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Harmonizing Freedom Of Speech And Free Exercise Of Religion, John Fee Mar 2024

Harmonizing Freedom Of Speech And Free Exercise Of Religion, John Fee

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

[...]The close relationship between the free exercise of religion and the freedom of speech points to the sensible assumption that they should receive similar interpretation when dealing with parallel types of problems, or at least that differences in interpretation should be carefully justified.

With this premise, this Article compares freedom of speech and free exercise jurisprudence in various parallel applications, with the suggestion of harmonizing them more closely. While other commentators have compared freedom of speech and free exercise case law with a narrower focus (most commonly, focusing on the incidental burdens issue presented in [Employment Division v. Smith] …


Eavesdropping, The Fourth Amendment, And The Common Law (Of Eavesdropping), Donald A. Dripps Mar 2024

Eavesdropping, The Fourth Amendment, And The Common Law (Of Eavesdropping), Donald A. Dripps

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

This Article addresses two of the most momentous and controversial issues raised by the Fourth Amendment. These issues are closely related but distinct. First, is eavesdropping a “search” subject to the Fourth Amendment? Second, are Fourth Amendment “searches” limited to the interests against physical intrusion protected by the common-law torts of trespass and false arrest?

[...]

Remarkably, the debate about the Fourth Amendment, the common law, and eavesdropping has almost completely ignored the common law of eavesdropping. This Article is the first to consider the Fourth Amendment in light of an in-depth examination of the common law’s prohibition of …


Originalism V. Originalism: How James Madison's Understanding Of The Establishment Clause Can Help Combat Christian Nationalism, Patrick Sawyer Mar 2024

Originalism V. Originalism: How James Madison's Understanding Of The Establishment Clause Can Help Combat Christian Nationalism, Patrick Sawyer

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

This Note will focus on what can be done to prevent Christian Nationalism from ending the Establishment Clause. Part I will focus on the cases that defined former Establishment Clause doctrine and how recent cases have done away with the parameters laid out in those earlier cases. Part II will focus on the understanding that James Madison had about the Establishment Clause. Part III will argue that Madison’s understanding of complete separation can and should be codified either under Congress’ enforcement power under the Fourteenth Amendment or the Spending Power of Article I. Part IV will consider how a statute …


The Private Abridgment Of Free Speech, Erin L. Miller Mar 2024

The Private Abridgment Of Free Speech, Erin L. Miller

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

This Article challenges the orthodoxy that First Amendment speech rights can bind only the state. I argue that the primary justification for the freedom of speech is to protect fundamental interests like autonomy, democracy, and knowledge from the kind of extraordinary power over speech available to the state. If so, this justification applies with nearly equal force to any private agents with power over speech rivaling that of the state. Such a class of private agents, which I call quasi-state agents, turns out to be a live possibility once we recognize that state power is more limited than it seems …


Fourteen Going On Forty: Challenging Sex Offender Registration For Juveniles Under The Fourteenth Amendment Equal Protection Clause, Emily Baker Mar 2024

Fourteen Going On Forty: Challenging Sex Offender Registration For Juveniles Under The Fourteenth Amendment Equal Protection Clause, Emily Baker

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

Part I of this Note reviews the historical background leading to the development of sex offender registration laws and examines relevant Supreme Court precedent. Part II analyzes the principles of juvenile justice, the application of juvenile sex offender registration policies, and the collateral consequences of youth sex offender registration. Part III argues that registered juvenile offenders should be considered a quasi-suspect class and thus receive intermediate scrutiny in equal protection analysis, and challenges the constitutionality of juvenile sex offender registries, particularly the South Carolina statutory scheme. Part IV examines the turning legal tide against juvenile registration through the recent Model …


Appendix B - Tax Funds For Religious Schools, Allan Walker Vestal Mar 2024

Appendix B - Tax Funds For Religious Schools, Allan Walker Vestal

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

No abstract provided.


Tax-Funded Education Savings Account Payments To Religious Schools Violate State Constitution Compulsion Guarantees: The Iowa Example, Allan Walker Vestal Mar 2024

Tax-Funded Education Savings Account Payments To Religious Schools Violate State Constitution Compulsion Guarantees: The Iowa Example, Allan Walker Vestal

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

[...] This Article makes the unremarkable and conservative argument that the transfer of public funds to religious schools under Iowa’s education savings account program violates the Iowa Constitution’s compulsion guarantee.

We start by looking at the Iowa compulsion guarantee, including a review of the Iowa authorities which have construed it, the historical record and setting of its adoption, and the history of its New Jersey antecedent. We then introduce the education savings account mechanism by which Iowa’s religious schools stand to receive more than a third of a billion dollars annually by FY 2027. After that, we consider whether education …


Historians Wear Robes Now? Applying The History And Tradition Standard: A Practical Guide For Lower Courts, Alexandra Michalak Dec 2023

Historians Wear Robes Now? Applying The History And Tradition Standard: A Practical Guide For Lower Courts, Alexandra Michalak

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

Never before has the Supreme Court relied on the history and tradition standard to such a magnitude as in the 2021 term to determine the scope of a range of constitutional rights. [...] In reaffirming this standard, the Supreme Court provided no guidance to lower courts on how to apply and analyze the history and tradition standard. Along with balancing the lack of resources in deciding cases with the history and tradition framework, lower courts must face the reality that this standard presents ample opportunity for one-sided historical analysis. To combat the temptation of conducting unbalanced and cursory reviews of …


Remedying The Insular Cases: Providing Tribal Sovereignty To Unincorporated Territories To Ensure Constitutional Rights For All U.S. Nationals And Citizens, Allison Ripple Dec 2023

Remedying The Insular Cases: Providing Tribal Sovereignty To Unincorporated Territories To Ensure Constitutional Rights For All U.S. Nationals And Citizens, Allison Ripple

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

This Note will focus on the Supreme Court’s decisions in the Insular Cases to demonstrate the origins of denying jus soli citizenship to those born in unincorporated territories and to analyze its direct contradiction to the Fourteenth Amendment and other Supreme Court decisions. It will argue that the Court’s decisions in the Insular Cases were influenced by colonial rule and rooted in racism. Furthermore, this Note will argue that because of these influences, the continued application of the Insular Cases by Congress and the Supreme Court to deny constitutional rights for U.S. nationals and citizens born in unincorporated territories violates …


On Inmates And Friendship, Jared Deeds Dec 2023

On Inmates And Friendship, Jared Deeds

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

That humanity both cherishes friendship and finds it to be fundamental for its own good should be reason enough to justify its legal protection. Yet, there is a serious deficiency of legal discourse on the rights and liberties of friends in America’s courts. In the absence of such discourse—perhaps partially because of it—friendship as a social institution experiences a lack of legal protection in the United States. Though all friends may be exposed to abuses as a result of deficient safeguards, inmates and their unincarcerated friends suffer with particular severity.

[...]

Part I of this Note will further discuss the …


Unleashing The Guarantee Clause Against The Spirit Of Innovation, Ricardo N. Cordova Dec 2023

Unleashing The Guarantee Clause Against The Spirit Of Innovation, Ricardo N. Cordova

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

[...] Of special significance is Madison’s defense of the Guarantee Clause in Federalist 43, in which he argued that the Clause is intended to prevent “aristocratic or monarchical innovations” by the states. This phrase is a critical clue to uncovering the full meaning of the Guarantee Clause. Yet scholars have mentioned it only in passing and divorced from its historical context, as part of apocryphal claims that the Clause supports radical modern causes. This is unfortunate because Madison’s phrase, properly construed, speaks volumes.

Preliminarily, the phrase shows that the Guarantee Clause was originally understood to prevent changes of a …


"There's A New Sheriff In Town": Why Granting Qualified Immunity To Local Officials Acting Outside Their Authority Erodes Constitutional Rights And Further Deteriorates The Doctrine, Josephine Mcguire Dec 2023

"There's A New Sheriff In Town": Why Granting Qualified Immunity To Local Officials Acting Outside Their Authority Erodes Constitutional Rights And Further Deteriorates The Doctrine, Josephine Mcguire

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

Part I traces the history of qualified immunity and the doctrine’s analytical changes over time, detailing the twofold test as it currently stands. Part II considers Large and Sweetin, comparing the courts’ approaches to essentially similar scenarios and evaluating the differences in outcome. Part III addresses the Supreme Court’s denial of the Large plaintiffs’ petition for certiorari and explicates the “scope of authority” question the Court declined to address. Part IV breaks down the decision in Large and conducts the qualified immunity analysis anew, determining that the court misapplied the doctrine regardless of its failure to consider the scope …


Twilight-Zone Originalism: The Peculiar Reasoning And Unfortunate Consequences Of New York State Pistol & Rifle Association V. Bruen, Albert W. Alschuler Oct 2023

Twilight-Zone Originalism: The Peculiar Reasoning And Unfortunate Consequences Of New York State Pistol & Rifle Association V. Bruen, Albert W. Alschuler

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

This Article consists of two Parts and a conclusion. Part I focuses on the Bruen opinion and considers its contradictions, flaws, fallacies, and implications. Part II examines lower-court decisions applying Bruen during the first year after that decision. These decisions make Bruen’s flaws vivid.

This abstract has been taken from the author's introduction.


Dobbs' Sex Equality Troubles, Marc Spindelman Oct 2023

Dobbs' Sex Equality Troubles, Marc Spindelman

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

This article takes up what Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Org. may mean for sex equality rights beyond the abortion setting. It details how Dobbs lays the foundation for rolling back and even eliminating Fourteenth Amendment sex equality protections. The work scales these possibilities against a different dimension of the ruling that’s yet to receive the attention that it merits. An important footnote in Dobbs, Footnote 22, sketches a new history-and-tradition-based approach to unenumerated rights under the Fourteenth Amendment’s Privileges or Immunities Clause. The jurisprudence that this Footnote capacitates could transform the constitutional landscape via new economic and social …


The Evolution Of Sodomy Decriminalization Jurisprudence In Transnational And Comparative Constitutional Perspective, Ayodeji Kamau Perrin Oct 2023

The Evolution Of Sodomy Decriminalization Jurisprudence In Transnational And Comparative Constitutional Perspective, Ayodeji Kamau Perrin

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

In this Article, I demonstrate that legal mobilization by activist litigants combined with a comparative methodological jurisprudence has been central to the “transnational legal process” of the generation and diffusion of the sodomy decriminalization norm since the 1950s. My analysis of the transnational comparative jurisprudence relies on a comprehensive legal survey of seven decades of decriminalization jurisprudence (1954–2022), primarily using successful cases. Although the scholarship on the well-known Dudgeon, Toonen, and NCGLE cases often asserts the influence that these cases had on subsequent domestic court constitutional jurisprudence, I suggest that it is the domestic privacy jurisprudence of lobbyists, …


Serious Value, Prurient Appeal, And "Obscene" Books In The Hands Of Children, Todd E. Pettys May 2023

Serious Value, Prurient Appeal, And "Obscene" Books In The Hands Of Children, Todd E. Pettys

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

Controversy has erupted across the country concerning sexually explicit books that are available to children in bookstores, schools, and libraries. Many have called for tough enforcement of obscenity laws, with some saying librarians and schoolteachers who distribute certain books to children should face jail time. Using four controversial books as examples, this Article takes today’s book wars as an opportunity to achieve two things. First, the Article explains the narrow circumstances in which the First Amendment permits the government to block the distribution of books to children due to concerns about the books’ prurient appeal. The Article’s second aim is …


Freedom In The Balance: Procedural Due Process Rights And The Burden Of Proof In Detention Hearings In Immigration Removal Proceedings, Colin Brady May 2023

Freedom In The Balance: Procedural Due Process Rights And The Burden Of Proof In Detention Hearings In Immigration Removal Proceedings, Colin Brady

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

Part I of this Note considers the statutory and regulatory basis for immigration detention. Part II reviews prior cases decided by the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) that bear on the question. Part III discusses how the Supreme Court has addressed previous procedural due process concerns within the immigration system and how lower courts have reacted. Part IV lays out how the Supreme Court has conceptualized the constitutional due process rights extended to noncitizens and how that has changed over the years. Part V considers how other categories of individuals are treated with respect to involuntary detention and the burden …


Attachment Issues: Assessing The Relationship Between Newcomers And The Constitution, Ashley Mantha-Hollands May 2023

Attachment Issues: Assessing The Relationship Between Newcomers And The Constitution, Ashley Mantha-Hollands

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

Are you attached to the principles of the U.S. Constitution? How do you prove it—do you feel it, or just know it? What role does it play in your daily life as a citizen? Ever since one of the first acts of the U.S. Congress, the Naturalization Act of 1795, applicants for citizenship have been required to demonstrate that they are “attached to the principles of the [C]onstitution of the United States.” This requirement has been at the forefront of fierce debates in U.S. constitutional history and, although it has had limited usage after WWII, it has recently been brought …


The Fourth Amendment's Constitutional Home, Gerald S. Dickinson May 2023

The Fourth Amendment's Constitutional Home, Gerald S. Dickinson

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

The home enjoys omnipresent status in American constitutional law. The Bill of Rights, peculiarly, has served as the central refuge for special protections to the home. This constitutional sanctuary has elicited an intriguing textual and doctrinal puzzle. A distinct thread has emerged that runs through the first five amendments delineating the home as a zone where rights emanating from speech, smut, gods, guns, soldiers, searches, sex, and self-incrimination enjoy special protections. However, the thread inexplicably unravels upon arriving at takings. There, the constitutional text omits and the Supreme Court’s doctrine excludes a special zone of safeguards to the home. This …


Let My People Go, Part Two: The Second Amendment Political Necessity Defense And The Storming Of Capital Hill, Kindaka Sanders May 2023

Let My People Go, Part Two: The Second Amendment Political Necessity Defense And The Storming Of Capital Hill, Kindaka Sanders

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

The Article examines the traditional political necessity defense, extracting elements that are compatible with the Second Amendment and discarding elements that are not. The Article also explores the historical and legal background of the right to rebel and then uses the right to rebel to define the contours of the Second Amendment political necessity defense. Finally, the Article applies the Second Amendment political necessity defense to the storming of the Capitol on January 6, 2020.

Part I of this Article discusses the constitutional basis for the political necessity defense. Part II articulates the political necessity doctrine refined by its Second …


Plaintiff's Problem: Constitutional Concerns With Service Of Process Under Alaska Rule Of Civil Procedure 4(D)(7)-(8), Casey Sawyer May 2023

Plaintiff's Problem: Constitutional Concerns With Service Of Process Under Alaska Rule Of Civil Procedure 4(D)(7)-(8), Casey Sawyer

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

Rule 4 of Alaska’s Rules of Civil Procedure prescribes how service of process must be completed for a civil lawsuit, much like Rule 4 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. When filing suit against the State of Alaska or one of its agencies or officers, Alaska Civil Rule 4(d)(7)–(8) require that service of process be delivered to multiple locations. The plaintiff will usually have to serve the Attorney General’s office in the district of filing (either Anchorage or Fairbanks) and also must deliver service of process to the Attorney General’s office in Alaska’s capital city of Juneau. If they …


Let My People Go, Part One: Black Rebellion And The Second Amendment Political Necessity Defense, Kindaka Sanders Mar 2023

Let My People Go, Part One: Black Rebellion And The Second Amendment Political Necessity Defense, Kindaka Sanders

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

This Article argues that when an individual or group acts to protect a government-assailed constitutional right by criminal means, the doctrine of political necessity may serve as a constitutionally protected defense. The doctrine of political necessity builds on the common law doctrine of necessity. The necessity doctrine, also referred to as the “choice of evils” defense, exonerates an individual who creates a social harm to allay a greater harm to herself or others. Both state and federal courts have been especially reluctant to allow the use of the necessity defense in cases with political implications, in which the defendant acts …


State Separation Of Powers And The Federal Courts, Ann Woolhandler Mar 2023

State Separation Of Powers And The Federal Courts, Ann Woolhandler

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

The cases discussed herein mostly surfaced in the regulatory era of the latter half of the nineteenth century and the early twentieth century. This Article first discusses arguments as to state delegations of legislative power, and the Court’s rejection of legislative-style deference that state agencies often argued for. This Article next discusses the Court’s decisions as to state adjudicative bodies, and its refusal to treat state agency adjudicators as full-fledged courts. This Article then addresses the Court’s response to arguments for unreviewable executive discretion and to laws allowing delegations to private parties. It then addresses whether the discussion sheds light …


In Search Of A Legislative Leviathan: Judicial Enforcement Of Senate Nominations Rules, Sam Simon Mar 2023

In Search Of A Legislative Leviathan: Judicial Enforcement Of Senate Nominations Rules, Sam Simon

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

The Senate is trapped in a collective action problem. Both political parties would be better off if the Senate could consistently confirm judicial nominees on a reasonable timeline. However, when the party that controls the presidency does not control the Senate, Senate leaders face strong incentives to block nominees using whatever excuse they can find. Any Senate majority considering playing nice with a president of the opposing party runs the risk that its kindness will not be repaid when the tables are turned. The only rational strategy is to apply what scholars have called the Iron Rule: do unto others …


Sola Scriptura: Slavery, Federalism And The Textual Power To Provide For The General Welfare, Calvin H. Johnson Mar 2023

Sola Scriptura: Slavery, Federalism And The Textual Power To Provide For The General Welfare, Calvin H. Johnson

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

This Article argues specifically that under the text of the Constitution, Congress has the general power to provide for the welfare through tax and any other necessary and appropriate means. Clause 1 of the description of powers of Congress in Article I, Section 8, gives Congress the power to tax and spend to provide for the common defense and general welfare. Common defense and domestic welfare are parallel in the text and equally plenary, subject only to restrictions protecting individual rights. The final clause of Section 8 then allows Congress to reach the goal of general welfare by any necessary …


The False Promise Of Expanded Religious Liberty Rights After The Covid-19 Cases And Fulton V. City Of Philadelphia, Shlomo C. Pill Mar 2023

The False Promise Of Expanded Religious Liberty Rights After The Covid-19 Cases And Fulton V. City Of Philadelphia, Shlomo C. Pill

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

This Article explains and critiques the Supreme Court’s recent reframing of religious free exercise rights. This change was initiated by a series of “shadow docket” rulings issued in late 2020 and early 2021 in which the Court sustained religious challenges to COVID-19 capacity restrictions and mask mandates. That doctrinal shift was confirmed and reinforced by the Court’s subsequence decision in Fulton v. City of Philadelphia. In these cases, the Court significantly narrowed the Smith test, which, since 1990, had subjected neutral and generally applicable laws that burden religious practice to only rational basis review. Under the Court’s new free …


On The Nexus Between The Strength Of The Separation Of Powers And The Power Of The Judiciary, Rivka Weill Mar 2023

On The Nexus Between The Strength Of The Separation Of Powers And The Power Of The Judiciary, Rivka Weill

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

This Article makes four novel arguments: (1) There is an inverse relationship between the strength of a separation of powers structure and the strength of the judiciary. In a strong separation of powers structure, one should expect a weaker judiciary, and vice versa. This nexus exists empirically, and is supported on normative and strategic grounds. (2) This nexus is manifested through a web of common law doctrines that developed to support a given separation of powers structure and shape the judicial oversight of the political branches. This Article identifies a list of common law doctrines—including standing, justiciability, deference, and judicial …


Answering The Political Question: Demonstrating An Intent-Based Framework For Partisan Gerrymandering, Kyle H. Keraga Mar 2023

Answering The Political Question: Demonstrating An Intent-Based Framework For Partisan Gerrymandering, Kyle H. Keraga

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

Partisan gerrymandering is widely recognized as a threat to the foundations of our democracy. Political parties with control over their state legislatures routinely leverage the redistricting process to entrench themselves in power—suppressing political adversaries, chilling public participation, and polarizing the electorate. Nevertheless, despite a persistent recognition that partisan gerrymandering is incompatible with basic democratic principles, the Supreme Court struggled to develop a stable and consistent doctrinal approach to this issue, even as reliable standards emerged to adjudicate malapportionment and racial gerrymandering claims. Recently, in Rucho v. Common Cause, the Court abandoned the search entirely, holding that partisan gerrymandering is …


The Legal Origins Of Catholic Conscientious Objection, Jeremy Kessler Dec 2022

The Legal Origins Of Catholic Conscientious Objection, Jeremy Kessler

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

This Article traces the origins of Catholic conscientious objection as a theory and practice of American constitutionalism. It argues that Catholic conscientious objection emerged during the 1960s from a confluence of left-wing and right-wing Catholic efforts to participate in American democratic culture more fully. The refusal of the American government to allow legitimate Catholic conscientious objection to the Vietnam War became a cause célèbre for clerical and lay leaders and provided a blueprint for Catholic legal critiques of other forms of federal regulation in the late 1960s and early 1970s—most especially regulations concerning the provision of contraception and abortion.

Over …


A New Takings Clause? The Implications Of Cedar Point Nursery V. Hassid For Property Rights And Moratoria, Benjamin Alexander Mogren Dec 2022

A New Takings Clause? The Implications Of Cedar Point Nursery V. Hassid For Property Rights And Moratoria, Benjamin Alexander Mogren

William & Mary Bill of Rights Journal

In part, the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution holds that “no person . . . shall [have their] private property . . . taken for public use, without just compensation.” In Cedar Point Nursery v. Hassid, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that “a California regulation that permits union organizers to enter the property of agricultural business to talk with employees about supporting a union is unconstitutional.” The purpose of this Note is to discuss what Cedar Point Nursery means generally for the future of Takings Clause analysis and will argue that Cedar Point Nursery should be seen as a …