This week the Supreme Court heard oral argument for a case very similar to the issue Appellate Writing & Advocacy students from last semester argued in briefs and before coaches, roommates, professors – anyone that would care to listen. Though the audio has yet to be released, I was eager to review the transcript released on Wednesday. Navarette v. California asks whether police can (and if so, under what circumstances) initiate an investigatory stop of a vehicle pursuant to a sparse anonymous tip. The case is different than most situations regarding anonymous tips for a variety of reasons, but most relevant is the nature and seriousness of the danger of drunk driving. It’s hard to separate the arguments I advanced as a student in Professor Greipp’s AWA course, but luckily, many of my and my fellow classmates’ arguments were voiced on Tuesday in the great hall.

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Restorative Justice is for Libertarians

I remember joking with former Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice and leader of the Restorative Justice program at Marquette that I was taking her class on RJ because my wife made me. Liz wanted to know more about RJ, even if it was through me. I took the course begrudgingly, and to my surprise it quickly became a passion of mine here at Marquette.

Restorative Justice has a lot of appeal. Incredible outcomes for prisoners and victim participants that will renew your faith in the criminal justice system and in humanity. I, on the other hand, was drawn in because I am libertarian, and so is Restorative Justice.

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Harmonizing with the Cold and the People Close to Us

Though many people bemoan cold weather, I want to share my adoration for freezing temperatures and crystalline precipitation. After living in Wisconsin and warmer places such as Texas and Hawai’i, I’ve come to one conclusion: I love Wisconsin winters.

In America, we complain about cold without debate; it’s disliked nearly universally. We separate into our homes and don’t like to venture out unless we must. We rush through our routines, and often pass up opportunities to socialize or participate in activity due to the temps. Business at restaurants and bars slows considerably. Some of us become serious complainers (somehow despising where we live while being free to leave).

This isn’t true everywhere. In Denmark, winter is a very special time with significance and meaning for Danes. The Danish have a word that doesn’t have a direct translation into English: “hygge” (pronounced HYU-gah), relates to words like “togetherness,” “coziness,” and “well-being.” The best attempt to define hygge describes it thusly: “an intentional chilling out of the spirit as a way to harmonize with – not combat or stave off – the darkness of winter, and an intentional meditative time created out of the much-maligned but potentially fruitful malady we desperately call cabin fever.” Hygge can also be used as a noun (“hyggeligt”). Our homes, restaurants and bars, even couches or blankets can be hyggeligts, depending on how we use them. 

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