Category Archive: News

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Before You Go Spouting Off About Free Speech, A Primer on the First Amendment

Gather ‘round folks, we’re about to learn a little free speech law. Very little.

UC Berkeley is having a tough time with student groups inviting speakers a majority of their students dislike. These incidents have provoked a lot of hot takes about the free speech and the First Amendment. So before you wage into your latest anonymous flame war on Twitter, Reddit, or Pinterest about this, let’s have a look at the law.

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The Lawyer’s Pursuit of “Truth”

We may be living in a “post-truth” society, but the truth made a strong comeback this weekend. Thousands of protesters marched Washington, D.C., and hundreds of other cities, to defend truth and facts. Specifically, the scientific method for discovering the truth, which protesters argue is under attack from a culture and—though the protests were billed as non-partisan, let’s face it—a presidential administration that value opinion and partisanship over facts and empirical evidence.

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The Fog of War Powers: Did Trump Have the Power to Authorize the Airstrike on Syria?

At the beginning of the week, it seemed like the biggest news would be the ongoing battle over whether the Senate would approve Neil Gorsuch’s appointment to the Supreme Court … aaaaand then came Thursday’s news that President Donald Trump authorized an airstrike against a Syrian air base.

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ISPs, the FCC, and the Stuff You Do on the Internet: A Rundown of Congress’ New Internet Privacy Law

Nowadays, people are willing to publicize a vast amount of private information. From locations and dates of birth to sexual orientation and relationship status, almost every aspect of a person’s life can often be found online with a few clicks. Yet, there is one area of our lives that we generally try to guard—our online search histories. I, for one, get a little nervous when someone asks to borrow my computer, just in case they open up my search history (not because there’s anything particular damning or deviant, I’m not that interesting).

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Federal Prosecutors’ Role In Government

With the firing of the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Preet Bharara, people might like to know a bit more about the role of prosecutors in “the system.”

Prosecutors have enormous power. First, prosecutors decide whether to bring any charges at all against a given defendant. If a prosecutor decides not to bring charges against a defendant, no one can appeal this decision — it’s final.

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Google’s self-driving cars didn’t just drive themselves over to Uber.

A few years ago, Apple sued Samsung for patent violations. The case resulted in a jury award amounting to over one billion dollars. It was a massive case, and it captured headlines around the world. Just a short time ago, Google filed suit against Uber, beginning a case that could dwarf the Apple v. Samsung litigation.

Google, through its self-driving car subsidiary Waymo, is accusing Uber of stealing its self-driving car technology. The complaint centers on Anthony Levandowski. Levandowski is a former Google employee who now works at Uber.

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The Way We Treat Powerful Women Is Telling

The New York Times published an article earlier this week about sexist criticism of powerful women – in particular, Hillary Rodham Clinton and Kellyanne Conway. This article followed on the heels of a disciplinary complaint filed against Kellyanne by 15 legal ethics professors, who allege that she violated the DC bar’s rule against “dishonesty, fraud, deceit, or misrepresentation.”

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What’s the matter with Cal?

Remember the name Milo Yiannopoulos? Before some comments about pederasty caused him to fade from public view, there was a big kerfuffle on an evening when he was supposed to speak at UC Berkeley. Protestors and so-called black block anarchists took to the streets. There was chaos. Windows were smashed.

The campus called off the event for public safety reasons. Instead of speaking to a roomful of college kids, Yiannopoulos got to cry to Fox News about how so-called liberals were interfering with his right to free speech. I’m sure he was soooo disappointed.