Emory Law News Center

May 2017 In the News Archive | Emory University School of Law

Brown: For blacks, social mobility is a double-edged sword

Brown: For blacks, social mobility is a double-edged sword

"For many African-American families, securing a college degree holds the promise of securing a middle-class life with financial stability," a Chicago Reporter story says. But a recent study finds that for middle-class blacks, "social mobility is a double-edged sword." Emory Law Professor Dorothy Brown is quoted on how neighborhood diversity affects home prices. "Research shows homes in majority black neighborhoods do not appreciate as much as homes in overwhelmingly white neighborhoods."

Cooper 67L closes oldest case by vacating death sentence

Cooper 67L closes oldest case by vacating death sentence

Lawrence Joseph Jefferson's 1985 death sentence has troubled federal judges for years. In April, U.S. District Court Judge Clarence Cooper 67L reaffirmed the position he took a decade ago, in a 71-page opinion that argues Jefferson's trial counsel--one of whom is now a Cobb County Superior Court judge--had been constitutionally ineffective.

Goldfeder comments on Palestinian terrorist policy bill

Goldfeder comments on Palestinian terrorist policy bill

Last year, the Palestinians spent $300 million, or nearly 7 percent of its total budget, on paying terrorists and their surviving family members, Fox News reports. "It's unbelievable," Emory Law Senior Lecturer Mark Goldfeder said of the payments. "[The PA] literally publish the fact, in their laws, that they are incentivizing terrorism. Then they publish a budget which says how much they are paid to incentivize terrorism. This is an open and shut case, you can't ask for better evidence than a literal physical confession."

Jonathan R. Nash

Nash: How Trump will remake the lower courts

President Trump continues to select federal judge nominees from lists created by right leaning think tanks during his campaign. There are certainly enough vacancies, about 150 positions, on the lower federal courts to keep the White House busy, Emory Law Professor Jonathan Nash writes in an essay for The Hill. "As these nominations roll in, we will gain more traction on how Trump plans to remake the federal judiciary," he writes.

Supreme Court ruling on N.C. may affect Georgia voting, Kang says

Supreme Court ruling on N.C. may affect Georgia voting, Kang says

Georgia may feel the effects of the U.S. Supreme Court decision overruling voting districts in North Carolina, according to a WABE story. Emory Law Professor Michael Kang said the decision could have a big impact in Southern states like Georgia, where party preference tends to fall along racial lines. "I think states felt like as long as they could point to partisan reasons to explain what they were doing, they could defend it in court," Kang said. "And that seems a little bit less true, a little bit less certain after [Monday's] ruling."

Dudziak in the Post: Trump's problematic view of Fifth Amendment 

Dudziak in the Post: Trump's problematic view of Fifth Amendment 

Donald Trump's views on invoking the Fifth Amendment are mutable, says a Washington Post story. Depending on when and what legal issue is involved, he has said it implies guilt--or it doesn't. Emory Law Professor Mary Dudziak said the amendment is "a really important part of the Bill of Rights. The idea that it's shameful to plead the Fifth is on some level deeply problematic and we should push back from that."

Mueller as special counsel for Russia investigation makes sense, Ahdieh says

Mueller as special counsel for Russia investigation makes sense, Ahdieh says

The appointment of former FBI Director Robert Mueller as special counsel in charge of the Russia investigation has quelled the anxieties of many Americans, an ABC report says. The decision to use special counsel puts legally complex or politically thorny cases "at least one degree away from the day to day political back and forth," said Emory Law Vice Dean Robert Ahdieh. "As a political matter, Mueller was a very smart choice in terms of the political discourse and taking down the temperature," Ahdieh said. "In essence he has completely wiped the slate clean."

'Dreamer' student's DACA revocation reflects new deportation priorities, Price says

'Dreamer' student's DACA revocation reflects new deportation priorities, Price says

One Georgia "dreamer" has had her Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals protection against deportation revoked. Emory Law Professor Polly Price says the action reflects the new administration's deportation priorities. Jessica Colotl, who works as a paralegal, got a mailed notice this week that her DACA status was terminated. "It's emblematic of the broader scope that ICE has taken recently in terms of who they're targeting and what their priorities might be," Price says.

Trump's order on pulpit endorsements problematic, Goldfeder says

Trump's order on pulpit endorsements problematic, Goldfeder says

President Trump's executive order to loosen a federal law governing religious leaders endorsing political candidates could cut a number of ways, says Emory Law Senior Lecturer Mark Goldfeder. The Johnson Amendment is vague and problematic because it limits free speech, but enforcement is rare. "Pastors are breaking it on a weekly basis," he tells the AJC. But a true repeal could cause rifts in congregations. "People have relied on the Johnson Amendment to keep their churches together," he said. If pastors are pressured to endorse candidates from the pulpit, portions of their congregations will be alienated as a result.

Goldfeder comments on religious freedom in Christian Science Monitor

Goldfeder comments on religious freedom in Christian Science Monitor

In a recent story on Americans embracing conscientious objector status in their private and professional lives, Emory Law Senior Lecturer Mark Goldfeder was quoted on religious liberty. "I believe as an American that, in general, it is a good thing for society to shape laws in ways that allow people to live their lives in ways consistent with their sincerely held religious obligations," he said. "It's in our First Amendment for a reason: It is extraordinarily important as part of the American constitutional experiment that separated us from previous societies, and made us a better nation. At the end of the day, that's a cornerstone, the bedrock of our society."