Author Archives: Tristan Blaine

Marriage equality now a reality for majority of Americans and 30 states (with 2 more in limbo)

Same sex wedding

As a result of Monday’s Supreme Court decision NOT to take up the issue of same-sex marriage (for now), same-sex marriage is now legal in 30 states, which includes roughly 165 million people, over half the U.S. population. The decision affected 11 states (Utah, Oklahoma, Virginia, Wisconsin, Indiana, Colorado, Wyoming, Kansas, West Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina), so added to the previous 19 states (and DC) that have

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AT&T to pay $80M in refunds to cell phone customers for unauthorized charges

YOUR RIGHT OF THE DAY: Cell phone companies may not add charges to your bill from outside companies without your clear consent, must clearly identify these charges as from outside companies, and must give you the option to block the charges.* This one may seem pretty obvious, but many companies are apparently just now getting the memo about it, in the form of a bill

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Judge says Ferguson police can’t require protesters to keep it moving

YOUR RIGHT OF THE DAY: You have the right to peacefully gather with others on public sidewalks, and police may not unreasonably restrict this right.* What’s the news? Police apparently love telling people to keep it moving, claiming that it helps maintain order. Or perhaps it’s secretly part of Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign? In any case, police might not be able to

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FCC says hotels may not jam your personal Wi-Fi hotspot

YOUR RIGHT OF THE DAY: Companies or individuals may not block or interfere with your personal Wi-Fi hotspot.* What’s the news on this right? Hotel chain Marriott International has agreed to pay the government a penalty of $600,000 for “jamming” guests’ personal Wi-Fi hotspots. What law did Marriott violate and how? The Communications Act contains a very broad prohibition on anyone blocking any “radio

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RIGHT OF THE DAY: Right to pre viability abortion without significant restrictions (an update)

Positive pregnancy test

YOUR RIGHT OF THE DAY: If you are pregnant, you have the right to an abortion up until the time the fetus becomes viable*, and the government may not place significant** restrictions on your ability to do so.1U.S. Constitution, 14th amendment (due process clause); Roe v Wade (1973); Planned Parenthood v Casey (1992) *A fetus is legally considered viable when it

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RIGHT OF THE DAY: Quickly have your scandalous photos removed from the internet

YOUR RIGHT OF THE DAY: Websites that show your* photos (or other content you own) without your permission must quickly remove them when you send them a valid “takedown notice.”1Digital Millennium Copyright Act Jennifer Lawrence and other celebrities whose photos were hacked and leaked on the internet are taking advantage of this relatively easy to use legal tool to get these photos taken down. Thanks to

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RIGHT OF THE DAY: No voting restrictions that would likely limit minority voting

YOUR RIGHT OF THE DAY: The government may not place restrictions on voting that would likely have the effect of limiting voting by racial minorities. 1Voting Rights Act of 1965, codified at 52 U.S.C. § 10301(a); U.S. Constitution, 14th amendment Last year, North Carolina changed some of its voting rules. Today, just one month ahead of the November elections, a federal

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Governor signs law allowing guns to be temporarily taken from people determined to be threat

Governor Jerry Brown signed into law today a measure that allows guns to be temporarily taken from people deemed to be a threat to themselves or others due to mental instability or otherwise. The law is a response to the Isla Vista shooting rampage that occurred near the UC Santa Barbara campus back in May, during which a mentally disturbed 22 year old

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RIGHT OF THE DAY: Large money award for reporting violations of financial regulations

YOUR RIGHT OF THE DAY: You are entitled to a substantial “whistleblower award” for providing original information to the government about violations of federal financial regulations that leads to successful enforcement action where the penalties involved are over $1 million.1Section 21F(b)(1) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (the “Exchange Act”), 15 U.S.C. § 78u-6(b)(1), and Rule 21F-3(a) thereunder, 17 C.F.R.

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RIGHT OF THE DAY: Right to sue police officers who violate your rights

YOUR RIGHT OF THE DAY: You have the right to sue a police officer for using his/her authority to violate your rights. 1U.S. Code, Title 18, Section 1983 Photo: Occupy Wall Street demonstration Dec 2011. From Bigstockphoto.com A man in New York filed a lawsuit last week against NYPD police officers who he claims improperly arrested him and held him at the police station, all for

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