In Brown v. Brown, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 126580 (SD MS, July 30, 2018), a Mississippi federal district court adopted in part a magistrate’s recommendations (2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 126903, June 11, 2018) and dismissed Bivens claims and certain other claims by a federal prisoner who claimed religious discrimination while employed at the prison, but allowed plaintiff to move ahead with his 5th Amendment equal protection claim.In Neal v. Miyares, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 126993 (SD FL, July 26, 2018), a Florida federal magistrate judge recommended denying an inmate’s request for an injunciton orderng that he receive fresh kosher meals.In West v. Kind, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 127452 (ED WI, July 31, 2018), a Wisconsin federal district court allowed a Muslim inmate to move ahead with his complaint that his religious beliefs were infringed by allowing him to be strip searched by a transgender male who he regards as a female.In Hardrick v. MacLaren, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 126697 (WD MI, July 30, 2018), a Michigan federal district court adopted a magistrate’s recommendation (2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 127932, June 18, 2018) and refused to grant summary judgment to either party in an Muslim inmate’s suit complaining that defendant blocked accommodating his late request for inclusion in Ramadan meals.In Hallom v. Bowens, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 128224 (ND IL, July 31, 2018), an Illinois federal district court dismissed plaintiff’s complaint that a Cook County jail employee refused to accommodate his request to attend group Baptist religious services while he was in protective custody.In Lambright v. Indiana Department of Corrections, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 128577 (ND IN, July 31, 2018), an Indiana federal district court allowed a Jewish inmate to move ahead to seek an injunction requiring that he be provided with kosher meals.In Shaw v. Kaemingk, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 129520 (D SD, Aug. 2, 2018), a South Dakota federal district court dismissed a complaint by an inmate who is a follower of Dorcha Cosán that his religious rights were infringed because he was unable, due to his indigency, to access Internet service to receive books, music and games.In Hall v. WV DOC, 2018 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 129907 (SD WV, July 13, 2018), a West Virginia federal magistrate judge recommended dismissing an inmate’s complaint that the chaplain refused to acknowledge his Zoroastrian religion.
President attacked NBA star after TV appearance with CNN hostAthletes and first lady have praised James since Trump’s criticismCNN host Don Lemon has responded to Donald Trump’s criticism of his interview with LeBron James, saying the president “traffics in racism”.Last week, the US president tweeted that Lemon “made Lebron look smart, which isn’t easy to do”, in response to a conversation the two men had about Trump’s previous attacks on black athletes. Continue reading…
In Roy v. City of Monroe, (WD LA, Aug. 1 2018), a Louisiana federal district court granted defendant’s motion for reconsideration and dismissed on qualified immunity grounds the damage portion of a claim by a street preacher against a police officer. At issue was a claim that issuance of a citation and summons to the preacher for disturbing the peace violated his First Amendment rights. The court said in part:Sergeant Booth issued a citation to Roy for disturbing the peace based upon Falcon’s complaint to him, in which she said Roy followed her across the street, called her names, and scared her. Falcon’s complaints were corroborated by Falcon appearing scared and by her direct identification of Roy. Sergeant Booth did not issue a citation to Roy for preaching in a public forum. Viewed from the standpoint of an objectively reasonable police officer, Booth had probable cause, and is entitled to qualified immunity.Plaintiff’s claims for injunctive and declaratory relief and attorneys’ fees were set for trial.
Often we talk about consent in terms of power: who has it and how are they wielding it? What if we thought of it in terms of attention?Since the short story Cat Person was published in the New Yorker late last year, my friends and I have spent a lot of time talking about bad sex. If consent is a spectrum with an enthusiastic, joyful yes at one end and sexual assault at the other, bad sex lives in the middle. There are lots of reasons why so many women have had so much bad sex: an impulse to please, the shame or discomfort of acknowledging your own needs, a misplaced hope that if you just go along with it, a bad experience might eventually get better. We are women in our twenties and thirties and forties and the question underlying these conversations is the same for each of us: what is the value of my desires?We’re getting better at talking about consent when it comes to sex. The #metoo movement has encouraged people of all genders to really imagine what an enthusiastic, joyful yes can look like—and to understand how prioritizing mutual pleasure makes sex better for everyone. But we’re missing an opportunity to consider how these more sophisticated ways of practicing consent might re-shape our relationships—and our entire culture. Continue reading…
In Cormier v. PF Fitness-Midland, LLC, (MI App., July 26, 2018), a Michigan appellate court in a case on remand from the Michigan Supreme Court held that the gym Planet Fitness violated provisions of the Michigan Consumer Protection Act when it failed to inform plaintiff that it had a policy of allowing members to use whichever locker room and rest room corresponds to the gender with which that person self-identifies. The court concluded that Planet Fitness violated MCL 445.903(1)(s), (bb), and (cc) which prohibit:(s) Failing to reveal a material fact, the omission of which tends to mislead or deceive the consumer, and which fact could not reasonably be known by the consumer.(bb) Making a representation of fact or statement of fact material to the transaction such that a person reasonably believes the represented or suggested state of affairs to be other than it actually is.(cc) Failing to reveal facts that are material to the transaction in light of representations of fact made in a positive manner.In concluding that the failure to inform plaintiff of the policy was material, the court said:After joining the gym, plaintiff saw an assigned male individual in the women’s locker room and then complained to an employee at the front desk and to defendants’ corporate office. Upon being informed of defendants’ unwritten policy on the matter, plaintiff verbally warned other women at the gym about it. Plaintiff’s actions indicate that she strongly preferred a locker room and a restroom in which individuals who are assigned biologically male are not present, and it is thus reasonable to infer that defendants’ failure to inform plaintiff of the unwritten policy affected her decision to join the gym.A person who successfully sues under Michigan’s Consumer Protection Act may recover actual damages or $250, whichever is greater, plus attorneys’ fees. Liberty Counsel issued a press release announcing the decision.
A review of documents from the commission on election integrity by a former member found no evidence of voter fraud A review of documents has shown White House claims to have unearthed “substantial evidence” of voter fraud were false, according to a junior member of Donald Trump’s short-lived commission on election integrity. Continue reading…
In Saher v. Norton Simon Museum of Art at Pasadena, (9th Cir., July 30, 2018), the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in a lengthy opinion applied the Act of State Doctrine to reject the attempt by plaintiff to recover two oil paintings of Biblical characters taken by the Nazis from her father-in-law in a forced sale. At issue are Renaissance masterworks painted by Cranach the Elder—
In Walker v. Indian River Transport Co., (11th Cir., July 27, 2018), the U.S. 11th Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the dismissal of Title VII claims brought by a Jehovah’s Witness truck driver who resigned his job alleging a failure to accommodate his need to regularly attend Sunday church services. The milk route to which Bobby Walker, Jr. was assigned required flexibility that included Sunday availability. The court concluded that Walker’s employer, Indian River Transport, offered Walker a reasonable accommodation by offering him other local routes, even though they paid less than the milk route. The court also rejected Walker’s retaliation claim. Land Line reports on the decision.
Ron DeSantis has released an ad indoctrinating his children into Trumpism – but what does it say about the president’s popularity?Ron DeSantis was trailing in the polls in the Republican primary for the governorship of Florida, according to one poll, by as much as 15 points. His main competitor, Adam Putnam, a rising star in Florida politics, had more local endorsements and had raised more money, $19.2m by April of this year.Then came Donald Trump. On 22 June, Trump tweeted his endorsement of DeSantis, and the polls flipped almost overnight. Real Clear Politics now gives DeSantis around an 11-point lead. Continue reading…
Challenging an entitled man can put you at risk. What happened to Marie Laguerre is what frightens us mostMany women have been in a situation where a man has approached them, only for it to turn uncomfortable when they reject his advances. No doubt I will be accused of generalisation in saying this, so I would advise those who don’t believe me to ask women they know about their experiences of rejecting men.Male reactions can range from verbal abuse (counterintuitively, “slut” seems to be the insult of choice when a woman declines an offer of sex from a man in the street), to refusing to take no for an answer, harassment, stalking and physical violence. The last of these reactions is the most extreme and the one many of us fear most. Continue reading…