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Judges Explaining Technology

"As a matter of science, traditional adoption does not provide a woman with the opportunity to be pregnant.” Reber v. Reiss, 42 A.3d 1131, 1138-39 (Pa. Super. Ct. 2012). Judges Explaining Technology.
posted by dzkalman on Jul 8, 2014 - 25 comments

Conversely, android judges more likely to only have sons.

Does Having Daughters Cause Judges to Rule for Women's Issues? [PDF] New research on judicial empathy finds that when judges, specifically Republican judges, have daughters, they are more likely to rule in favor of women's issues. [more inside]
posted by MisantropicPainforest on May 22, 2014 - 54 comments

Faced with such high stakes, it's no wonder that so many defendants cave

Bail is Busted - How Jail Really Works
posted by lalochezia on May 21, 2013 - 22 comments

Addressing the Justice Gap

Several commentators are advocating the deregulation of the practice of law.
posted by reenum on Aug 26, 2011 - 125 comments

Sue the bastards!

“A parent’s presence alone does not give a reasonable [four-year-old] carte blanche to engage in risky behavior." So said a NY State Supreme Court judge in his ruling that four-year-olds can be sued. Cue Dora The Litigator.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders on Oct 29, 2010 - 136 comments

The Impact of Diversity

"Race & Gender of Judges Make Enormous Differences in Rulings, Studies Find," is the headline of a February 6 ABA Journal article. The article refers to two studies reported in law reviews, linked here in pdf format, on the effect of gender and race on decisionmaking in harassment and discrimination cases.
posted by bearwife on Feb 10, 2010 - 31 comments

Penal theory

The threat of a mild punishment imposed reliably and immediately has a much greater deterrent effect than the threat of a severe punishment that is delayed and uncertain. A state trial judge in Hawaii, was frustrated with the cases on his docket. Nearly half of the people appearing before him were convicted offenders with drug problems who had been sentenced to probation rather than prison and then repeatedly violated the terms of that probation by missing appointments or testing positive for drugs. Whether out of neglect or leniency, probation officers would tend to overlook a probationer’s first 5 or 10 violations, giving the offender the impression that he could ignore the rules. But eventually, the officers would get fed up and recommend that Alm revoke probation and send the offender to jail to serve out his sentence. That struck Alm as too harsh, but the alternative — winking at probation violations — struck him as too soft. “I thought, This is crazy, this is a crazy way to change people’s behavior,” he told me recently. So Alm decided to try something different. [more inside]
posted by caddis on Jan 10, 2010 - 33 comments

Empathy = ovary?

When President Obama says he's looking for a judge with the "quality of empathy" to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice David Souter, is it code for a female judge? In the two decades since Bertha Wilson famously asked Will Women Judges Really Make A Difference? (mms), the answer has come back as a resounding yes (studies: 1 (pdf), 2) -- and no (studies: 1 (pdf), 2). But either way, is choosing judges based on supposed gender qualities ever a good idea?
posted by hayvac on May 21, 2009 - 64 comments

Luttig resigns Fourth Circuit post.

Luttig Resigns. Judge J. Michael Luttig, long considered a front-runner for a Supreme Court nomination, at least until he was passed over by President Bush, has resigned his position on the Fourth circuit. Luttig will take over as general counsel to Boeing. Read Boeing's press release and Luttig's resignation letter [pdf].
posted by monju_bosatsu on May 10, 2006 - 29 comments

Start with the basics.

Starting a new job at the big law firm? Make sure you read this coloring book for lawyers. Need a little background material for your next legal discussion? Bone up with Learning About the Law, Learning More About the Law, and Learning About Judges (also available in Spanish). For law enforcement information, try Law & Order, an Adventure to Color. [most links pdf]
posted by monju_bosatsu on Feb 17, 2006 - 18 comments

Conservative Indiana secretly hotbed of judicial activism!

Thomas Jones and Tammie Bristol, both Wiccans, divorced in 2004. Likely they disagree about much, but not which religion they wish to teach their son. Too bad for them, then, that a Marion County Superior Court judge included a provision in their divorce decree which bans them from exposing their child to "non-mainstream religious beliefs and rituals". Neither parent requested this; in fact, both vehemently objected, yet the judge refused to remove it. I guess them there activist judges are a threat to freedom of religion after all - but I doubt that the Judeo-Christian Council for Constitutional Restoration will be going after this guy. Funny; he's right up their alley.
posted by tzikeh on May 26, 2005 - 46 comments

...concerns about Owen go to the heart of what makes a good judge...

Meet Priscilla Owen, 2-time nominee for the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, Senate nuclear option trigger, and "activist judge" who White House Counsel Gonzales himself criticized ...for "an unconscionable act of judicial activism" in seeking to restrict a minor's right to an abortion. ...

This PDF from People for the American Way goes case-by-case to paint a damning picture: It focuses not only on the evidence from Justice Owen’s dissenting opinions that she is a right wing judicial activist, but also on the fact that this conclusion is established by the criticism often leveled at her by her conservative colleagues on the Court, particularly including Alberto Gonzales. Indeed, during the relatively brief time that they served together on the Court, Gonzales wrote or joined numerous opinions sharply criticizing opinions written or joined by Owen. This report also addresses Justice Owen’s failure at her confirmation hearing to dispel the serious concerns that had been raised about her record. For the reasons we discuss below, the Judiciary Committee made the correct decision in refusing to confirm Priscilla Owen to the Fifth Circuit. It should make the same decision again.
posted by amberglow on May 18, 2005 - 30 comments

Filibustering The Frist Center

Princeton Students and Polticians Stage Filibuster -- Princeton students started a filibuster at the Frist Campus Center at Princeton University to protest the impending unloading of the "nuclear option" in the United States Senate. Bill Frist is a Princeton alum and his family donated the building the filibuster is in front of. It's been going on for a whopping 78 hours already and looks to at least go through the weekend. Congressman Rush Holt (D-NJ) spoke earlier today, and NJ Assemblyman Reed Gusciora was there yesterday. They've even got physicists (one and two) and a Nobel Prize winner.
posted by nathanrudy on Apr 29, 2005 - 20 comments

Ah, so that's why! How silly of me!

U.S. Senator rationalizes violence against judges: "I wonder whether there may be some connection between the perception in some quarters on some occasions where judges are making political decisions yet are unaccountable to the public, that it builds up and builds up and builds up to the point where some people engage in - engage in violence." Sen. John Cornyn, explaining today how "activist judges" are bringing it upon themselves. The full statement is a breathtaking look at the next step in the upcoming judicial wars.
posted by XQUZYPHYR on Apr 4, 2005 - 87 comments

Byrd on the Nuclear Option

Senator Robert Byrd (D-WV) on the "nuclear option." "The Senate is intended for deliberation not point scoring. It is a place designed from its inception, as expressive of minority views." As the Senate gears up for another round of contentious judicial confirmations, and as Washington gears up for all-out war following Rehnquist's imminent retirement, here's an eloquent, if Godwin-invoking, defense of deliberative lawmaking from the Senate's preeminent historian.
posted by Saucy Intruder on Mar 1, 2005 - 40 comments

A funny thing happened on the way to District Court

A funny thing happened on the way to District Court. More mandatory minimum madness. See related story to the case here. More guidelines are being passed everyday. This Massachusetts judge has had enough. Are we destroying judges' ability to mete out justice or should the people decide justice through legislation? NYTimes coverage here.
posted by McBain on Jun 29, 2004 - 12 comments

The Judicial Role

Justice Scalia's recusal in the Pledge case has prompted a serious debate on the judicial role. Robert Alt has suggested that the Justice's recusal carries an important warning for the Senate in confirming new judges; if the Senate requires the nominees to answer questions about their opinions on potential cases, those nominees would have to recuse themselves if those cases later indeed came before them. Matthew Franck, on the other hand, suggests "this argument ... permits the requirements of judicial ethics — and even a terribly broad reading of them — to trump the constitutional obligation of senators to inform themselves adequately about the kinds of judges they are being asked to confirm." [more inside]
posted by monju_bosatsu on Oct 22, 2003 - 11 comments

Should punishments be "creative"?

Should punishments be "creative"? Judge Michael Cicconett has sentenced a kid with a loud radio to sit quietly in the woods, a man to hang out with a pig, at least one guy to run a race to diminish his jail sentence. Now Judge Michael Cicconetti is back in the news for sentencing a couple to print apologies in the local newspaper for their tryst on a public beach. These are rather inconsequential sentences for very minor crimes, but one might still ask: Does creative sentencing seems intuitively more fair and/or effective, or does it seem to leave justice up to the capriciousness of the judge?
posted by sj on Jul 1, 2002 - 23 comments

anguish of a drug war judge

anguish of a drug war judge moral of the story: if an undercover cop asks you to sell crack opposite the white house, just say no. wrong answer gets you framed for 10 years
posted by quarsan on Jun 22, 2001 - 3 comments

Charlotte Judge Says Get Married Or Move Out

Charlotte Judge Says Get Married Or Move Out If you want to be released on bond in U.S. Magistrate Judge Carl Horn's court, you've got to stop breaking that 1805 law against shacking up. He doesn't release habitual lawbreakers! Note that he's a federal judge, enforcing a North Carolina Class 2 misdemeanor.
posted by BT on Apr 11, 2001 - 13 comments

Is the Consitution a "living" document?

Is the Consitution a "living" document? Following "Scary" Scalia's arguments, the Dread Scott decision was a wise and appropriate one, right?
posted by darren on Mar 14, 2001 - 20 comments

from the front page of CNN:

from the front page of CNN: "....Circuit Judge...has scheduled a....hearing to issue a ruling on whether Florida Secretary of State....used her best discretion in deciding...." And my question for the legal experts here: how can a judge rule on matters of discretion? I thought Marbury vs. Madison dealt with a similar situation and that courts didn't decide political matters.
posted by greyscale on Nov 16, 2000 - 9 comments

Does Judy give judges a bad name?

Does Judy give judges a bad name? Should they care? Interesting piece written by... B.J Hunnicutt. :-)
posted by baylink on Jun 13, 2000 - 7 comments

From the "We're in the 2000's, right?" file: Senator Jesse Helms continues to be an asshole, blocking *any* African-American judges from being appointed to the 4th Circut Court of Appeals. The court happens to preside over an area with the largest population of African-Americans anywhere in the country.
posted by mathowie on Feb 12, 2000 - 6 comments

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