Free trade and public morality coexist in a precarious balance. On the one hand, the international trading system was founded on the principle of nondiscrimination. Countries should not disadvantage those that fail to share their geopolitical or religious views. On the other hand, the system was also founded on the notion that countries should not be forced to liberalize trade when doing so would threaten their public morality. But how is this balance defined? How does the system grant states sufficient autonomy to regulate on moral grounds while preventing states from abusing that power to enact protectionist measures in disguise?
Free Trade and the Protection of Public Morals: An Analysis of the Newly Emerging Public Morals Clause Doctrine,
Yale J. Int'l L.
Available at: http://digitalcommons.law.yale.edu/yjil/vol33/iss1/6