Rutgers Journal of Law & Public Policy

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Put a Lid on It: How NYC’s Attempted Regulation of Oversized Sugary Drinks Jeopardizes Traditional First Amendment Values

By: Jason Stern[1]

August 13, 2013

The American Medical Association has long warned that proactive measures should be taken to limit caloric intake, especially in the form of “sweetened carbonated beverages.”[2] Nevertheless, consumption of sugary soft drinks is on the rise.[3]  Between 1999 and 2001, sugary soft drinks comprised seven percent of all calories consumed by Americans, an over four percent increase from similar estimates taken thirty plus years ago.[4] In addition, portion sizes have exploded.[5] A soft drink at McDonald’s, for example, has increased in volume 457% since 1955, from seven fluid ounces to thirty-two fluid ounces.[6] The number of calories and the amount of sugar has surged with the rise of these supersized drinks.[7]

Land of the Free and Museums of the Stolen

By: Emily Santoro[1]
April 21, 2013
The United States is a country rich in history and diverse in backgrounds as a result of the many different individuals who come to call America “home.”  In addition to this unique culture within the United States, Americans crave an understanding of society outside its borders.  To satisfy this desire for experiencing art and civilization, American museums feature exhibits with artwork and artifacts from around the world.  In order for museum curators to create these exhibits, there is often a reliance on other countries to loan their artwork and cultural material. Unfortunately, in the art and archaeology sphere, ownership of works and objects are often contested publicly—e.g. the contention over Elgin’s Marbles—as well as situations where possession results from theft and plundering.  With this in mind, the Foreign Cultural Exchange Jurisdictional Immunity Clarification Act (Immunity Clarification Act)[2] was introduced into the Senate during the previous congressional session, but thankfully died in committee.  This article will analyze and discuss how passage of this bill would have resulted in the United States becoming a country that endorsed unlawful possession of artwork and artifacts, thereby promoting unethical actions to both its own citizens and citizens of other countries.

Rutgers Professors Weigh In On Healthcare, Reproductive Rights, Taxing, and Unemployment

April 17, 2013
Editor’s Note: Last November the Health Law Society held a panel event on issues of importance in the 2012 election. Prof. Phillip Harvey spoke on unemployment and job creation. Prof. Michael Livingston discussed the differing tax policies of President Obama and Governor Romney.  Prof. Sally Goldfarb considered the role that a President plays in steering the future of women’s reproductive rights.  Prof. Rand Rosenblatt discussed the health insurance industry, and why medical costs are rising. 
The JLPP Blog has included a transcript of the professors’ remarks below.  Although the election has passed, the policies debated in it continue to have tremendous importance for the future of American society.

Rutgers Responds to an Evolving Legal Market

By: Amanda Follet, Brian Block, Phil Portantino, & Greg Bergman
March 5, 2013
On February 28, 2013, Rutgers took a key step towards change in recognition of a fundamentally altered legal field.  At a meeting of the Rutgers Board of Governors, President Robert L. Barchi introduced a proposal to strengthen legal education at Rutgers by merging Rutgers’ two schools of law in Camden and Newark into a single, unified institution.  Rayman Solomon, Dean of the Rutgers School of Law – Camden, expressed fervent support for the proposed unification, stating, “We believe strongly that, under this Rutgers Law model, there are increased opportunities for students at each location to access expanded opportunities for advancing their career searches and for learning from and with a wider selection of world-class Rutgers faculty.  Rutgers Law will be greater than the sum of its parts and will raise our law schools to a significant level of national prominence.”

The Rutgers-Rowan (Non-)Merger: An Avoidable Legal Debacle

By: Brian Block

February 20, 2013

Although the emotions stirred by the proposed merger of Rowan and Rutgers – Camden were invaluable to its downfall, various legal impediments were just as instrumental. What were these impediments, and more importantly, how did they go unrecognized by policymakers?

Non, Merci! Nein, Danke! No, Grazie!, Na, Engraziel! - Lessons from the 2009 Swiss Referendum to Ban the Construction of Minarets

By Jordan Hollander[i]
February 6, 2013
In a referendum held in Switzerland in 2009, Swiss voters amended the Constitution of Switzerland to ban the construction of new minarets, the distinctive spires typically found on top of Islamic mosques throughout the country.[ii]  Switzerland is not the only country in Europe to enact public policies targeting the Muslim community.  Far-right and anti-Muslim parties and policies are becoming more and more familiar in many countries in Europe.  Recently, the governments of both France and Belgium banned the public wearing of burqas, a type of headscarf that covers the face, typically worn by women.  Some parties, like the Front National in France, have been around for some time, but others, like Geert Wilder’s Party for Freedom in the Netherlands, are much newer to the political arena.  Wilder’s party recently formed part of the governing coalition in the Netherlands, and he has expressed support of the Swiss referendum and seeks to pose a similar initiative to Dutch voters in the near future.[iii]

A Survey of Red Light Cameras: Countering Faulty Premises with Popular Sentiment

by John Neckonchuk[*]
January 29, 2013
While red light cameras (hereinafter “RLC’s”) are not exactly among the ranks of profound philosophical issues, these devices, which have metastasized throughout this nation’s intersections, warrant the close attention of taxpayers of the twenty-five states where they are in use.[1]  Once thought to be a life-saving revolution in traffic safety, the consensus has begun shifting out of this technology’s favor.[2]

Autism and the Permissible Underachieving Education System

By Lauren Martinez[1]
January 7, 2013
Autism Spectrum Disorder is a lifelong condition, and the lifetime costs associated with treating it are as high as $3.2 million for each individual.[2] The high costs of treatment and educational services, along with the growing incident rate, are placing enormous burdens on service providers and families throughout the United States. Effective autism treatment programs often require 40 hours per week of individual instruction, which adds up to annual costs exceeding tens of thousands of dollars.[3] As a result, there is a disproportionately low amount of services offered by school districts on tight budgets. Currently, a majority of the educational system fails to effectively incorporate high functioning autistic individuals into society. Additionally, families without adequate financial resources cannot afford to pay for additional therapy or petition their school district to provide necessary services. Despite many complications, there are multiple solutions to the nation’s inadequate special education system.