Constitutional implications of a Zombie outbreak

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Abstract

A zombie apocalypse would require an unprecedented exercise of constitutional powers relating to defence and the maintenance of the Constitution. It would also have implications for civil liberties, in particular the detention of people to prevent the spread of the disease –in this regard it is disturbing to note that, so weak is current constitutional protection of the right to personal liberty, once detained a person would have no recourse to the courts for release. As
governmental authority broke down, practicality would require that authority be exercised extra-constiutionally, and this makes relevant interesting precedents from the Commonwealth which determine such exercises of power are justifiable.
Finally, it may well be the case that, in the aftermath of a zombie apocalypse, the old Commonwealth and State governments would not be re-established. This would raise questions concerning the legitimacy of successor regimes. It would also provide an opportunity for thoroughgoing constitutional reform - which has proved elusive in pre-zombie Australia - as well as the re-establishment of Indigenous sovereignty over parts of the country.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)14-27
Number of pages14
JournalCanberra Law Review
Volume14
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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