Fall 2018, Issue #3 (11/15/18)



In this new edition of The Commentary:

Current Events Recap– CWSL panel discusses the long-term implications of Justice Kavanaugh’s appointment / Students attend environmental rally on behalf of kids who are suing the government

LeBron Speaks Up – “Why Don’t You Just SHUT UP and DRIBBLE?”

A Look Into Life After Law School – Read about the CPDO’s civil law and criminal law panels

A World Where Dinosaurs ExistThe Commentary and SBA’s JDRF Philanthropy Event 

Finding A Sense Of My People – 1L Brandon Birungi-Sengendo shares his experience attending his first-ever African-American legal community mixer

Student Award Winner – 3L Tyler Marquez won third place in a legal writing competition

Making San Diego Better – Dubai’s sustainable city may provide a blueprint for cities of the future

Student Orgs Recap – ILS, SIPLA, PILF, and APALSA 

Student writers are what make The Commentary so great! This semester we have had an amazing group of talented writers join our team and we couldn’t be more excited! That being said, we are always looking for students to submit articles on topics of their choice — including, but not limited to: campus news, legal news, sports, entertainment, etc. No long-term commitment is required, so feel free to submit a draft and share your academic/creative talents with the campus community, when you’re not out fighting crimes, going to class, or studying in the library!

To learn how to contribute to our next edition, contact us at commentary@law.cwsl.edu for submissions and questions/story ideas.

Sara Gold & Tandis Taghavi, Editors-in-Chief

Special thanks to our Webmaster, Parsa Nozzari

Current events recap: Kavanaugh panel & environmental rally

A Discussion of the Era of Kavanaugh -- Oday Yousif, ACS Vice President

More than 60 students attended a panel discussion Oct. 30 on the repercussions of Justice Brett Kavanaugh’s recent appointment to the U.S. Supreme Court. Hosted by the American Constitution Society and Women’s Law Caucus, the panel discussed how Kavanaugh’s confirmation will impact the Supreme Court and women’s rights. (For background on Kavanaugh, his views, and his confirmation, see our Kavanaugh coverage.) Additionally, the panel discussed the issues of sexual assault and sexual harassment.

“Kavanaugh’s lifetime appointment to the Supreme Court will have major implications for generations to come,” said Melissa Owens, president of the Women’s Law Caucus. “The discussion conducted through the partnership of ACS and WLC was truly invaluable for staff, students, and attorneys in the community.”


Continue reading “Current events recap: Kavanaugh panel & environmental rally”

Finding a sense of my people — my first 1L networking event

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Brandon Birungi-Sengendo, back row, second from left

By Brandon Birungi-Sengendo

On November 10, I attended my first networking event as a law student, the Earl B. Gilliam Bar Foundation’s 42nd Annual Scholarship & Awards Gala. My main motivation for going to this event was to develop a relationship with the black legal community in San Diego. On the night of, I made sure to arrive somewhat early so I could maximize the number of people I could talk to. Plus, there was a hosted wine bar I wanted to get to before the selection thinned out — seeing as I don’t often have a choice of wine options outside of the cheapest bottle I can find, after a long week of hoping not to get cold called.

Continue reading “Finding a sense of my people — my first 1L networking event”

“Why don’t you just SHUT UP and DRIBBLE?”


Photo by Erik Drost

By Vincent Chiaverini

These offensive, and what most would call belittling, words are from Fox News journalist Laura Ingraham. Ingraham exclaimed, on live national television, how she felt about LeBron James and Kevin Durant expressing their negative political opinions toward the current administration. Ingraham went on to say that it is unwise to take political advice from people who get paid $100 million to bounce a ball, so they should just “shut up and dribble.”

LeBron James may be a professional basketball player, but there is one thing Mr. James and I have in common: strong feelings for doing and saying what is right. Mr. James took this opportunity to do just that. He turned Ingraham’s negative insult into a Showtime title. This three-part series, called Shut up and Dribble, is currently on its second episode.

Continue reading ““Why don’t you just SHUT UP and DRIBBLE?””

Two sides of the same coin — CPDO civil and criminal law panels

Panelists at the Nov. 6 criminal law panel

By James A. Gilmore

The Career and Professional Development Office (CPDO) hosted a civil law panel Oct. 30 and a criminal law panel Nov. 6.

Civil law panel

The Business Law Society co-sponsored this panel, which featured several civil-law attorneys from a diverse array of practice areas. Continue reading “Two sides of the same coin — CPDO civil and criminal law panels”

A World where Dinosaurs and Santa Clause Exist but Type 1 Doesn’t

By Oliver Fredrickson / Tandis Taghavi, Editor-in-Chief 

The Starting Line

On Saturday, November 10, 2018, 4,000 strangers dusted off their running shoes, taped up their ankles, and lined up behind a red ribbon to fight for one cause.

But these people weren’t just strangers. They are community leaders. They are wives. They are husbands. They are brothers. They are sisters. They are aunts. They are uncles. They are co-workers. They are neighbors. They are friends. They are kids.

Some of them have direct experience with the nagging 20 finger pricks a day and emergency Skittles stash. Others now carry a tube of glucose gel in their back pocket after witnessing a friend’s blood sugar drop to 54 mg/dL.


Continue reading “A World where Dinosaurs and Santa Clause Exist but Type 1 Doesn’t”

Fall 2018, Issue #2 (10/15/18)


In this packed new edition of The Commentary:

CIP FREES 30 EXONEREES IN LESS THAN TWO DECADES – The two most recent exonerees are Horace Roberts and Quintin Morris, both men who had been wrongfully imprisoned since the ’90s. 

OPINION – What’s the deal with Brett Kavanaugh, our newest U.S. Supreme Court justice?

Spotting the Issue: Confessions of a “Half-Blood” 2L (Pt. 4).

Youth Sue U.S. over Climate Change – The trial against the U.S. government starts in two weeks.

Oceans Littered with Trash – A 24-year-old Dutchman invented a floating device to remove plastic.

Attorney Q&A – Gayle Blatt, a 1985 CWSL alumna, serves on the school’s Board of Trustees.

CLP Volunteer of the Year – CWSL’s Community Law Project recognized Miriam Hernandez.

Events Recap – R&B concert & Immigration Law Society panel

Student writers are what make The Commentary great, and we are always looking for students to submit articles on topics of their choice — including, but not limited to, campus news, legal news, sports, entertainment, etc. No long-term commitment is required, and you can easily share your academic/creative talents with the campus community!

To learn how to contribute to our next edition, contact us at commentary@law.cwsl.edu with submissions or questions/story ideas.

Sara Gold & Tandis Taghavi, Editors-in-Chief


Spotting the Issue: Confessions of a “Half-Blood” 2L (Pt. 4)

Tandis 3

    By Tandis Taghavi, Editor-in-Chief

Chapter 4: The Goblet of Fire (read Chapters One; Two; and Three)

Heart pounding, I jolted upright in confusion. Wiping the tiny salt bubbles from my forehead, I only hoped this was all a nightmare. Unlike Lord Voldem….who, in his weakest form, boldly took away Frank Bryce’s last breath, the Senate, in its weakest form, chose to look away as millions took their last breath on Saturday, October 6th.

The well-established eras of our history remind us that a Portkey is not necessary to refresh our recollection [FRE 612] on the fact that it is worse to be poor and innocent than rich and guilty. This is true even in the Wizard World. When a group of masked Wizards start a riot at the 422nd Quidditch World Cup, the Ministry of Magic arrives immediately only to blame Harry Potter (the one unconscious person) for the attacks and the illuminated Dark Mark floating in the sky.

What’s worse? Funny you should ask…the tiny, female house-elf, Winky, is then found holding Harry Potter’s wand. But rather than investigate the crime and rationalize how and what motive Winky could have had for casting the Dark Mark, Winky is instead publicly and embarrassingly fired by her master, Barty Crouch Senior (who was an influential Ministry of Magic official). But who dare question Barty’s authority and listen to a poor house-elf testify to her innocence? Did Winky even have the necessary personal knowledge to cast the Dark Mark? [FRE 602]. When such a powerful political figure has a reputation for fighting fire with fire, does it even matter? [FRE 608] According to this high ranked official, obviously it had to be Winky…especially since Barty is neither clearly bias nor is looking out for his own political welfare (*wink* *wink*…see impeachment below).

Triwizard Tournament

Similar to the process of becoming a Justice of the Supreme Court, one of the highest and most powerful positions in the nation, being selected for the Triwizard Tournament requires some minimum standards and skill. The Goblet of Fire (President) is supposed to be a magical and “impartial” object that ONLY chooses the worthiest and most competent [FRE 601] candidates to compete in the tournament (appointment). After a delegate passes the magical “Age Line” test (preliminary procedural standards and questionnaire), their name is entered on the ballot and the games begin.
Continue reading “Spotting the Issue: Confessions of a “Half-Blood” 2L (Pt. 4)”

Ocean cleanup problems and solutions

MattBy Matthew D. Batista

The Problem

Plastic Does Not Disappear. “Every bit of plastic ever made still exists.”  Plastic permeates the Earth and its ecological systems. Since the advent and mass adoption of plastic, roughly over the last 100 years, humans have treated plastics like they are bio-degradable. Spoiler alert, they are not. Plastics also gradually break down into smaller debris, making the collection problem even worse. The result is an astonishing concentration of plastics, often ending up in oceans around the globe.

Pacific Gyre Accumulation. The Great Pacific Garbage Patch (“GPGP”) is a region of the Pacific Ocean, between the United States and Japan, where dumped plastics accumulate due to natural ocean currents. The GPGP is an area of incredible plastic concentration, estimated to be roughly twice the size of Texas. Though the problem has been known for some time, a recent study—using perhaps the most comprehensive research method yet—has concluded that the concentration by weight of plastics in the GPGP may be between four and sixteen times more than previously estimated. The study estimates a minimum total of at 80,000 tons (approximately 176,000,000 pounds) of plastic floating in the gyre. Continue reading “Ocean cleanup problems and solutions”

Events recap: San Diego concert, immigration law panel

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R&B Artist 'Comes Through and Chills' in San Diego 
-- Vincent Chiaverini

The artist simply known as Miguel is a contemporary and alternative R&B artist who has been on everyone’s playlist. His new Ascention Tour is selling out music venues all over North America, and even made a stop in sunny San Diego. Whether you need some new study tunes, or you’re trying let loose like a weekend warrior, Miguel is the musical talent you have been missing out on.

On Sept. 17, the Cal Coast Credit Union Open Air Theatre in San Diego was host to one of the 26 shows lined up on Miguel’s new Ascension tour. The singer showcased his War & Leisure album that debuted less than a year ago. Some of his top hits featured included: “Come Through and Chill,” “Pineapple Skies,” “Banana Clip,” and my personal favorite “How Many Drinks.”

Continue reading “Events recap: San Diego concert, immigration law panel”