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At Supreme Court, Eric Holder’s Justice Dept. Routinely Backs Officers’ Use of Force

At Supreme Court, Eric Holder’s Justice Dept. Routinely Backs Officers’ Use of Force | Upsetment | Scoop.it
At the Supreme Court, the attorney general’s office consistently backs officers accused of abuse, even as it pursues civil rights investigations against several local police departments.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

Mr. Holder as Attorney General and the Department of Justice have to find the best path through two often contradictory considerations, the civil rights of individuals and the right to "qualified immunity" for peace officers using force. In each actual instance, the question must be did the officer(s) in question have a reasonable knowledge that the threat to them and to others was passed or quite simply non-existent. We, reading about the far-too-frequent instances of unnecessary violence are reading about them after the fact, but what was it reasonable for the officer on the scene to think? On the other hand, and here's the biggie, was the officer's thinking incorrect because of bias or the lack of proper training? If the officer or a department has bias or inadequate training, then, INMH, no "qualified immunity" exists.

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US Supreme Court to hear Jerusalem passport case | Al Jazeera America

US Supreme Court to hear Jerusalem passport case | Al Jazeera America | Upsetment | Scoop.it
Case prompted by parents of US citizen seeks to list son's place of birth as 'Israel' not 'Jerusalem' on passport
Kenneth Weene's insight:

This is one of those moments we can only hope for rationality by the Supreme Court. It may seem like a small thing, a limited personal court case, the reality is that it would pave the way for individual American citizens to force American foreign policy in some awkward and inappropriate directions. Imagine this shoe being on the other foot. A Russian child is born on the Iroquois lands in upstate NY. The child's parents ask that the child's birth certificate says Iroquois Nation instead of New York. Would the U.S. tolerate that infringement of territorial rights? That we don't formally recognize the Palestinian government doesn't mean we don't recognize that these claims exist. And, as the article points out, what about the rights of Arab-American parents whose child is born in Jerusalem? 

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Hobby Lobby: Supreme Court To Rule In Landmark Birth Control Case

Hobby Lobby: Supreme Court To Rule In Landmark Birth Control Case | Upsetment | Scoop.it
On Monday, the Supreme Court is poised to rule in a landmark case about whether for-profit corporations are entitled to religious-based exceptions from neutral laws.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

The ultimate question of most SCOTUS decisions is at the intersection between conflicting rights. If we start with the premise that women have a right to equal insurance treatment regardless of where they work and that corporations have a right to religious freedom, then we have a conflict worthy of adjudication. Of course, this entire case rests on the shoulders of Citizens United, which held that corporations were persons. Take that crazy assumption out, and there would be no case. It also rests on the assumption that the government should mandate health insurance -- not just provide it as the governments in most advanced economies do. For my part, I think that striking down Citizens United by saying that corporations cannot have religious views would be the way to go.

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The Supreme Court Takes Up The Case Of The Missing Fish

The Supreme Court Takes Up The Case Of The Missing Fish | Upsetment | Scoop.it
Prosecutors say that when undersized fish disappeared off of captain John Yates' boat, it constituted destruction of evidence. Business and civil liberties groups say the law only applies to papers.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

Too often there is a slip between the writing and and the purpose of a law; it is in that small unintended space that lawyers wiggle at the expense of justice and body politic. This is one of those instances.

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Supreme Court Birth Control Ruling May Impact Millions Of Americans

Supreme Court Birth Control Ruling May Impact Millions Of Americans | Upsetment | Scoop.it
The Supreme Court said in a landmark ruling on Monday that "closely held" corporations with religious owners may opt out of Obamacare's birth control mandate, a definition that sounds narrow in scope but actually comprises a vast majority of American businesses.

The most immediate impact will be felt by the female employees of Hobby Lobby (which employs 13,000 people total) and Conestoga Wood (which employs 1,000 people), who will no longer have cost-free access to emergency contraceptives like the morning-after pill. Beyond that, health care experts and pro-choice advocates say it's close to impossible to know precisely how many women will be affected because it depends on which employers opt out.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

Am I the only one wondering what happens when it comes out that a member of that close group which owns Hobby Lobby (or some other company) is using the pill for contraception? When it comes out that a member of that group is investing in a pill manufacturer? When it comes out that they have bought their own insurance which covers the pill? I have a strong suspicion that skullduggery will out; that these are not honest people; that they are hypocrites motivated by the show of religiosity not by its spirit.

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Pro-Business Decisions Are Defining This Supreme Court

Pro-Business Decisions Are Defining This Supreme Court | Upsetment | Scoop.it
A new analysis finds the current Supreme Court to be by far the most pro-business of any since World War II.
Kenneth Weene's insight:

Was there anybody who didn't already know this? This Supreme Court thinks that corporations are direct descents from Adam and Eve or at least from Jesus Christ. They have lost the sense of proportion that T.R., Taft, and Wilson tried to give back to the country after the last corruption of the late nineteenth century.

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