Reimagining Criminal Justice
Cecelia Klingele, Michael S. Scott & Walter J. Dickey
The criminal justice system needs more than reform. It requires reimagining. In its present state, by every measure that matters, the criminal justice system is failing to deliver what can fairly be expected of it. In response to glaring deficiencies in the current system, many policymakers and advocates have demanded increased resources for more patrol officers
Citizens United and the Corporate Form
Reuven S. Avi-Yonah
In Citizens United vs. FEC, the Supreme Court struck down a Federal statute banning direct corporate expenditures on political campaigns. The decision has been widely criticized and praised as a matter of First Amendment law
Freedom of Thought for the Extended Mind: Cognitive Enhancement and the Constitution
Marc Jonathon Blitz
Freedom of thought is often described as the central liberty in our constitutional system. Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes said that there is no principle that “more imperatively calls for attachment” than “the principle of free thought.” The Supreme Court has likewise often placed it at the center of our First Amendment jurisprudence, saying that our “whole constitutional heritage”
But while the Court has often celebrated freedom of thought, it has never clearly defined it or delineated its contours. Is “freedom of mind” a liberty that operates and protects only when we express our thoughts in speech or religious action? Or does it have independent force? This Article suggests an answer by looking at a form of government regulation that arguably limits our right to think, or enhance our powers of thought, without limiting our freedom of speech or worship. More specifically, it asks whether the Constitution’s freedom of thought places limits on the extent to which officials may restrict our use of cognitive-enhancement technology. Ultimately, I argue, the power to reshape our thinking processes biologically should be recognized as merely one form of a more general power that our “freedom of mind” is intended to place firmly in our own hands, not in the hands of government officials.
Preserving a More Perfect Union: Melding Two Circuits’ Approaches to Save a Valuable Weapon in the Fight Against Political Corruption
The federal criminal law that serves as a principal protection against local and state political corruption has been severely curtailed this year after the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Skilling v. United States. For the past twenty years, federal prosecutors utilized one statute—the mail and wire fraud’s prohibition against theft of a citizen’s right to honest services—to reach
However, its vague language was also its biggest vice. The
vagueness invited potential prosecutorial overuse and abuse. This article advocates for Congress to enact an honest-services-fraud statute that cabins the law’s reach while preserving its ability to criminalize acts undermining the republic’s faith in its state and local representatives. This public-trust preserving, private-gain standard is a two-prong test that elevates substance over form, borrowing heavily from tests established by the Sixth and Seventh Circuits. In three state and local corruption scenarios, this Comment analyzes the likely outcomes of using the public-trust preserving, private-gain standard, the popular “state law limiting” approach, and the new Skilling standard. Comparing these three approaches reveals that the public-trust preserving, private-gain standard ensures that public officials will not face charges for minor lapses in judgment without compromising the law’s prime policy goal of protecting the public against its corrupt politicians and governors.