Spring 2009 Media Hits

Robert Jerry
Dean and Levin Mabie and Levin Professor of Law

Oct. 20, 2008, Jacksonville Financial News & Daily Record, “Lunch with law school leader”

“Students are graduating with so much debt that it’s tough for them to think about serving with the State Attorney’s or Public Defender’s Office after they graduate. … That’s a decision they shouldn’t have to make if they want to serve the public.”

Jerry was a guest speaker at the Jacksonville Bar Association’s October 2008 luncheon, where he expressed concern about the career choices law students are often forced to make due to financial issues.

Lyrissa Barnett Lidksy
Stephen C. O’Connell Professor of Law

Nov. 9, 2008, Sun Sentinel, United Press International and in the e-publications Official Wire, The Money Times, The Post Chronicle, “Web reviews can spur lawsuits”

“These (law) suits are extremely common and starting to make their way through the courts. … Courts are starting to develop balancing tests to guarantee it’s a legitimate libel suit before they uncover the poster’s identity.”

Lidsky was quoted on the trend of businesses initiating libel suits against disgruntled customers who anonymously post unfavorable reviews online. Lidsky said it’s often hard to know if such libel lawsuits are legitimate or if companies just want to muzzle their critics.

Katheryn Russell-Brown
Chesterfield Smith Professor of Law and Director of the Center for the Study of Race and Race Relations

Nov 9, 2008, Orlando Sentinel, Opinion Page, “Hoaxes signal the state of our racial fears”

“When I heard Susan Smith’s tale that she had been carjacked by a young black man, I was skeptical. In 1994, Smith told police that while stopped at a traffic signal, she was carjacked by a black man who drove off with her infant and toddler boys in the back seat. I thought, ‘Where would a black man go with two small white children?’. … Likewise, last month when I heard Ashley Todd’s yarn, the alleged facts struck me as odd. Todd, a volunteer for John McCain’s campaign, reported that she had been robbed, assaulted and maimed by a 6-foot-4 black man at an ATM. She said the man was a Barack Obama supporter who wanted to ‘teach her a lesson’ after seeing her McCain bumper sticker. … Welcome to the land of racial hoaxes. Not burdened by logic, hoaxes don’t have to make sense; they just have to feel like they could make sense.”