law

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A federal judge in Detroit will hear opening arguments today on a case that could potentially overturn Michigan’s ban on same-sex marriage. In 2012, two lesbian nurses sued Governor Rick Snyder and Attorney General Bill Schuette. The couple is raising three special needs children, but they cannot legally adopt them unless they are married.

parkscrump.com


 Tomorrow is the second anniversary of the shooting death of Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Florida. George Zimmerman shot the unarmed teenager while on a neighborhood watch patrol. Claiming self defense under Florida’s controversial “Stand Your Ground” law, Zimmerman was ultimately acquitted of second-degree murder and manslaughter charges. Attorney Benjamin Crump has represented the interests of Martin’s family. He has a speaking engagement tonight in Lansing.

     In January 2010, the Supreme Court released its 5-4 decision in Citizens United versus the Federal Election Commission.  The opinion struck down a Federal Elections Commission rule prohibiting corporations from engaging in certain political activity, maintaining it violated free-speech rights. 

WKAR File Photo

Highly controversial comments made recently by a Michigan State University professor continue to be a topic of discussion both locally and beyond.  

Last week, creative writing professor William Penn sparked an intense backlash after a video surfaced of him suggesting Republicans had “raped the country” and included many closet racists.  A student attending the lecture told MLive.com that Penn also denigrated Christians and athletes.

The Sixth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution makes it clear:  any citizen accused of a crime will -- if necessary -- have access to qualified legal representation in court.  Many legal professionals think that guarantee has been seriously compromised in Michigan for many years.  The state often ranks low in assessments of its indigent defense system.  After decades of failed efforts to reform the system, both the state Senate and House sent bipartisan bills on Wednesday to Gov. Rick Snyder’s desk that would offer some concrete changes.

SCOTUS rules against gene patenting

Jun 14, 2013
Wikimedia Commons

 

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled unanimously that naturally occurring human genes cannot be patented. The ruling will affect researchers, universities and industries. 

Current State #78 | May 1, 2013

May 1, 2013

Today on Current State: Ingham County Chief District Judge talks Indigent Defense ; the Lansing Information Technology Empowerment Center; Michael Finney from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and re-imagining the Grand River corridor.

Chief judge makes case for indigent defense reform

May 1, 2013

The sixth amendment to the U.S. Constitution makes it clear:  any citizen accused of a crime will--if necessary--have access to qualified legal representation in court.  Many legal professionals think that guarantee has been seriously compromised in Michigan for many years.   The state often ranks low in assessments of its system of indigent defense.   In recent years, several efforts by the state legislature to strengthen the system have failed. 

SCOTUS takes up of gene patenting

Apr 22, 2013
via Wikimedia Commons

  The Supreme Court heard arguments last week about whether human genes can be patented. The court’s ruling could drastically change the biotech industry and also the way universities do research.

WKAR File Photo

Early data suggest the state may not be causing a big jump in the number of biker deaths since the Legislature repealed a law requiring them to wear helmets. The group American Bikers Aiming Toward Education – or ABATE – released those numbers this week.

However, state officials say it’s too early to come to any conclusions.

Kevin Rosseel / morgueFile

A state House committee held a hearing Tuesday on what Michigan needs to do to comply with a recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling.