Were Mark and Patricia McCloskey within their rights to point guns at protesters?

The St. Louis couple who pointed guns at protesters walking past their house claim they feared for their lives because of the “angry mob.”

Mark McCloskey, 63, and his wife, Patricia, 61 — both personal-injury lawyers — were caught on video brandishing weapons and yelling at protesters who were on their way to demonstrate in front of the mayor’s house on Sunday evening.

Will gun-wielding St. Louis attorneys be able to hide behind the state’s ‘Castle Doctrine’?

The St. Louis couple who went viral after an array of photos and videos showed them aiming firearms at protestors marching without permission through their private, gated community and toward the mayor’s mansion made national headlines over the weekend. The encounter sparked controversy and debate surrounding Missouri’s “castle doctrine,” particularly among conservative commentators who defended the couple’s actions as being a lawful exercise of their right to defend their home.

India-China standoff: What cards does India hold to play?

It would be an apocalyptic irony if the hand-to-hand brawl on June 15 near the poorly delineated Line of Actual Control in the Galwan Valley between Ladakh and Aksai Chin mushroomed to war between the world’s two most populous declared nuclear nations. By all credible accounts, with medieval nail-studded rods, China has again challenged India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. For the first time in 45 years, death ensued, of 20 Indian soldiers, including the Commander, Colonel Bikkumalla Santosh Babu.

India-China standoff: PM Modi should use JFK’s Cuban Crisis playbook

This is the second article in a two-part series on India’s strategic options vis-à-vis China. Read the first here. 

India must deal with the lethal drama on June 15 at the Line of Actual Control. But India cannot alter Chinese behaviour solely through private boycotts and government quarantines. India needs to couple those economic measures with diplomatic action.

Here are the diplomatic choices: 

‘Nobody else for them to pick on’ KS Senate candidates scuffle over transgender rights

Three of the Republicans running for U.S. Senate in Kansas have launched ads in the last week attacking transgender rights, a strategy intended to galvanize social conservatives in the competitive August primary.

Former Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach announced Tuesday that if elected he would offer legislation to withhold Title IX federal funds from institutions that allow transgender students to participate in women’s sports.

50 Kansans You Should Know: Class of 2020

The 50 individuals you’ll meet in the following pages bring to an even 500 the number of Sunflower State residents from all walks of life who have been singled out for their over-sized contributions to business success, civic engagement, philanthropic zeal and shared interest in moving their communities forward, and by extension, advancing the interests of an entire state. As in years past, they are a patchwork quilt of life in Kansas.

KU Law students make 2020 honor roll for pro bono service

Tuesday, June 09, 2020

KU Law Guardianship Assistance Program 2020

LAWRENCE – Fifty-one University of Kansas School of Law students contributed 2,578 hours of free legal services over the past year.

Students prepared tax returns for low-income residents, helped clients expunge past criminal convictions, represented the interests of children in foster care as court-appointed special advocates and worked with nonprofit organizations, government agencies, prosecutors’ offices and public defenders’ offices.

“Despite having many demands on their time, KU Law students are dedicated to serving the public good,” said Meredith Schnug, clinical associate professor and chair of KU Law’s Pro Bono Committee. “Through pro bono service, students have the opportunity to see firsthand how the law impacts people’s everyday lives and how lawyers can make a positive impact.”

Pro bono work is defined as uncompensated, law-related work that benefits the public, such as through a nonprofit organization or government agency.

Through the pro bono Guardianship Assistance Program, nine law students helped 12 families start the process of obtaining legal guardianship of their adult children with cognitive disabilities. Students traveled to Wichita on March 6 to meet with the families and obtain information needed to draft guardianship petitions. The petitions drafted will provide legal protection and security for these adults for decades to come.

“This program was an opportunity to contribute to the Wichita community and apply what I learned in class to help real people. Helping a family reminded me of the importance of the work lawyers do,” said second-year law student Trey Duran, who participated in the 2020 Guardianship Assistance Program.

The following 31 students completed 15 hours or more of pro bono service during the 2019-2020 academic year, earning a spot on KU Law’s Pro Bono Honor Roll. Students are listed by name, graduation year and hometown:

  • Hannah Bedford, 2020, Omaha, Nebraska
  • Ellen Bertels, 2021, Wichita
  • Terra Brockman, 2020, Overland Park
  • Noelle Daniel, 2022, Solon, Ohio
  • Emma Easom, 2021, Albuquerque, New Mexico
  • Megan Elder, 2020, Wamego
  • Hannah Eubanks, 2022, Tempe, Arizona
  • Alec Feather, 2022, Overland Park
  • Tatum Gibbar, 2022, Overland Park
  • Dukgi Goh, 2020, Los Angeles
  • Delaney Hiegert, 2021, Topeka
  • Courtney Hurtig, 2019, Alma
  • Max Iverson, 2020, Lawrence
  • Eliza Kassebaum, 2020, Mount Pleasant, South Carolina
  • Chloe Ketchmark, 2022, Overland Park
  • Joseph Lawrence Korbel, 2020, San Antonio
  • Leah Lewsader, 2021, Carbondale, Illinois
  • Konnor Manley, 2022, Eureka, Missouri
  • Cori Moffett, 2021, Houston
  • Bria Nelson, 2021, Woodstock, Illinois
  • Audrey Nelson, 2022, Prairie Village
  • Sara Pagnotta, 2021, Leawood
  • Peter Qiu, 2021, Hutchinson
  • Grace Seger, 2022, Olathe
  • Kendra Stacey, 2022, Kansas City, Kansas
  • Grace Stewart-Johnson, 2022, Wichita
  • Edwin Sullivan, 2022, Kenosha, Wisconsin
  • Emily Thompson, 2021, Mission Hills
  • Hayden Walker, 2020, Paradise Valley, Arizona
  • Heidi Wolff-Stanton, 2022, Camdenton, Missouri
  • Rachel Zierden, 2022, Minneapolis

In addition, 12 students were honored with Pro Bono Distinction for having completed 50 hours or more of pro bono service throughout their law school career. Collectively, members of the Class of 2020 completed 2,199 hours of pro bono service.

The university's Commencement ceremonies and KU Law’s Hooding Ceremony were postponed due to the developing situation around the COVID-19 pandemic. However, 12 students will still be recognized with Pro Bono Distinction for their achievements.

Students recognized with Pro Bono Distinction:

  • Hannah Bedford, 2020, Omaha, Nebraska
  • Terra Brockman, 2020, Overland Park
  • Megan Elder, 2020, Wamego
  • Dukgi Goh, 2020, Los Angeles
  • Courtney Hurtig, 2019, Alma
  • Grace Hussey, 2020, Milwaukee
  • Max Iverson, 2020, Lawrence
  • Eliza Kassebaum, 2020, Mount Pleasant, South Carolina
  • Joseph Lawrence Korbel, 2020, San Antonio
  • Ariel Rhines, 2020, Shawnee
  • Jaden Scott, 2020, Louisburg
  • Hayden Walker, 2020, Paradise Valley, Arizona

Jaden Scott earned pro bono hours through her work with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program and Kansas Athletics Inc.’s compliance department.

“I believe people who are lucky enough to attend college and pursue a career of their choice have a civic duty to give back to the community and those who are less fortunate,” Scott said. “It is often the case that when you aim to serve others, they end up making a positive difference in your own life. Whoever chooses to complete pro bono hours will definitely not regret it.”

Students also participated in the spring 2020 “Clean Slate” Expungement Clinic, a partnership between KU Law’s Legal Aid Clinic and the Douglas County District Attorney’s Office.

Sixteen KU Law students volunteered for the clinic, which provided free legal representation to eligible individuals seeking to expunge records in Douglas County District Court and/or Lawrence Municipal Court. At this year’s clinic, students met with 45 clients. The expungement clinic’s docket in April was canceled due to COVID-19 and has not yet been rescheduled. KU Law students will continue to represent eligible clients through the final hearings.

Photo: KU Law students assisted with the spring 2020 Guardianship Assistance Program in Wichita. From left: Hunter Lindquist, Natasha Richartz, Noelle Daniel, Edwin Sullivan, Alec Feather, Trey Duran and Katie Tepezano.

Lawyers pick apart Alito and Kavanaugh dissents in landmark LGBT rights case

In a 6-3 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court on Monday ruled that employers who fire employees for being homosexual or transgender violate Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The landmark ruling for LGBT rights, penned by Justice Neil Gorsuch, was predominantly grounded in an analysis of the statutory text which says it is unlawful for an employer to discriminate against any individual because of their “sex.” It was largely celebrated as a much-needed step in the right direction for egalitarian rights.

KU discrimination law expert says Supreme Court ruling on LGBTQ workers is ‘historic,’ but ‘there’s still a lot of work to do’

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday issued a ruling protecting as many as 13 million Americans from being fired solely because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.

Though it was a landmark decision, a professor and expert in discrimination law at the University of Kansas School of Law said a gap still needs to be addressed in the 28 states, including Kansas, that don’t offer protections for LGBTQ workers.

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