U.S. Fourth Circuit - The FindLaw 4th Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries Blog

July 2013 Archives

No Bivens Relief for 28 Military Sexual Assault Victims

"The law is now settled that Bivens suits are never permitted for constitutional violations arising from military service, no matter how severe the injury or how egregious the rights infringement."

That statement, from Erwin Chemerinsky's Federal Jurisdiction treatise sums up the opinion quite well. Twenty-eight current and former members of the armed forces attempted to sue two former Secretaries of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld and Robert Gates, for their "acts and omissions" that enabled a "military culture of tolerance for sexual crimes perpetrated against them."

Grope in Response to Homosexual Sex Sting, Flirtation Not Obscene

The Blue Ridge Parkway is home to some of the most breathtakingly beautiful scenery in America. It's not a wonder then, that the romantic Sleepy Gap Overlook of the Blue Ridge Parkway in Buncombe County, North Carolina has been home to a few rendezvous.

More than a few, actually. The forest fires of passion became so enflamed that the Park Rangers conducted a sting operation to target homosexual activity in the park.

Sadly, it seems that only Virginia is for lovers, not North Carolina.

Liberty University Loses Mandate Appeal; Plots Return to SCOTUS

Liberty University’s long-awaited return to the Fourth Circuit finally resulted in a decision on the merits last week, but the outcome was not what they were hoping for. The university attacked the Affordable Care Act’s employer mandate on constitutional grounds, and while the district court found the mandate constitutional, the Fourth Circuit refused to hear the case, citing the Anti-Injunction Act.

However, when the Supreme Court considered the individual insurance mandate in National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius, they held that the AIA didn’t apply. When Liberty University appealed to the Supreme Court, they remanded the case for reconsideration in light of their holding in NFIB, leading to last week’s lengthy decision.

Lexington, VA's Stonewalling of Confederate Flag Flying OK'd

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Lexington, Virginia, which will forever hold a place near-and-dear to this blogger’s heart, is an idyllic small town with many, many ties to the Confederacy. After all, the great Washington and Lee University is named for, you guessed it, Robert E. Lee, who became president of the university after the Civil War.

General Stonewall Jackson’s statue watches over the town’s cemetery, more than a century after he loomed over the Virginia Military Institute. The Robert E. Lee highway runs straight through town, and one wouldn’t be surprised to run by an odd fellow or two in a grey Confederate States of America uniform, on their way to or from a Civil War reenactment.

Yeah. It’s pretty ingrained. We won’t even talk about the sandwiches named after the late Southern folk heroes.

Paleo Blogger Can Fight North Carolina in Free Speech Case

Steve Cooksey is a blogger. He also almost died. Many years ago, he was rushed to a hospital in a diabetic coma. Fortunately, he turned his lifestyle, and his medical condition, around by making a significant change to his diet: he went Paleo.

The Paleolithic Diet attempts to emulate what our cavemen ancestors would have eaten — meat, fats, and nuts, while abstaining from large amounts of grains, carbohydrates, and sugars. Though this diet went against the advice of the dieticians that advised him post-coma, it worked for Steve, and combined with exercise, enabled him to drop 78 pounds and stop taking medication for Type II Diabetes.