Category Archives: law

Canada repeals its blasphemy law

Thanks to several humanist groups, the Canadian blasphemy law, which hasn’t been much used, has just been repealed. As reported by Humanists UK, the bill passed the Canadian Parliament two days ago and now “awaits royal assent”. (Those ties to the UK still irk me. Why the hell does the Queen have to certify this?) […]

Title IX and the weakening of due process

As I wrote last week, I think the only thing that the Trump administration has done that has improved our country is to issue, through the much-despised Betsy DeVos, new guidelines for adjudicating accusations of sexual assault and misconduct in American universities. (Do I really need to add here that I think DeVos’s appointment was […]

In the case of Trump v. Roberts, Trump is right

John Roberts, the Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court, has been serving for 13 years, and is a judicial conservative nominated to be Chief Justice by George W. Bush. This week Roberts pushed back against a comment that President Trump made; the story is reported in the New York Times article below (click on […]

New improved standards proposed for adjudicating sexual misconduct in college; ACLU opposes them for “inappropriately favoring the accused”

In my view, the only good thing that the Trump administration has done is to revise the standards American colleges should use to judge sexual misconduct of students. These changes are, I think, fairer to both accused and accuser than were the previous standards proposed by the Obama administration under its Title IX “Dear colleague” […]

Don’t say I didn’t warn you about Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Ruth Bader Ginsburg, several readers said, will never resign from the Supreme Court so long as Trump is around to replace her. But that may not be up to her. A bulletin just in; click on the screenshot to go to the story: Let’s hope she’s tough enough to return to the bench!

Woman who accused Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault comes forward

Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation as a Supreme Court justice would be a disaster for many years to come, ensuring a firmly conservative court for the future—perhaps even the overturning of decisions like Roe v. Wade. But then again, this would be the case for any of Trump’s nominees. I, for one, would prefer more of a […]

NYT puts in request for information about Brett Kavanaugh’s wife

Here we may have another example of the New York Times‘s double standards comparable to their having hired Sarah Jeong while firing Quinn Norton for the same acts committed by Jeong (nasty and bigoted statements on Twitter). In this short article (click on screenshot to read it), two of the paper’s investigative reporters explain why […]

We’re screwed good and proper: Anthony Kennedy to retire

Yes, this just happened: as of July 31, we’ll have a vacancy on the Supreme Court. Kennedy was a swing vote, and now Trump gets to appoint his replacement, which will be someone like Scalia or Thomas. And that, of course, means we’re screwed for decades to come. What we’re going to get now is […]

By a narrow 5-4 vote, Supreme Court upholds Trump’s travel ban

I suppose this was predictable, and I don’t have the capability to judge whether Trump’s travel ban, however heinous, was legal or not, for that’s the basis on which Chief Justice Roberts, who wrote the ruling, upheld the restriction on immigration. It was, he said, legally within Trump’s powers. The vote was 5-4, strictly along […]

Supreme Court rules in favor of baker who refused to make a wedding cake for gays

UPDATE: The Freedom from Religion Foundation, whose take I wanted on this case, has issued a bulletin on this decision, “Missed opportunity; Supreme Court punts on important case, manufactures hostility toward religion where none exists.” The FFRF had written an amicus brief to the Court supporting the gay couple, and think that this decision was […]