Coke case -
  Jury Function
-- today, juries decide the facts, not the law
   (compare: Socrates -- jury was not so confined)
-- How did this modern role come about?
   Lord Coke’s Maxim (pronounced “cook”):
       “Where reason stops, the law itself also stops.”
  Suggestion: Judges are the ones who do the reasoning;

				
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posted:1/21/2011
language:English
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