Academic Commentary

(c) William H. Widen 2015

I learned with sadness, but not surprise, that Rep. John Lewis lost his battle with pancreatic cancer yesterday. Congressman John Lewis lived courage. Courage takes the path less traveled. Others will write the details. I want to share with you one perspective. John Lewis was savagely beaten—his skull fractured—on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, [...]

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One of the most devastating parts of the proposed regulations overhauling asylum law issued on June 15 is a new rule allowing immigration judges to deny asylum applications without an evidentiary hearing. The regulation states that the judge can “pretermit” legally insufficient applications, meaning deny them without even giving the asylum seeker a chance to [...]

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The entire world is grappling with the COVID-19 catastrophe which according to Johns Hopkins University & Medicine has affected the lives of at least 13.4 million people and the demise of more than 581,000 people across the globe. Due to the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, numerous countries were forced to implement nationwide lockdowns resulting [...]

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With each passing day that the coronavirus pandemic wears on, there are new statistics in the news making headlines, not just regarding the health and well-being of citizens all across the country, but also about which latest retailer is filing for bankruptcy. This May, clothing giants JCPenney, Neiman Marcus, and J.Crew all announced they are [...]

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A few weeks after the Supreme Court rejected the Trump Administration’s attempt to terminate Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) for failing to consider important aspects of the problem, including any “legitimate reliance” interests, the Trump Administration made the same mistake again. On June 18, 2020, the Supreme Court faulted the Trump Administration for failing [...]

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© WikiMedia (Tony Webster)

Regulators need to know what happens out in the world to understand and to oversee the industries under their supervision. Information flow may be a particular challenge for overseeing payday lending. At present, most states do not have database systems to track payday lending operations. Even when states do have database systems, federal regulators may [...]

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A spectre is haunting the American legal profession – the spectre of diploma privilege. Facing the psychological and physical trauma of COVID-19, and buoyed by growing calls for diversity and equity in the wake of centuries of racial and social injustice blithely and sometimes viciously perpetuated by lawyers in positions of power, a new generation [...]

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No less than Columbus’ namesake founded U.S. legal education.  Christopher Columbus Langdell devised the “case method”—the formalistic “science” of “discovering” law from appellate court opinions through the process of “legal reasoning.” As dean of Harvard Law School in the late nineteenth century, Langdell institutionalized the case method during the eras of Reconstruction, Redemption, and Jim [...]

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