To the left you can see a photo that seems to show a plate of spaghetti noodles topped by some sort of strawberry sauce. However, first looks can be deceiving. This is actually a photo of a popular type of gelato, called “spaghetti eis,” that is served at the Cafe San Marcos and at numerous other locations in Giessen, Germany.
Similarly, if you were to walk around the campus of Justus Liebig University for the next three weeks, you would undoubtedly see a large group of students laughing and talking as they make their way to and from classes. You might even assume that these are German law students attending a summer session. However, once again first looks can be deceiving.
These students currently enjoying the warm and sunny weather are actually over 40 law students who have gathered in Giessen from the United States and across the globe to participate in the Summer Session in International and Comparative Law co-hosted once again by the Marquette University Law School and our partners the University of Wisconsin and Justus Liebig University. There are 14 students attending from the United States and a variety of other countries represented including Brazil, Poland, Egypt, Portugal, Belgium, Macedonia, Italy and Vietnam, to name a few.
The following conversation was overheard this morning outside of the entrance to the parking structure in Eckstein Hall:
Parking Attendant: I’m sorry, but you will have to back up your car. The parking structure is full.
Faculty Member: I can see past the gate. There are plenty of empty spots.
Parking Attendant: Those spots are reserved for faculty and students only.
Faculty Member: But I have been on the faculty for 26 years.
Parking Attendant: My apologies. I didn’t recognize you. However, those spots are reserved for today’s On the Issues with Mike Gousha. He is interviewing the author of the book “Trump Bad: How to Sell Your Book By Using Trump’s Name in the Title.”
Faculty Member: I happen to know that that event is tomorrow.
Parking Attendant: My mistake. Today those spots are reserved for people attending Charles Franklin’s press conference. He has new poll results: “Public Support for Cheese Curds Reaches Record Low in Wisconsin.”
Please join me in welcoming our two guest bloggers for the month of April.
Our Alumni Blogger of the Month is Bill Davidson. Bill is a December 2016 graduate of Marquette University Law School and has served as an Assistant District Attorney in Milwaukee County since February 2017. In addition to prosecuting a wide variety of civil and criminal offenses in the Milwaukee County Circuit Court, Bill has represented the State of Wisconsin in several matters before the Wisconsin Court of Appeals. He resides in the Greater Milwaukee Area with his wife and daughter where he enjoys spending time with his family, playing golf, and cheering for the Chicago Cubs.
Our Student Blogger of the Month is Benjamin James Britton. Benjamin introduces himself as follows: “I am a father to a 6 year old son and currently a 3L at Marquette University Law School graduating in May 2018. Prior to coming to law school I obtained my Bachelor’s in Science degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Wisconsin with a Minor in psychology in May of 2007. Upon completing my undergraduate studies, I immediately began working as a paralegal and have continued to do so during my studies at Marquette.”
With spring in the air, I thought the following poem from Emily Dickinson might help us mark the welcome change of seasons. However, Dickinson also provides a cautionary note. The spectacular inspires us, but it also slips by. Spring not only arrives but also departs. Our resulting sense of loss is like “Trade” encroaching “upon a Sacrament.”
Time is running out to apply for the 2018 Summer Session in International and Comparative Law to be held over 4 weeks in Giessen, Germany (July 14 – August 11, 2018). The tuition for the program has been reduced in the amount of $750. Accordingly, the total amount of academic and non-academic fees for 4 Law School credits, lodging and two field trips has been reduced to only $4,350 (airfare is still the responsibility of each student). We are very pleased to be able to provide this reduction in the total cost of the program for all of our participants.
The deadline for applications for this summer’s program is March 23. Applications will be accepted after the deadline if there is space available. Applications can be downloaded on the following webpage:
On this cold Winter’s Day, let’s give a warm welcome to our Guest Bloggers for January.
Our Alumni Blogger for the month is Pamela M. Heinrich. Pam serves as General Counsel and Director of Government Affairs to NAFA, the National Association for Fixed Annuities, a national trade association representing the fixed annuity industry. In addition, she is the Outside Claims Manager for Harley-Davidson Motor Company.
Pam is a 1981 graduate of Ripon College (B.A., English) and a 2008 graduate of Marquette University Law School, summa cum laude. During law school, Pam served as an associate editor of the Marquette Law Review and as student editor of the Federation of Defense & Corporation Counsel Quarterly. She also completed internships with the Wisconsin Supreme Court and the Wisconsin Department of Justice – Criminal Appeals Unit. Prior to joining NAFA, Pam was an associate attorney at Quarles & Brady, practicing in the firm’s Product Liability litigation group.
Pam has been married to Tom for 33 years and together they have three grown children (and a son-in-law!) and a Siberian Husky, named Juno. Pam enjoys cooking and entertaining (often!), yoga, and sailing.
Our Student Blogger for the month is K.C. Parker. K.C. is a current 1L who attended a military academy instead of from a high school. By the age of seventeen he was in the military, and on his way overseas. After military service, K.C. became a certified law enforcement officer in Wisconsin. He received his B.S. at the University of Wisconsin – Green Bay in Democracy and Justice Studies, and Economics. K.C. is currently involved in the Veterans Association and the Business Law Association at Marquette Law School, and has assisted veterans as part of the Estate Planning Clinic.
My husband Brad and I are proud parents of a 20-month-old daughter, Lucille. Having to balance being a mom and a litigator at a large firm is probably the most challenging thing I’ve ever done. But it’s also an accomplishment of which I am very proud, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I don’t pretend to be an expert, and I still have a lot to learn. But based on the past 20 months, here are some tips that I’ve acquired to support a “work-mom” balance:
It takes a village. I won’t sugarcoat this: I’d have to quit my job if it weren’t for my husband and my mom. My husband works predictable, regular hours and, with rare exception, does not have to work at night or on the weekends. He is an extremely present dad, is helpful at home, and is very supportive and understanding of my job. My mom lives 30 miles away and is our go-to babysitter, with little to no notice, particularly when Lucy is sick and has to stay home from daycare. She watched Lucy twice per week when she was an infant and is the most dependable person in our lives.
Invest in superior daycare, whatever that means for you and your family. For us, it means that Lucy attends a daycare in downtown Madison, only two blocks away from both my and my husband’s offices. Continue reading ““Work-Mom” Balance”
There will be two information sessions this coming Thursday September 21 in order to provide students with important details about the Law School’s study abroad opportunities. Plan to attend and learn about how to spend one semester of your law school experience in Copenhagen, Madrid or Poitiers, France. Information will also be available about the 2018 summer program in International and Comparative Law which will be held in Giessen. Germany. Foreign study can add an international perspective to your legal education, and the Marquette University Law School offers several outstanding study abroad opportunities. Advance planning is necessary in order to take advantage of these programs, however, so come to the information session in order to learn more about deadlines and application procedures.
Professors Madry and Fallone will be providing information and answering questions on Thursday at noon (in Room 257) and again at 4:30 pm (in Room 255).
As the Chinese lawyer Jiang Tianyong painfully realized, a belief in the rule of law is commendable in one context but deplorable in another. While a belief in the rule of law has traditionally been honored in the dominant American ideology, the same belief is suspect given the dominant Chinese ideology.
Jiang had been a prominent human rights lawyer in Beijing and represented a large number of Chinese dissidents, often with surprising success. His most famous client was perhaps Chen Guangcheng, an activist who fled house arrest and received asylum in the American Embassy. Most recently, Jiang represented a group of other human rights lawyers, who were being prosecuted for criticizing the government.
In late August, 2017, Jiang himself was convicted of inciting subversion and attempting to undermine the Chinese Communist Party. His trial as broadcast live on Weibo, a popular Chinese social media network, and highlights of the trial appeared daily on Chinese network television.
Jiang’s conviction was hardly surprising since, late in the trial, Jiang confessed. In his confession, Jiang apologized for the harm he had done and, indeed, admitted he was part of a conspiracy to topple the Chinese Communist Party. His confession ended with an emotional plea for mercy and for “a chance to become a new person.”
What’s surprising, at least for an American, is that Jiang said he had stumbled into subversion because of a misguided belief in the rule of law. Jiang pointed at “the bourgeois Western constitutional system” and claimed that it had a “subliminal influence on him.” Because of his belief in the rule of law, Jiang said, he rejected China’s political system and worked to replace it with the type of system that reigns in the United States. Continue reading “Jiang Tianyong, Subversion, and the Seductive Rule of Law”
It is that values question we should really be asking. As far as I can tell, those who object to the removal of the statutes seem to be saying that those Confederate generals who defended slavery, secession, and white supremacy represent the values of a twenty-first century America that is becoming more egalitarian and diverse.
It is overstatement to say that by removing monuments to Confederate generals one is erasing all history. Commentators have wondered aloud whether this will become a long-term movement towards total eradication of history of the South. The president even suggested this by asking when this will stop. He called the removal of Confederate monuments the destruction of culture. These claims incorrectly conflate crafting historical memory with the fact that honorific statuary in public places signals the values of the modern-day community.Memory of the Civil War and its aftermath will not suddenly be completely erased forever because statues are torn down, street names changed, buildings renamed, and the like. Culture will not be destroyed. (And as an aside, one should ask, “Who’s culture is being protected by protecting these monuments?”) The consequences of the Civil War, for good and ill, linger. Moreover, history’s memory is a lot longer than the beginning and ending of a statue, and history will continue to be useful as long as scholars, schools, and society have open and honest conversations about the past.
History is dynamic. Honorary statues are not. Communities change and values evolve and those who are honored yesterday may be disfavored tomorrow. Think about it this way–when the American Revolution concluded, as my friend and Marquette colleague Edward Fallone points out, no one objected that the history of British rule over the colonies would be erased forever when the statues of George III were torn down. Two hundred forty one years later, we literally still sing songs to sold-out audiences about the American Revolution. And Hamilton the Musical! still gets the facts right.
The Ninth Annual Summer Session in International and Comparative Law, one of the nation’s most unique law school study abroad programs, ended with a Closing Ceremony on August 11. The Closing Ceremony was covered by the local newspaper in the town of Giessen, Germany, The Giessener. You can read the newspaper’s story at this link. For those of you who do not speak German, here is a translation of the story courtesy of Google Translate:
GIESSEN – An international atmosphere prevailed in the last four weeks at Justus Liebig University (JLU). During this period, 65 students from 22 nations attended the ninth German Summer School in International and Comparative Law and the 13th Hessen International Summer University (ISU). At the closing ceremony in the university building in Ludwigstrasse, it was necessary to say good-bye.
“I hope that the two programs are the beginning of an intense relationship between you and Germany and that this is not your last visit here,” JLU President Prof. Joybrato Mukherjee wished in his welcoming speech. For him, the academic exchange is very important, especially since in Giessen it is also part of a particularly long tradition. For already University namesake Justus von Liebig had brought together international scientists at the University of Giessen. Professor Thilo Marauhn was delighted that this tradition has been preserved to this day. The holder of the Chair of Public Law and International Law was impressed by the fact that “so many students from so many countries come to Giessen to learn together here.” He was proud to say that the “summer schools” were so much international. “They are at the heart of our international exchange programs and help to make Giessen known everywhere.” Prof. Anuj Desai from the JLU partner University of Wisconsin Law School praised the programs as “an important cooperation between the universities, which is organized by the JLU in an outstanding way”. Program coordinator Magdalena Jas-Nowopolska also emphasized: “The programs mean not only mean studying, but also bringing together people from different countries.”
When the certificate was given, each participant was celebrated loudly during the walk across the stage. But there was also a little melancholy in the air, for the time spent in Germany had come to an end. For some, however, this does not mean a farewell forever. Laura Catalina Guerrero from Colombia wants to apply for a master’s degree in Hamburg. “In the past four weeks, I’ve been totally in love with Germany, and there is so much to see and learn,” said the 23-year-old criminologist. But she will miss the time in Giessen because it is such a “dynamic and student-perfect city”. Bhagirath Singh Ashiya from India feels similar. “I liked it here very much,” enthused the 23-year-old law student. He was particularly impressed by “the transparent legal system and German efficiency”. But most of all, the many green areas in the cities fascinated him. “We do not have that at home”.
After the ceremony, the students celebrated one last time with their newly won friends until late in the evening. Because the next morning it was time to say good-bye and return to their respective home countries. Both programs were organized by the Franz von Liszt Institute at the JLU Faculty of Law.
We have two guest bloggers for the month of September to help us get the new academic year off to a good start.
Our Alumni Blogger of the Month is Albert (“A.J.”) Bianchi, Jr. A.J. is an attorney at Michael Best and Friedrich LLP where he focuses his litigation practice on intellectual property and federal court matters, including cases involving patent, trademark and copyright infringement, contract disputes, and class actions. He also litigates cases in Wisconsin, Illinois, and Minnesota state courts, and has experience with jury trials in both Wisconsin and Minnesota. Before joining Michael Best, A.J. served as a law clerk in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin for the Honorable William M. Conley, the Honorable Barbara B. Crabb, and the Honorable John C. Shabaz. He is a 2007 graduate of the Marquette University Law School.
Our Student Blogger of the month is Matt Sowden. Matt is a Second Year law student who is quick to give credit to his “wonderful, supportive wife and two amazing daughters.” He was born and raised in Des Moines, Iowa and served six years in the U.S. Navy as a nuclear electrician on submarines. After his enlistment, Matt attended Drake University where he graduated with a double major in economics and politics. He then worked various jobs for a few years, from warehouse manager to table games supervisor at a casino. During his first year at Marquette University Law School, Matt volunteered at Milwaukee Justice Center’s Family Forms Clinic and at the Marquette Volunteer Legal Clinic. As for his future career in law, Matt says: “I am still searching for my preferred area of practice.”
Welcome A.J. and Matt. We look forward to reading your posts this month.