Friday, July 31, 2015

Six legal technologies that should be obsolete

The list: copiers, fax machines, dictaphones, typewriters, Blackberrys, and Windows XP.

I must confess that I rely on #1 - copiers - on a daily basis.

I also must confess that I sort of miss typewriters, or at least the process of using a typewriter to write. (Now, I do have access to a typewriter in my office - it's an IBM Selectric - to type on forms that I can't get a PDF of online). But back to the writing process: Typewriters were sort of permanent, like an early PDF. In order to use one, your thought had to be pretty complete, or you knew you'd have to edit the pages you types, and then re-type them.

I hand wrote all my exams, which made the writing process more interesting, since I couldn't use "copy, paste" to re-organize my thoughts, while other exam takers with their laptops could edit while typing. But I think the handwriting process was important: It made me write a short outline on the exam book or note paper, then fill out the outlines as I wrote. If I'm stuck now, while writing a brief or whatnot, I will still resort to writing longhand, then typing (but not on a typewriter) the notes I wrote. I know it's very old school, but the multi-step process seems to solidify my thoughts better.

Article here via the lawyerist.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

The Dignity of Gay marriages was part of SCOTUS decision: Will that bring about "dignity codes" which are against the First Amendment?

A George Washington University professor says "perhaps."

Article here (via aba journal).

George Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley says the opinion recognizing the dignity of gay marriage could pave the way for dignity codes that trump free-speech rights.
Turley says “the most direct way” the majority could have upheld a right to gay marriage in Obergefell v. Hodges would be to find that sexual orientation is a protected class under the 14th Amendment’s equal protection clause. That would have made a refusal to issue gay-marriage licenses illegal discrimination, and would have clarified the standard in areas such as employment discrimination and refusal of public accommodations, Turley says.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Two petitions approved for Marijuana legalization in Michigan

One group wants to give the legislature the ability to tax & regulate marijuana, the other wants it to be legal, but not under control of the legislature.

Article here (via the Freep).

What does this mean to the average Michigan voter? It means these two groups will be circulating their version of the petition, and if there are at least 253,000 signatures, and then it is "passed on" by the legislature, voters will see it on a ballot.

See more here: Michigan Cannabis Coalition website, and ballot language.

and here: Cannabis Reform Committee website, and ballot language.