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School: Totino-Grace High School

Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Friend of the Court for Hosanna-Tabor Church v. EEOC

Written by concrim-2011-66

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Justices; we have a very important issue before you; one that has many dramatic and far-reaching consequences.  If this matter is resolved in the wrong way, it could leave many people unemployed and give a great deal of power to church and religious leaders across America.

I am here to represent the EEOC or the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.  The job of the EEOC is to make sure that everyone has an equal chance of being employed, regardless of their gender, race, sexual orientation or disabilities.  Now in the case of Hosanna-Tabor Church, the EEOC’s rules have been severely violated.

Mrs. Cheryl Perich was an elementary school teacher at Hosanna-Tabor Church, which is also a school.  Mrs. Perich developed a condition that caused her to randomly fall asleep, it could happen at any time.  Understandably, parents and administrators were concerned about children’s safety while under Mrs. Perich’s care.  So, Mrs. Perich was fired from her job because of her disability.  This clearly violates the EEOC’s rules.  However, the problem is churches and religious organizations are immune from this rule.  But Mrs. Perich was not a religious teacher at Hosanna-Tabor Church.  She had little to noting to do with the religious teachings of the school.  Religious leaders have the authority to dismiss other religious leaders and teachers for any reason, that does not fall under the authority of the EEOC.  But, because Mrs. Perich was not a religious teacher, she is under the EEOC’s protection and should never have been fired from her job.  What should have happened is Mrs. Perich was given a teacher’s aide, to watch over the kids in the event that Mrs. Perich should fall asleep on the job.   But, instead, Mrs. Perich was unjustly fired.  If this is overlooked, then religious leaders can fire non-religious teachers all across the country with no direct consequences.  Many could become unemployed unfairly.  This is why, in the case of Hosanna-Tabor Church v. EEOC, you must side with the EEOC, to protect those that need protection.

By Ryan S

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Amicus Brief for Florence v. Board of Free Holders

Written by concrim-2011-375

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

My client the prison safety group should win this case.  They are being taken advantage of, my client is responsible for everything that goes on in these halls every single day. These prisioners need to know who runs this place and who makes the rules.  And the rule makers are my client.  If my client needs to run searches to make sure that their facility is safe, then that prcess needs to be done. The prisioners are in jail for a reason they did something wrong to upset someone.  Because of this crime, they cannot be trusted, that is they way trust works.  A person earns trust, and trust is not earned from commiting a crime. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit reversed the District Court and said, “holding that the strip search policy was a reasonable way to balance the competing interests of the prison and the individual”.  The Fourth Amendment issue should not be one.  Going back to my point about trust, if their is reasonable cause to check the person the Fourth Amendment is not violated.  In the case of a prisoner there is always probable cause, because they are sinful people.  In Bell v. Wolfish, 441 U.S. 520 (1979) the court ruled in favor of the strip search.  They also ruled that after a visit from a friend or someone else that a search is always a necessity.  They also claimed that “reasonable individualized suspicion” was not necessary to make a prison strip search policy constitutional. That is why my client should be allowed to preform strip searches at any time.

 

 

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Discrimination and Religious Employees

Written by concrim-2011-28f

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

   In the Seventeen years of my life I have saw many people take advantage of other people in any kind of situation. Many people would say religious institutions could take advantage of this and I am sure some do. Does this mean that what they are doing is right? of course not! But under my interpretation of the constitution Religious schools, organizations, etc. have the right to freely exercise their beliefs. We have to always look through the constitution to see if the institution is going against it or not. Some Judges on the court might look past the constitution to make their decision but I am pretty sure they would get a scolding from Judge Scalia who is an originalist.

    I do believe that the court should look to who the employer is if an individual is said to be discriminated against. There are other ways throughout the constitution where the court can look at to get around the first amendment that religious institutions use to persuade the court in their favor. If a case like the Hosanna Tabor church case comes up again in the near future then congress might have to add a couple of new amendments that limit what religious institutions have the right to do with their employees.

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Write The Opinion

Written by concrim-2011-172

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Cheryl Perich had filed a lawsuit against the Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church and School in Redford, Michigan. She had claimed that they had violated the Americans with Disabilities Act. She feels that she was discriminated against for her disability, which is Narcolepsy. When She was first diagnosed the school had said that there would be a position waiting for her. As time went on the Church Board became worried. They were worried that if she came back to teach she might become a threat to the children. They thought if she were to fall asleep while watching the kids something could happen. They decided to give her a peaceful release. Perich did not like this and she threatened to sue the school. After that the Principle of Hosanna-Tabor had her Perich fired. The opinion is that the government still cannot be involved with the Church. The Church can still fire and hire people according to their rules.

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Executive Authority and Foreign Conflict

Written by concrim-2011-b3

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

The President can have power to deploy troops if it is absolutely necessary for the safety of the United States or if their is an immediate threat to any of our overseas allies. As policemen of countries who are too weak to stand up for themselves, the president should be able to intervene in conflicts between smaller countries if the majority of Congress agrees with him. A line should be drawn if he begins to abuse his power or keeps deploying troops in an area that is not popular (Lyndon Johnson- Vietnam). If over half of Congress disagrees, then it is not okay. A case could of been made for Libya last year, but the operation ended up successful so troops did their job. In extreme cases, this could be something presented before the U.S Supreme Court, but even Vietnam was not an extreme abuse of power, so it would have to be really significant.

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Friend of the Court – Amicus Brief Badge (150 points)

Written by concrim-2011-df

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

The reason why you should be looking at this case is because Florence was subjected to illegal strip searches. Florence should have not even have been searched in the first place for providing a proof of payment of a ticket so he should not have a warrant out for his arrest. “In Bell v. Wolfish, the Supreme Court upheld a prison policy of strip searching all inmates” This quotation shows that all inmates are suppose to be strip searched but it does not say how many times; therefore, this case should be looked at by the court. The reason why this case is important is because it is going to show how strip searches are conducted in the arresting process and that there will not be anymore confusion within other state courts.  The strip searches were also available to be seen by other inmates in prison, which there fore makes them an invasion of privacy according to our constitution. In Powell “a blanket strip search policy nearly identical to the one in Florence was constitutional”   In this quotation it is legal because the police had reasonable cause and it was a private strip search. That is why you should look at this case and strongly consider Florence’s part.

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The Cost of Safety

Written by concrim-2011-390

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Recent events have tipped the scales towards security because of bombing terrorism and things like that. Security officials can not trust citizens to follow the laws over the passed years and this forces security to limit us and stepped up security procedures. It started with september 11th 2001 when terrorists bombed the twin towers in New York. This caused our nations security to increase exponensially. We now could no longer bring any liquids on planes and we had to all travel through metal detectors and now x-rays to see if we are carrying anything that may cause harm. I think that it is good that they are trying to stop torrorist by doing this but where do we draw the line? A strip search because of a routine traffic stop and an unpaid ticket is no reason to get stripped searched in todays society. There was no reason to believe that he had anything on him and a strip search was humiliating and unnecesary.

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Medical Profesionals

Written by concrim-2011-390

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

It does matter who is doing the strip search for many reasons. If a guard that is giving and strip search does not know what he is looking for then the search is no good. He may pass right over something that he should have noticed. He also has no idea of illnesses and pain. A professional doctor would know what he is looking for in an inmate and be able to find it quick and painless.  There should be restrictions on who os authorized to give strip searches in jails around the country. Only those who are authorized should be allowed to give the searches because they will be able to find what they are looking for as well as look for illness or disease. It is important that a professional does it rather than an unauthorized person because then it is not putting the inmate at risk for anything and the task will be completed correctly.

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Administrative Concerns

Written by concrim-2011-390

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Every jail should get the funding and staff it needs to complete strip searches that are less intrusive that what is going on right now. Funding should be given to jails so they can get the proper tools and staff to complete strip searches the right way. Strip searches are very intrussive and group strip searches violate each inmate. New instruments should be introduced so that searches are less intrusive and do not violate the inmate like the way they do now. Proper staff should be at each jail so that group searches to not need to be done. Group searches violate each inmates right and proper staffing would make it so group searches are no longer neccesary. The costs of strip searches to the jail should matter to the constitutionality of the subject because normal strip searches violate each inmates rights and with proper funding the rights of these inmates would no longer be violated and this is what the constitution is all about.

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The Cost of Safety

Written by concrim-2011-3ac

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

When going to the airport you might encounter more searches, such as extra bag searches, that may inconvenience you, but at what cost? Because of the ever-present threat of terrorist attacks, there has been an increase in searching at airports. I think with the potential of terrorist attacks, there should be even more caution then there is now. We are asked to give up a mere five extra minutes to extra searching. If those extra five minutes helped to stop an attack it could save hundreds of lives. Events like 9/11 and the London Bombings give us even more reason to be concerned with getting more security at airports and other public areas. The more security and protection we have the less likely there will be attacks. The increase in security may detour the attacks in the first place. in order to help better protect people an increase in security may be necessary.

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Official Immunity and Section 1983

Written by concrim-2011-3ac

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

In “Section 1983″ it states that a person under the law that deprives another person of their rights will be liable to that person. This means if you infringe on another persons rights they can sue and you would be liable. For example, if you were hiring for a job and there were two people that were applying, both of them are equally qualified for that job.  One is white and one is black, and you hire the white person because the others black which is discrimination. they could take you to court and win.

But there are of course certain exceptions to “Section 1983″. There are certain government people that are immune to this. This, though it seems unfair, is a good rule. People in power are the ones that will always get blamed for making unjust laws and they are usually held accountable. It is not one persons decision to make a law or rule which is why it is good for them to have a type of immunity that would protect them form frivolous lawsuits just involving them.

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Social Cost

Written by concrim-2011-3ac

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

People think that is someones a criminal they will always be a criminal this is not necessarily the truth because it all depends on the circumstances of the crime. you can split up crime into two categories, violent and non-violent. The non-violent offenders should be treated differently in terms or their background. Meaning, that once they get back in to the working world that for there background check non-violent offenses should not be counted against them. In order to help better protect ourselves against re-offenders there should be a difference because not all crimes are the same in severity. I think it should always be noted that they were, or still are, violent offenders in order to ensure people’s safety. For example, if you were the head of a security firm and you needed to hire someone to fill a position. You would want to know if that person had a violent history so you’d know if you can trust him or not.

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Framers and Power

Written by concrim-2011-2d9

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

The Framers wanted power divided equally. They noticed how bad a monarchy was for the country and wanted a change. Another reason why the framers split the power was because they didn’t want one certain group to have more power than the other. An example would be, if more power was given to the executive branch the president would would be signing bills that are not in the country’s best interest.

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Friend of the Court Amicus Brief Badge

Written by concrim-2011-215

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Albert Florence should not have been physically violated in the ways that he was. The searches that were conducted multiple times for a menial offense were unnecessary. The searches were an obvious violation of his fourth amendment right, prohibiting unreasonable search and seizure. A reasonable search is searching him once he enters the prison to ensure that no drugs or weapons are coming into the prison, even though it was not required by the New Jersey code for a non-criminal offense. The fact that this unnecessary search was conducted twice upon entrance to two different facilities goes far beyond what may have been necessary. Much like in Safford v. Redding, there was no reason to suspect Florence of having anything illegal on him, especially for the second search. He was not an eminent threat to the prison being that he was held for a menial offense that he should not have been arrested for. They should have just cleared his proof that he paid the fine and let him go.  In Bell v. Wolfish,  it was determined that anyone could be issued a strip search after being visited my a guest from outside the prison. However, in Florence’s case, he never came in contact with anyone from outside the prison and was never released between his two searches. The second search was therefore unconstitutional.

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Rehberg v. Paulk-Friend of the Court

Written by concrim-2011-cf

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Written in defense of Paulk

It is of utmost importance that you stand by Paulk’s right to be granted immunity in court due to the fact that he is a government official. Government officials, such as police, detectives, and investigators, need to be protected before the law because they cannot perform their difficult duties properly without it. Day by day, cops and detectives are forced to make split second decisions that affect the protection of many citizens. If officers have to stop to fully consider all of the consequences of their actions, they may end up performing their job poorly. We need to trust our officers to do the right thing, and understand that they are not perfect but if it weren’t for them our society would not function. By providing these brave men and women with some protection before the court, we can ensure that they will not hesitate to do what is right, and thus will keep all of us safe. Paulk was doing what he was instructed to do and he did it to the best of his ability. He, nor any other government official, should not be convicted for any crimes that he may have committed while performing their jobs, as long as they were trying to keep the people of the United States safe.

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Florence v. Board of Freeholders-Friend of the Court

Written by concrim-2011-cf

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

In defense of prison strip searches

Although the circumstances of Mr. Florence’s arrest were unfortunate, due to the fact that he had indeed already paid his fine, the strip searches conducted were both constitutional and necessary. Every day, numerous people are brought to jail or transferred from one jail to another, and it is important that we ensure they are not sneaking any weapons or substances into the prisons. In order to do this, strip searches are necessary, but there is not easy way to determine who needs to have a strip search and who does not without discriminating. To make strips fair, every person being checked into a prison should be subject to a strip search, no matter what the reason of their sentence is. We need to ensure the safety of both the inmates and the prison guards. Even if a person is being checked in for a minor offense, they could still be transporting very harmful objects into the jail.    In order to prevent this from happening, all jails should be allowed to have mandatory strip searches of all inmates. In fact, all jails should be required to have mandatory strip searches to ensure the safety of everyone present.

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The Free Exercise Clause – First Amendment Badge (50 points)

Written by concrim-2011-df

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

I think that the court can not be aloud to say in whether or not what a religious institution can do with there employees.  Whether they are disabled or not this person in there eyes is unqualified to do the job.  If a person can’t do a job why should they be aloud to keep there job.  The court shouldn’t even be arguing this case because it is an easy decision but, the reason why they took it is because the fine line between the government and religion is foggy.  It is also a very fragile subject because of our first amendment to freedom of religion.  I think that this topic is very foggy because of all of this stuff but, for my honest opinion this case should not be in the court.  The teacher has a disability that a teacher shouldn’t have in a school full of kids because they will have no supervision.

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Social Cost ( Florence)

Written by concrim-2011-2d9

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Florence was obviously subjected to an illegal search and seizure. If person has no criminal background then they should not have to be told to take off their clothes and wait till be searched. This is only because they have done nothing wrong in society. Also another fact is wait makes them have to be searched. Probable cause is the reason police are allowed to search people. Florence was with his family on a nice drive. It wasn’t like he was transporting drugs. People with a serious criminal background. What is a serious criminal background would be a charge of assault and battery or a large possession of a controlled substance or any kind of drug.

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Friend of the Court-Amicus Brief Badge

Written by concrim-2011-3af

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

I am a lawyer and I represent the Association for Safety in Prisons.  I am writing this amicus brief to the Supreme Court to try to convince the justices to affirm the decision made at the Third Circuit Court of Appeals and vote in favor of the Board of Freeholders of Burlington County, New Jersey.  It is agreed that Florence should not have  been arrested in the first place, due to errors in the computer system.  However, the jail must do a strip-search on all the inmates.  This is for the safety of everyone in the jail or prison.  It is not justifiable to only do strip searches when there is reasonable suspicion.  An arrested person could co-operate with the police officers and give them no reason for suspicion and he could be hiding a weapon.  It is widely known that prisoners will get out of prison for good behavior and then commit a crime right away when they get out.  They fooled the authorities into trusting them.  The same concept applies in this type of situation the Supreme Court is deciding.  Giving the prisoners more freedom and not having them searched is a danger to everyone in the prison and also in the community.

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Friend of the court

Written by concrim-2011-28f

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

   Many religious institutions believe it is their right to freely do what they think is right for them and the people that attend their institution. Even though the hiring and firing of employees has to do with the state, it does not mean that all laws have to regulated through the state. I definitely agree that religious schools have the right to hire and fire employees and the court does not have the right to interfere in what the school is doing. Even though religion has nothing to do with the situation, Most religious institutions are held under the state so they are allowed to make their own decisions.

    This situation brings up the issue between exercising religion and making personnel decisions. If an individual working for a religious institution is exercising his/her beliefs that are not upheld by the institution then that individual is subject to dismissal. the school has the right to dismiss the individual without the courts recognition  because they are not upheld with the by laws of the state and can freely exercise their beliefs. Religion has wide range issues that it is configured with and falls under the first amendment of free exercise of religion.

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The Free Exercise clause

Written by concrim-2011-28f

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

    Many religious institutions believe it is their right to freely do what they think is right for them and the people that attend their institution. Even though the hiring and firing of employees has to do with the state, it does not mean that all laws have to regulated through the state. I definitely agree that religious schools have the right to hire and fire employees and the court does not have the right to interfere in what the school is doing. Even though religion has nothing to do with the situation, Most religious institutions are held under the state so they are allowed to make their own decisions.

    This situation brings up the issue between exercising religion and making personnel decisions. If an individual working for a religious institution is exercising his/her beliefs that are not upheld by the institution then that individual is subject to dismissal. the school has the right to dismiss the individual without the courts recognition  because they are not upheld with the by laws of the state and can freely exercise their beliefs. Religion has wide range issues that it is configured with and falls under the first amendment of free exercise of religion.

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Opinion Written by Justice Kenney

Written by concrim-2011-281

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th
Twelve out of sixteen justices voted to overturn the decision of the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals.
The Supreme Court Justices have agreed that the Hosanna- Tabor Church has the right to fire Mrs. Perich. The First Amendment to the Constitution states that church and government are to be two separate entities; state won’t interfere with religion.  Due to that fact, religious organizations have a Ministerial Exception for all people working with a religious purpose. This means that the church can fire anyone working within the organization that has a religious role.
Precedent is nothing to take lightly, and as we saw in the case of Serbian Eastern Orthodox Diocese v. Milivojevich in 1976, the church has the authority to fire a bishop due to his beliefs. Although the reason for being fired is different, it is the basic principle that the religious organization holds the right to hire and fire.
While some may argue that the case Employment Division v. Smith has Precedent, but it simple does not. In that case the individuals who took peyote were doing something illegal, and were fired from a job that had no religious connection. They weren’t fired because of their religious beliefs but because they were doing something that interfered with state law.
In the case Bell v. Wolfish, we see that a prison doesn’t need suspicion to search an inmate. This is like a blanket, because it covers every one in the jail. This is how the ministerial exception works; it covers everyone that is an employee of the religious organization.
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Friend of the Court-Amicus Brief Badge

Written by concrim-2011-3af

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

I represent an atheist group known as the Atheists of America.  I am writing a brief to the Supreme Court to convince the justices to consider affirming the decision made in the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals.  It is widely understood, even by the atheists, that churches have the right to decide which ministers are qualified to further the advancements of the religous beliefs of the congregation.  However, this should not give churches the right to discriminate against all of their employees.  Perich’s role was mainly teacher and allowing the church to discriminate against her will give them the right to discriminate any kind of employee which can include custiodial or janitors.  Religous organzations are not free from the Constitution and the church’s actions at Hosanna-Tabor Church were unconstitutional.  All of the other employees in churches, whose roles are not religious, would all be worried about their jobs.  The Court needs to determine what sorts of roles are considered religious.  The Court should rule so that only jobs that are strictly religious should fall under ministerial exception.  Perich’s small role in religion should not apply because her job was mainly teacher and did not threaten the beliefs of the congregation.

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Discrimination and Religious Employees

Written by concrim-2011-22a

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Yes religious employers should be able to discriminate to a certain degree. Religious Employers should never be able to discriminate by race but they should be able to discriminate if the person attempting to get hired is involved in some action that goes against the employer’s religion. For example if i was hiring a sunday school teacher for a catholic church i would not want to hire a homosexual individual because many of the parents of the sunday school children will be angry because that goes against catholic religion. Technically the employer is discriminating when he doesn’t hire the individual because of their sexuality but it makes sense why. Another example if i was a Religious employer who was looking to hire a new pastor at a lutheran church and a muslim individual applied, I probably would not hire that person to preach to people about luthren christinism since they believe in something else. It does make sense for religious employers to be able to discriminate but there is a fine line between what is ok to discriminate against and what is not. It  is not ok for a religious employer to not hire an individual based on race or something like that.

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Historical Context

Written by concrim-2011-375

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

The Framers we learned about early in the semester wanted to divide power within the federal government.They did not want to give all of the government to just one person or group. They were afraid that the person or group might abuse their power and our government might become a dictatorship, the type of government we are working to stop.  To avoid is risk, the framers divided the new government into three parts, or branches: the executive branch, the legislative branch, and the judicial branch. This ultimately is the reason for our countries governmental success.  Before they came to the Americas they were being ruled unfairly by King James.  He abused his power not treating everyone in the community equally.  When the pilgrims landed in the Americas they were getting taxed unjustly and wanted to break away from the British government.  They knew they could find a way where people were treated justly. They wanted to create a place where everyone had equally opportunity.  So they created the branches to be fair to everyone which was a success.

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Historical Context – Separation of Powers Badge

Written by concrim-2011-191

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Ever since we were able to flee from the British monarchy, we have decided as a control that we don’t want to be under the control of one person.The Framers of the Constitution created our government in the structure of three branches. Each branch has a responsibility that they are to carry out and certain powers that they are able to put to use. They created a government like this so that not one branch could have complete control over one another. Therefore, with our government  we have a system called checks and balances between the three branches of government. With this system, each of the three branches of government can limit the powers of others; that way no one branch will become too powerful. This systems works such as, the legislative branch creates a bill or law; the president or executive branch approves and signs the law; the judicial branch interprets the law and makes sure the law is constitutional for the citizens of the United States. As we can see, this system works well to make sure that the citizens are under the best possible form of laws.

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Executive Authority and Foreign Conflict

Written by concrim-2011-191

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Often times, Congress is the ones to declare war. We have this set up in our government so that our Representatives can vote and really decide if we need to go to war. With Congress deciding we have many people talking about the very different options and really picking out the best possible scenario for our Country.  A few times, our President has declared war due to the safety of our Country. The President’s job is to make sure that our Country is and forever will be safe. If that means that he thinks we should go to war, then we go to war. However, I do believe if the President makes the decision to go to war, Congress should be able to vote and decide as well if the Country should go to war. We can’t have the President making the decisions about going to war without anyone else’s thoughts because then our system of checks and balances is not going into play. If Congress does disagree about the Presidents decision on going to war, then the courts should have to hear the two sides on why they want to do what they do, and then vote to see what will protect the American people in the best possible way.

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Administrative Concerns

Written by concrim-2011-191

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Completing a strip search on people violates the rights of citizens, especially when they are in a room full of other people. At times, a nice, sweet, innocent person is forced to go through a strip search although they have shown no evidence of being guilty. This is wrong. It doesn’t matter that other jail searches are difficult or costly. A person who is striped searched for no entire reason is unconstitutional and it should not be allowed to happen unless you are found to be guilty or have proof of suspicion. There is no doubt in my mind that a jail has a few people that are qualified to complete another kind of search that is less intrusive. And learning how to complete other searches can not be that expensive. If they are the prisons should learn who to use their money well and train their employees to get the job done right by still providing every citizen their right as a human and their rights in the constitution.

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Medical Professionals

Written by concrim-2011-191

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

If a doctor is able to point out and detect the signs of illness from drugs and and could extract internal objects in a more medically appropriate way than a prison guard; then the doctor should be the one to conduct the strip search. This is more constitutional because here you have a doctor who is able to find what they are looking for in an appropriate way than a prison guard who is strip searching a person because they were told to, even though they aren’t quite sure what they are looking for. If this means training the doctors so they know exactly what they are looking for, then prisons should train and pay the doctors to perform the strip searches. Also, there should be gender represenatives for both genders. A woman should not be strip searched by another man because that is awkward and uncomfortable for that women. Women should be strip searched by women, and men strip searched by men.

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Effect of Religious Schools

Written by concrim-2011-16e

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

This would put me into a scared and worried state. Now, any teacher that has been fired from the school may want to look into the law. The majority of people want as much money as they can get and there is a fair chance some teacher(s) will want to try to capitalize on this issue. Lawyers have a way with words that can make cases seem much more important and emotional than a rational person would see it. Schools that teach religion like Hosanna-Tabor Church are all private institutions. Being sued could easily bankrupt the school or at least put it into severe finanial problems for years to come. The attention brought by such a case could be seen as a bad sign for potential future students, which would bring enrolement down by a significanty amount.  All in all, I would be very worried if the court let this pass because any private religious school that ever fired someone could soon be sued for a lot of cash.

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Separation of Powers – Historical Context

Written by concrim-2011-16e

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

The Framers of the Constitution were very wise to separate the powers of the Government into three different bodies. They did this to eliminate any chance of a one leader controlling everything. This is how most countries in Europe were being controlled at the time. There was one leader, some rich people and a lot of poor people who had no chance to improve their life situation. With one person in control, that one person’s will is the law. The Framers were familier with this concept because they were all English emmigrents and a colony of the King. We all know the story of how the people were tired of obeing one person so when it came to making their own government, they made sure that one person could never rule. The system of Checks and Balances between the three branchs destroys any idea of one person ever being in total control.

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The cost of safety

Written by concrim-2011-16e

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

I think these strip searches are necisary for safety to an extent. When entering prision a strip search I believe is mandatory. There is no way to tell if the prisoner is hiding a small weapon in their pants or shirt because of all the ways clothes bend when people move around. This may be infringing on the prisoner’s personal freedoms but there is no way to know if they intend harm the the other inmates or even the guards. After the prisoner has been strip searched once however, I do not think there is a need to do it again when moving to another facility. The prisoner is under close to constant survellience whilst in prison. When changing facilities, if no suspicious actions took place in the first prison, there seems to be no reason to strip search the prisoner again. Once is bad enough even in the name of safely.

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Medical professionals

Written by concrim-2011-16e

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Prison guards I believe are more than capable to preform strip searches. Guards are not doctors, they may not recognize signs of illness that could be spotted by a medical professional. The prisoner is not there for a check up though, but rather because they are accused for breaking a law. A prison guard, when it comes to searching for weapons, knows what to look for. A doctor in this case could observe something not right the the prisioner but I do not think that would be hard to do when looking at a naked person. These doctors would of course demand payment for their services. They are I think more needed in the hospitals with pateints who are wanting medical treatment. This bill would be given to the taxpayers of the United States and these doctors would be payed a lot more than the prison guards. Doctors in prisons seem like a waste of time and money to me and the task should be left the guards.

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Medical Professionals

Written by concrim-2011-3ac

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

The question of medical professionals versus prison officials doing strip searches is not an easy yes or no, right or wrong answer. There are “pros” and “cons” for both. If medical officials are used there is a greater chance they would be able to detect something that could harm other prisoners. They are more knowledgeable about diseases and could better identify something that could be harmful. The down side to having a trained medical professional is the cost of having them there. Along with the prison officials there would be more people on staff.

The “pros” of having prison officials do the strip searches is the cost. the prison would have less people on staff, thus potentially saving money. The “cons” of having the prison official is that there is a higher risk of a suspect having a disease and could slip through because of the lack of the prison official’s medical knowledge.

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The Free Exercise Clause

Written by concrim-2011-3ac

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

In this case the question brought to the Court is: Can a church discriminate against a teacher because of a disability? This case involves Hosanna Tabor Church and Cheryl Perich. After taking medical leave from her job, Cheryl Perich came back to her job to find she could not return because of her medical disability of Narcolepsy. It is clearly stated in the first amendment that Congress cannot make a law that prohibits a church’s rites. Also, The Americans with Disabilities Act states that no employer can discriminate, in this case to solely not hire because of a disability. This means that if there were two people applying for the same job the employer could not use the one applicant’s disability as a reason not to hire. If this case did not involve a church, the ADA would be in affect. But because this is a church, it is protected by the 1st Amendment, the ADA cannot be used. The church can use disability as a reason not to hire.

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EEOC v. Hosanna-Tabor’s Effect on Religious Schools

Written by concrim-2011-cd

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

If the court decided that an employee could sue the school, that might open up the doors to what else the government could get involved in. If the government could decide to involve itself into religious organizations’ employee terminations, then it could decide that it has the right to get involved in other aspects of the religious organization. If the court decided that the employee  could sue the school, a school would take actions in protecting itself against being sued. The school might require all teachers to teach a religion course, so that the school could claim that the school and all its employees are separated from the government’s control. If the court decided that the teacher could not sue, other employees of religious schools may become uneasy, and worried over weather their rights were being usurped. They may become so worried that they decide to leave their jobs at religious schools and switch to nonreligious schools. The school’s best interest may be to make all the teachers teach the religion course, but give them extra benefits that nonreligious schools do not give their employees.

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Discrimination & Religious Employees

Written by concrim-2011-cd

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Because religious organizations are exempt from certain laws, they could abuse these powers. In this particular case, it may not matter weather Perich’s employer was religious or not, because she had a disability that limited her from working. Perich’s disability had nothing to do with the religion of the organization she was working for, it was simply a problem that limited her ability to do her job. Her disability had nothing to do with weather or not she was teaching a religion class. If, however, she had been fired for a religious belief, or if she was gay, that is something different. The religious school would not have been wrong to terminate her employment because her beliefs would have gone against the school’s morals and teachings. A religious school should not have to employ a person who has beliefs that disagree with their teachings because then the school would not be teaching by the example.

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Friend of the Court

Written by concrim-2011-cd

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

In the case of Florence vs. Board of Freeholders, strip searches are completely constitutional. Not only are the searches necessary for looking for weapons, but also for looking for gang tattoos, and diseases with one easy search. The guards are looking for weapons not only for their own safety, but also for the safety of the inmates who will be living with the prisoner being searched. This will help prevent fights, murders, and violence in the jails. According to Bell vs. Wolfish, the court upheld the ruling that it is legal for guards to conduct a strip search after a prisoner has had a visitor. This prevents the prisoner from receiving  weapons, therefore keeping both the guards and the inmates safe. Such should be the case in Florence vs. Board of Freeholders. One never knows weather or not the prisoner is dangerous, or smuggling a weapon into jail for another prisoner, therefore strip searches are completely necessary, even for seemingly nonviolent criminals. If the guards are allowed to conduct strip searches, they can also look for gang related tattoos, and can then separate members of the same and enemy gangs to prevent fights. During the strip search, the guards can also look for visible diseases. If the guards were not allowed to conduct strip searches, disease could easily get into the jails. The diseases would be quarantined because all the prisoners are not allowed to leave the jail, and every prisoner would become a target for the disease, and the entire jail could become infected with the disease. If jail guards were not allowed to conduct strip searches, and maintain that the prisoners were safe, they might not feel safe in their jobs and quit, so there would not be enough jailers to guard the prisoners. In 2008, a 12 member panel ruled in a case almost identical to Florence vs. Board of Freeholders that strip searches are legal. According to the precedent, the court should rule by stare decisis, and rule that strip searches are not only legal, but are completely necessary.

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The Cost of Safety

Written by concrim-2011-66

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

After 9/11 it should be pretty obvious that we need these extra scurity measures.  There has not been any sucsessful hijaking of an American plane since 9/11 and that is in part to our increased security systems.  That alone should be enough to convince people that we need these security measures, but many people still complain about them.  After the attempted hijaking and bombing of a Detroit plane, well, we should be able to see that these security measures are vital.    Many people say that these secuirty measures are too intrusive and they violate our privacy.  The simple truth is; if you have nothing to hide then you have nothing to worry about.   After all, these measures are there to protect you.  These security systems have saved who knows how many times from another 9/11.   Why anyone would complain about a system that is saving lives is a mystery to me.  Who knows, the nest time you get a plane and go through security and the person in front of you is cought carrying a dangerous weapon, you’ll be glad that those systems are in place.

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The balance between security and safety

Written by concrim-2011-215

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Current events should not have an effect on how we view security, but security should always be protecting us, regardless of what the current-day threats are. Searches for security’s sake should be kept at a level that ensures safety and does not infringe on personal privacy, or at least, not more than is necessary. The TSA (Transportation Security Administration), has put in place scanners at airports that can see though clothing to check for weapons or explosives (travelers cam opt out of the scan but will need to go though an invasive full body pat-down instead). This is the main topic today that is the topic of discussion on “Where should we draw the line between personal privacy and security.” This new practice including the scanners and pat-downs were put in place after the underwear bomber attempted to blow up a plane with explosives hidden in, of course, his underwear. Many argue that the metal detectors and chemical detecting machines would suffice and that the naked-body scanners are an unnecessary measure. There have been no specific victories for the sides of security but there have been many complaints on the invasion of privacy. However, nothing has been publicized enough to make this a huge public issue worthy of the supreme court hearing it.

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Summary of Hosanna-Tabor Church v. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

Written by concrim-2011-215

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Hosanna-Tabor Church v. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is more of a “Where is the separation between church and state?” issue. Cheryl Perich taught at Hosanna-Tabor church. She was diagnosed with narcolepsy and went on medical-leave. When she returned to work, she found out that she had been fired because of the church’s congregation’s concern over whether she would be able to watch their kids well enough with her condition. The courts are not deciding if she can watch the kids well but are seeing if this falls under equal opportunity employment as discrimination against someone with a disability. I can understand both sides of this argument quite well, but that is not what one needs to look at in this case. They need to look at whether the court can even have a say in the matter. It is tough to draw the line between church and state when Perich was a teacher in the school. The church claims that her job did include religious duties and she would like the court to look at it from a non-church side. In this case, the true question that the court will decide is “Where do we draw the line between church and state, and therefore, do equal opportunity employment laws apply in this case?”

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Strip Searches

Written by concrim-2011-390

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Prisoners with no criminal background should not be treated the same as prisoners with a criminal background. There is no reason to believe that a person is carrying or doing anything illegal if they have never been convicted of a crime. If you are arrested for the first time and brought into prison you should not be stripped searched because there is no reason they have anything to hide. The fourth amendment protects citizens against unlawful searches and without reason they should not be searched. A student that has done nothing wrong in the past should not be treated the same as a student who has committed crimes in the past. There is no reason to believe that they will or want to harm anyone if there is no reasonable cause. Florence had no criminal record and when they brought him to the station they did a strip search that was completely unnecessary and not right in many peoples opinion.


Teachers Rights

Written by concrim-2011-390

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Religious organizations could take advantage of them being able to be exempted from a lawsuit. They may feel that whatever they do they can get away with because they do not have to treat their employees the way they should. It does not matter if she performed religious duties at the church because she was still discriminated against. She was diagnosed with a disease that she has not control over and when she left she was told her job would be there when she returned. The church did not follow their word and gave her job to someone else. They terminated her job position because of her disability and that is discrimination no matter what. A church should be able to choose employers based on the religions views and beliefs like gay marriage but not a disability in which a person has no control over. I believe this is discrimination and the church should not have given the woman’s job away.

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Discrimination & Religious Employees

Written by concrim-2011-66

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

DISCRIMINATION & RELIGIOUS EMPLOYEES

By Ryan

I can see the deference given to the churches by the  courts being greatly abused.  I’m sure it has been abused in the past and it will in the future.  If someone in charge of a religious school fired a teacher or another employee, no one can really do anything about because of all the protection churches have.  Now I can see where the firing of religious leaders in the churches and schools should be fired at the discretion of the church and not the government, but the math and English teachers who have nothing to do with the religious function of the school, that’s another matter.  Someone who is not involved in the religion department of the school should not be subject to the Ministerial Exception firing rule.  They should get the same rights as public school teachers.  In Perich’s case, a better solution might have been to get her a teacher’s aide.  That way when Perich does fall asleep, someone can still watch over the kids and keep them out of danger.  Then this whole ordeal could have been avoided.  A religious school may be able to get away with not hiring someone because they are openly gay, if that particular religion considers homosexuality a sin.  The school would most likely tell the person that they did not get hired for different reasons, however.  But if they simply said that they will not hire someone because they are gay, disabled or African-American, it would be a different story.  The courts would probably get involved in that case.

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Official Immunity and Section 1983

Written by concrim-2011-3af

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Immunity for certain government individuals is necessary.  The Supreme Court gives them immunity because they need to be able to make decisions for the government and not be afraid of a lawsuit from any individual who doesn’t like their decision.  They need some sort of safety net to let them do their jobs because otherwise nothing would get done because of a fear from a lawsuit.  Not everyone will like decisions or acts the government makes.  I’m glad, however, Section 1983 was created because government individuals could get away with anything and claim their immunity.  I don’t think that government individuals should have immunity for acts like fabricating subpenas or providing false testimony even if they are acting under their government authority.  Allowing those sorts of actions from the government does not protect the rights of the people.

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The Cost of Safety

Written by concrim-2011-b3

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

September 11th, 2001 caused tremendous affect on how we now run our security in the USA. Before this tragedy happened citizens were able to go onto a plane with no problem. No one was there to check inside of carry on bags and no one was there to make sure you were not carrying illegal substances. Since that has happened we are now up to date on how we run security. We have X-ray machines and full body scan machines. When I was traveling to Pennsylvania for spring break last March, I had an awkward experience with airport security. I was just about done going through security and I got called by a female security worker. She had to pat me down because I was wearing sweat pants and a sweat shirt. During the procedure it was very uncomfortable because she went as far as putting her hand into my pants. There is no current events that have happened that have been life threatening for security to take it to that dramatic of a level.

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The Free Exercise Clause

Written by concrim-2011-b3

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th
Emma W

There are times when saying “that violates the First Amendment” just does not cut it, and in this case comes off as a very weak and ignorant argument that is attempting to cover up the blatant fact that Hosanna-Tabor wrongfully terminated a woman because of her disability. Perich should not even be considered a “commissioned minister” because her purpose at the school was not to be a religion teacher, but to teach secular subjects. My science/math teacher teaches science and math at [our private Catholic high school], some days he will even pray before class, but in no way, shape, or form do I expect him to guide me on my spiritual journey in life. I do not think the students nor Mrs. Perich felt that was her purpose at the school either. The grounds on which she was fired scream out discrimination and the school should be ashamed with themselves for attempting to peacefully throw an employee under the bus because of her narcolepsy. Even if she had been a religion teacher, it would not have been right. If she had been inappropriate in class or unsatisfactory to her students, then yes it would have been fine. It is great that private schools have the privilege of making more decisions than public schools, but there is a line that needs to be drawn. The First Amendment is very important to this nation, but I do not think the Founding Fathers would be happy with what it is being used for in this case.

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Social Cost criminal justice badge

Written by concrim-2011-16e

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

It seems that a person who has not payed a fine should not be treated in prision the same way a dangerous person would be treated. Fines are forgotten all the time because people foget about library books. Should they be treated as dangerous because of a one dollar late fine? Doing so would make no sense. People have minnor slip ups everyday, they just are not against the law. Murder and theft are not minor mistakes like small fines. Treating them all the same would create an extremely harsh system to make sure the big crimes are payed for, or an extremely light system so small mistakes are given a fair amount of punishment. Both of these ideas are simply rediculous and should only remain ideas. The punishment must fit the crime. That ideas is what our whole justice system is based upon. In this court case, the punishment is far superior to the crime.

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Hasanna-Taylor Church v Equal Employment Opportunity

Written by concrim-2011-375

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Could you foresee this deference ever being abused by a religious organization? If a court finds that Perich was, in fact, discriminated against because of her disability, should it matter who her employer was or whether she performed religious duties as a part of her job? Could a religious school intentionally choose not to hire an employee because he or she is gay, African-American, or disabled?

Its possible to see the deference being abused a lot.  Companies will do whatever they have to do can to get ahead and what is best for their association.  No it should not matter who she was working for.  It is against the constitution to break the equal employment opportunity.  It is also not morally right to do something to a impaired person at that time.  It do not think that it should matter if she was working for a religious organization either because it still  breaks the law.    Ultimately it is up to the company on who they do and do not hire.  But in most cases it is illegal to intentionally not hire someone because of their differences.  This would be very hard to prove though. Discriminating against workers should be made illegal though because every person has the right to work.  Perich should be allowed to return to work without her place being filled no matter her career or whether or not her work involves religious duties or not.

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Friend of the Court

Written by concrim-2011-172

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

I am the attorney who represents the religious school. My client contends that Ms. Perich is under ministerial exception in the case of her contention of discrimination of a disabled person regarding the termination of her employment.

Our school hires teachers as either “Call” teachers or “Lay” teachers. A call teacher is voted by the church board as a permanent teacher and must abide by church teachings, incorporating these teachings into their curriculum. For this reason, a call teacher is always teaching religion on some level at our school and is therefore subject to the ministerial exception. Ms. Perich was hired as a call teacher.

According to the first amendment of the Constitution of the United States, the government cannot make decisions about religious practices. It does not matter which courses Perich taught; all courses at our school incorporate our religious teachings. Therefore, call teachers are given the title of Commissioned Ministers because they are indeed teaching church doctrine. Decisions about hiring and dismissing teachers is up to the church board and should not be up to the government, as stated in the first amendment.

This is not a case about discrimination but rather a case about the authority of the church in internal matters. When Perich took her position as a call teacher and commissioned minister, she accepted all responsibility for following the decisions by the Church board.

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Social Cost- Criminal Justice Badge

Written by concrim-2011-191

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

Prisoners who have not shown harm to others should not be held to all of the same standards as the prisoners who have shown misconduct and harm to others. We are all born with a clean slate, some of us tend to keep our slate clean and do well in the society. While others go out into the world and break laws, do drugs and harm others. It’s pretty obvious that people who tend to hurt the society should be under more control than those who stick with the laws. Prisoners that show misconduct are under high standards so that our society is kept under control. By giving them higher standards you are able to watch what they do. While an average citizen is able to do things more freely under less control because they don’t harm society. But let’s say the citizen gets pulled over for speeding, he shouldn’t be treated the same as a prisoner because speeding is a lot less different than killing someone. It depends on the situation at hand on how much of a standard should take place.

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Medical professionals- Grace L

Written by concrim-2011-394

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

 

Prisons should employ medical professionals to conduct strip searches in their facilities for a number of reasons. As stated in the prompt, medical professionals would be more affective in their searches because of their extensive knowledge. A doctor would be more qualified to judge if a prisoner is sick or if they are under the influence of any drugs. Furthermore, if the professional does believe the prisoner is, in fact, hiding drugs or any contraband they would be able to extract that object more effectively and less painfully then a prison guard who is not trained. Having a trained professional administer a strip search is also better for the prisoner being checked. Doctors are required to take a Hippocratic oath when receiving their title. That Hippocratic oath promises that a doctor will do not harm. A prison guard takes no such oath. Therefore, a prisoner would feel more comfortable knowing they will not be hurt. It may be the opinion of some prisons that an element of enforcement and order is lost when a prison guard does not conduct strip searches. To please those who share this belief, while a doctor conducts the strip searches, a prison guard should supervise. With this method the prisoners feel safer, can be more effectively searched, and the prisons’ security and order is not in jeopardy.

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Discrimination & Religious Employees

Written by concrim-2011-2d9

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th
 Due to her disability Perich should still be able to keep her job. Even though her job in fact does not take part in the religious sense it’s still part of the church. Plus she was also promised that her job title whould still be in tact after she would recovered. If the Supreme Court were to reverse this it might inflict with the First Amendment which states Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, and or prohibiting the free excersise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech or of the press, or the right to assemble and to pettiton the Government for greievances. Also there is the (ADA) Americans with Disabilities Act No [employer] shall discriminate against a qualified individual on the basis of disability in regard to job application procedures, the hiring, advancement, or discharge of employees, employee compensation, job training, and other terms, conditions, and privileges of religious. 
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Friend of The Court- 150 points

Written by concrim-2011-88

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

According to the Fourth Amendment of the Constitution,

“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized”.

All citizens are endowed to the right of a fair trial. If government officials jeopardize a citizens case by providing the court false information, that government official is infringing on the citizen’s right to a fair trial. If a government official lies to or presents fabricated evidence to the court, they can drastically change the outcome of a trial. All witnesses are required to tell the truth when providing a sworn testimony and if a government official lies to the court, they have committed perjury. Government officials are citizens of the United States and should not receive absolute immunity from lawsuits if they commit a crime as serious as perjury.  If a government official violates a citizen’s right to a fair trial, they are violating the Title 42 of the United States Code, Section 1983; Civil Actions for Deprivation of Civil Rights (“Every person who . . . subjects, or causes to be subjected, any citizen of the United States . . . to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution shall be liable to the party injured in an action at law, suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for redress . . .”).  They are liable to law suit. It is important that government officials not recieve special treatment and they should not have the right to absolute immunity.

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Friend of the Court- 150 points

Written by concrim-2011-88

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

According to the Fourth Amendment of the Constitution,

“The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized”.

Prisoners should not have to undergo strip searches unless there is reasonable suspicion. Inexplicable strip searches without probable cause may have serious psychological effects on the psyches of an inmate, including anxiety and depression. If a person is forced to remove their clothes, squat, and cough in order to prove they are innocent and have nothing to hide, how is their Fourth Amendment right being honored?  A prisoner deserves the respect and right to forego unreasonable strip searches if there is no evidence suggesting that prisoner may have possesion of illegal substances or contraband. In the Supreme Court case of Safford Unified School District v. Redding, the Court ruled suspicion less strip searches in schools to be unconstitutional. This Precedent should be honored in both schools and prisons. Prisoners should not be required to undergo strip searches or visual observation unless there is unreasonable doubt that the person may be harmful. The purpose of the Constitution is to establish a limited yet structured government. It is imperative that the government’s power to force someone to be strip searched to be limited to the cases where government officials have a probable cause to believe a prisoner may be a danger to others.

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Official Immunity and Section 1983

Written by concrim-2011-b3

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

I think that the Supreme Court allows certain government individuals to be absolutely immune from suit because, if they are apart of a branch of the government and see something is wrong, they should be able to testify for it no matter haw many times. It does change my thoughts a little bit knowing that Section 1983 was made in large part as a response to violent Ku Klux Klan problems in the South after the Civil war. That is a very poor reason to make Section 1983 because of that, if things are so serious with the Ku Klux Klan they should be heard. I do agree with the fact that they have a Section 1983. I can see how it would be come up with such strong evidence to prove to the Supreme court how someone is guilty. It is already hard enough to speak in front of the Justices with them asking you questions, and cutting you off in the middle of your sentence. Imagine trying to prove someone guilty. I agree that government individuals should be absolutely immune from suit.


Historical Context – Separation of Powers Badge – MBZ v Clinton

Written by concrim-2011-b3

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

I think that the Framers of the Constitution structured our government this way because they did not want the President to have to much power. They came up with three branches so that if the President wants to pass a law it has to go through Congress which is made up of  many people. That is more than just one persons opinion making a decision, it is many different opinions and coming up with on answer. Even when they agree or disagree it goes to the Supreme Court to make sure that the bill or law that they are going to pass is Constitutional. With three different branches of the court it makes sure that not just one person or group has to much power. Their experience with the British monarchy may have caused them to make these decisions because the people in Britain do not have a say, they have to follow what their leader wants and only he wants. To have a successful country you want everyone to be happy and not have one person to much power so that it was I thik the Framers came up with having three branches.

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Harlan Institute Feedback: Bills that haven't been signed into law do not go to the Supreme Court to decide if they are constitutional. The Supreme Court typically hears cases after several appeals through the state and federal court circuits. Otherwise, good job.


Hosanna-Tabor Church Amicus Brief

Written by concrim-2011-281

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th
 I implore you to take a deep look into the case of Hosanna-Tabor Church vs. EEOC. In the respondents argument, they state that Mrs. Perich should not be considered a religious teacher, and therefore not fall under ministerial exception, yet she admits to teaching religion. The fact of the matter is that even though she may not have used religion all the time while teaching, she is still teaching in a Catholic School, and she was named a, “Called,” teacher. This means that she was elected by the members of the church to be a religious leader. The ministerial exception was made to protect religious organizations, and the school is connected to the church.
If the Supreme Court of the United States does not reverse this decision, many problems will arise. This will make Catholic Schools more careful about who they hire, and religion will be forced in every class. The administrators at the school will not want to hire teachers that don’t use religion in all aspects of study, so it will infringe upon the children learning about other subjects.
I respectfully insist that you take a deep look into the ministerial exception. I am confident  you will realize that she was indeed a teacher that used religion, and therefore falls into the ministerial exception, so she should not be given the same rights as a normal employee.

 

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EEOC v. Hosanna-Tabor’s Effect on Religious Schools – Education Badge- Grace L

Written by concrim-2011-394

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

If the Court decided that an employee like Perich can sue the school she worked for after being terminated it would affect my school. I would have to make some changes to school policy in order to protect my school from being sued. The judge at the Court of Appeals level reasoned that Perich did have a right to sue Hosanna-Tabor Church because her duties as a teacher were secular. Because of this ruling, I would require each teacher employed to teach not only a secular course such as math or social studies but a religion course as well. By changing this in school policy, the teachers can be considered religious leaders and therefore cannot sue my religious school under federal discrimination law with the ministerial exception. If the Court finds that Perich cannot file a lawsuit my employees may feel more insecure with their jobs but I would do as much as I can to insure them that they would not be fired without any good reasoning. It would be my job as a religious leader to do the right thing for the community and my employees. The Court finding Perich cannot file a lawsuit against Hosanna- Tabor Church would be in my best interest.

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Friend of the Court – Hosanna-Tabor v. EEOC- Grace L

Written by concrim-2011-394

School: Totino-Grace High School
Class: ConCrim 2011
Grade: 12th

I am writing to the Court on behalf of my client the Religious Association of Minnesota. The Court should consider the following in their decision: the ministerial exception and the reasoning of Hosanna-Tabor Church in their termination of Perich. The Hosanna-Tabor Church cannot be sued under federal discrimination law because the firing and hiring of Church leaders falls under the Ministerial Exception. Even though the Court of Appeals reasoned that Perich taught mostly secular classes and held secular duties, she was still a leader in the school community. The school falls under the category of a religious organization and therefore has the authority to fire and hire employees as they see fit. Secondly, the Church made their decision to terminate Perich based on the safety of their congregation’s children. Perich and the EEOC claim Perich was discriminated against. Discrimination implies judgements passed based on a person belonging to a specific group and not by individual merit. The school and the conjugation terminated her not because she was narcoleptic but because she could not care for the children. It would be dangerous to leave children under the supervision of someone who may suddenly not be able to give care direction, or assistance. I hope the Court findings my brief helpful and convincing in favor of Hosanna-Tabor on behalf of my client the Religious Association of Minnesota.

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Harlan Institute Feedback: This is a very good Amicus Brief. You raise very good points about the fact that Perich--putting aside all issues of discrimination--was narcoleptic, and could not property take care of the children. Well done!