The New York Times published an editorial appreciation of the late William J. Stuntz of the Harvard Law School faculty, on March 23.

The editorial, by Lincoln Caplan, praises Stuntz’s forthcoming book “The Collapse of American Criminal Justice,” as “the capstone to the career of one of the most influential legal scholars of the past generation.”

Caplan writes: “The book argues that the rule of law has been replaced by the misrule of politics, with a one-way ratchet of ever-expanding criminal laws giving boundless discretion to police and prosecutors, leading to a system that wrongly punishes too many black men.

“The solution is ‘a better brand of politics,’ including more ‘local democracy’ through jury decisions about who is guilty and how they should be punished and a broad revival of equal protection of the laws to end pervasive discrimination against the poor and minorities.”

Read the full editorial on

Personal remembrances of Stuntz can be shared with the Harvard Law & Policy Review. To submit a tribute, please send it to