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Civil Discourse Podcast

Companion to the podcast

SCOTUS Wrap Up, Parts 1 and 2 (Aired 9/7 and 9/14, 2021)

Season 8 begins with Aughie and Nia discussing the 2020-21 U.S. Supreme Court Term.  In part 1, topics include general statistics of the Court (number of cases, percentages of agreements and dissents, and number of opinions written). Part 2 deals with current and possible future trends in rulings.

Preliminary 2020 Census report (Aired 9/14/2021)

Nia and Aughie give their take on the initial data released by the Census Bureau for the 2020 Decennial Census. Results of the new census count are affecting Congressional and in some cases State Assemblies' districts.

What is the Shadow Docket of the SCOTUS? (Aired 9/21/2021)

Aughie and Nia discuss the nature of the shadow docket, and how it is used by the Supreme Court.  Aughie also explains the common scholarly critiques associated with the use of the shadow docket.

Shadow Docket Follow Up, Fall 2021 (Aired 9/28/2021)

In this follow up episode, Nia and Aughie discuss two recent controversial SCOTUS shadow docket decisions. The Evictions Moratorium case and the Texas Abortion case decisions may have far reaching consequences in American law and may affect future SCOTUS decisions.

Government Public Relations (Aired 10/5/2021)

Aughie and Nia discuss the Gillette Amendment, 5 United States Code Section 3107, and the use of public relations specialists by the United States Government. The discussion ranges from messy public relations around COVID messaging to the titles given government information employees to the use of propaganda by federal agencies.

Who Responds to Elections Polling? (Aired 10/12/2021)

Nia and Aughie discuss polling and the media prior to the November elections of 2021.  They cover common mistakes in polling that can lead to confusion and unreliable results.

R Kelly and The RICO and Mann Acts (Aired 10/19/2021)

Aughie and Nia discuss the conviction of R&B singer R Kelly in instances of racketeering and Mann Act violations. Aughie explains the history behind, and crimes that may be charged, under the RICO and Mann Acts.

Midterm Elections Preview (Aired 10/26/2021)

Nia and Aughie discuss why people vote the way they do in non-presidential elections. Aughie explores the three most common political theories that explain voter behavior in the midterm elections.

Rats' First Amendment Rights (Aired 11/2/2021)

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Aughie and Nia discuss the case of Scabby the Rat and the rights of unions to protest in certain conditions. Aughie explains the early history of the National Labor Review Board and its current powers and problems when dealing with labor disputes.





2020 U.S. Census Update (Aired 11/9/2021)

Nia and Aughie explore more 2020 U.S. Census data. This episode focuses on the racial demographics of the U.S. currently, and projections for future demographics in 20-40 years.

Controlled Substances Act (Aired 11/16/2021)

Aughie and Nia discuss the Controlled Substances Act and the latest changes to Virginia marijuana laws. They also discuss the positives and negatives of enforcement of state drug laws versus national drug laws.

Do You Want to Know a Secret? (Aired 11/23/2021)

Nia and Aughie discuss the State Secrets Privilege in court, and the potential problems that arise from invoking that privilege. They weigh the pros and cons of protecting information versus transparency.

Fun With Patents and Trademarks (Aired 11/30/2021)

Aughie and Nia welcome back copyright librarian Hillary Miller. Hillary walks listeners through the process of applying for a patent. The discussion then moves into some of the more interesting patent and trademark cases.

Adding a State to the United States (Aired 12/7/2021)

Nia and Aughie discuss how territories and protectorates come to join the United States. The discussion includes the barriers to statehood and the requirements that Congress sets out for proto-states to meet.  The latter part of the discussion covers the Equal Footing Doctrine.

D.C. Statehood (Aired 12/14/21)

Aughie and Nia discuss the potential difficulties of adding the District of Columbia as a state to the United States. Complexities include representation, balancing federal and state needs, and the Constitutional issues.

*Correction: Nia mistakenly says LaFayette planned the city of Washington twice; rather, L'Enfant planned the city. Apologies for the error.