Appeals Court Weighs in for Marriage Equality

Utah Court of Appeals Affirms Marriage Equality

The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Utah recently became the first appeals court to rule on marriage equality since the Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act in US v. Windsor. Following the wave of district court opinions in favor of gay marriage, the 10th Circuit ruled Utah’s law unconstitutional and paved the way back to the Supreme Court. Read the full post »

Why “Boys Will Be Boys” Doesn’t Answer Bullying

Bullying pushes another student to suicide.It happened again: a middle-school boy committed suicide after being bullied at school. Even though the boy faced repeated abuse, one teacher’s response was simply “boys will be boys.” But that kind of attitude does nothing to give our children the protection they deserve under the law. Read the full post »

Supreme Court: To Search a Cell Phone, Get a Warrant

Supreme Court Tells Police to Get a Warrant to Search Cell PhonesWhat’s the difference between a cell phone and a purse? A recent U.S. Supreme Court says a whole lot. In a decision that experts are heralding as huge step in digital privacy, the court gave clear instructions to police: to search a cell phone, get a warrant. Read the full post »

Why Hobby Lobby Is Bigger (And Smaller) Than You Think

What Does the Hobby Lobby Decision Mean?The Supreme Court’s latest decision has flooded social media. But praise and objections often don’t show what actually happened. So what does Hobby Lobby really mean, anyway? Read the full post »

MI Supreme Court Undercuts Right to Attorney

Right to Attorney doesn't include the right to know one showed up.You are sitting in jail, being questioned by police. You assert your right to an attorney so they put you in a cell. After sitting there over night you decide to talk and ask for an attorney again. Your lawyer shows up, but is told to wait in the lobby while the police have you sign a Miranda waiver and make a confession. Is there a problem? Read the full post »

Student Suspended For 2 Word Tweet

Student Suspended for 2 Word TweetStudents being suspended for their online behavior is nothing new, but a Massachusetts school district has taken discipline for Internet speech to the extreme by suspending and threatening to expel a student for a 2-word tweet: “Actually yeah.” Read the full post »

Michigan Republicans Support Marriage Equality

26 Michigan GOP Republicans publicly support Marriage Equality and gay marriageThe Michigan Marriage Equality case is headed to the Court of Appeals in August. But among the over 50 pleadings was one that may surprise you: an amicus brief signed by 26 influential members of the Michigan Republican party asking the court to rule in favor of LGBT couples across the state. Read the full post »

MI Supreme Court Protects Parents’ Rights

Each Parent Must Be Found Unfit Before Children Can Be RemovedParents have a fundamental constitutional right to care for their children, but for 70 years, Michigan has allowed courts to take one parent’s children away because of the behavior of the other parent. But on June 2, 2014, the Michigan Supreme Court put an end to the practice by ruling the “One Parent Doctrine” unconstitutional. Read the full post »

Supreme Court Says Chemical Assault Isn’t a Federal Case

Federal Ban on Chemical Weapons Doesn't Apply to Domestic AssaultsIn 2006, Carol Bond made a bad decision. She used a chemical designed for developing photographs to literally burn her husband’s lover. She spread the chemical on door knobs, car door handles, and mail boxes to make the lover develop a rash. There is no question that what she did was illegal, but did it violate a federal ban on chemical weapons? Read the full post »

Why Isn’t Child Maltreatment Taken More Seriously?

Why isn't child abuse a factor in custody?Child custody in Michigan is decided based on 12 Best Interest Factors. These factors cover everything from love and affection to physical health of the parents, to domestic violence. But none of the factors explicitly address abuse or neglect of the children. If a judge is trying to decide what is in the child’s best interest, shouldn’t the child’s treatment be at the center of that discussion? Read the full post »