The Monday Morning Teaser

The Supreme Court has been relatively quiet lately. (Like freshmen, they finish most of their assignments at the end of the term in June.) But lower court judges have been issuing important rulings on net neutrality, same-sex marriage, the NSA, voting rights, drug-testing welfare recipients, and a variety of other subjects.

I’ve gotten way behind in covering them, so this week’s featured article will be: “Catching Up With the Judges: Net Neutrality and Marriage”. (I’ll try to catch up with the rest next week.)

The D. C. Circuit Court of Appeals struck down the FCC’s net neutrality rules, but the majority opinion suggests that the FCC could fix the problem without new legislation. So in a weird way, the winners (Verizon) were losers and vice versa.

A month ago, if you’d asked me to guess which two states would be the last to legalize same-sex marriage, I might have picked Utah and Oklahoma. Well, just before Christmas a federal judge struck down Utah’s constitutional amendment limiting marriage to one man and one woman, and this Tuesday Oklahoma’s bit the dust. The cases had nearly identical facts and the states made nearly identical arguments, which the judges destroyed in similar ways, as if the standard anti-marriage-equality arguments have become fat pitches easily hit out of the park.

Both cases will be appealed and undoubtedly the issue will wind up at the Supreme Court, maybe next year. I’m having a hard time imagining what the four conservative justices can possibly say to persuade Justice Kennedy.

The weekly summary will bring you up to date on the Bridgegate scandal and President Obama’s change of rhetoric on the NSA. Michael Mann also wrote an interesting article about how climate scientists should approach the politics of global warming. The 50th anniversary of the War on Poverty is continuing to generate good discussion about inequality. Pressure continues to build on the Washington NFL franchise to change its name. And I’ll end with a great dance video.

Expect the legal article around ten (New Hampshire time) and the weekly summary about noon.

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