Recent graduate shines investigative light on 75-​​year-​​old civil rights cold case

Pvt. Felix Hall, a 19-​​year-​​old African Amer­ican from Mill­brook, Alabama, was lynched in the woods of Fort Ben­ning, Georgia, in 1941. More than 70 years later, Alexa Mills dug into the case as part of her course work in the School of Journalism’s Media Inno­va­tion pro­gram and then wrote a front-​​page fea­ture on her find­ings for The Wash­ington Post.

3Qs: Why voting rights rulings will help the Democrats at the polls

Over the past two weeks, courts in five states have ruled against voter ID and proof-​​of-​​citizenship laws, citing their dis­crim­i­na­tory impact on minori­ties. Martha Davis, law pro­fessor and human rights expert, says that the court rul­ings will likely favor the Democ­rats, par­tic­u­larly in the swing states where restric­tive voter laws have been struck down.

3Qs: What can a crime drama teach us about justice?

Law pro­fessor Jes­sica Silbey will dis­cuss the his­tory of law in Amer­ican film on Wednesday at a Law Library of Con­gress event. Here, she looks at the pit­falls of crime shows, names her favorite legal drama, and explains how the depic­tion of law in film has changed over the past 125 years.

NUPD chief: National shootings ‘disturbing,’ but present opportunity to form stronger bonds between police and communities

North­eastern Uni­ver­sity Chief of Police Michael Davis has been a part of a range of efforts and ini­tia­tives at the national level exam­ining law enforce­ment prac­tices, par­tic­u­larly those involving race and policing.

Witness videos and the conversation about race and policing

Police in Louisiana shot and killed Alton Ster­ling on Tuesday. A day later, police in Min­nesota fatally shot Phi­lando Castile. Both men were black. And both shoot­ings were cap­tured in grisly videos by bystanders—videos that quickly cir­cu­lated on social media. Here, law pro­fessor Jes­sica Silbey talks about the role tech­nology now plays in influ­encing the con­ver­sa­tion about race and policing, and the con­sti­tu­tional right of cit­i­zens to record law enforce­ment in public.

Are safe injection facilities for heroin users a step in the right direction?

The mayor of Ithaca, New York, last week, announced a plan to open sites where heroin users can safely inject the drug under med­ical super­vi­sion. Assis­tant pro­fessor Leo Beletsky thinks the idea isn’t that far-​​fetched, saying “We need inno­v­a­tive inter­ven­tions because what we are doing is not working.”

3Qs: What’s next in the partisan fight to replace Scalia?

Pres­i­dent Obama intends to ful­fill his con­sti­tu­tional duty to nom­i­nate a new Supreme Court jus­tice to replace Antonin Scalia, but Senate Repub­li­cans have vowed to block his pick. We asked law pro­fessor Daniel Medwed how this polit­ical battle is likely to play out.

3Qs: Justice Scalia’s legacy, and what his death means for politics and the law

Supreme Court Jus­tice Antonin Scalia’s death touched off a polit­ical debate that could define Pres­i­dent Obama’s final year in office and bring drama to an already con­tentious pres­i­den­tial pri­mary. Pro­fessor Michael Melt­sner, a con­sti­tu­tional law expert, called Scalia’s death “a great blow to Repub­li­cans” and “a gift to Hillary Clinton.”

Supreme Court of the ‘60s lent ‘legal force to the dissatisfaction with bigotry’

Former U.S. Rep. Barney Frank and retired fed­eral judge Nancy Gertner dis­cussed during last week’s Myra Kraft Open Class­room lec­ture the ram­i­fi­ca­tions of the U.S. Supreme Court between 1953 and 1969, when Earl Warren served as chief justice.

Northeastern community reacts to new Boy Scouts policy

Stu­dents and fac­ulty described the group’s deci­sion to lift its ban on openly gay leaders while allowing church-​​sponsored units to con­tinue excluding gays for reli­gious rea­sons in unequiv­o­cally strong terms. “Claiming ‘morality’ or ‘reli­gious beliefs’ cannot over­ride basic prin­ci­ples of equality,” noted soci­ology pro­fessor Suzanna Walters.