Monthly Archives: June 2017

On This Date in Legal History

On June 30 ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­1921, President Harding nominated William Howard Taft to the Supreme Court where he remained for nine years. He’s the only President to serve on the Court. When he was Chief Justice, the Supreme Court was housed at … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

On June 29, 1972, the United States Supreme Court decided the case of Furman v. Georgia. Prisoners appealed their death sentences– claiming that the punishment, as applied to them, was unconstitutional. The Court agreed, and explained in a per curium … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

In 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt nominated Associate Justice Harlan Fiske Stone to be Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, and on January 27, 1941, the Senate confirmed his appointment. He became our twelfth Chief Justice—he served in that position … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

On January 26, 1987,  Justice Lewis Powell retired from the United States Supreme Court. Justice Powell served on the Court for 15 years.  He was appointed by President Nixon in October 1971. Listen to a very informative interview with John Jeffries, … Continue reading

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In The News

This past week the United States Supreme Court held that a federal law banning the registration of disparaging trademarks violates the Free Speech Clause of the First Amendment.  Take a look at this interesting case– Matal v. Tam– at https://goo.gl/LJoD8k.

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On This Date in Legal History

In 1958, a New York school district required the following prayer be recited each morning in its public schools: “Almighty God, we acknowledge our dependence upon Thee, and we beg Thy blessings upon us, our parents, our teachers and our … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

On June 24, 1992, the United States Supreme Court decided Lee v. Weisman. Daniel Weisman sued his daughter’s public school to bar them from inviting clergy to offer invocation and benediction prayers at her graduation. Weisman claimed that the practice … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

On July 23, 1936, Justice Anthony Kennedy was born in Sacramento, California. In November 1987, President Reagan nominated him to the United States Supreme Court. The Senate confirmed his nomination in a vote of 97 yeas to 0 nays. Take … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

On June 22, 1970, President Nixon signed the Voting Rights Act Amendments, albeit with serious reservations. The legislation included a rider that lowered the voting age to 18. Read the President’s speech from that day at http://goo.gl/rz2oKW.

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On This Date in Legal History

In 1984, protesters gathered in Dallas, Texas, to voice objections to policies adopted by the Reagan administration. During the demonstration, Gregory Lee Johnson doused an American flag with kerosene, and set it on fire. He was arrested for violating a … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

On June 20, 2002, the United States Supreme Court held in Atkins v. Virginia that the Eighth Amendment prohibited the sentencing of an intellectually disabled person to death. Justice John Paul Stevens, who authored the majority opinion for the Court, explained–“We … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

Fred Vinson was our 13th Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court. Prior to his appointment to the Court he practiced law, was a congressman, a judge on the United States Court of Appeals, and he served in both … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

Louisiana passed the” Creationism Act,” also known as the “Balanced Treatment for Creation-Science and Evolution-Science in Public School Instruction Act.” The law forbade the teaching of evolution, unless creationism was taught as well, in public elementary and secondary schools. Parents, … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

On June 18, 2015, the United States Supreme Court held (in a 5:4 decision) that Texas couldn’t be forced to issue license plates with the confederate flag. You can read the entire decision at http://1.usa.gov/1JWTN0G. Justice Breyer, who authored the majority … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

Susan B. Anthony was arrested after she voted in the 1872 New York State congressional election, because New York restricted the right to vote to men. Her trial concluded on June 18, 1873– when she was found guilty of voting … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

On June 17, 1963, the United States Supreme Court decided School District of Abington Township, Pennsylvania v. Schempp. The case dealt with prayer in the public schools.  Under Pennsylvania law, at the beginning of each school day, at least ten … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

On June 16, 1918, Eugene Debs gave a speech intending to encourage others not to join the military. Debs was indicted and convicted by a jury for violating the Espionage Act. The Act made it a crime to obstruct military … Continue reading

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On This Date in Legal History

Today is the Magna Carta’s birthday.  Learn more about this “Great Charter” at https://goo.gl/Uw7Y0k.

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On This Date in Legal History

Today we celebrate Flag Day. You can read about the history of Flag Day at http://1.usa.gov/SMCrvj 

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On This Date in Legal History

On June 13, 1966, the United States Supreme Court decided  (in a 5-4 decision) the landmark case of Miranda v. Arizona. Chief Justice Earl Warren, who delivered the opinion of the Court, summarized the holding as follows– “we hold that an … Continue reading

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