Professor Montre Carodine recently commented in The Washington Times about Obama’s silence after the New York police officer killings. The president “has been in the background. Why is it we’re talking about the mayor of New York City on this? He’s been the out-front spokesperson,” Carodine said. “It’s coming back to bite him. He’s getting the backlash. They need someone to blame.”
Read more, read “Obama mum on New York police officer murders as de Blasio, Sharpton seize spotlight.“
In the wake of U.S. Secret Service breaches in security at the White House, Professor Richard Delgado recently told The Daily Beast it would be a mistake to discount how racism can affect an institution’s ability to function effectively.
African-American Secret Service agents have filed a lawsuit claiming the agency’s culture is racist.
When racist activity is claimed, “it creates a terrible environment for both sides of the color line,” Delgado said.
“For the minority agents who feel discriminated against, they feel unappreciated and develop a defensive attitude at best,” he said. “Many of their white colleagues see the minority agents as troublemakers scheming to get ahead, talking to lawyers.”
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Civil Law Clinic Certified Legal Interns Scott MacLatchie and Austin Whitten recently won a two-day jury trial in the Tuscaloosa County Circuit Court. The Civil Law Clinic’s client alleged that the contractor who made repairs to her roof and home after the April 2011 tornado did not complete the work properly. After hours of deliberation, the jury returned a verdict in favor of the Clinic client, awarding monetary damages against the contractor for his breach of the repair contract. This award will allow the Clinic client to make the necessary repairs to her home.
Harper Lee is one of 12 Alabama writers who will be inducted into the first Alabama Writers Hall of Fame in June 2015.
The Alabama Center for the Book and the Alabama Writers’ Forum have partnered and created the state’s first comprehensive Alabama Writers Hall of Fame.
In addition to Lee, the members of the class are: Johnson Jones Hooper (1815-1862), Augusta Jane Evans Wilson (1835-1909), Helen Keller (1880-1968), Zora Neal Hurston (1891-1960), William March (1894-1954), Albert Murray (1916-2013) and Helen Norris Bell (1916-2013). Other authors of the 20th century who will be inducted are: Rick Bragg, Andrew Glaze, Sonia Sanchez and Sena Jeter Naslund.
Professor Daniel Joyner’s blog, Arms Control Law, has been chosen for the ABA Journal’s 2014 Blawg 100 list, as one of the top 100 best blogs for a legal audience. For more read, “8th Annual Blawg 100.”
Professor Ronald Krotoszynski recently told AL.com that the legal standard to judge whether speech is a threat is based on three points: the subjective intent of the speaker, the subjective intent of the victim or the recipient and a third where “you ask what a reasonable objective observer would think about the speech: whether they would treat it as hyperbole or whether they would treat it as a genuine threat.”
The U.S. Supreme Court recently heard arguments in Elonis vs. United States to discern what proof is needed for conviction under a federal law when citizens make threats via the Internet or other forms of communications. The case centers around Anthony Douglas Elonis who was convicted for posting what prosecutors considered threats of violence on Facebook. Since the government is not arguing whether to make speech a crime when it terrifies someone, Krotoszynski said the First Amendment should come out of the case unharmed.
“The subjective intent of the victim standard would go too far toward creating liability for hyperbolic speech,” Krotoszynski said. “The other two positions, it seems to me, are both pretty easy to defend. The government clearly has a compelling interest in protecting people from the anxiety of threats that result from being threatened with physical violence by their ex-spouses, for example.”
The U.S. Supreme Court is hearing arguments in Elonis vs. United States to discern what proof is needed for conviction under a federal law when citizens make threats via the Internet or other forms of communications. The case centers around Anthony Douglas Elonis who was convicted for posting what prosecutors considered threats of violence on Facebook.
A ruling against Elonis would not necessarily harm the First Amendment, Professor Ronald Krotoszynski told AL.com
“If [Elonis] couldn’t go to [his wife’s] house and point a gun at her head, why can he do the equivalent through a speech act and avoid any liability when some of these posts might be even more threatening than driving by while brandishing a gun?” Krotoszynski said. “There’s nothing in the First Amendment that makes speech absolutely protected in terms of its social cost…what we’re talking about here is essentially imposing psychological, even physical, harm on a person.”
Glory McLaughlin, Assistant Dean for Public Interest, and several Law School alumni were among the 30 attorneys selected as members of the 2015 Leadership Forum Class 11, the Alabama State Bar recently announced.
Participants will be trained in leadership, ethics, and career development and they are required to attend five sessions, including a three-day orientation program. Since 2005, the bar’s Leadership Forum has produced 287 graduates.
“As a graduate of the program, I know firsthand the positive impact it can have on your legal career, and how it further prepares the participants to serve their clients, their communities and the profession,” said Alabama State Bar President Rich Raleigh of Wilmer & Lee, PA in Huntsville. “The Leadership Forum offers a dynamic and educational environment that creates conversation, inspires new ideas and fosters strong working relationships among attorneys.”
For more, read “Alabama State Bar Announces 2015 Leadership Forum.”
In an essay for Jurist magazine, Professor Fredrick Vars says Alabama’s gun regulations will be mostly unchanged by the state’s new constitutional amendment.
“Most of the important gun laws in Alabama are federal. The state constitution has no effect on federal Law,” he wrote. “The Supremacy Clause of the U.S. Constitution dictates that result. For the same reason, the new Alabama amendment’s assertion that treaties may not henceforth limit the right to bear arms is mistaken. Treaties trump state law, even state constitutional law.”
For more, read “Shooting Blanks: Alabama’s New Gun Rights Amendment.”