Bloglikes - Society en-US Fri, 03 Jul 2020 23:09:26 +0000 Sat, 06 Apr 2013 00:00:00 +0000 FeedWriter "The entire house — every room, every bed, every bathroom, shower and toilet — was rigged with cameras and audio." From "Powerful men are scared about what Ghislaine Maxwell will say" (NY Post).

[Author: (Ann Althouse)]

Fri, 03 Jul 2020 16:08:41 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Crime Law Ny Post Epstein Ghislaine Maxwell Richard Epstein Ann Althouse Ghislaine -RSB- Maxwell
Prince Andrew's silence is a 'torture test' for Epstein's alleged victims, says lawyer Pressure grows on Duke of York to ‘speak up’ after the arrest of his friend Ghislaine Maxwell

The Duke of York was accused of subjecting alleged victims of disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein to a “torture test” by his silence as lawyers for the women increased the pressure following the arrest of Ghislaine Maxwell.

As Maxwell, 58, remained in custody on charges of facilitating former boyfriend Epstein’s sexual exploitation of underage girls, lawyers for multiple women demanded Prince Andrew “be a man”, “speak up” and stop “deliberately avoiding” US authorities.

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Fri, 03 Jul 2020 12:29:53 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law US UK News World news US news Maxwell Prince Andrew Sexual Harassment Duke Of York Andrew Jeffrey Epstein Epstein Ghislaine Maxwell Ghislaine MaxwellThe Duke of York
Amid the havoc wreaked by coronavirus, there is another danger we've forgotten | Jonathan Freedland As Boris Johnson reopens pubs, a no-deal Brexit threatens to rain disaster on a country reeling from the pandemic

Do you have the bunting out and the fireworks primed for Independence Day, with 4 July designated as the moment England ends its long national hibernation and flocks to the pub? To the untrained eye, the choice of a Saturday for the great unlocking might seem a tad rash, when, I don’t know, Monday was available to ease people in gradually. That point was put to Boris Johnson on LBC this morning, but he couldn’t offer even an approximation of an answer. Which leaves us to conclude that his government of geniuses picked Saturday solely because of the pleasing headlines that the Fourth of July suggested – rather forgetting that this is the day when Americans celebrate their escape from the rule of a dysfunctional London elite headed by a man with more children than you could count and prone to gibbering in public.

Related: I love pubs so much I recreated mine in VR – but I'm staying home on 4 July | Tristan Cross

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Fri, 03 Jul 2020 12:11:01 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Europe Business Politics England London European Union Society UK News Unemployment Infectious Diseases Boris Johnson LBC Brexit Jonathan Freedland Coronavirus outbreak
Vogue Portugal under fire for mental health cover in 'very bad taste' Front of magazine’s ‘Madness’ issue attacked as attempt to glamorise mental illness

Vogue Portugal has been criticised for insensitive treatment of mental health on one of its latest magazine covers.

The image – one of four covers created for its July/August “Madness” issue – features model Simona Kirchnerova crouched in a bath flanked by two nurses, with one pouring water over her head. The cover has been criticised both for attempting to glamorise mental illness and for the use of the outdated term “madness”.

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Fri, 03 Jul 2020 11:17:05 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Health Fashion Society World news Mental Health Vogue Portugal Vogue Portugal Simona Kirchnerova
Houston PD decides public can know when police might injure or kill them Legislature codified Holmes v. Morales in 1997), to my knowledge, few other departments had followed their lead.
Grits always thought that's because keeping the policy secret didn't make sense. If nothing else, I found it unseemly and a little rude that police would go to the trouble of writing down a policy that basically tells the public, "Here's when we will hurt you" and then refuse to share a copy with them.
"No, I won't tell you the circumstances under which I'm trained to kill you, but don't worry, you'll know when I do!"
Now, the policy has been un-redacted and is publicly available, reported the Houston Chronicle last week. Before releasing it, the department made mostly minor, inconsequential revisions, the paper reported, including changing the policy's name from "Use of Force" to "Response to Resistance." (Austin and Dallas have done the same thing, likely many others.)
The "response to resistance" terminology is verbal judo being deployed on behalf of authoritarianism, an Orwellian re-framing in which all use of force, by definition, responds to "resistance" and is therefore justified. It comes off to me as a little smarmy. If you don't like "Use of Force," OTOH, some scholars suggest the title, "Police Violence," instead.
Grits hasn't had time to examine Houston's policy in detail, but I know there are local activists who've been waiting to see it for many years. Releasing this policy was a small but important step; it's hard to debate appropriate police practices when they are secret.

[Author: Gritsforbreakfast]

Fri, 03 Jul 2020 11:13:12 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Dallas Houston Houston Chronicle Holmes Legislature Morales AG Gritsforbreakfast Houston PD Resistance Austin
"At least one highly dedicated Wikipedia user has been scrubbing controversial aspects of [Kamala] Harris’s 'tough-on-crime' record from her Wikipedia page, her decision not to prosecute..." From "THERE’S A WAR GOING ON OVER KAMALA HARRIS’S WIKIPEDIA PAGE, WITH UNFLATTERING ELEMENTS VANISHING" (The Intercept).
IN THE COMMENTS: wild chicken says:
Too bad. It sounds like some of those "damning" items would recommend her to me!
A black law-and-order candidate would be awesome.
Wouldn't it be funny if she were rather conservative deep down but had to play that Democrat game because California.

[Author: (Ann Althouse)]

Fri, 03 Jul 2020 09:52:02 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law California Wikipedia Atlantic Reddit Amy Klobuchar Orange County Kamala Harris HARRIS Sen Elizabeth Warren Vp Ann Althouse Steve Mnuchin Intercept Stacey Abrams Kamala -RSB- Harris Wild Chicken
This morning at 5:55, I paid my respects to the empty plinth of the Hans Christian Heg statue. IMG_7517
I didn't insert the flags — only took the photograph.
Notice the bent up portion of the bronze in back. That damage occurred when the statue was attacked last week:

The memorial statue was beheaded and thrown in Lake Monona by rioters, incensed by the arrest of a member of Black Lives Matter as demonstrations in Madison turned violent in June 2020,[5][6] despite it being of a Union soldier and abolitionist.... On the morning of 24 June, someone painted "Fire Matt Kenny" on the base of the Heg statue. (This was a reference to an incident in 2015, when a police officer shot and killed a 19-year old black man; the police officer was cleared of any criminal wrongdoing, and is still employed.)Another statue toppled on the same night, was of a female figure representing Wisconsin's "Forward" motto.
"Protester Micah Le said the two statues paint a picture of Wisconsin as a racially progressive state even though slavery has continued in the form of a corrections system built around incarcerating Blacks." Two protestors interviewed by the Wisconsin State Journal said that toppling the statues was to draw attention to their view of Wisconsin as being racially unjust.

[Author: (Ann Althouse)]

Fri, 03 Jul 2020 09:45:01 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Photography Law Wisconsin Union Civil War Black Lives Matter Madison Flags Monuments Wisconsin State Journal Matt Kenny Lake Monona Ann Althouse Destruction Of Art Micah Le Hans Christian Heg Heg
"This week, it was announced that Tucker Carlson Tonight recorded the highest-rated quarter for a cable news show ever...." Publicly, online and on opposing channels, these comments are offensive, racist, and despicable. Privately, they are interesting, subjective stances worth considering.... Alternative views are particularly a refreshment to the younger demographics, who are showered in extreme thinking online. They are just trying to get through their days without getting fired or shamed. Carlson is that opposing perspective for them in the evening."
Writes Bobby Burack (at Outkick).

[Author: (Ann Althouse)]

Fri, 03 Jul 2020 09:33:03 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs TV Law Protests Fox News Msnbc Tucker Carlson Hayes Chris Hayes Carlson Ann Althouse These Kids Today Cancel Culture Bobby Burack
Hong Kong journalists and lawyers scramble to adapt to security law Accounts deleted and social media erased as members of both professions question – in private – how to operate

Journalists and lawyers in Hong Kong are scrambling to adapt as Chinese authorities set up the apparatus to enforce a controversial national security law, including appointing a hardline party official to head a new security agency.

Zheng Yanxiong, who is best known for tackling protests on the mainland, is to run the office established under the law that empowers mainland security agents to operate in Hong Kong openly and unbound for the first time. China’s authoritarian leaders say its series of powers will restore stability after a year of protests.

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Fri, 03 Jul 2020 08:55:02 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Hong Kong Human Rights Media Law China World news Newspapers Asia Pacific Press freedom Zheng Yanxiong
"For the past few months, Trump and the conservative propaganda apparatus have struggled to make the old race-and-gender-baiting rhetoric stick to Biden." From "Trump Is Struggling to Run Against a White Guy/The president is having a difficult time deploying his traditional culture-war playbook against Biden" by Adam Serwer (in The Atlantic).
By the way, I thought I was looking at Nixon...

... when I saw that oddly cropped image of Biden (at the link).

[Author: (Ann Althouse)]

Fri, 03 Jul 2020 08:52:42 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Obama Joe Biden Atlantic Fox News Republican Party Oklahoma Biden Trump Nixon Laura Ingraham Ann Althouse Racial Politics Left-wing Ideology Trump 2020 what Trump did to the GOP Marxists Adam Serwer
"This Fourth of July holiday is one of the most humbling in our history." Says Robin Wright in "To the World, We’re Now America the Racist and Pitiful" (The New Yorker).
I'm surprised to encounter reverence for the Fourth of July holiday. If we're going to take this year's events as seriously as Wright wants us to take them, isn't the Fourth racist? Isn't it white supremacy? Why is she calling on us to be truer to its values?
We've had the 1619 Project to instruct us. Shouldn't there now be a call to abolish the Fourth of July as a national holiday? Should we even be calling holidays "national"?
I'm not seeing that suggestion — abolish the holiday. Not yet. It must be brewing out there, though, don't you think? I'm seeing articles that look like they're anticipating that idea and pushing it back before it emerges — aborting it, pre-born.
I'm talking about things like that Robin Wright article, and, more conspicuously, at WaPo — by historian Jonathan Lande — "The Fourth of July is a Black American holiday/Black Americans have long used the holiday to crusade for equality."
Throughout the 1830s and 1840s, black Americans sparsely celebrated the day, as they were routinely shunned or attacked in public, but by the late 1840s, black abolitionists had developed genius techniques to lampoon and lament American commitments to freedom amid rampant unfreedoms and inequalities. This included celebrating independence. They understood the day of freedom festivals served as the best moment to challenge Americans, especially white Americans, to reflect on subjects too often ignored: slavery and racism.
Black abolitionists organized celebrations... Frederick Douglass joined this movement... In 1852, he famously commemorated the signing of the Declaration of Independence... “What, to the American slave, is your 4th of July?,” Douglass asked the packed hall of white abolitionists. “I answer,” he continued: It is “a day that reveals to him, more than all other days in the year, the gross injustice and cruelty to which he is the constant victim. To him, your celebration is a sham; your boasted liberty, an unholy license; your national greatness, swelling vanity; your sounds of rejoicing are empty and heartless.”...
He closed his oration venerating the Constitution as a “GLORIOUS LIBERTY DOCUMENT” and pushed for reforms to end bondage and inequality....
Black Americans... knew the hypocrisy embedded within the nation’s celebration of freedom and justice. But they, like those celebrated signatories of the Declaration, grasped the country’s potential for progress and that only dedicated, persistent protests and activism could deliver the nation from the ever-present tyranny of slavery and racism. Today, as protesters again assemble to challenge injustices, it is again time to imagine how we can better the country.

[Author: (Ann Althouse)]

Fri, 03 Jul 2020 08:43:29 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law America History United States Slavery Robin Wright Wright WaPo New York Harbor Frederick Douglass Douglass Festivities Race Consciousness Ann Althouse Jonathan Lande
Morning Docket: 07.03.20 Nashville Post] * A New Jersey lawyer has been disbarred for converting $92,000 from his attorney trust account. [New Jersey Law Journal] * A Manhattan judge (before whom I argued my first motion years ago!) has dismissed a conservative group's defamation lawsuit against the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center. [New York Daily News] * Joe Biden's campaign is preparing an army of lawyers as part of voter protection efforts. [CNN] * The ACLU has filed a lawsuit seeking to delay an execution because the inmate's Buddhist priest is at risk of complications should he contract COVID-19. Have to give props to those lawyers for a creative argument. [Hill]]]> Fri, 03 Jul 2020 08:30:58 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Joe Biden Tennessee Aclu New Jersey Manhattan Lgbtq New York Daily News Buddhist New Jersey Law Journal Nashville Post Morning Docket Bar Exam Voter Supression COVID-19 "37A: Author/TV personality who wrote 'Your body is not a temple, it's an amusement park.'" Here's the grid — filled out — at Rex Parker's blog. It's great clue, because it's an interesting quote, and you actually want to know who said that. My first thought was George's mother on "Seinfeld":
"I come home and find my son treating his body like it was an amusement park!"
But the answer is not Estelle Costanza. She's not an "Author/TV personality." Well, I thought, who wrote that episode? What's the episode? It's "The Contest"! It's about masturbation. Would the NYT center its puzzle on masturbation?! The writer of the episode could be considered an "Author/TV personality"... maybe. It's Larry David, but it's a 15-letter answer. Maybe Lawrence David? Lawrence Gene David? No, still not 15 letters.

With a few down answers, it became easy to visualize the full name, though I'd never associated him with the quote. It's Anthony Bourdain. Oh, the amusement isn't masturbating, it's eating? Or is it hanging yourself in a hotel bathroom?
I'm going to recommend visualizing your body as a temple, then. It's not a thrill ride. Treat it with respect, in good times and bad.
The Bourdain line is in "Kitchen Confidential," originally published in 2000. The "Seinfeld" episode "The Contest" first aired in 1992. And Larry David has resisted killing himself.

[Author: (Ann Althouse)]

Fri, 03 Jul 2020 08:16:51 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Puzzles Names Seinfeld Larry David Anthony Bourdain George Bourdain Ann Althouse Rex Parker Estelle Costanza Lawrence David Lawrence Gene David
Priti Patel accused of 'shameful' bid to deport girl at risk of FGM Barrister says Home Office’s unwillingness to protect 11-year-old makes a mockery of FGM protection orders

Human rights lawyers have launched a scathing attack on the Home Office for failing to grant asylum to an 11-year-old girl found by judges to be at high risk of female genital mutilation if removed from Britain.

The girl, who is thriving at school and only speaks English, was brought to the UK in 2012 by her mother, herself a victim of what is known as type 3 FGM whose two sisters died after being cut in their native Sudan.

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Fri, 03 Jul 2020 07:15:42 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Health Politics UK Law Society UK News Immigration and asylum Britain Home Office Sudan Fgm Priti Patel Female genital mutilation (FGM Women's rights and gender equality
A Journalist Shield Law for the Provinces

This piece is based on my Parkland Institute report entitled, “Alberta’s Inadequate Legal Protection of Whistleblowers, Journalist Sources and Others Who Speak Out in the Public Interest.” The report is expected to be published online later this year.

A person who wants to blow the whistle on wrongdoing in our society has a lot to worry about. On the legal front, they may lose their job or be sued. Whistleblower protections in Canada, which extend only the public sector employment, are poor. Moreover, only three provinces have anti-SLAPP legislation. Most choose to feed a tip, leaked document, or their first hand information to a journalist on a confidential basis, i.e. the journalist will not disclose the identity of her source.

In some North American jurisdictions, this confidential relationship is protected through a journalist shield law. The general purpose of these laws is to encourage whistleblowers to come forward on the assurance that a court will not order their identity to be revealed. The competing public interest consideration in such laws is when – if at all – courts should reveal the identity of a source in the interests of furthering a criminal investigation, or in the civil context, to help a would-be plaintiff initiate a lawsuit.

At the federal (and criminal) level, the recently-enacted Journalistic Sources Protection Act (JSPA) uses an interest balancing approach with the onus the on Crown, or would-be plaintiff, to show that the public interest in revealing identity (or obtaining evidence) outweighs the chilling effects on sources coming forward. This should mean greater protection for journalist sources.

At common law, courts in this country have favored disclosure by making inferences about the possible importance of the evidence to a criminal investigation while downplaying the possible chilling effects on journalist sources. In this state of affairs, I am skeptical that reversing the onus will make much of a difference.

While the JSPA is not likely to be changed anytime soon, it is striking that no province in Canada has yet to enact a journalist shield law to protect sources against civil claims by plaintiffs. This is perturbing since the common law, as in Alberta,[1] does not necessarily provide any protection.

Most US states, by contrast, have some kind of journalist shield law. New York and California law, for example, absolutely protect journalists from revealing the identify of (or documents related to) a confidential informant.

Many other US states have a journalist shield law located somewhere between a straight up balancing approach (like in Canada where the source and/or her evidence is usually revealed) and absolute privilege which can never be penetrated.

An effective middle way would be some articulation of the test offered by Justice Stewart’s dissent in the US Supreme Court’s foundational case of Branzburg v. Hayes requiring a journalist to reveal her source only if there is:

  • “…probable cause to believe that the newsman has information that is clearly relevant to a specific probable violation of the law;
  • …the information cannot be obtained by alternative means; and
  • [there is] a compelling overriding interest in the information.”

The first notable feature of this test is that it removes much of the speculation associated with a straight balancing test. The information sought must be “clearly relevant” to a “specific probable” violation of the law. Mere speculation that the information sought might assist law enforcement, or a civil plaintiff, in some vague way is not enough. Even then, privilege is to be maintained unless there is a “compelling overriding interest in the information.” This is not a mere balancing exercise but clearly favors confidentiality in all but the most exceptional circumstances.

According to Mathewson, this three-part test in one form or another has been codified into legislation in 32 US states and the District of Columbia.[2] But I think this better approach can be improved upon.

Abramowicz has convincingly argued that the three-part test, as currently formulated, looks only at the public interest in obtaining evidence. The newsgathering interest, on the other hand, is viewed as fixed. He advocates that this interest should be evaluated on the basis of whether proper journalistic procedures were followed in using a confidential source.

Proper journalistic standards includes only using confidential sources for “important” information, attempting to verify it elsewhere, ensuring the information is within the source’s direct knowledge, engaging in deliberation with an editor who knows the identity of the informant and has the newspaper’s credibility in mind, and transparency in explaining why confidentiality was granted to the informant.[3]

In Canada, these guidelines are followed by reputable institutional newsgatherers.[4] More to the point, any shield law should assess the journalistic standards used to check and verify information provided by an anonymous source as part of the inquiry.[5] The stronger the journalistic standards, the more difficult it should be to show that there is a compelling interest that the source, or her evidence, should be revealed.


[1] Moysa v. Alberta (Labour Relations Board) [1987] A.J. No. 418.

[2] Joe Mathewson The Supreme Court and the Press: The Indispensable Conflict (Northwestern University Press: Evanston 2011) at 109.

[3] David Abramowicz “Calculating the Public Interest in Protecting Journalists’ Confidential Sources” (2008) 108 Columbia Law Review 1949 at 1971-3.

[4] See e.g. CBC Journalistic Standards and Practics , and the Globe and Mail editorial standards:

[5] It is worth noting that Abella J. (dissenting) in National Post suggests that courts should give deference to the professional judgement of ethical journalists. At para. 130: “Where, as here, the journalist has taken credible and reasonable steps to determine the authenticity and reliability of his source, one should respect his professional judgement and pause, it seems to me, before trespassing on the confidentiality which is the source of the relationship.”

Fri, 03 Jul 2020 07:00:24 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs New York Supreme Court Law California US Canada District Of Columbia Alberta Columbia US supreme court National Post Abella Hayes Joe Mathewson Justice Issues Alberta Labour Relations Board Mathewson Branzburg Parkland Institute Justice Stewart Abramowicz Moysa David Abramowicz Public Interest in Protecting Journalists CBC Journalistic Standards
Friday Jobs Roundup

Each Friday, we share the latest job listings from Slaw Jobs, which features employment opportunities from across the country. Find out more about these positions by following the links below, or learn how you can use Slaw Jobs to gain valuable exposure for your job ads, while supporting the great Canadian legal commentary at

Current postings on Slaw Jobs (newest first):

Fri, 03 Jul 2020 07:00:00 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Canada Slaw Friday Jobs Roundup
Liberty, freedom, 2020 in incarceration nation ... discuss An open thread for those who might be interested....

[Author: Douglas A. Berman]

Fri, 03 Jul 2020 06:30:34 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Douglas A Berman
The NYT and Vanity Fair are striving to help Trump with his underdog narrative. "Why June Was Such a Terrible Month for Trump/Last month represented the political nadir of President Trump’s three and a half years in office, thanks to self-inflicted wounds as he played to his base and missteps by a fractured campaign."
Vanity Fair: "'WHAT DO I DO? WHAT DO I DO?': TRUMP DESPERATE, DESPONDENT AS NUMBERS CRATER, 'LOSER' LABEL LOOMS/'They probably won’t have' the Jacksonville convention. The Joni Ernst campaign is angry at Trump’s horrible numbers. Meadows and Kushner are at loggerheads over Parscale. And if things don’t turn around by Labor Day, GOP defections may begin."

[Author: (Ann Althouse)]

Fri, 03 Jul 2020 05:49:30 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Vanity Fair Jacksonville Trump Joni Ernst Meadows Kushner Ann Althouse Trump 2020 Labor Day GOP
"Proposition 47’s Impact on Racial Disparity in Criminal Justice Outcomes" The title of this post is the title of from the Public Policy Institute of California.  Here is its "Summary":

While the COVID-19 pandemic has forced changes to correctional systems and law enforcement’s interactions with the community, widespread protests focused on the deaths of African Americans in police custody have intensified concern about racial and ethnic disparities in our criminal justice system.  In recent years, California has implemented a number of significant reforms that were not motivated by racial disparities but might have narrowed them in a number of ways. In this report, we extend our previous arrest work to examine the impact of Proposition 47, which reclassified a number of drug and property offenses from felonies to misdemeanors, on racial disparities in arrest and jail booking rates and in the likelihood of an arrest resulting in a booking.

While significant inequities persist in California and elsewhere, our findings point to a reduction in pretrial detention and a narrowing of racial disparities in key statewide criminal justice outcomes.

  • After Prop 47 passed in November 2014, the number of bookings quickly dropped by 10.4 percent.  As a result, California’s use of pretrial detention has declined.
  • Prop 47 also led to notable decreases in racial/ethnic disparities in arrests and bookings.  The African American–white arrest rate gap narrowed by about 5.9 percent, while the African American–white booking rate gap shrank by about 8.2 percent.  Prop 47 has not meaningfully changed the disparities in arrest and booking rates between Latinos and whites, which are still only a small fraction of the African American–white gap.
  • The narrowing of African American–white disparities has been driven by property and drug offenses.  The gap in arrests for these offenses dropped by about 24 percent and the bookings gap narrowed by almost 33 percent.  Even more striking, African American–white gaps in arrest and booking rates for drug felonies decreased by about 36 percent and 55 percent, respectively.
  • The likelihood of an arrest leading to a jail booking declined the most for whites, but this is attributable to the relatively larger share of white arrests for drug offenses covered by Prop 47. When we account for arrest offense differences, the decreases in the likelihood of an arrest being booked are similar across race and ethnicity.

We also looked at the cumulative impact of reforms and prison population reduction measures in California since 2009 on racial disparities in incarceration.  We found that the sizable reduction in the overall incarceration rate produced by these efforts has led to a narrowing of racial disparities in the proportion institutionalized on any given day.  In particular, the African American–white incarceration gap dropped from about 4.5 percentage points to 2.8 percentage points, a decrease of about 36 percent.

In addition to meaningfully reducing racial disparities in key criminal justice outcomes, the reclassification of drug and property offenses led to significant decreases in arrests and bookings, and hence pretrial detention. These decreases have the potential to reduce and/or redirect the use of public resources.  However, more work is needed.  Given evidence that the reforms have led to some increases in property crime, it is important for policymakers and practitioners to identify effective programs and policies that can reduce recidivism and maintain public safety while also continuing to address racial disparities.

[Author: Douglas A. Berman]

Fri, 03 Jul 2020 05:32:00 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law California Douglas A Berman Public Policy Institute of California Here
Why victims can sometimes inherit from their abusers- even if they kill them It is a basic rule of English law that a person who kills someone should not inherit from their victim. The justification behind the rule, known as the forfeiture rule, is that a person should not benefit from their crimes and therefore forfeits entitlement. Many other jurisdictions have the same basic rule for fundamental reasons of public policy, including the need to avoid incentivising homicide. Importantly, however, Parliament passed the Forfeiture Act 1982 to give courts in England and Wales discretion to modify the application of the rule in certain cases, so that some people could inherit from those they had killed after all. Such modification is also possible in some other jurisdictions: It allows judges to consider individual circumstances where the blanket application of a forfeiture rule would cause injustice.

Sally Challen was convicted of murdering her husband in 2011. Challen killed her husband Richard with a hammer while suffering from a psychiatric illness apparently caused by his abuse. If that conviction had stood, she could not have benefitted under the intestacy rules applicable where a deceased person leaves no will, as she usually would as a spouse. The forfeiture rule would have applied unmodified because the Forfeiture Act prevents modification where someone “stands convicted of murder.” But the Court of Appeal overturned her conviction in 2019 because of psychiatric evidence suggesting she had been suffering from previously undiagnosed personality disorders at the time of the killing. Her guilty plea to the less serious offence of manslaughter by reason of diminished responsibility was later accepted.

Because of the original application of the forfeiture rule, Mrs. Challen’s sons had inherited their father’s estate instead of her. Challen did not want to recover the property from them for herself. But in recent court proceedings (Challen v Challen), she did seek modification of the rule to allow her sons to recover the inheritance tax paid because their inheritance had come directly from their father rather than via her.

In exercising his discretion to modify the rule the judge took into account factors including the deceased’s violent, humiliating and isolating conduct toward his wife. The judge was also satisfied that the claimant loved the deceased very much, despite killing him. The judge emphasised that the facts occurred over 40 years and “involved the combination of a submissive personality on whom coercive control worked, a man prepared to use that coercive control, a lack of friends or other sources of assistance, an enormous dependency upon him by the claimant, and significant psychiatric illness.”

A particularly important aspect of the case was that Challen’s husband “undoubtedly contributed significantly to the circumstances in which he died,” since the judge was satisfied that “without his appalling behaviour over so many years, the claimant would not have killed him.”

Clearly, the judge responded very sensitively and carefully to the facts. He anxiously emphasised that his decision did not mean that all victims of coercive control who kill the perpetrators can expect a total disapplication of the forfeiture rule. The judge asserted that “the facts of this terrible case are so extraordinary, with such a fatal combination of conditions and events, that [he] would not expect them easily to be replicated in any other.” The expectation of relief may nevertheless be difficult to rein in in future cases.

Some may consider it controversial that the forfeiture rule can be modified at all in a case like this. But the acceptance of her plea inherently demonstrates that Challen’s culpability was limited, and that was for reasons associated with the deceased’s own conduct. The very point of the 1982 Act is to relieve the effects of forfeiture notwithstanding the fact that the deceased was unlawfully killed by the offender: If Challen had not been criminally responsible for her husband’s death, the rule would never have applied in the first place. It is also worth emphasising that Sally Challen did not inherit in substance, and her motivation in improving her sons’ position was largely selfless.

While the result appears correct, sadly the case of Sally Challen will not be the last occasion on which the phenomenon of coercive control and its consequences will come before the courts, however much the judge emphasised the extraordinary facts.

Feature Image Credit: by Mondschwinge via Pixabay.

The post Why victims can sometimes inherit from their abusers- even if they kill them appeared first on OUPblog.

Fri, 03 Jul 2020 05:30:36 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Books England Featured Law Wales Court of appeal Manslaughter Parliament Richard Sloan Brian Sloan Murder Case Coercive Control Law Of Succession Sally Challen Challen Murder Conviction Challen V Challenin Forfeiture Act 1982 Forfeiture Rule Heritance Tax Psychiatric Evidence Mrs Challen Mondschwinge
'I'm cautiously optimistic': Imperial's Robin Shattock on his coronavirus vaccine Team is using new approach that could be cheap and scalable and become the norm within five years

Prof Robin Shattock would have liked slightly longer to develop the revolutionary approach to vaccines that he is pretty sure will not only save lives in the Covid-19 pandemic but become the norm for vaccine development within five years.

His team at Imperial College were working on Ebola and Lassa fever vaccines using new technology but had not got as far as human trials when a novel coronavirus started to kill thousands of people in Wuhan, China.

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Fri, 03 Jul 2020 01:00:12 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Health Science Society Medical Research Vaccines and immunisation Imperial College Wuhan China Coronavirus outbreak Robin Shattock
D.C. Considers Rule Changes [Author: Legal Profession Prof]

Thu, 02 Jul 2020 23:11:39 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Legal Profession Prof Bar Discipline & Process District of Columbia Bar Bar Invites Comment
Text Messages Draw Bar Charges [Author: Legal Profession Prof]

Thu, 02 Jul 2020 23:11:39 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Illinois Newton NEWTON Legal Profession Prof Bar Discipline & Process
TCOLE screwed up new racial profiling data required in 2017 Sandra Bland Act identifying a big screw up by the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement regarding racial-profiling data collection by Texas law enforcement agencies.
In 2017, the Texas Legislature expanded the data collected to include after-stop data involving arrests, searches, contraband discovered, and use of force. But when the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement went to implement the statute's requirements via rule making, they excised the "racial" data from the racial profiling reports, making it impossible to use them to assess discriminatory practices.
At first Grits feared we may have screwed up the language in Rep. Garnet Coleman's bill, but at this point all agree the errors arose in the agency rule making process.
By all appearances, this was a good-faith error, and TCOLE has pledged to fix the problem. Normally, Grits might be more skeptical, but TCOLE's chief, Kim Vickers, operates an unusually open and accountable shop, in my experience. Considering they're fixing the problem as soon as it was identified, I'm inclined to afford him the benefit of the doubt. (Since the agency is currently up for "sunset" review at the Legislature, they have lots of incentive to be cooperative.)
Notably, Just Liberty last year analyzed this data as soon as it came out to help construct arguments for limiting arrests for Class C misdemeanors. The 2017 Sandra Bland Act mandated information on Class C arrests and use of force at traffic stops be reported for the first time, and we reported that data by agency. We found Waco PD led the state in Class C misdemeanor arrests at traffic stops, arresting more than 4.5% of driver stopped for these lowest-level offenses. Houston PD used force most frequently, at about one out of every 188 stops.
This was a short turnaround project - the initial data only appeared mid-session in March. Our goal with that analysis was to counter the opposition's argument that arrests like Sandra Bland's are infrequent, so Just Liberty's report focused on total arrests and use of force incidents without attempting to break them out by race. Apparently, nobody else used the dataset until Eric began poking around, so no one discovered the omission.
It's disappointing these data aren't crunched more often, particularly by local reporters and policy makers overseeing local law-enforcement agencies. Grits must admit, I put a lot of stock in transparency and the power of data to confront significant social problems. But data don't matter if no one is using them.
That's even more frustrating because Texas' so-called racial-profiling data are now particularly robust. Once TCOLE fixes its categorization problem, this data set will become one of the most comprehensive of its type, providing policy makers a statistical window into traffic-enforcement activities that constitute a huge proportion of police interactions with the public.
Particularly when it comes to vehicle searches, the ability to tell whether contraband is found will let researchers and police supervisors drill down to discover discriminatory practices. The old data might show black folks were searched more often, but shed no light on whether that was justified.
These sorts of analyses aren't as viscerally compelling as, say, video of a Minnesota cop with his knee on George Floyd's neck. But they help counter arguments that discriminatory policing is confined to "isolated incidents." And they provide policy makers more aggregate information about what, exactly, their officers do in the field than any other source available.

[Author: Gritsforbreakfast]

Thu, 02 Jul 2020 23:11:38 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Texas Minnesota Law Sandra Bland Houston Chronicle Legislature Eric Texas Legislature Gritsforbreakfast Garnet Coleman Eric Dexheimer Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Houston PD Kim Vickers George Floyd TCOLE
Court grants Alabama’s request to block ruling on COVID-related accommodations for upcoming runoff election

Tonight a divided Supreme Court granted a request by Alabama to temporarily freeze a lower-court ruling, issued as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, that would make it easier for voters in the state to cast absentee ballots in the state’s upcoming primary election runoff, which is scheduled for July 14. By a vote of 5-4, the justices put the order by a federal district court in Alabama on hold while the state appeals to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit and, if necessary, the Supreme Court. The court’s four more liberal justices – Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan – indicated that they would have allowed the balloting accommodations to remain in place.

The ruling comes six days after the Supreme Court turned down a request from the Texas Democratic Party to temporarily reinstate a lower-court ruling that would have allowed all voters in the state to vote by mail without an excuse because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It also comes on the same day that the justices denied the Texas Democrats’ request to fast-track their petition for review of their claims, an order that all but eliminated the prospect that the justices will weigh in on the merits of that dispute before the 2020 election in November.

Tonight’s order involved a dispute over the requirements for absentee voting in Alabama, where the July 14 primary election runoffs will determine the Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate, among other races. The Senate runoff pits former U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions against former Auburn University football coach Tommy Tuberville, who has been endorsed by President Donald Trump. The winner will face Sen. Doug Jones, a Democrat, in the general election in November.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the state is allowing all registered voters to cast absentee ballots in the runoff, which was moved to July from its originally scheduled date of March 31. But several Alabama voters who are at high risk of serious illness if they are exposed to COVID-19, as well as three groups with high-risk members, filed a lawsuit in federal district court challenging provisions in state election law that, they argued, “pose severe obstacles to voting” in light of the pandemic. The district court agreed and, on June 15, entered an injunction that barred election officials in three counties from requiring high-risk voters to have their absentee ballot envelopes witnessed or notarized and to mail in a copy of their photo ID. The district court also blocked the state from enforcing a ban on curbside voting, although it did not require curbside voting.

After the 11th Circuit declined to put the district court’s order on hold, the state came to the Supreme Court, asking the justices to step in. The district court’s order, the state told the court, “rewrites Alabama’s election law by prohibiting election officials in three counties from enforcing modest anti-fraud requirements for absentee voting” and by requiring election officials to allow curbside voting, even though Alabama officials had “concluded that trying out a brand-new voting procedure during a pandemic would create more logistical and safety problems than it would fix and is likely unlawful in any event.” More broadly, the state added, the Supreme Court’s “precedent prohibits federal courts from changing the rules of an ongoing or rapidly approaching election.” Tonight the justices granted the state’s request in a brief, unsigned order.

In its request to stay the lower court’s order, the state warned the justices that “[l]ower courts across the nation are facing a flood of requests for, and appeals of, preliminary injunctions challenging States’ election laws in light of COVID-19.” At the beginning of April, the court – also divided 5-4 – blocked a lower-court order that had extended the deadline for absentee ballots for Wisconsin’s primary election. In an unsigned opinion, the majority reiterated that “lower federal courts should not ordinarily alter the election rules on the eve of an election.” Although the justices did not explain their ruling tonight, the same principle likely was persuasive for the majority – and may well play a key role in future COVID-related election cases that come to the court.

This post was originally published at Howe on the Court.

The post Court grants Alabama’s request to block ruling on COVID-related accommodations for upcoming runoff election appeared first on SCOTUSblog.

Thu, 02 Jul 2020 22:18:04 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Featured Supreme Court Law Senate Court Alabama Wisconsin Donald Trump U S Senate Howe Auburn University U S Court of Appeals Jeff Sessions Elena Kagan 11th Circuit Texas Democratic Party Ruth Bader Ginsburg Stephen Breyer Sonia Sotomayor Tommy Tuberville Texas Democrats Sen Doug Jones Emergency appeals and applications
At the Sunrise Café... IMG_7410
... you can write about whatever you like.

[Author: (Ann Althouse)]

Thu, 02 Jul 2020 21:14:53 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Photography Law Sunrise Lake Mendota Ann Althouse
Patently-O Bits and Bytes by Juvan Bonni Recent Headlines in the IP World:

Source: USPTO

Commentary and Journal Articles:

New Job Postings on Patently-O:

Thu, 02 Jul 2020 19:55:57 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Cnn Wipo Patent Malathi Nayak Juvan Bonni Bloomberg Law Ian Lopez Bloomberg Law Stephen Lambrechts Techrader Allen Kim Daniele Fabris Joseph Fishman Rochelle Cooper Dreyfuss Jerome H Reichman
"These iconoclasts appeared on the Capitol Square to cover over the hate graffiti inspired by the fire bombers, looters, and window smashers." Writes David Blaska, about his counter-protest activities in downtown Madison. Photos at the link.

[Author: (Ann Althouse)]

Thu, 02 Jul 2020 19:11:45 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Milwaukee Protests Posters Madison Ann Althouse Mifflin Street David Blaska Capitol Square Destruction Of Art Hans Christian Heg Yeshua Musa Mayor Satya State Sen Tim Carpenter City County Building Let
‘This Is A Very Complicated Case, Maude. You Know, A Lotta Ins, A Lotta Outs, Lotta What-Have-Yous’ — See Also Editor's Note: Due to the holiday, Above the Law will not be publishing tomorrow. That also means this ends ATL's unofficial week-long See Also tribute to the Big Lebowski. Something I'm pretty sure only Joe Patrice and I cared about. Latest Twist In Highly Publicized Vandalism Case: Attorneys arrested for throwing a molotov cocktail get to go home. Why Is The Federal Judiciary So Homogenous? And what can we do about it. Zoom Life Is Here To Stay: What you need to know. The Lawsuit Over Aunt Jemima: And her legacy.]]> Thu, 02 Jul 2020 18:16:17 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Joe Patrice See Also Firm With An ‘Aggressive Growth Trajectory’ Thu, 02 Jul 2020 17:47:01 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Biglaw Trivia Question of the Day