The law was popularly named for African-American leader H. “Rap” Brown; its formal title was “The Civil Obedience Act of 1968.”
Author Archive | Michael E. Tigar
Donald Trump today sentenced Planet Earth to death. Whether he has the power actually to have that sentence carried out is open to serious question.
Donald Trump has nominated Neil Gorsuch, a judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court. The Senate should not confirm Judge Gorsuch. This post gives one cardinal reason for rejecting the nomination.
This past week, I have read two judicial decisions that – once again – remind me how powerful mythologies are deployed to justify conduct that harms and mutilates human beings. However, in both cases, the majority of judges penetrate the mythology and see the case in human terms. The cases can therefore teach all of […]
Do federal courts have the legitimate power to block Presidential orders concerning immigration and border control? Yes. Article 3 of the constitution gives them that power. In the current controversy, we should remind ourselves of this fragile and endangered separation of powers, on which we now rely as a bulwark against racism, bigotry and xenophobia.
Racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, repression, and the other evils that have been spotlighted by the recent election did not arise full-blown from the Trump campaign. They all trace deep roots in American society; they are brought now to the surface by demagogy. The point of my last several posts has been that we could see […]
The escalating attack on worker rights in the United States has taken several forms in recent years. In some American states, right-wing politicians have passed laws denying public employees such as teachers, janitors, police, and firefighters the right to organize into unions and bargain collectively. Some of these laws strip recognition and power from existing […]
Today’s post discusses the way that neoliberal policies embraced by the Democratic Party resulted in job loss in key states. Bear with me: there are facts and figures here that make the case. Tomorrow, I will continue to discuss these issues in the context of “domestic” job displacement. The third post will discuss a progressive […]
Donald Trump and his allies have announced their agenda. It includes torture, denial of basic human rights, military action that violates the laws of war, racial injustice, misogyny, and xenophobia. What role and responsibility do we have? I am a lawyer, teacher, and writer. So I speak to those in my profession and those preparing […]
The Guardian reports that Chilean President Augusto Pinochet personally ordered the assassination of Orlando Letelier and Ronni Moffitt, in Washington, D.C. in September 1976. So, you may say, what’s new? After all, my partner Sam Buffone and I sued Chile for these murders and won a judgment. At the trial, our expert witness said that […]
National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) Foundation for Criminal Justice dinner, Denver, Colorado, July 24, 2015 A few months ago, I spoke to a group of lawyers in Los Angeles. I talked about legal ethics. I mentioned Henry Drinker, author of ABA ethical rules, author of a book that was the basis for the […]
A new report by In the Public Interest, available at www.inthepublicinterest.org/article/criminal-how-lockup-quotas-and-low-crime-taxes-guarantee-profits-private-prison-corporations, documents the increased use of private prisons to house the large and growing population of incarcerated Americans. We have the highest incarceration rate in the world, five to seven times that of comparable countries. See my article “Lawyers, Jails, and the Law’s Fake Bargains,” […]
I met Clint Jencks in about 1959 when I was an undergraduate at Berkeley. He was getting his Ph.D. and was the teaching assistant in economics for our section. I knew of his history and was honored to get to know him. We spent many hours together talking about labor history and his own life. […]