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In These Times Of Compassion When Conformity’S In Fashion: How Therapeutic Jurisprudence Can Root Out Bias, Limit Polarization And Support Vulnerable Persons In The Legal Process, Michael L. Perlin Jan 2023

In These Times Of Compassion When Conformity’S In Fashion: How Therapeutic Jurisprudence Can Root Out Bias, Limit Polarization And Support Vulnerable Persons In The Legal Process, Michael L. Perlin

Articles & Chapters

In this paper, I consider the extent to which caselaw has – either explicitly or implicitly – incorporated the precepts of therapeutic jurisprudence (TJ), a school of legal thought that focuses on the law’s influence on emotional life and psychological well-being, and that asks us to assess the actual impact of the law on people’s lives. Two of the core tenets of TJ in practice are commitments to dignity and to compassion. I conclude ultimately that, with these principles as touchstones, TJ can be an effective tool – perhaps the most effective tool - in rooting out bias, limiting polarization, …


Sovereign Imaginaries: Visualizing The Sacred Foundation Of Law’S Authority, Richard K. Sherwin Aug 2022

Sovereign Imaginaries: Visualizing The Sacred Foundation Of Law’S Authority, Richard K. Sherwin

Articles & Chapters

If a world is to be lived in, it must be founded. This foundational function belongs to the sovereign imagination. What a polity names as sovereign in the state of exception, when the sacred irrupts anew, is a matter of individual and collective responsibility. In this dispensation, law, politics, and religion become inescapably entangled in metaphysics. It behooves us to understand the nature and consequences of this state of affairs.


The Distant Ships Of Liberty: Why Criminology Needs To Take Seriously International Human Rights Laws That Apply To Persons With Disabilities, Michael L. Perlin, Alison Lynch, Kelly Frailing, Ashley Juneau Jul 2022

The Distant Ships Of Liberty: Why Criminology Needs To Take Seriously International Human Rights Laws That Apply To Persons With Disabilities, Michael L. Perlin, Alison Lynch, Kelly Frailing, Ashley Juneau

Articles & Chapters

Persons institutionalized in forensic psychiatric facilities have been hidden from the public view for decades – physically, socially, and legally. The forensic population also faces multiple forms of discrimination, both for their criminal history and mental illness. This reality must be radically reconsidered in light of the ratification of the United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD), the first legally binding instrument devoted to the comprehensive protection of the rights of persons with disabilities. There has been, however, virtually no attention paid by criminologists to the potential impact of this Convention on forensic populations. In this …


Most Favored Racial Hierarchy: The Ever-Evolving Ways Of The Supreme Court's Superordination Of Whiteness, David Simson Jun 2022

Most Favored Racial Hierarchy: The Ever-Evolving Ways Of The Supreme Court's Superordination Of Whiteness, David Simson

Articles & Chapters

This Article engages in a critical comparative analysis of the recent history and likely future trajectory of the Supreme Court’s constitutional jurisprudence in matters of race and religion to uncover new aspects of the racial project that Reggie Oh has recently called the “racial superordination” of whiteness—the reinforcing of the superior status of whites in American society by, among other things, prioritizing their interests in structuring constitutional doctrine. This analysis shows that the Court is increasingly widening the gap between conceptions of, and levels of protection provided for, equality in the contexts of race and religion in ways that prioritize …


“Some Mother’S Child Has Gone Astray”: Neuroscientific Approaches To A Therapeutic Jurisprudence Model Of Juvenile Sentencing, Michael L. Perlin, Alison Lynch Jul 2021

“Some Mother’S Child Has Gone Astray”: Neuroscientific Approaches To A Therapeutic Jurisprudence Model Of Juvenile Sentencing, Michael L. Perlin, Alison Lynch

Articles & Chapters

There is a robust body of evidence that tells us that the juvenile brain is not fully developed by age 18, and this evidence should and does raise important questions about the sentencing of juveniles in criminal cases. This evidence, though, must be considered in the context of public opinion (about certain juvenile crimes that have been subject to saturation publicity) in the context of judges’ decision-making (where such judges do not want to be perceived as “soft on crime”). The conflict between what we now know and what (false) “ordinary common sense” demands (in the way of enhanced punishments) …


The Strings In The Books Ain't Pulled And Persuaded: How The Use Of Improper Statistics And Unverified Data Corrupts The Judicial Process In Sex Offender Cases, Heather Ellis Cucolo, Michael L. Perlin Jan 2019

The Strings In The Books Ain't Pulled And Persuaded: How The Use Of Improper Statistics And Unverified Data Corrupts The Judicial Process In Sex Offender Cases, Heather Ellis Cucolo, Michael L. Perlin

Articles & Chapters

An examination of a range of judicial decisions involving sexual offender determinations reveals that, frequently, courts rely improperly on inaccurate and under-developed statistics as well as unverified and outdated information. This reliance, too often, underlies rulings that subject the sex offender to significant sanctions and loss of liberty. Additionally, the continuation of the testimonial script that all sex offenders are high recidivists, dangerous, compulsive and untreatable, contributes to the anti-therapeutic effect of shaming and humiliation. This results in isolation, seclusion, lack of dignity; also, it further trivializes the judicial process, and violates the tenants of therapeutic jurisprudence. Despite the “frightening …


Hidden Nondefense: Partisanship In State Attorneys General Amicus Briefs And The Need For Transparency, Lisa Grumet Jan 2019

Hidden Nondefense: Partisanship In State Attorneys General Amicus Briefs And The Need For Transparency, Lisa Grumet

Articles & Chapters

In all fifty states, the State Attorney General (SAG) — as the state’s chief legal officer — is charged with defending state laws that are challenged in court. If an SAG declines to defend or challenges a state law on the ground that it is unconstitutional — an action scholars describe as “nondefense” — the SAG ordinarily will disclose this decision to the public.

This Essay discusses a hidden form of nondefense that can occur when SAGs file amicus curiae briefs on behalf of their states in matters before the U.S. Supreme Court. Surprisingly, some SAGs have joined multistate amicus …


Some Things Are Too Hot To Touch: Competency, The Right To Sexual Autonomy, And The Roles Of Lawyers And Expert Witnesses, Michael L. Perlin, Alison Lynch, Valerie R. Mcclain Jan 2019

Some Things Are Too Hot To Touch: Competency, The Right To Sexual Autonomy, And The Roles Of Lawyers And Expert Witnesses, Michael L. Perlin, Alison Lynch, Valerie R. Mcclain

Articles & Chapters

No abstract provided.


Punishment Without Process: Victim Impact Proceedings For Dead Defendants, Bruce Green, Rebecca Roiphe Jan 2019

Punishment Without Process: Victim Impact Proceedings For Dead Defendants, Bruce Green, Rebecca Roiphe

Articles & Chapters

After Jeffrey Epstein committed suicide in jail, two judges allowed his accusers to speak in court. This article argues that the proceedings were inappropriate because the criminal case ends when the defendant dies. If the conviction and appeal are not final, there is no finding of guilt, and the defendant is still presumed innocent. Allowing accusers to speak at this time violates the principle of due process and threatens to undermine faith in judges and the criminal justice system in general. While courts are at times legally required to hear from victims of crimes, they were not allowed to do …


There's Voices In The Night Trying To Be Heard: The Potential Impact Of The Convention On The Rights Of Persons With Disabilities On Domestic Mental Disability Law, Michael L. Perlin, Naomi Weinstein Jan 2019

There's Voices In The Night Trying To Be Heard: The Potential Impact Of The Convention On The Rights Of Persons With Disabilities On Domestic Mental Disability Law, Michael L. Perlin, Naomi Weinstein

Articles & Chapters

This paper carefully examines, through a therapeutic jurisprudence framework, the likely impact of the ratification of this UN Convention on society’s sanist attitudes towards persons with mental disabilities. We argue that it is impossible to consider the impact of anti-discrimination law on persons with mental disabilities without a full understanding of how sanism -- an irrational prejudice of the same quality and character of other irrational prejudices that cause (and are reflected in) prevailing social attitudes of racism, sexism, homophobia, and ethnic bigotry -- permeates all aspects of the legal system and the entire fabric of American society.

Notwithstanding nearly …


To Promote Innovation, Congress Should Abolish The Supreme Court Created Exceptions To 35 U.S. Code Sec. 101, Shahrokh Falati Jan 2019

To Promote Innovation, Congress Should Abolish The Supreme Court Created Exceptions To 35 U.S. Code Sec. 101, Shahrokh Falati

Articles & Chapters

No abstract provided.


A Tj Approach To Mental Disability Rights Research: On Sexual Autonomy And Sexual Offending, Michael L. Perlin, Heather Ellis Cucolo, Alison Lynch Jan 2019

A Tj Approach To Mental Disability Rights Research: On Sexual Autonomy And Sexual Offending, Michael L. Perlin, Heather Ellis Cucolo, Alison Lynch

Articles & Chapters

We believe it is impossible to understand the development and the power of therapeutic jurisprudence (TJ) without acknowledging that its roots in mental disability law have continued to expand and flourish over the decades, and that there is no other substantive area of the law in which every aspect – substantive and procedural, civil and criminal, statutory and constitutional. domestic and international – has been weighed and evaluated using a TJ lens. In this chapter, we consider how those roots have shaped the last three decades of research and the implications of what has developed. We look carefully at two …


Visual Literacy For The Legal Profession, Richard K. Sherwin Jan 2018

Visual Literacy For The Legal Profession, Richard K. Sherwin

Articles & Chapters

Digital technology has transformed the way we communicate in society. Swept along on a digital tide, words, sounds, and images easily, and often, flow together. This state of affairs has radically affected not only our commercial and political practices in society, but also the way we practice law.

Unfortunately, legal education and legal theory have not kept up. Inconsistencies and unpredictability in the way courts ascertain the admissibility of various kinds of visual evidence and visual argumentation, lapses in the cross examination of visual evidence at trial, and inadequately theorized notions of visual meaning and the epistemology of affect tell …


'The Pain I Rise Above': How International Human Rights Can Best Realize The Needs Of Persons With Trauma-Related Mental Disabilities, Mehgan Gallagher, Michael L. Perlin Jan 2018

'The Pain I Rise Above': How International Human Rights Can Best Realize The Needs Of Persons With Trauma-Related Mental Disabilities, Mehgan Gallagher, Michael L. Perlin

Articles & Chapters

No abstract provided.


Tolling For The Aching Ones Whose Wounds Cannot Be Nursed’: The Marginalization Of Racial Minorities And Women In Institutional Mental Disability Law, Michael L. Perlin, Heather Ellis Cucolo Jan 2017

Tolling For The Aching Ones Whose Wounds Cannot Be Nursed’: The Marginalization Of Racial Minorities And Women In Institutional Mental Disability Law, Michael L. Perlin, Heather Ellis Cucolo

Articles & Chapters

Individuals with mental disabilities have traditionally been and continue to be subjected to rights violations and pervasive discrimination because of their mental disabilities. Seen as “the other,” individuals who are racial minorities and/or are women are marginalized to an even greater extent than other persons with mental disabilities in matters related to civil commitment and institutional treatment (especially involving theright to refuse medication).

It is impossible to examine these questions critically without coming to grips with the ways that expert testimony — testimony that is essential and necessary in all these cases — is infected with bias that leads to …


The Insanity Defense: Nine Myths That Will Not Go Away, Michael L. Perlin Jan 2017

The Insanity Defense: Nine Myths That Will Not Go Away, Michael L. Perlin

Articles & Chapters

Writing about the insanity defense over a quarter of a century ago, the author of this chapter stated: "Until we 'unpack' the empirical and social myths that underlie our misconceptions about the insane and the insanitydefense and hold us in a paralytic thrall, we cannot begin to move forward." Some five years later, he began a full-length book on the insanity defense by alleging, "Our insanity defense jurisprudence is incoherent." Five years after that, he concluded that "we as a society remain fixated on the insanity defense as a symbol of all that is wrong with the criminal justice system …


"Toiling In The Danger And In The Morals Of Despair": Risk, Security, Danger, The Constitution, And The Clinician's Dilemma, Michael L. Perlin, Alison Lynch Jan 2017

"Toiling In The Danger And In The Morals Of Despair": Risk, Security, Danger, The Constitution, And The Clinician's Dilemma, Michael L. Perlin, Alison Lynch

Articles & Chapters

Persons institutionalized in psychiatric hospitals and “state schools” for those with intellectual disabilities have always been hidden from view. Such facilities were often constructed far from major urban centers, availability of transportation to such institutions was often limited, and those who were locked up were, to the public, faceless and often seen as less than human.

Although there has been regular litigation in the area of psychiatric (and intellectual disability) institutional rights for 40 years, much of this case law entirely ignores forensic patients – mostly those awaiting incompetency-to-stand trial determinations, those found permanently incompetent to stand trial, those acquitted …


God Said To Abraham/Kill Me A Son: Why The Insanity Defense And The Incompetency Status Are Compatible With And Required By The Convention On The Rights Of Persons With Disabilities And Basic Principles Of Therapeutic Jurisprudence, Michael L. Perlin Jan 2017

God Said To Abraham/Kill Me A Son: Why The Insanity Defense And The Incompetency Status Are Compatible With And Required By The Convention On The Rights Of Persons With Disabilities And Basic Principles Of Therapeutic Jurisprudence, Michael L. Perlin

Articles & Chapters

Interpretations of the General Comments to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) — that command the abolition of the insanity defense and the incompetency status — make no theoretical or conceptual sense, disregard the history of how society has treated persons with serious mental disabilities who are charged with crime, and will lead to predictable torture of this population in prison, at the hands of both prison guards and other prisoners. Such interpretation also flies in the face of every precept of therapeutic jurisprudence. Support of this position exhibits a startling lack of understanding of the …


A Contextual Approach To Harmless Error Review, Justin Murray Jan 2017

A Contextual Approach To Harmless Error Review, Justin Murray

Articles & Chapters

Harmless error review is profoundly important, but arguably broken, in the form that courts currently employ it in criminal cases. One significant reason for this brokenness lies in the dissonance between the reductionism of modern harmless error methodology and the diverse normative ambitions of criminal procedure. Nearly all harmless error rules used by courts today focus exclusively on whether the procedural error under review affected the result of a judicial proceeding. I refer to these rules as “result-based harmlesserror review.” The singular preoccupation of result-based harmless error review with the outputs of criminal processes stands in marked contrast with criminal …


"Mr. Bad Example": Why Lawyers Need To Embrace Therapeutic Jurisprudence To Root Out Sanism In The Representation Of Persons With Mental Disabilities, Michael L. Perlin Jan 2016

"Mr. Bad Example": Why Lawyers Need To Embrace Therapeutic Jurisprudence To Root Out Sanism In The Representation Of Persons With Mental Disabilities, Michael L. Perlin

Articles & Chapters

Litigants with mental disabilities are taken less seriously by their own lawyers, trivialized by opposing counsel, and disparaged by judges. This is largely a result of “sanism,” an irrational prejudice of the same quality and character of other irrational prejudices such as racism, sexism or homophobia. Recognizing and combatting sanism creates extra burdens on lawyers who do seek to provide effective counsel for this population. Such lawyers need special tools to combat sanism, and we believe that lawyering skills rooted in therapeutic jurisprudence provide the best foundation through which to create a positive psychology of persuasion in this representation. Our …


Infinity Goes On Trial: Sanism, Pretextuality, And The Representation Of Defendants With Mental Disabilities, Michael L. Perlin Jan 2016

Infinity Goes On Trial: Sanism, Pretextuality, And The Representation Of Defendants With Mental Disabilities, Michael L. Perlin

Articles & Chapters

This paper, presented to the mid-winter meeting of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (Austin, TX, 2/18/16), explains why it is essential for lawyers representing criminal defendants with mental disabilities to understand the meanings and contexts of sanism - a largely invisible and largely socially acceptable irrational prejudice of the same quality and character of other irrational prejudices that cause (and are reflected in) prevailing social attitudes of racism, sexism, homophobia, and ethnic bigotry - and pretextuality - the means by which courts regularly accept (either implicitly or explicitly) testimonial dishonesty, countenance liberty deprivations in disingenuous ways that bear …


Judicial Externships, Mariana Hogan, Michael Roffer Jan 2016

Judicial Externships, Mariana Hogan, Michael Roffer

Articles & Chapters

No abstract provided.


Had To Be Held Down By Big Police: A Therapeutic Jurisprudence Perspective On Interactions Between Police And Persons With Mental Disabilities, Michael L. Perlin, Alison Lynch Jan 2016

Had To Be Held Down By Big Police: A Therapeutic Jurisprudence Perspective On Interactions Between Police And Persons With Mental Disabilities, Michael L. Perlin, Alison Lynch

Articles & Chapters

It is a truism that the largest mental health facilities in the nation are the nation’s largest urban jails. Most of the predictable solutions that are offered to curb the influx of individuals with mental illness into jails -- especially those that urge the loosening of civil commitment standards and the return to large psychiatric institutions -- are dreary at best, unconstitutional at heart, and mean-spirited at worst. However, we pay remarkably little attention to one of the primary causes of this reality: the decisionmaking processes "on the street" by police officers who choose to apprehend and arrest certain cohorts …


There's A Dyin Voice Within Me Reaching Out Somewhere: How Tj Can Bring Voice To The Teaching Of Mental Disability Law And Criminal Law, Michael L. Perlin Jan 2015

There's A Dyin Voice Within Me Reaching Out Somewhere: How Tj Can Bring Voice To The Teaching Of Mental Disability Law And Criminal Law, Michael L. Perlin

Articles & Chapters

In this article, I discuss my historical involvement with therapeutic jurisprudence (TJ), how I use it in my classes (both in the free-standing TJ class and in all the others that I teach), its role in my written scholarship, and its role in conferences that I regularly attend. Although this is all positive and supportive of all efforts to widen the appeal of TJ as well as its applicability in the classroom, in scholarship and in “real life,” I also share some information that is far from optimistic with regard to the way that TJ is being reacted to by …


I Expected It To Happen/I Knew He'd Lost Control: The Impact Of Ptsd On Criminal Sentencing After The Promulgation Of Dsm-5, Michael L. Perlin Jan 2015

I Expected It To Happen/I Knew He'd Lost Control: The Impact Of Ptsd On Criminal Sentencing After The Promulgation Of Dsm-5, Michael L. Perlin

Articles & Chapters

The adoption by the American Psychiatric Association of DSM-5 significantly changes (and in material ways, expands) the definition of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a change that raises multiple questions that need to be considered carefully by lawyers, mental health professionals, advocates and policy makers.

My thesis is that the expansion of the PTSD criteria in DSM-5 has the potential to make significant changes in legal practice in all aspects of criminal procedure, but none more so than in criminal sentencing. I believe that if courts treat DSM 5 with the same deference with which they have treated earlier versions of …


Empathy And Reasoning In Context: Thinking About Anti-Gay Bullying, Kris Franklin Jan 2014

Empathy And Reasoning In Context: Thinking About Anti-Gay Bullying, Kris Franklin

Articles & Chapters

“Empathy” has negative connotations for many legal theorists, who may conceive of it as subjective, lacking in intellectual rigor, and emphasizing sensitivity over reason. Even those legal scholars who have embraced the importance of empathy in legal work have emphasized its affective dimensions: pointing out that empathy is central to human relations and motivations, and is therefore a crucial lawyering skill. This paper builds on social science literature that identifies both cognitive and affective dimensions to empathy, and recasts empathy as in part a central component to higher-order thinking in law. It draws examples from empathetic reasoning in foundational cases …


They’Re Planting Stories In The Press: The Impact Of Media Distortions On Sex Offender Law And Policy, Heather Ellis Cucolo, Michael L. Perlin Jan 2013

They’Re Planting Stories In The Press: The Impact Of Media Distortions On Sex Offender Law And Policy, Heather Ellis Cucolo, Michael L. Perlin

Articles & Chapters

Individuals classified as sexual predators are the pariahs of the community. Sex offenders are arguably the most despised members of our society and therefore warrant our harshest condemnation. Twenty individual states and the federal government have enacted laws confining individuals who have been adjudicated as “sexually violent predators” to civil commitment facilities post incarceration and/or conviction. Additionally, in many jurisdictions, offenders who are returned to the community are restricted and monitored under community notification, registration and residency limitations. Targeting, punishing and ostracizing these individuals has become an obsession in society, clearly evidenced in the constant push to enact even more …


The Judge, He Cast His Robe Aside: Mental Health Courts, Dignity And Due Process, Michael L. Perlin Jan 2013

The Judge, He Cast His Robe Aside: Mental Health Courts, Dignity And Due Process, Michael L. Perlin

Articles & Chapters

One of the most important developments in the past two decades in the way that criminal defendants with mental disabilities are treated in the criminal process has been the creation and the expansion of mental health courts, one kind of “problem-solving court.” There are now over 300 such courts in operation in States, some dealing solely with misdemeanors, some solely with non-violent offenders, and some with no such restrictions. There is a wide range of dispositional alternatives available to judges in these cases, and an even wider range of judicial attitudes. And the entire concept of “mental health courts” is …


Competition Within Intellectual Property Regimes: The Instance Of Patent Rights, Rudolph J.R. Peritz Jan 2011

Competition Within Intellectual Property Regimes: The Instance Of Patent Rights, Rudolph J.R. Peritz

Articles & Chapters

No abstract provided.


Too Stubborn To Ever Be Governed By Enforced Insanity: Some Therapeutic Jurisprudence Dilemmas In The Representation Of Criminal Defendants In Incompetency And Insanity Cases, Michael L. Perlin Jan 2010

Too Stubborn To Ever Be Governed By Enforced Insanity: Some Therapeutic Jurisprudence Dilemmas In The Representation Of Criminal Defendants In Incompetency And Insanity Cases, Michael L. Perlin

Articles & Chapters

Little attention has been paid to the importance between therapeutic jurisprudence (TJ) and the role ofcriminal defense lawyers in insanity and incompetency-to-stand-trial (IST) cases. That inattention is especially noteworthy in light of the dismal track record of counsel providing services to defendants who are part of this cohort of incompetency-status-raisers and insanity-defense-pleaders. On one hand, this lack of attention is a surprise as TJ scholars have, in recent years, turned their attention to virtually every other aspect of the legal system. On the other hand, it is not a surprise, given the omnipresence of sanism, an irrational prejudice ofthe same …