Category Archives: Constitutional Law

[Jonathan H. Adler] The History of Wakanda

The Black Panther was among the first of my favorite comic heroes. The first comic book I had featuring T'Challa of Wakanda was Avengers #126. Given this I was understandably excited to take my daughter to the movie this weekend (and, like Kurt Loder, thought it was both an important film, and quite good). In anticipation of the film, I reacquainted myself with some of the old storylines — particularly those developed by Jack Kirby and Stan Lee. It's well-known how anxieties about nuclear radiation inspired much of the early Marvel pantheon, from Spider Man to the X-Men to the Hulk. What I had not realized, however, was the role such concerns — and associated geopolitical concerns — provided the inspiration for the Black Panther's homeland of Wakanda, including the idea that it was the source of a rare and important mineral resource. This is one of the things I learned from Ohio State University history professor Thomas McDow's essay on the African roots….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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Check it Out: Epps on Volokh and Baude, on Abood

Check out Garrett Epps's piece in The Atlantic reviewing Eugene Volokh and William Baude's amicus brief in Janus, the case testing whether fair-share fees for public-sector unions violate the First Amendment. We last posted on the case here. Volokh and….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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Executive Privilege, Bannon Style

Steven D. Schwinn, John Marshall Law School Former White House chief strategist Stephen Bannon once again tried to expand the scope of executive privilege in his testimony today before the House Intelligence Committee. This time, Bannon reportedly invoked the privilege….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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Seventh Circuit Applies Ministerial Exception to Hebrew Teacher at Jewish School

Steven D. Schwinn, John Marshall Law School The Seventh Circuit ruled this week that the First Amendment's ministerial exception barred a Hebrew teacher's Americans with Disabilities Act claim against her employer, a Jewish school. The ruling is the first time….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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I Sentenced a Teen to Die in Prison. I Regret It.

A retired judge sentenced a teenager to 241 years in prison. She now believes her sentence was unconstitutional. This piece originally appeared at The Washington Post.  “You will die in the Department of Corrections.” Those are the words I spoke as a trial judge in 1997 when I sentenced Bobby Bostic to a total of 241 years in prison for his role in two armed robberies he committed when he was just 16 years old. Bostic and an 18-year-old friend robbed a group of six people who were delivering Christmas presents to a needy family in St. Louis. Two shots were fired. A bullet grazed one person, but no one was seriously injured. The two then abducted and robbed another woman — who said she was groped by Bostic’s accomplice before the two released her. They used the money they stole from her to buy marijuana. Despite overwhelming evidence against him, Bostic chose to go to trial. He was found guilty. Bostic had written me a letter trying to….. To continue reading this legal news please click Read full information...

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