Legal Briefs: This Week in Law

September 3, 2013

Should economic realities, and the changing role of women in the workforce, affect traditional alimony laws? (Bloomberg News)

Martin Luther King, Jr.’s iconic speech is copyrighted; some historians, journalists, and copyright reformists question whether such protection is appropriate. (Mother Jones)

Ninth Circuit rules that Montana’s Firearms Freedom Act, which declared certain firearms to be beyond the scope of Congress’ commerce power, to be preempted and invalid. (United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit)

Since a UN mandate for intervention is unlikely to occur anytime soon, if at all, countries must determine if military action against Syria is still permitted under international law. (The GuardianWashington Post)

Legal experts argue that the trial against former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak is flawed. (Al Jazeera)

Federal district court judges urge Congress to increase funding to the judiciary. (NY Times)

The DOJ’s lawsuit against Microsoft in the 1990s appears to have yielded more positives than negatives. (Slate)

Russian police seize paintings of President Putin and Prime Minister Medvedev in lingerie, claiming the paintings violate the law; critics claim that this is an example of Russia’s anti-gay law censoring artistic expression. (Christian Scientist Monitor)

Passing legislation in July, North Carolina is the first state to offer financial compensation to victims of the state’s eugenics program.  (Al Jazeera)

Same-sex marriage supporters shift their focus from legislative efforts to court battles. (Washington Post)  This week, a judge in New Mexico ruled that denying same-sex couples access to civil marriage violates the state’s constitution. (ACLU of New Mexico)

City ordinance in Raleigh, North Carolina, stops a church group from distributing food to homeless persons in a public park. (Time)

Saudi Arabia passes a law penalizing domestic abuse. (BBC News)

George Zimmerman’s defense attorneys plan on requesting reimbursement for court costs. (CNN)

Department of Justice announces it will defer to state and local authorities in states that have legalized marijuana, so long as those states’ enforcement efforts are sufficiently robust. (DOJ)

Is the criminalization of teachers who have sex with students too severe? (Washington Post)