Lujan v. Defenders of Wildlife—Can Environmental Litigants Regain Ground to Stand on Using the “Ecosystem Nexus” Test for Causation, Redressibility?

Sophie Guilfoyle

Pressing environmental issues such as climate change, loss of habitat and biodiversity, overpopulation, and resource shortage involve complex adaptive systems that adhere to ecological principles.[1] While ecological observation has historically been limited to local scales, conceptual and technological advances are now revealing causative relationships in environmental degradation globally.[2] With such advances, it is plausible that ecological causation showing environmental injury will be much more than “pure speculation.”[3] The judiciary’s receptiveness to evolving ecological principles directly affects environmental standing. This Note discusses the possibility of an “ecosystem nexus” acceptable to the federal judiciary that satisfies the Article III standing requirements of causation, traceability, and injury-in-fact.

Posse Comitatus—Positively Cohabitate

Jared Kelly

Acts of police violence are common in today’s news. Police officers are no strangers to using violence to achieve their means.[1] In recent years, excessive police force has occurred in tandem with military-style weapons and tactics.[2] Particularly, the events that transpired in Ferguson, Missouri beginning in August 2014 attracted worldwide media attention.[3] Police used heavy-handed tactics and military equipment to quell protests.[4] Images from Missouri instilled a sense of fear and tension between the people of the United States and law enforcement officers, whose tactics mimicked those used in war against enemies.[5]

Guardians of the Nation—A Return to the Framers’ Intent for Freedom of the Press in a World of Citizen Journalism and Police Intimidation

Ivy Garlow

This student Note questions whether citizens have a First Amendment right to record police in their official capacities. This Note asserts that citizen whistleblowing increases accountability because, when police action goes unchecked, instances of misconduct increase. The circuits are split over whether the right to record police action is clearly established, and thus some courts have provided qualified immunity to police who stop citizens from recording police activity while others have not.[1]

Schedule I—Congress’s Bad Trip Gone Too Far

Noura Eltabbakh


Individuals suffering from treatment resistant mood disorders deserve to have safe and immediate access to any unconventional method of treatment that produces significant results. The health and wellbeing of its citizens is a legitimate state interest.[1] Federal regulation of hallucinogens directly impedes on the distinct state right to regulate a legitimate state interest.[2] The Federal Government must reclassify hallucinogens in order to facilitate research, ensure patient access, and permit its legal regulation.

“Yes, Even State Courts”: How the Controlled Substances Act Frustrates Contract Formation for Recreational Marijuana

James LaRock

Colorado and Washington have implemented systems to regulate and sell marijuana.[1] Other states are following suit.[2] But the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) lingers over businesses attempting to buy and sell marijuana in those states. One scholar has referred to the various provisions of that Act as the heads of a hydra:[3] solve one problem, and two more sprout up. This Note focuses on one problem that the Act causes in particular—it disrupts contract formation. This Note argues that the CSA may preempt any state law which authorizes conduct that the CSA prohibits. It argues that the Restatement’s approach to contracts against public policy suggests that courts should enforce marijuana-related contracts. Finally, it argues that relatively little federal action would be necessary to solve this problem; Congress would not have to repeal the CSA or remove marijuana from the list of scheduled substances.

The Modern Atlantis: 21st Century Solutions To A Legendary Problem

Chelsea Dixon

Nations around the world are feeling the effects of climate change. The international community now accepts that climate change is spurred by human action, and the consequences of climate change will be severe.[1] One consequence is the emergence of Environmentally Displaced Persons. Environmentally Displaced Persons, defined by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, are those “who are displaced from or who feel obliged to leave their usual place of residence, because their lives, livelihoods and welfare have been placed at serious risk as a result of adverse environmental, ecological or climatic processes and events.”[2] There are fifty-one island nations around the world that identify themselves as Small Island Developing States (SIDS).[3] Many of these nations are also included in the United Nation’s grouping of Least Developed Countries,[4] and as such have contributed very little to the carbon emissions that cause climate change (less than 1% of global emissions).[5]

How the Rest Was Won: Creating a Universally Beneficial Legal Regime for Space-Based Resource Utilization

Ian Hedges

History has demonstrated the United States’ ability to rapidly assert control over vast areas of land in a sweeping manner. In 1803, Thomas Jefferson acquired the Louisiana Purchase, doubling the size of the country.[1] Over a century later, Congress passed the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act of 1953, asserting control over 1.76 billion acres of submerged land.[2] And on September 10th, 2014, a subcommittee in the House of Representatives sat down to discuss what could be the beginning of a new era of American property acquisition.[3] The American Space Technology for Exploring Resource Opportunities in Deep Space Act (Asteroids Act) strives to:

Death of the NCAA: Eliminating Financial Aid Limitations for Student Athletes

Michael Gan

After winning the NCAA Men’s Basketball National Championship in 2014, University of Connecticut’s star player Shabazz Napier made waves when he said, “Sometimes, there’s hungry nights where I am not able to eat, but I still gotta play up to my capabilities.”[1] While past media coverage focused on paying student athletes for their contributions to university revenues, Napier’s statement refocused the issue on the possibility that their basic needs are not being fully met. It’s crazy to think that during a time where coaches’ salaries are on the rise, multi-billion dollar television contracts are being signed, and many millions more are collected in ticket sales, student-athletes are struggling to feed themselves.

Autism, Bullying, and the Individuals With Disabilities Act

Catherine Fregosi

In August of 2014, a viral trend hit social networks: the “ice bucket challenge” raised awareness of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) by challenging people to either douse themselves in ice or donate money to ALS research, or both.[1] In Bay Village, Ohio, five high-school boys challenged a fifteen-year-old classmate with autism to participate in the ice bucket challenge.[2] On the evening of August 18, the autistic youth met his challengers to complete the challenge, but instead of a bucket of ice, the challengers poured a bucket of urine and tobacco spit on him.[3] The challengers recorded the incident on the boy’s phone and posted the video to Instagram.[4] The boy’s parents found the video on his phone and reported it to the police and the media.[5]

The Evolution of Codes of Corporate Social Responsibility Into Contracts With Consumers

Caryn Connolly

This Note analyzes the code of corporate social responsibility as an implied-in-fact contract with consumers who rely on the reputations of corporations when making their purchasing decisions. Consumers and customers of corporations may be the public or a subcontractor in a large supply chain as in a multi-national corporation like Maersk[1], which is the world’s largest shipping company. These codes are voluntary,[2] and as such, are not often given the weight they deserve by the corporations who create them; however, society as a whole is giving the codes greater credence.[3]

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