The Opioid Dragon of Johnson & Johnson is Slayed. All Hail the Killing of the Not Guilty.

47 Rutgers L. Rec. 305 (2019) | WestLaw | LexisNexis | PDF

The recent Johnson & Johnson case decided in Oklahoma is one where the courts decided that the solution to societies’ frustration over the opioid crisis was to give society what they wanted: a bad guy to blame and then hang.The court picked Johnson & Johnson, railroaded the company with questionable legal analysis and then made sure at the end of the trail the bad guy would be hung to the cheers of the crowds.This paper looks at the consequences of allowing the legal system to forego its duty and side with the mob simply to be a hero. This paper will examine how the courts mislead the mob and why they did it, and why by allegedly solving this crisis, they may have created an even bigger problem.

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Behavior to Benefit Others on the Basis of Relation and Belonging: Is Partiality Towards Relatives Opposed to Universalism and Equality? A Conceptual Analysis of Normative Terms

47 Rutgers L. Rec. 255 (2019) | WestLaw | LexisNexis | PDF

This article deals with the question of moral justification to show preference towards those individuals with whom an agent shares a relationship or who belong to the same group as the agent, on the basis of that very relationship or belonging — advantaging those individuals above other people who are strangers, i.e. not sharing a relationship with or belonging to the same group as the agent. The article clarifies basic concepts which apply to the issue and the question of the interaction between partiality, universalism and equality. However, the article will not deal with the moral basis for showing preference towards relatives, which we will examine at another time. To exemplify these concepts, this article will use a series of hypothetical situations devised by the authors.

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Tenants’ Right: The Law on Paper Versus the Law in Practice

47 Rutgers L. Rec. 226 (2019) | WestLaw | LexisNexis | PDF

In New York City, the State of New Jersey and around the nation, the housing market has seen a general decline in home ownership. Due to a host of economic and cultural reasons, Millennials and other generations alike are choosing to rent more and buy less. With a likely economic recession looming ahead due to the COVID-19 global pandemic shutdowns, it is unlikely that this housing trend will reverse. This paper seeks to analyze various challenges and abuses that many tenants in tri-state area housing market encounter and the existing legal framework in place to resolve such challenges. The State of New Jersey has been a leader in advancing consumer protection since the 1970s and has adopted a strong stance towards tenants’ rights laws. The Truth-in-Renting, the Implied Warranty of Habitability and a developed statutory framework for individuals facing eviction proceedings are just a few examples of the advanced infrastructure which exists in New Jersey. This paper seeks to investigate the challenges that tenants may face from the formation of the lease contract to completion of a residential lease and post-tenancy procedures. While New Jersey has a protective legal structure to shield tenants from landlord harassment, there is a gap between the available rights and the tenants’ ability to defend themselves on the basis of these rights.
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The Alien Tort Statute: Holding U.S. Corporations Accountable

47 Rutgers L. Rec. 199 (2019) | WestLaw | LexisNexis | PDF

This note will first take a look at the legislative history behind the Alien Tort Statute. Second, this note will discuss the landmark decisions that followed Filartiga, the theories behind them, and how these decisions continued to shape the scope of the ATS. This note will then analyze why the federal courts should not exclude U.S. corporations from liability under the ATS by first looking at arguments in favor of excluding corporate liability that focus on past international criminal tribunals. While some courts favor looking into past practices regarding corporate liability, the Supreme Court is not meant to be static and should look to contemporary normative practices in determining the appropriateness of corporate liability. Finally, this note will revisit the original purpose of the ATS and explain why foreclosing corporate liability would be in contravention to that purpose.
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Online Targeted Advertising for Jobs: Does Showing Job Advertisements to Men and Not Women Violate the Civil Rights Act?

47 Rutgers L. Rec. 175 (2019) | WestLaw | LexisNexis | PDF

As online advertising for employment is becoming increasingly popular, it begs the question: how do employers target employee prospects, and are those practices violative of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964? Online job advertisements are shown to users and viewers based upon individual interests, just like online advertisements for clothing, housing, and other products. This is done through an algorithm; employers can decide who to target based on interests and “categories” of people, such as race, gender, age, etc. Such practices give effect to stereotyping, which is clearly not a plausible indication of people’s qualifications and skills for employment purposes. Employers want their advertisements shown to those they believe are best qualified for the job. This could have negative consequences for people who may be qualified for the job in question, but are not targeted by the employer. This note will look specifically at the potential disparate impact on women, who, in particular circumstances, are not shown employment advertisements for jobs that they are qualified for because they were not targeted by the employer.

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Free of Charge: An Analysis of Absolute Immunity in Prosecutorial Misconduct

47 Rutgers L. Rec. 145 (2019) | WestLaw | LexisNexis | PDF

Since the 1990s, prosecutors around the country have come under fire for misusing or abusing the power of prosecutorial discretion. Recently, the public has focused on how prosecutorial misconduct may result in convicting an innocent person and therefore, contributing to wrongful conviction rates. Prosecutorial misconduct can take many forms, such as withholding evidence, purposefully delaying the trial, or not giving the defense proper time to prepare their case. However, the current procedures in place are weak and ineffective as it relates to reprimanding a prosecutor for abusing that discretion or breaking rules. Prosecutorial misconduct is defined as any conduct which violates court rules or ethical standards of a practicing attorney and does not include good-faith errors. All prosecutors across the United States have immunity for acts done within the scope of their employment. Therefore, unless a state has adopted legislation to strip prosecutors of their absolute immunity, there is generally no liability or penalty for prosecutorial misconduct. In cases where a prosecutor commits misconduct, the state is in charge of reprimanding the prosecutor. The American Bar Association (ABA) has guidelines and model rules that states can choose to adopt to hold prosecutors accountable. It is uncommon to hear of a prosecutor being sanctioned or reprimanded for any type of misconduct.

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Of Two Evils, Choose Neither. The Bifurcated Church Plan Election.

47 Rutgers L. Rec. 104 (2019) | WestLaw | LexisNexis | PDF

Millions of Americans get their healthcare through health plans that are provided by a religious employer. Nearly all of these health plans invoke “church plan” status as a means to legally exclude coverage of medically-approved procedures they deem morally-objectionable. The 2017 Supreme Court holding in Advocate Health Care Network v. Stapleton extends church plan protections to plans covering many more millions of employees of religiously-affiliated entities. However, religious employers that exclude these procedures based on church plan status risk violating state law, and can make the plan a target for costly employee lawsuits.

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The Internet of Things – The Internet of Things or of Human Objects? Mechanizing the New Social Order

47 Rutgers L. Rec. 15 (2019) | WestLaw | LexisNexis | PDF

Like the printed book, the Internet of Thing [IoT] has also changed the perception of reality and conceptions of social interaction. It has changed the levels of how information is perceived and viewed. For many people, it is the sharing of mostly personal information via social networks that extends from a personal face-to-face interaction to a global communication; a form of communication that is accessible to many in an instant and retransmitted to a global audience. With the speed and volume of transmission(s), the Internet has created a different social construction of reality and has assisted the spread of knowledge; however, it has also been the source of misinformation.

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Articulating Justice: The Continental Tradition and the Rule and Language of Law

47 Rutgers L. Rec. 1 (2019) | WestLaw | LexisNexis | PDF

The contemporary era is frequently characterized as one in which the law’s legitimacy is under assault. In the popular imagination, this assault inexorably follows from the embrace of a Continental philosophical tradition that claims that “all truths are partial.” Yet a more careful examination of several seminal Continental thinkers suggests that the Continental tradition provides the theoretical foundation for the rule of law that our pluralistic age increasingly lacks. I argue that Continental thought both legitimates American legal traditions and institutions while providing the justification for their dynamism and growth in the face of evolving notions of justice.

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Telling the Story: Theme and Rhetoric in Asylum Cases

46 Rutgers L. Rec. 196 (2019) | WestLaw | LexisNexis | PDF

Rhetorical strategies, themes, and interpretive framing allow the speaker to control the narrative when presenting oral testimony in asylum cases. These formal elements help structure traumatic events and memories into a coherent story that will engage the judge and enable the court to see the situation from the asylum seeker’s worldview. In the context of asylum applications, even the most deserving claimant may be unable to deliver their testimony in a coherent or compelling manner without the assistance of an effective advocate, due to the severe trauma that he or she experienced – and the trauma that he or she must once again undergo by having to retell and relive these experiences in the courtroom. It is crucial, therefore, that immigration lawyers acting in these proceedings consciously utilize these rhetorical techniques in order to facilitate the delivery by their clients of narratives that are credible, humanizing, and persuasive to the court. It is equally important that the lawyers representing the Department of Homeland Security be sensitized in this area so they are able to separate out any genuine issues of material fact and law critical to a fair analyzation of the asylum claim.

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