It’s the Statehouses. Stupid. So says David Pepper, the author of Laboratories of Autocracy: A Wake-Up Call from Behind the Lines. State legislatures, often ignored, play a significant role in deciding our rights, including the right to vote. Join SideBar co-hosts law school deans Jackie Gardina and Mitch Winick as they discuss current challenges to the American political system and Constitutional rights with author, lawyer, and politician David Pepper as the podcast’s inaugural guest.
Is “vigilante federalism” the new weapon in battles over abortion, religion sexuality, gender, and race? David Noll, co-author of Vigilante Federalism, lawyer, columnist, and Rutgers law professor joins SideBar co-hosts law school deans Jackie Gardina and Mitch Winick as they discuss whether the spread of private subordination laws thwart the democratic system, erase longstanding constitutional rights, and reflect an alarming move toward national vs. state regulatory power.
We are facing a crisis in the legitimacy of the Supreme Court. Dahlia Lithwick is a regular contributor at MSNBC and senior editor at Slate. She has been writing the "Supreme Court Dispatches" and "Jurisprudence" columns since 1999. Her most recent publication is Lady Justice: Women, the Law, and the Battle to Save America. She is aalso the host of Amicus, Slate’s award-winning biweekly podcast about the law and the Supreme Court.
Artificial Intelligence - Who do You Trust? Professor Orly Lobel is the Director of the Center for Employment and Labor Law, and founding member of the Center for Intellectual Property Law and Markets at the University of San Diego. Author of The Equality Machine: Harnessing Tomorrow’s Technologies for a Brighter, More Inclusive Future, Lobel argues that digital technology frequently has a comparative advantage over humans in detecting discrimination, correcting historical exclusions, subverting long-standing stereotypes, and addressing the world’s thorniest problems.
Threats to free speech and expression are reaching into higher education, K-12 education, and even our public libraries. Suzanne Nossel currently serves as the Chief Executive Officer of PEN America, the leading human rights and free expression organization. She is author of Dare to Speak: Defending Free Speech for All. She has served as the Chief Operating Officer of Human Rights Watch and as Exec. Director of Amnesty International USA. Nossel is a featured columnist and has published op-eds and scholarly articles on the topics of free speech and expression.
Do states need to take steps to protect against the criminalization of women’s reproductive rights and access to healthcare? California Assemblywoman Buffy Wicks discusses California’s legislative response to the Supreme Court’s Dobb’s decision that overturned Roe v. Wade as well as the power of state legislatures to counter legislative overreach. Wicks has championed solutions to solve California's housing and homelessness crisis, expanding the state’s social safety net, championing the rights of women and working families, protecting consumers, and reducing gun violence in our communities.
Is the American judicial system losing the public’s respect and trust? Indiana University Law Professor Charles Geyh, author of Courting Peril: The Political Transformation of the American Judiciary and Who Is to Judge? The Perennial Debate Over Whether to Elect or Appoint America’s Judges joins SideBar co-hosts law school deans Jackie Gardina and Mitch Winick to discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the American judicial system. Professor Geyh shares his expertise as a national and international expert in judicial ethics, selection, and impeachment.
Is Conservative Christian Discrimination Now a Protected Class?
Law Professor Nomi Stolzenberg discusses the US Supreme Court’s consideration of Conservative Christian ideology as a new protected class under the First Amendment. Seven of the nine members of the Supreme Court are Catholic or raised Catholic. How does this potentially affect the decisions being handed down by the Supreme Court? Stolzenberg is the author of "Righting the Relationship Between Race and Religion in Law" and other books and articles on religion and the law.
Supreme Court Justices Behaving Badly - What Has History Taught Us? with Judge Margaret McKeown. Federal Judge Margaret McKeown discusses her book on U.S. Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas, the longest-serving Supreme Court justice from 1939 to 1975. Justice Douglas is often remembered for his four wives, as a potential vice-presidential nominee, and as a target of impeachment proceedings for receiving private funds and alleged conflicts of interest. However, his most enduring legacy is perhaps his advocacy for the environment.
What is the High Road? Are we willing to pursue a more equitable, sustainable, and democratic society? University of Wisconsin-Madison Law Professor Joel Rogers challenges government, community members, and businesses to work together on innovations that lift up workers, use natural resources and human capital more efficiently, and foster equity, justice, and democracy for all people. His books include The Hidden Election, On Democracy, Right Turn, Metro Futures, Associations and Democracy, Works Councils, Working Capital, What Workers Want, Cites at Work, and American Society: How It Really Works.
Who is "Whispering" in the Supreme Court's Ears? Professors Morgan Hazelton and Rachael Hinkle have published a fascinating book on one of the mysteries behind Supreme Court decision-making. "Persuading the Supreme Court: The Significance of Briefs in Judicial Decision-Making" combines research of 25,000 briefs filed between 1984 and 2015 to shed light on one of the more mysterious and consequential features of Supreme Court cases. Both professors have J.D. and Ph.D. degrees and combine unique academic expertise in judicial politics, judicial process, and analytical methods.
America's struggle for racial justice in the 21st Century. Peniel E. Joseph is a scholar, teacher, and public voice on issues related to race, citizenship, and democracy. He is the author of The Third Reconstruction - America's Struggle for Racial Justice in the Twenty-First Century. His university appointments at the LBJ School of Public Affairs and the College of Liberal Arts at the University of Texas include Inaugural Associate Dean for Justice, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion, Founding Director of the Center for the Study of Race and Democracy, and the Barbara Jordan Chair in Ethics and Political Values.
“Can We Trust this Supreme Court with the Constitution?” SideBar Cohosts Jackie Gardina and Mitch Winick discuss the Constitution, Access to Justice, and the Supreme Court with Elie Mystal. The indomitable, outspoken, brilliant, and thoughtful Elie Mystal, author, columnist, and commentator, joins cohosts Jackie Gardina and Mitch Winick to discuss his book “Allow Me to Retort: A Black Guy's Guide to the Constitution”. In this wide-ranging conversation, Mystal challenges our thinking about how judges should be selected, the myth of judicial ethics, and the false narrative of "originalism".
Technology as the great equalizer in access to justice. Nicole Clark is an attorney, entrepreneur, and co-founder and CEO of Trellis.Law, a scalable legal analytics platform that she believes helps democratize access for state trial court data. A graduate of Rutgers Law School , Clark has practiced as a litigation attorney specializing in business litigation and labor and employment matters. Clark has authored articles for the ABA Journal, New York Law Journal, Texas Lawyer, and Santa Barbara Lawyer. She is also regularly featured as a legal expert and podcast guest on topics related to legal technology.
Are we making progress in our historic justice system disparities? Thaddeus Johnson is an Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice & Criminology at Georgia State University’s Andrew Young School of Policy Studies. An expert in policing, crime control, and governance equity, he has conducted extensive research on police lethality and coercion, street violence, recidivism, algorithmic and predictive bias, and correctional control. Johnson is the co-author of the recently published national study: Justice System Disparities: Black-White National Imprisonment Trends 2000 to 2020 .
Is it "Race" for Success that is before the Supreme Court? Two cases this Supreme Court term involve the question of whether colleges and universities can use race as a factor in their admissions. Damon T. Hewitt, President and Executive Director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law has more than 20 years of civil rights litigation and policy experience. The Lawyer's Committee argued in defense of current law that allows certain race conscious admission policies. Hewitt joins SideBar to explain why the substantial benefits of diversity are at risk without affirmative action.
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