by Nick Danby
Tensions in the Middle East reached unprecedented levels on June 5, 2017, after four members of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) imposed a host of sanctions upon a fellow GCC member, Qatar, for their alleged support of extremist groups and strong relations with countries like Iran. If reconciliation can not be achieved between both parties, antagonism and non-cooperation will run rampant—worse than it has for the past century. In addition, the four nations attempting to change Qatar's foreign policy through these measures put the international legal concept of noninterventionism in a precarious position.
by Mara Roth
This essay analyzes the opinions in the 2013 Supreme Court case Shelby County, Alabama v. Holder to determine how legal actors should assess the continued necessity of legal safeguards and whether or not their repeal is advisable—specifically with concern to those safeguards that protect minority voting rights. It suggests that legal actors must look beyond perceived increases in equality when deciding to repeal a legal safeguard, and it uses Justice Ginsberg’s dissenting opinion to establish three criteria that legal actors should consider before repealing a legal safeguard: if the safeguard currently serves a protective function, if the damage from repealing the safeguard would be hard to repair, and if the political climate provides incentives to violate the right that the safeguard protects. The essay then applies these criteria to the current debate over the necessity of laws safeguarding majority-minority voting districts.
The Masthead of the Harvard College Law Review does not endorse the opinions expressed in individually published articles.
by Lucas Ward
This essay examines the constitutionality of federal and state prison labor mechanisms by weighing them against the 13th and 8th amendments. The essay begins with a brief history of the 13th Amendment and involuntary servitude in America, beginning with slavery, and how the use of involuntary servitude remained legal in the case of punishment for a crime. The essay concludes with the argument that although the 13th Amendment did in fact leave the door open for the use of involuntary servitude in prisons, the punishments and practices that surround the incarcerated labor force should be deemed unconstitutional based on the 8th Amendment.
by Edgar Carerro
Abraham Lincoln and Henry David Thoreau, though both similarly at the forefront of American history, offer up completely contradictory views on the adherence to law. While Thoreau advocated for civil disobedience in the face of injustice, Lincoln held the opinion that the law was to be adhered to in all cases, until such a time that the bad law was repealed. This article sides with Thoreau and argues that Lincoln’s view isn’t substantiated when laws violated basic human rights.
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