Author Archives: Mackenzie Grant

Are robot cops the future of efficient, bias-free policing?

WASHINGTON EXAMINER, 6 FEB, 2018, FEAT. PROF. BRYANT WALKER SMITH:

Ford, of course, may not be the only company interested in making a robotic cop car.

“I’m skeptical that this idea satisfies the patentability requirements of novelty and nonobviousness,” said Bryant Walker Smith, a professor of law and engineering at the University of South Carolina and an affiliate scholar at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School.

Regardless, Smith said, the idea’s likely to be one part of a larger shift.

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Waymo vs. Uber: High-stakes trial for the self-driving world

AUTOMOTIVE NEWS, 1 FEB 2018, FEAT. PROF. BRYANT WALKER SMITH:

Nearly a year after Waymo filed its lawsuit against Uber, the self-driving competitors are to have their day in court, with the trial scheduled to start this week.

But beyond whether the spinoff of Google’s parent company or the ride-hailing giant prevails, the trial is expected to have a huge impact on the auto industry.

“This trial is a really big deal,” said Bryant Walker Smith, a University of South Carolina law professor who specializes in self-driving vehicles. “Not as much because of the legal issue or the ultimate impact for the companies, but for showing how much is at stake in development of automated vehicles for companies that are doing it.”

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Economic Impact of Immigration by State

WALLETHUB, 30 JAN. 2018, FEAT. PROF. MARCIA ZUG:

Immigration, and how to handle it, continues to be a contentious topic in the United States in 2018. Recent issues include court battles over the Trump administration’s travel ban on certain countries, along with the possible upcoming end of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. But political differences aside, there’s no question that immigration as a whole affects the economy.

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South Carolina bill would require schools to display ‘In God We Trust’ posters

FOX NEWS, FEBRUARY 2018, FEAT. PROF. DEREK BLACK:

The bill could reach the state’s House Education and Public Works Committee as early as March, but even if it passes, federal courts could intervene.

Legal experts say the proposed legislation may have a difficult time standing up in court.

“Here, the purpose seems to be a religious purpose, and anytime there’s a religious purpose in passing legislation, the courts are going to strike it down,” said Derek W. Black, a law professor at the University of South Carolina.

Black acknowledged the Supreme Court ruling in favor of “In God We Trust” on U.S. currency but says the defense of “ceremonial deism” – in other words, the motto’s longstanding nature – makes it more about tradition than religion and will not protect new developments incorporating the phrase.

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South Carolina beach-building line still in legislative snarls

POST AND COURIER, 1 FEB. 2018, FEAT. PROF. JOSH EAGLE:

Redrawing the line now could cost taxpayers millions of dollars, said Josh Eagle, a University of South Carolina environmental law professor who took part in a panel that crafted the policy calling for the line.

The bills would:

  • Do away with the seaward line, as filed by state Sen. Chip Campsen, R-Isle of Palms. That bill is being amended.
  • Hold off deciding on the line until the end of 2019, as filed by Sen. Stephen Goldfinch, R-Georgetown. That bill was moved to a full committee hearing.

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