Alumni reception in Charlotte

UofL Alumni Club of Charlotte reception featuring School of Law Dean James Ming Chen


December 10, 2008, 6:00–8:00 p.m.

Ruth's Chris Steakhouse, Charlotte Uptown
222 South Tyron Street
Charlotte, NC 28202

The UofL Alumni Club of Charlotte and the University of Louisville Alumni Association cordially invite you and a guest to a reception with special guest James Ming Chen, dean of the UofL School of Law.

You may make your online reservation for this complimentary event. If you have further questions, contact the Alumni Association at 800-813-UofL.

Fireside chat in Bowling Green

Join me tonight for a fireside chat in Bowling Green:

Join UofL School of Law Dean James Ming Chen for a fireside chat


December 3, 2008, 5:30-7:00 p.m.

801 State Street
Bowling Green, KY 42101
(270) 842-6878

Join the UofL Alumni Association, UofL Alumni Bowling Green Club, and UofL's School of Law Dean Chen for the first Law School fireside chat from 5:30-7:00 p.m. on Wednesday, December 3rd for an update of the state of the University, the School of Law and other great topics. You and a guest are welcome to come, socialize, listen and ask questions.

Dean Chen will also talk about his time working as law clerk for Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas as well as his tenure on the Harvard Law Review with Barack Obama.

A Thanksgiving message

Here is my Thanksgiving message to the Law School, the University of Louisville, and the communities we proudly serve. The message and several options for viewing, embedding, and sharing it are available at LawTube, the Law School's multimedia portal.


Download the audio file  of Dean Jim Chen's Thanksgiving message to the UofL Law School community.

Greetings. I am Jim Chen, the Dean of the University of Louisville School of Law. As Thanksgiving and the holiday season approach, I extend warmest wishes to you and your families.

This time of year invites reflection and retrospection by all of us, and we at the Law School are no exception. 2008 has brought many good things to the Law School. We have launched the new University of Louisville Law Clinic. The Law School has welcomed a wide range of fresh faces on the faculty and staff. The career services office, the public service program, admissions, academic support, the annual fund — all of these offices operate as they have never before, for the benefit of the entire Law School community. We have renovated our largest classroom and installed cutting-edge educational technology throughout the Law School.

We are the proud home of the national champions in the ABA negotiation competition. The University of Louisville Law Review staged a landmark symposium on desegregation in Jefferson County and in public school systems throughout the country. For the second year in a row, a Law School graduate is representing the University of Louisville and the United States of America as a Fulbright Scholar. Suffice it to say that our graduates have achieved distinction in all aspects of the legal profession.

As much as we have accomplished, we realize that these things have come about as a result of your help and support. You are a dear friend of the Law School. By word and by deed, you have made it possible for us to bring the Law School to unprecedented heights. This Thanksgiving, we are thinking of you. This Thanksgiving, we thank you.

All too often, you have heard from the Law School and from the University of Louisville only when we have been seeking your financial support. We'd like to fix that. We should do more to say, as clearly as possible, how thankful we are everything you do on behalf of the Law School. Your support to the Law School goes way beyond dollars and cents. We know how much more you do. And we are grateful.

Our graduates are the best representatives of our Law School. Wherever you go in this world, whatever you do, you send an unmistakable message that the UofL Law School is doing great work. Through you, we are having a tremendous impact on the legal profession and the world at large.

We appreciate all that you do on behalf of the University of Louisville. Thank you. Happy Thanksgiving, and happy holidays.

A Cardinal quartet of University of Louisville fight songs

Professor Ann Bartow of Feminist Law Professors has posted the definitive survey of the fight songs of Southern universities. Ann pays ample (and generally kind) attention to the University of Louisville's athletic anthems. She trashes other schools' fight songs with impunity. They're "sexist," "abominable," possibly even prone to cause rabies and feline distemper. I sure am glad Ann is a friend of mine.

I remain confident that Ann, in due time, will come to appreciate the virtues of the Cardinal Bird, who after all is the South's premier pugnacious red-and-black avian amateur athletic mascot. In particular, I hope she eventually will see through that Cocky impostor in Columbia, South Carolina, who tastes exactly like chicken in the mouths of Bulldogs and Gators on game days. In the meanwhile, for the listening pleasure of Ann Bartow and all University of Louisville stalwarts — current and future — I am pleased to present this foursome of University of Louisville fight songs (courtesy of

Whitney v. California

I've come late to the party, but I imagine it isn't too late to celebrate the 152nd birthday of Louis D. Brandeis by quoting this famous passage from Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357 (1927):

Whitney v. California, 274 U.S. 357, 375-77 (1927) (Brandeis, J., concurring) (footnotes omitted) Charlotte Anita Whitney

Those who won our independence believed that the final end of the state was to make men free to develop their faculties, and that in its government the deliberative forces should prevail over the arbitrary. They valued liberty both as an end and as a means. They believed liberty to the secret of happiness and courage to be the secret of liberty. They believed that freedom to think as you will and to speak as you think are means indispensable to the discovery and spread of political truth; that without free speech and assembly discussion would be futile; that with them, discussion affords ordinarily adequate protection against the dissemination of noxious doctrine; that the greatest menace to freedom is an inert people; that public discussion is a political duty; and that this should be a fundamental principle of the American government. They recognized the risks to which all human institutions are subject. But they knew that order cannot be secured merely through fear of punishment for its infraction; that it is hazardous to discourage thought, hope and imagination; that fear breeds repression; that repression breeds hate; that hate menaces stable government; that the path of safety lies in the opportunity to discuss freely supposed grievances and proposed remedies; and that the fitting remedy for evil counsels is good ones. Believing in the power of reason as applied through public discussion, they eschewed silence coerced by law — the argument of force in its worst form. Recognizing the occasional tyrannies of governing majorities, they amended the Constitution so that free speech and assembly should be guaranteed.

Louis Brandeis

Fear of serious injury cannot alone justify suppression of free speech and assembly. Men feared witches and burnt women. It is the function of speech to free men from the bondage of irrational fears. . . . Those who won our independence by revolution were not cowards. They did not fear political change. They did not exalt order at the cost of liberty. To courageous, self-reliant men, with confidence in the power of free and fearless reasoning applied through the processes of popular government, no danger flowing from speech can be deemed clear and present, unless the incidence of the evil apprehended is so imminent that it may befall before there is opportunity for full discussion. If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence.

Moot court update: ABA arbitration competition

Professor Ariana Levinson reports on the performance of the University of Louisville's team in the ABA's arbitration competition:

I would like to congratulate the arbitration competition team on their great performance at the ABA arbitration competition this past weekend. It was the first time each member of the team had competed, yet they managed to secure an arbitrator judge’s vote in each of the two rounds. Their evaluation forms include many positive comments. Here are some highlights. Lily Chan and Josh Speirs prepared a “well organized” opening statement and summation. They made “good use of evidence” and gave a “well done professional and ethical presentation.” Mike McIntire’s direct examination included “good chronological organization of questions and proof,” and on cross he did well by showing “possible bias.” His partner, Colleen Goodman, gave a “superior” opening with “great organization” and a “good timeline” that was “great on remedies.” All participants were repeatedly congratulated on how well-prepared their witnesses were. I have every expectation that next year Lily and Josh will make use of their experience to advance the team to the semi-finals.

Professor James T.R. Jones on WFPL's "Living with a Mental Illness"

Professor James T.R. Jones took part in a November 7, 2008, broadcast on WFPL 89.3 FM. The State of Affairs program focused on Living with a Mental Illness:

Jim Jones Living with a Mental Illness

Download the WFPL State of Affairs November 7, 2008, broadcast  featuring Professor James T.R. Jones. Or simply mash the "play" button above.

If we believe what we see on TV and in the movies, persons with a mental illness are violent, irrational, unpredictable people who can’t function in “normal” society. But the truth is those who are living day to day with mental illness are our mothers, husbands, co-workers, daughters, teachers, and even us. Mental illness affects every one of us every day, whether we are dealing with an illness personally or it is someone we know casually or someone in our own home. So, what are the challenges and frustrations of living with a mental illness? What can you do to help your family member or friend cope? And how does it affect everyone else?

For more information on this program, see Professor Jones's blog.

A moot court update

Professor Sam Marcosson reports on the University of Louisville's performance this past weekend at the regional round of the National Moot Court Competition:

One of our teams, composed of third-year student Steve Mattingly and second-year Brian Stempien, were recognized for writing the Best Brief in the tournament. This was the second time in the last three years that one of our teams has won this award. Writing the best brief of the 21 teams in the competition positioned Steve and Brian to then win both of their preliminary rounds on Friday (beating teams from George Mason and William & Mary), and advance into the quarterfinal round on Saturday morning.

There, they defeated the defending regional champions from Campbell University, to advance to the semi-finals where they faced a team from Duke. In an extremely close and high-quality round, they were knocked out by a slim two-point margin. Overall, it was the most successful performance by any UofL team in the history of the competition.

We were also very well-represented by a team made up entirely of second-year students, Barry Dunn and Duffy Trager. They went 1-1 on Friday, including a win over a team from Wake Forest, and just missed out on a tie-breaker from advancing to the quarterfinals.

It was a great performance, and I was extremely proud of the way all four of them represented the law school.

Disaster and Sustainability: The Cultural Perspective

I will take part in a November 6-7 symposium called Disaster and Sustainability: The Cultural Perspective. The University of Copenhagen's Faculty of Law will stage this symposium at Carlsberg Akademi:

Carlsberg Akademi

It is widely accepted that the study of ecological and societal sustainability in general and climate change in particular involves all research disciplines from all faculties within the academy. The study of sustainability is inherently multi- as well as cross-disciplinary, given the fact that climate changes and other questions of sustainability relate to and influence every aspect of human society and its environment. In this two-day Copenhagen symposium, we will explore the huge and diverse field of sustainability studies by focusing on the interrelationship between sustainability and disaster as recto and verso of the same set of problems.

We consider the study of disasters an important and rewarding way of gaining knowledge about the sustainability of human societies and their environment. Disasters challenge the resilience and threaten the cohesion of the social fabric; however, disaster research shows how disasters can also strengthen the cohesion of a community in the short term, and work important changes in the long term.

In the recent decade the cultural and social aspects of disasters-questions such as how human societies contribute to the creation of disasters, how they perceive disasters, and how they respond when they strike-have gained acceptance as important constituents of disaster research. Yet the cultural perspective on sustainability studies-in the widest possible sense of the word, including social, economic, legal, religious, aesthetic, political, and philosophical inquiries-still seems like an area very much open for development and further research.

We have the pleasure of inviting scholars from all fields of research to explore the multi-faceted perspectives of the interrelationship between disaster and sustainability. With this symposium we hope to accelerate further research within the field. In joining scholars from different disciplines and traditions, we particularly hope to create an inspiring and synergizing platform for valuable exchanges in the years to come.

Luke Milligan's Federalist Society podcast on Herring v. United States

Professor Luke Milligan has recorded a Federalist Society podcast on Herring v. United States:

Luke Milligan

Download Luke Milligan's Federalist Society podcast . Or simply mash the "play" button above.

In [Herring], the Supreme Court considers the limits of the exclusionary rule. The case arises from a search incident to the arrest of Bennie Dean Herring by police officers in Coffee County, Alabama. An investigator, suspicious of Herring, checked to see if there was a warrant for his arrest in neighboring Dale County and was informed that there was. So Herring was arrested, and the search incident to arrest turned up methamphetamine and a pistol. In the meantime, however, the Dale County Warrant Clerk discovered that the warrant for Herring's arrest had actually been recalled, but the arrest and search were already complete. Herring was charged and convicted with possession of methamphetamine and being a felon in possession of a firearm. He appealed arguing that the district court had erred in refusing to grant his motion to suppress the evidence from the unconstitutional search, but the Eleventh Circuit affirmed. The Supreme Court is now asked to decide whether the Fourth Amendment requires the exclusion of evidence seized incident to an arrest conducted on the basis of credible, but ultimately erroneous, information negligently provided by another law enforcement agent.