Impeach Justice Douglas!

4 User Reviews

Length: 3 Hours

CLE Credits: 3 to 3.6 Ethics, PR and/or General (Depends on 50 or 60 Min State)

Approved in: AK, AZ, CA, ME, MN, MO, MT, NE, NH, NC, OK, OR, PA, TN, UT, VT, WA, WY; CO and NJ via Reciprocity


Featuring Graham Thatcher as Justice William O. Douglas

Written by Anna Marie Thatcher, J.D. and Graham Thatcher, Ph.D.

 When William O. Douglas retired from the U.S. Supreme Court in 1975, he had served longer than any other justice in its history and had helped to decide some of the most important cases in the history of the nation. Anecdote, humor and painful remembrances are used to explore some of the most explosive issues of William O. Douglas' thirty-six year tenure on the U.S. Supreme Court.  Douglas wrestles with balancing what he calls the "wilderness mind" with the often-hostile adversarial conflicts created by his controversial opinions and his active public life. He addresses the issues about which he was most passionate as he reflects on Brown v. Board of Education, the "McCarthy Era" and the Vietnam War. William O. Douglas left a legacy that calls for vigilance to protect human rights and action to protect the earth's environment. The movie explores that legacy, and provokes thought about our responsibilities, not only as lawyers, but also as citizens of the world.

Produced By:

Periaktos Productions L.L.C.


  • Charles "Charlie" Abourezk, Partner, Abourezk Law Firm (Rapid City, SD)
  • Graham Thatcher, Ph.D.
    • GRAHAM THATCHER, who portrays Clarence Darrow, is the Artistic Director and primary performer for Periaktos Productions. Since appearing in his first acting role at five years of age, Graham has performed in or directed over 150 community, university and professional theatre productions. He is the co-author and solo performer in Clarence Darrow: Crimes, Causes and the Courtroom, Maxims, Monarchy and Sir Thomas More and Impeach Justice Douglas!, the live CLE Theatre programs and CLE movies of the same titles presented by Periaktos Productions. He is the co-author and director of Thurgood Marshall’s Coming!, also from Periaktos Productions. Graham has authored several other plays, including A Dickens Christmas and The Mask of the Jaguar, about the cultural clash between the Maya and Europeans during the Spanish Conquest, and works on commission. Graham also serves as a workshop facilitator and consultant in communications and is the creator and facilitator of the Continuing Legal Education programs, “Word of Mouth: A Workshop in the Art and Ethics of Oral Communication for Lawyers” and “The Art of the Law: A Workshop in Professionalism for Lawyers,” for law schools and legal associations. He holds a B.A. from San Francisco State University, an M.A. in Theatre from the University of South Dakota and a Ph.D. in Philosophy from the University of Minnesota. He has been listed in Who's Who in American Education and Outstanding American Educators and is a recipient of the Governor's Award from the Minnesota Council on Quality.

  • John M. Stuart, Retired State Public Defender (Minneapolis, MN)
  • Barry R. Vickrey, Professor of Ethics and Former Dean of the University of South Dakota School of Law (Vermillion, SD)
  • Brian T. Guthrie, ESQ., Of Counsel, Mattioni, LTD (Philadelphia, PA)

Course Materials


4 User Reviews

"Fascinating production about one of the Court's greatest champions of civil rights. There were too many important cases during his long tenure to cover them all in 3 hours, but I would have appreciated more discussion of Gideon v. Wainwright guaranteeing right to legal representation, and Griswold v. CT."
— Anonymous

— Luann G.

"This is a very good program that weaves the life of William O. Douglas with the times in which he lived. It is difficult to maintain viewer interest for any legal topic for 3 + hours, but the inherent interest of the subject matter, the camera changes from Douglas's office to the outdoors, and the convincing acting succeed in doing that. The film is wise to stay away from Douglas's significant contribution to the law of business regulation, but it missed an opportunity to do more with the constitutionalization of the right to privacy in Griswold v. Connecticut. I plan to show this program to my high school students. "
— Stephen G.

"It is refreshing to be reminded power does not necessarily corrupt. Superb program."
— Anonymous