I am writing about my criminal trial many years ago. When this whole debacle first began, I said that if it came to it that I would testify in my own defense. Part of me hoped and prayed it would never come to that, fortunately, as time passed another part of me became stronger, and more realistic about what it was like to be in the criminal justice system. I hated more than I could say that I was in this situation, but I would never be able to live with myself if I hadn’t done everything I could to stand…

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Everything is Reproductive Justice— What Happens Next?

“There is no relative direction in the vastness of space. There is only yourself, your ship, your crew.” Commodore Paris to Captain Kirk      I found myself watching Star Trek Beyond all weekend.  I regularly watch a lot of action and science fiction, but I do not think it’s just my habits that led me to a particular plot and theme. “Election anxiety” has joined the stage and the lexicon for COVID-19 times. While the entire world is wrapped in a zoom or IRL lesson on grappling with the unexpected and uncertainty, the question still presents itself, “what happens next?” To answer…

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Techlegality: Shaping Policy

With Election Day in just a few days, I am reminded of how policy shapes our society and the way we live. In a one-of-a-kind year that has sparked unprecedented social movements and calls for reform, the way individuals view and conceptualize policy has greatly shifted. As a result, who shapes policies has become more important than ever.   I recently attended a panel discussion that covered the current status of tech policy from a diversity and inclusion perspective in both the private sector and the public sector. There were so many interesting points throughout the discussion, but one overarching…

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Am I wearing too many hats? Learning how to juggle it all: COVID hit home – You should VOTE!

My nose is bleeding profusely. My white N95 mask is soaked with blood. How did this happen?  Let’s rewind back to my lonely days. OK, I haven’t been lonely. I simply miss my family. I have a nice size immediate family, five brother and five sisters. It’s an unfamiliar territory when I’m unable to hug my siblings, give my mom and dad cheek kisses, or attend family gatherings. I have become content with the COVID reality of going from seeing my family at least once a week to not seeing my family for weeks at a time. After a string of events that I did not partake in, I found myself having to go to the health department to…

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People have the power - to vote

Editor's Note: In honor of Election Day today, please read this piece from Writer in Residence Katalin Tarjan, and if you are able to, vote!    We’ve all learned about the electoral process and its importance in functioning democracies, yet, we might have different opinions about voting in practice.   I used to have a professor at law school who was very proud that he has never voted at any elections in his entire life. Ever. Not once. He talked quite a lot about politics – teaching administrative law –, his lectures were full of political comments and opinions about…

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The Case for Reading for Lawyers Reading for Leisure

As a child I was your stereotypical bookworm. Buried behind large broad rimmed glasses, I could spend hours sprawled on the living room couch. Some of my fondest childhood memories include trips to the library and going up the long spiral staircase to the “grown-up” section while my father browsed the shelves. Seeing the long stacks of books felt both like home, and like endless rows of adventure to be explored. I learned how to navigate the card catalogue and was expected to retrieve whatever reference books I needed for a school project on my own. I can still probably…

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The Influencers: This One Opened Her Own Doors

A little quiz on the eve of the 2020 Presidential election: Can you name the vice presidential candidate who headed the Special Victims Unit in a New York City DA’s office?  Maybe you know the VP candidate who spent years working as a lawyer in a real estate firm? How about the one whose first political campaign described her as a tough-on-crime conservative Democrat? Surely, you can name the first woman to run on a major party presidential ticket?  In case you haven’t guessed, it’s all the same person. She ran in the 1984 race, so if you’re a Baby…

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Everything is Reproductive Justice—A Voter Suppression Primer

Editor's Note: With Election Day on Tuesday, please consider this timely piece from Writer in Residence Leigh Bond.            “I do not understand why staying home is so hard. 105 million of you managed it on Election Day in 2016.” I saw this quote on social media and it stung hard. Many times over, especially in times of crisis and national events, society has failed to seek out the entire story. The incomplete narrative that folks stayed home when they should have voted or fail to stay home during the COVID-19 pandemic reminds me of Hurricane Katrina. More…

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Susan Smith Blakely

How RBG Helped Lead the Way to Women’s Financial Independence

Ruth Bader Ginsburg is gone. Our mentor is missing. We all should be very sad. Our politics do not matter in this context. We all are women. We all should be grateful that this small and powerful woman walked amongst us. I was in law school at Georgetown Law (then Georgetown University Law Center (GULC)) during the mid 1970’s when Ruth Bader Ginsburg was arguing cases on behalf of the American Civil Liberties Union and setting the foundation for women’s rights under the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. It is entirely possible that most…

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Am I wearing too many hats? Learning how to juggle it all: Trials have resumed, but not so fast!

On September 25, 2020, Judge Byrn, the Presiding Judge of Jackson County issued an immediate released that delayed trials in the 16th Judicial Circuit Court. Since March of 2020, there had been no jury trials in the Jackson County Courthouse downtown. October 5, 2020 was scheduled as the official date for trials to resume. Yes, you read that correctly, six whole months without jury trials in one of the busiest counties for prosecution in the U.S. However, Judge Byrn had previously held a Town Hall meeting informing the public that if someone in the courtroom tested positive for COVID-19, the courthouse…

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