Case Reviews

Pereida v. Wilkinson

April 21, 2021 Megan Gerges 0

Facts:  In the midst of discussions regarding the surge of immigration on the southern border, the Supreme Court recently ruled against Clemente Pereida, an undocumented immigrant who arrived almost 25 years ago. Pereida, who has a wife and three children, including an American citizen and a DACA recipient, was convicted for criminal impersonation under a Nebraska state law after using a fake Social Security Number to obtain a job- a conviction that came in the midst of a removal proceeding against him for unlawful entry. Under the federal Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), undocumented immigrants who have been in the country for a minimum of 10 years, have “good moral character,” have not been convicted of particular crimes (including crimes of moral turpitude), and have relatives that are American citizens or legal residents for whom the removal would create an “‘exceptional and extremely unusual’ hardship” become eligible to request a […]

International Law

Honesty is the Best Policy: Greenwashing in Europe

April 21, 2021 Erin Yu 0

“100% organic,” “environmentally conscious,” and “eco-friendly” are some common labels stuck onto a wide range of products today, but just how accurate are these claims? A 2021 study by the International Consumer Protection Enforcement Network examined 500 company websites and reported that 40% presented misleading claims about product sustainability. In recent years, many companies have made false claims about the supposed environmental benefits of their products as a means of attracting consumer interest and increasing sales, a tactic also known as “greenwashing.” While greenwashing has been a marketing staple for years, consumers have begun calling out large companies for their deceptive marketing strategies. Volkswagen found itself at the center of a recent greenwashing scandal when it promoted its use of “clean diesel” but was later exposed for using a special device in its cars to cheat emission tests.  This month, the European Union passed new legislation called the Sustainable Finance […]

Case Reviews

First Amendment Rights of Judges and other Public Employees (Part I of IV): Rutan v. Republican Party of Illinois (1990)

April 9, 2021 Angikar Ghosal 0

What extent do judges, or public employees in general, have freedom of speech under the First Amendment? What kind of speech, expression or even association in groups, could disqualify a person from seeking such public office, to ensure that defendants have their due process rights under the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments protected? What evidence can be used to judge the merit of such claims, and judge the judge themselves? How does this relate to the ethical standards for judicial recusal? The Senate confirmation hearings of Associate Justice of the Supreme Court Amy Coney Barrett saw an unusually reticent Barrett, unwilling to express opinions on matters of even the slightest legal controversy. Her silence could certainly be due to the politicized controversy regarding her nomination, however a larger trend has emerged. On one hand, the candidature of a nominee gets boosted by the presence of a significant paper trail if the […]

International Law

The Fire Waiting for a Match: Ethiopia’s Civil War

April 7, 2021 Shreya Joshi 0

Most nations in Africa are multi-ethnic today because the state boundaries were arbitrarily drawn up in the Berlin Conference of 1884. Ethnicities refer to tribal identity, language, cultural history and other factors that unite a peoples. Ethiopia is different for a couple reasons. For one, it has drawn its own borders, yet is still a multi-ethnic nation. Apart from five years of occupation by Mussolini, the country boasts never having been colonized, which makes their multiethnic nature even more interesting. Today, the country is made of eighty different ethnic groups, home to the Ethiopian Orthodox Christian church since the 4th century and a tumultuous democracy. Tensions have always been high between these groups. Ethiopia  was originally composed of the Amhara, Tigray, and Oromo groups. The original monarchy of Ethiopia acted almost as an empire, subjugating multiple ethnic groups under the narrative of being Christian and speaking Amhara. This began the […]

International Law

New Zealand Approves Miscarriage Paid Leave

April 5, 2021 Hyonjun Yun 0

On March 25th, New Zealand’s Parliament unanimously approved a bill that provides three days of paid leave for women and their partners who suffer a miscarriage or stillbirth. A miscarriage is defined as the death of a fetus before the 20th week of pregnancy, and a stillbirth is the death after the 20th week of pregnancy. The legislation does not apply to pregnancies ended by abortion. The Bereavement Leave for Miscarriage Bill was introduced by member of Parliament Ginny Andersen in 2019.  Andersen, Labour MP, said, “The bill will give women and their partners time to come to terms with their loss without having to tap into sick leave.” The three days of paid leave will be separate from sick leave as Andersen explains, “Because their grief is not a sickness, it is a loss. And loss takes time.”  This law is bound to have a large, positive impact. Facing […]

International Law

UK’s New Crime and Policing Bill: Reforming Protest Amid Fear, Frustration and Mourning

March 27, 2021 Cameron Page 0

Introduction: Just days after Sarah Everard’s body was discovered in the South East county of Kent, and as peaceful demonstrators in mourning endured disturbing heavy-handedness by the London Metropolitan Police, a new crime and policing bill – which threatens to “seriously curb the ability of citizens to protest” – overcame a key hurdle in the UK House of Commons. The Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill 2021 is an accumulation of proposed legislation which aims to reform the criminal justice system, crush the UK’s record of public dissidence, and support offender rehabilitation, among other things. Critically, though, proposed amendments to both the Public Order Act 1986 and the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011 would limit citizens’ rights to protest and grant police officers greater power to intervene by force. As Everard’s death at the hands of a London Metropolitan Police officer has heated discourse about the dangers, abuse […]

International Law

The Never-Happening Change: Why Israel is having its Fourth Election

March 24, 2021 Shreya Joshi 0

Elections are often a tumultuous time in any country. An election that seems to never end, however, drums up a lot of unrest. Throw in a pandemic in the middle, and suddenly, Israel’s political crisis is more dire than ever. Israel’s political system is Parliamentary, which encourages a multi-party system. Any party that receives at least 3.25% of the vote is allotted seats in the Knesset, or the Parliament proportionately, totalling 120 seats. As in other countries with Parliamentary systems, it is difficult for one party to gain a majority; instead, government participants shoot for pluralities and form coalitions. Unfortunately, creating stable coalitions is not the easiest thing to do. One lawmaker, generally the head of the party with a plurality, is given four weeks to form a coalition by Israel’s president, who is currently Reuven Rivlin. If the first lawmaker fails, the President nominates a second. Parliament itself can […]

International Law

The European Commission Initiates Legal Proceedings Against the U.K. Over Its Trade Policy in Ireland

March 22, 2021 Jacob Rosenzweig 0

The European Union and the United Kingdom have engaged in seemingly interminable legal negotiations since 2016, when U.K. voters approved a motion to depart from the confederation in a “Brexit” referendum. Almost five years and three Prime Ministers later, the U.K. has yet to work out some of the details. Recently, the island of Ireland has become a cauldron of resentment between the two parties. Northern Ireland, which is part of the U.K., shares a long and unfortified border with the Republic of Ireland, an arrangement that both countries desire to maintain. Ensuring that a physical barrier would not separate the two countries required a provision of the Brexit agreement called the Northern Ireland Protocol. This Brexit fixture has been controversial among Unionist parties within Northern Ireland and its implementation would have dire consequences for trade between N.I. and the rest of the U.K. When Prime Minister Boris Johnson unilaterally […]

International Law

Japanese Court Rules Same-Sex Marriage Ban Unconstitutional

March 21, 2021 Hyonjun Yun 0

On March 17, Sapporo District Court in Hokkaido, Japan ruled that the country’s same-sex marriage ban is unconstitutional. The ruling was in favor of a lawsuit filed by six people (two male couples and one female couple) in 2019. The plaintiffs sued for 1 million yen ($9,168.42) for the pain of not being able to legally marry. While the court ruled that the marriage ban is unconstitutional, it rejected the plaintiffs’ demand for compensation.  Judge Tomoko Takebe cited that the ban violated Article 14 of the Constitution that states “there shall be no discrimination in political, economic or social relations because of race, creed, sex, social status or family origin.” Judge Takebe pointed the government’s failure to provide the benefits of married, heterosexual couples as discriminatory by stating, “Sexual orientation cannot be changed or selected by a person’s will. It is discriminatory treatment… that they cannot receive even some of […]

US Law

Free Speech on College Campuses: Protecting a Fundamental Aspect of the University

March 19, 2021 Andrew Touma 0

On March 8, 2021, the Supreme Court issued a ruling in favor of a college student contending that his First Amendment rights were violated by the school’s policies. By an 8-1 decision in Uzuegbunam v. Preczewski, both liberal and conservative justices of the Supreme Court defended a pillar of both the modern university and the United States: the right to speak freely, regardless of whether it is convenient to others.  In 2016, Chike Uzuegbunam, an Evangelical Christian at Georgia Gwinnett College, in an attempt to share his faith with his classmates, stood outside of the campus library and handed out religious literature to students who expressed interest. Shortly after, campus police approached Uzuegbunam and notified him that he was in violation of the college’s “Freedom of Expression Policy.” This regulation held that any student who sought to engage in expressive activities must reserve a spot in one of the two […]