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What is wrong with Trump’s immigration ban?
On Friday, President Donald Trump signed an executive order restricting immigration from seven Muslim-majority countries, suspending the US refugee programme for 120 days, and banning Syrian refugees from entering the country until further notice. Ian Samuel
, a lecturer at Harvard Law School, explained the executive order - and just what is wrong with it - to Al Jazeera. Al Jazeera: What is the problem with the executive order? Ian Samuel: The United States immigration statute had, for 50 years, prohibited the kind of discrimination that this travel ban engages in, and moreover, the US Constitution prohibits targeting people because of their religion, which this travel ban is a very lightly disguised attempt to do. No civil servant who is covered by ordinary protections of the meritorious protection board is obligated to do illegal things in the course of their duties, and that's exactly what this travel ban asks them to do, it asks them to do something illegal.
So, What Is a Border Adjustment?
On Thursday, White House press secretary Sean Spicer said something sufficiently confusing that for a minute, people believed that the Trump administration intended to raise funds for a border wall by imposing a 20 percent tariff on all imports from countries with which the U.S. runs a trade deficit— including Mexico. It soon became clear that Spicer was not talking about a tariff per se, but something more like the House GOP’s border adjustment tax..."A border tax adjustment is not really a tariff, and it's not typically country specific or good specific. A border tax adjustment is part of a larger tax system where they're trying to tax consumption, and the adjustments are ways to make sure that the tax base is in fact domestic consumption," says Mihir Desai
, an expert in tax policy and international finance and a professor at Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School. Desai says that one of the advantages of passing off a border adjustment as a tariff might just be political convenience, characterizing a tax overhaul (which Republicans support) as a protectionist measure. But the border adjustment might be preferable to actual tariffs, which could lead to a trade war.
The Trump-era Supreme Court could erode abortion access with a ‘death by 1,000 cuts’
With control of the presidency, the House of Representatives, the Senate, and at least one Supreme Court seat to fill, the GOP will have the opportunity to make sweeping changes in the next four years. Since opposing abortion is part of the Republican Party's platform, Americans can expect a reproductive-rights fight will be part of the agenda...Glenn Cohen
, a health-law expert and professor at Harvard Law School, said two kinds of laws provide the most likely paths for SCOTUS to overturn or undermine Roe. The first are known as fetal-pain laws. They aim to ban abortions when a fetus can feel pain, which legislators typically claim is after 20 weeks, though scientists disagree...The second kind of law is what reproductive rights activists call Targeted Restrictions on Abortion Providers, or TRAP laws, that impose strict requirements on abortion clinics and providers.
Rule of Law 1, Trump’s Immigration Ban 0
An op-ed by Noah Feldman.
It’s beginning. The legal system’s constitutional defense against President Donald Trump’s policies won its first battle this weekend when several federal district courts blocked the implementation of his executive order banning immigration from seven majority-Muslim countries. The lawyers’ resistance won’t always succeed, and it will face many bumps in the road over the next four years. The resistance got a big assist this time from Trump himself, who ignored the Department of Justice and its first-rate lawyers. Eventually, Trump may figure out how to use the legal system to achieve his goals instead of work against it.
Trump’s Immigration Ban Promises Constitutional Showdown
Did President Donald Trump’s executive order on immigration ban Muslims from the country on the basis of their religion? That will be a central question when federal judges dig more deeply into the constitutionality of the order, signed on January 27. If the answer is yes, it appears vulnerable to a First Amendment challenge...Laurence Tribe
, a prominent liberal constitutional scholar at Harvard University, called the order “barely disguised religious discrimination against Muslims and religious preference for Christians.” The order by its own terms establishes preferential treatment for refugees identified with “minority religions” in their country of origin.
The Harvard Crimson
After Immigration Order, Two Harvard Affiliates Barred from Entering U.S.
At least two Harvard affiliates were barred from entering the United States after President Donald Trump suspended immigration from seven predominantly Muslim countries Friday, and the University has warned international students not to leave the country...“There’s a lot of confusion and uncertainty about how this order is going to be implemented in the short and long term,” Maggie Moran
, a fellow at the Harvard Law School Immigration and Refugee Clinic, said. “If you are a green card holder or on a valid student or employment visa from one of the affected countries, I think in general it’s advisable to exercise caution and postpone travel as much as possible outside of the United States until we have greater clarity as to how this order is going to be enforced.” Law professor Gerald L. Neuman
, who specializes in immigration law, said the order grants officials some discretion in enforcement, adding to the uncertainty surrounding Trump’s immigration restrictions. Neuman said he believes the order violates the Constitution. “This executive order serves no valid purpose, and is incitement of discrimination against people on grounds of religion, and that should be unconstitutional,” he said.
As President Trump Considers His Conflicts, He Should Heed The Tale Of Icarus
An op-ed by Nancy Gertner
. The Icarus myth is a cautionary tale for our new president. Daedalus gave his son, Icarus, wings made of feathers and wax on a wood frame, with a warning. If Icarus flew too near the sun, the wax would melt and he would fall to his death. Icarus, heady with his new power and bursting with hubris, ignored the warnings and perished. It is one thing to be a real estate mogul, playing fast and loose with the bankruptcy laws. It’s another to be the president playing close to the line. If Trump suppressed the investigation of Russian hacking of the Democratic National Committee in order to avoid delegitimizing his election, he could could have committed treason, as John Shattuck has written. Any foreign money Trump receives, in any form, could violate the Constitution’s Emoluments Clause — which prohibits government officials from taking money or gifts from a foreign state — as alleged in the lawsuit filed last week by a group of ethics experts and legal scholars. And if he tries to use his presidential power to secure private advantage, he could face impeachment for extortion or bribery.
Harvard Art Museums
Douglass and Obama: The Politicization of Art in the Quest for Political Change
Commentary by David E. White, Jr. `17
. Although walking the earth nearly a century apart, Frederick Douglass and Barack Obama each appreciated the transcendent power of an image to evoke emotion and spark progress. Douglass, a former slave, used photography as a tool of “moral and social influence” in his bid to persuade a country of his fellow black Americans’ humanity and thus the exigent need for their emancipation from slavery. Obama, for his part, made his own likeness synonymous with “hope” and “change,” and incorporated such iconography as the cornerstone of his unlikely yet successful presidential campaign. Prominent orators of unquestionable intelligence and wit, Obama and Douglass both recognized that a carefully executed picture, more than the cleverest turn of phrase, left an indelible mark on its viewer—a picture required no fluency or literacy in a particular language, for its message was universally intelligible insofar as one could rest their eyes upon it.
The Boston Globe
Judge who blocked Trump’s traveler ban known as ‘fearless’
People know Allison Dale Burroughs as fearless. As a prosecutor who cracked down on organized crime in Philadelphia during the 1990s at the US attorney’s office, Burroughs garnered a reputation as a whip-smart attorney who was attracted to challenging, demanding work, said John Pucci, who worked alongside her in Philadelphia...In 2014, Nancy Gertner
, a former federal judge, was part of the committee that recommended Burroughs to her current position. “She is someone who knows her way around the US attorney’s office, knows her way around the Boston legal community, and more significantly,” she said, “we knew she would have guts.”...Alex Whiting
, who worked with Burroughs as a prosecutor at the US attorney’s office in Boston, also said he was always struck by another thing. “She is fair, and she has great judgment,” said Whiting, now a professor at Harvard Law School. “Prosecutors have a lot of power, and she was always thoughtful of how that power was being used.”
Book review: Smart Collaboration by Heidi Gardner
In the age of revolution, wrote Gary Hamel, the management expert, “it is not knowledge that produces new wealth but insight — insight into opportunities for discontinuous innovation.” We all know businesses must innovate to attract customers with services and products and to update brands. Yet it is too often the big-bang disrupters and inventors that get the attention — the likes of Uber, Airbnb and Facebook. They are dramatic, after all. Yet Heidi Gardner
, a former McKinsey consultant and Harvard Business School professor, now at Harvard Law School, argues that subtle innovations and insights from teams of consultants are just as important. Key to achieving these, writes Gardner, is “smart collaboration,” which is also the title of her book. There are two reasons for this, she argues: “Expertise specialisation and the increasing complexity of today’s problems.”
Scalia’s Replacement Won’t Be Quite So Originalist
An op-ed by Noah Feldman
. President Donald Trump’s Supreme Court nominee, judging from the list of top contenders, will praise Justice Antonin Scalia and say he’s an originalist in the same vein. But will it be true? Or will the nominee be more like Justice Samuel Alito, a dyed-in-the-wool conservative who nominally adheres to originalism but doesn’t actually seem to decide many cases after a detailed examination of the origins of the Constitution? The difference may not matter in how the nominee will vote. But it does matter for the long-term development of constitutional doctrine -- and whether we continue to have justices who would bind us to the dead hand of the past rather than viewing the Constitution as Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes did: as a living, breathing organism that must evolve or die.
The Christian Science Monitor
Singapore’s plea to its people: Won’t you please have more children?
...For the Singaporean government, Lim and Ms. Foo’s indifference about child rearing is at the heart of a complex demographics trend it’s desperate to reverse. Singapore’s fertility rate is among the 10 lowest in the world. The average number of births per woman in 2015 was 1.24, according to government statistics. That’s well below the replacement rate of 2.1, the number of babies generally required to maintain a country’s current population level...Governments across the world, from Denmark to Japan, are struggling to come to terms with shrinking populations, and the implications for everything from supporting aging populations to growing the economy. But Singapore’s all-out approach stands out as one of the most ambitious. “If anybody is going to get it right, I would guess it’s going to be Singapore,” says Michael Teitelbaum
, a senior research associate at Harvard Law School in Cambridge, Mass., and coauthor of a book on global fertility decline. “That doesn’t mean it will be easy.”
Bills Rise As Pet Vets Get More Corporate
What price would you pay to keep the family pet healthy? The sky's the limit, say America's veterinarians, who are providing the increasingly extensive — and expensive — services to meet the growing demand...The key is do your research ahead of time -- before your animal friend needs care. "The worst time to make a decision is when you're in an emotional state and not thinking clearly and are eager to do whatever it takes to save the life of your animal and keep it healthy," said Chris Green
, executive director of the Animal Law & Policy Program at Harvard Law School.
The Harvard Crimson
Nearly 200 Harvard Professors Sign Petition Opposing Presidential Order
Joining thousands of academics worldwide, over 190 Harvard professors have signed a growing petition opposing President Donald Trump’s executive order barring immigration from seven Muslim-majority countries. By Sunday evening, nearly 200 Harvard faculty members from across the University’s schools had signed the petition, entitled “Academics Against Immigration Executive Order.” More than 7,100 professors from across the country have signed the condemnation...As students and residents protested the executive order in Harvard Square Friday and Copley Square Sunday, Law School lecturer Ian Samuel
, took to Twitter. In a post retweeted thousands of times, Samuel offered free legal support to government employees who considered refusing to obey the order. “Any government official who refuses to execute Trump’s orders on grounds of illegality will receive free representation from me. & I’m good!” Samuel tweeted Saturday. Samuel said he has since been approached by individuals asking for help and by fellow lawyers offering assistance.