Category Archives: Uncategorized

Seaton: Sheriff Roy And The Conspiracy Theorist

When we last left our intrepid heroes, Mud Lick’s top cops were attempting to solve the mystery of a prized cow allegedly anally probed by aliens—CLS

Sheriff Roy Templeton and Deputy Ernesto Miranda stood in front of what looked to be a cross between a nuclear bunker and an abandoned radio station.

“What in blazes are we doing here, boss, and why isn’t this building on any maps?” Miranda asked. Continue reading

For Biden, It’s Michigan Or Israel

Michelle Goldberg, the millennial pixie, conveys a threat from a Michigan activist named Layla Elabed. It’s Israel or us, Genocide Joe. Pick one.

As infuriated as she is by Joe Biden’s stalwart support for Israel, Layla Elabed has not ruled out voting for him in November. A progressive Palestinian American community organizer in Dearborn, Mich., a majority Arab American city near Detroit, she doesn’t want to see Donald Trump back in office.

“Donald Trump has never been a friend to our community,” she told me as we sat in an airy, modern Yemeni coffee shop. But to win her back, she said, “the very bare minimum” Biden needs to do is to completely overhaul America’s relationship with Israel, demanding a permanent cease-fire and ending American military aid to Israel, at least as long as its war in Gaza drags on.

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School Policy Trumps Parent

According to the father, daughter “Jane Doe” had issues that were being addressed by dad and her therapist after mom passed. But the school had rules, and District of New Jersey Judge Georgette Castner denied a temporary restraining order after finding the father unlikely to prevail.

Jane Doe is a freshman at Delaware Valley Regional High School in Frenchtown, New Jersey. Jane is a minor diagnosed with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Unspecified Mental Disorder (UMD), and has been under the care of a therapist for anxiety, depression, and gender confusion since April 2022. {The Court refers to Plaintiff’s child as “Jane Doe,” consistent with Plaintiff’s Verified Complaint and the parties’ briefing.} Plaintiff John Doe is Jane’s father. Plaintiff alleges that he and mental health professionals “agreed to take a cautious approach to Jane’s gender confusion” given her mental health diagnoses and the trauma following the death of Jane’s mother. Continue reading

When Justice Sam Alito Is Right

There have been precious few decisions from the United States Supreme Court where the opinion of Justice Sam Alito didn’t cause me paroxysms of pain. It’s almost a truism that the worst opinions begin, “Justice Alito delivered the opinion of the Court.” And yet, in his five-page dissent from the denial of cert in Coalition for TJ v. Fairfax County School Board, joined by Justice Clarence Thomas, Alito was right. Justice Sam Alito is right.

The case involved a change in the admissions policy of Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology in Alexandria, Virginia explicitly designed to reduce the number of  Asian students admitted by competitive exam in order to create a more diverse student body. It would reduce the percentage of Asians from 73% to about 54%, which was still more than the percentage of Asian students in the general population. Continue reading

Tuesday Talk*: Was $355 Million Proper?

Put aside Trump’s braggadocio, that he’s so very rich. He is, and he’s not. He’s a whole lot wealthier than me and, likely, you, but there are many who are far more wealthy. And as the case overwhelmingly proved, Trump can’t be trusted when it comes to his own wealth. He lies. A lot.

Put aside that Trump violated New York law by fraudulently inflating the value of his assets on loan applications. He did. A lot. Continue reading

Does Coprolalia Preclude Excellent Customer Service?

For some of us, mere competent customer service is such a stunning improvement from the norm that we applaud it. After all, how often are we able to get anything accomplished, no less done right the first time without insufferable fuss? But for an employee with a form of Tourtette Sydrome, coprolalia, performing the job isn’t enough but for his disability. And in Cooper v. Dolgencorp, LLC, the Sixth Circuit held that’s not discrimination.

Cameron Cooper has a disability that causes him to involuntarily utter racist and profane words. Even with the disability, Cooper (like many adults in America) needs to work to earn an income. Fortunately, the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) provides a remedy for an employee whose employer discriminates against him for having a disability. But to access the remedy, the employee must be able to perform the functions of his job, with or without help (an accommodation) from his employer. Continue reading

A Candidate’s “True” Name

The Ohio law made sense when enacted and it still makes sense. The problem isn’t with the law, but with the cultural shift that entitled some people, a tiny cohort, to use their name of choice and condemns their real name as “deadnaming.” There was no such thing as “deadnaming” back then.

The law, which was passed in 1995 to prevent deception, requires candidates who have changed names in the last five years to list previous names on election petitions. It has become an obstacle for Mr. Faber, who has not legally changed his name, and the three other transgender people seeking a seat in Ohio’s Legislature this year.

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Will ABA Standard 208 Change Anything?

It’s a truism in law that a right without a remedy is worthless. It’s cool to say “you have a right to speak,” but if you’re precluded from speaking, whether because of cancellation, disruption or pressure of being shunned, it’s an empty right. The American Bar Association, flexing the one power that it oddly still possesses, accreditation of law schools, decided to take a stand for free speech in law schools, in ironic conflict with its prior stands against free speech in Model Rule 8(4)(g) for lawyers, by approving Standard 208.

A law school shall adopt, publish, and adhere to written policies that encourage and support the free expression of ideas. A law school’s free expression policies must: Continue reading

Seaton: Return of the Friday Fail, Acorn Cop

Back during the days of Fault Lines, my mean-ass editor tasked me weekly with compiling a post called the “Friday Fail.” It was a short post detailing what I thought were the biggest criminal justice failures of the week. We let readers vote on what they considered the worst in an informal poll for audience interaction. It was a fun little bit.

And we’re kind of bringing it back today because hoo boy do I have a doozy for you. This is probably the biggest fail I’ve seen since I started writing about America’s criminal justice system. Continue reading

Circuit Denies Qualified Immunity to “Asshole” Buffalo Cop

Anthony Rupp isn’t going to get rich off the case. Buffalo police officer Todd McAlister isn’t going to go broke. How Rupp’s lawyers will get paid would be anybody’s guess, but for the fact that Tony Rupp happens to be the founder of the law firm, Rupp Pfalzgraf, and, well, doesn’t have to take it.

McAlister picked the wrong guy to violate his constitutional rights when he informed Rupp that he could be arrested for yelling at the cop to “put your lights on, asshole,” after almost hitting two women crossing the street as the cruiser without lights almost ran them down. Instead of saying “sorry,” and turning on his lights, McAlister informed the law firm’s name partner and civil rights lawyer, “You know you can be arrested for that.” As Tim Cushing at Techdirt explained, Rupp was not amused. Continue reading