Asylum and Migration: How Ambiguity Can Be Exploited

“In an era where globalization is inexorably gaining momentum, the topic of political asylum as a part of migration is inevitably controversial. This is especially relevant in regards to countries such as the United States of America, where both economic and social sustainability of the state are highly reliant on the foreign-born labor force. The notion of political asylum was first introduced to the international community in the aftermath of the Second World War and has gained popularity since. It was eventually proclaimed a basic right in 1948, as a part of Article 14(1) of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The 1951 Refugee Convention, in turn, broadened the criteria for political asylum by allowing those who possess “a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, or membership of a particular social group” to seek protection as well. In modern times, the ambiguity of the term ‘asylum’ significantly challenges the legitimacy of the refugee status, ultimately resulting in radical and reckless immigration policies…”

Olga Obolenets is a first-year in the College and is a prospective Law, Letters, & Society major.  

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A Conversation with Cook County Public Defender Amy Campanelli

When I was seventeen, I participated in a program that taught high school students about law and was able to use that opportunity to observe criminal court proceedings. The experience was both thrilling and devastating. I was poignantly aware that I was observing the worst day of many people's lives. The trials had an almost theatrical quality - the testimony was more outrageous and the consequences were more serious than any TV show can convey. But there was one quiet, fleeting moment that occurred just outside the doors of the courtroom that stuck in my head as one of the most upsetting things that I saw. I remember sitting on a bench in the hallway and seeing a boy not much older than me sitting a little further down. A woman approached him in a suit, introduced herself, said a few words and together, they walked into the courtroom. I asked my professor about the interaction and she explained to me that that was a public defender meeting her client for the first time moments before arguing for his freedom. The more I considered that, the more upset it made me: it was unfair to the boy, who is victim to a system in which one can only have a comprehensive defense if you can afford it. It was also unfair to the lawyer who was trying to fight for many boys like him without time, resources …

Lucy Ritzmann is a second-year in the College pursuing a double major in Law, Letters, & Society and Political Science.

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Open Applications for Associate Editor

The UChicago Undergraduate Law Magazine is excited to open applications to serve on our Editorial Board as an Associate Editor for the 2017-2018 academic year. UCULM is the University of Chicago’s first and only undergraduate law publication. The UCULM board is dedicated to fostering a sustained dialogue about local, domestic, and international legal issues. 

 Applications can be found here: http://bit.ly/UChicagoULM and will be open through May 7th.

We look forward to reading your applications!

Reproductive Rights: An Uncertain, Ever-evolving Tale (Part II)

Abstract: With the Trump administration in power, the future of many policies, including those pertaining to reproductive rights, are uncertain. President Trump has taken many hardline stances, including his vow to appoint conservative judges to federal courts that will affirm pro-life policies. His recent Supreme Court nominee, Neil Gorsuch, suggests that Trump intends to continue advancing conservative policy goals. In recent years, conservative state legislatures have ruled in favor of more stringent abortion regulations. Yet, in the summer of 2016, the Supreme Court ruled 5-to-3 against a Texas regulation of abortion clinics in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt. The impact of this ruling will depend, in part, on Trump’s nominees to the federal courts. The potential for a steadfast Democratic opposition to these nominees creates further uncertainty for the future of the high court as well as the partisanship of American politics in general.

Author: Taylor Leighton is currently a second-year at the University of Chicago, pursuing a double major in Public Policy and Psychology.

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Reproductive Rights: An Uncertain, Ever-Evolving Tale (Part I)

Abstract: With the Trump administration in power, the future of many policies, including those pertaining to reproductive rights, are uncertain. President Trump has taken many hardline stances, including his vow to appoint conservative judges to federal courts that will affirm pro-life policies. His recent Supreme Court nominee, Neil Gorsuch, suggests that Trump intends to continue advancing conservative policy goals. In recent years, conservative state legislatures have ruled in favor of more stringent abortion regulations. Yet, in the summer of 2016, the Supreme Court ruled 5-to-3 against a Texas regulation of abortion clinics in Whole Woman’s Health v. Hellerstedt. The impact of this ruling will depend, in part, on Trump’s nominees to the federal courts. The potential for a steadfast Democratic opposition to these nominees creates further uncertainty for the future of the high court as well as the partisanship of American politics in general.

Author: Taylor Leighton is currently a second-year at the University of Chicago, pursuing a double major in Public Policy and Psychology.

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