CRJ419 Midterm Exam
Although physical or bodily autonomy is by no means a fundamental right, there are specific decisions in which the Supreme Court recognized this autonomy. For example, in Planned Parenthood v. Casey (1992), the Supreme Court highlighted the effect that specifically Roe v. Wade (1973) placed on the significance of personal autonomy, specifically concerning reproductive rights. The Casey Court had argued that Roe was viewed to state a personal autonomy rule. The Supreme Court also accorded with Roe’s view with the argument that the interest of the state in life protection is inadequate in justifying all individual liberty claims’ plenary override. In addition, in Rochin v. California (1952), the Supreme Court recognized an individual’s right to disagree with unwanted bodily intrusions; this is in line with bodily autonomy right. Therefore, in the above decisions, the Supreme Court recognized physical or bodily autonomy right.
The ruling, in this case, fits perfectly with the statute’s language. The Court may have argued that ensuring that health providers take necessary steps to keep away from transmitting a menacing virus to their various patients is in line with the medical profession’s fundamental principle; this highlight that; first, one should not harm. Healthcare workers should be vaccinated regularly against other different diseases. Health organizations have also supported this mandate. Also, the Court may have followed the CMS rule that requires that different healthcare facilities, nursing homes, ambulatory surgery centers, and hospitals must ensure that their staff is entirely vaccinated; otherwise, they can risk losing Medicaid and Medicare funding (Mensik, 2022). In addition, it would be contradictory to effective and efficient administration for a certain healthcare facility meant to ensure people are healthy to make them affected by COVID-19. Thus, although the case cites bodily autonomy rights, the ruling does not alter the Constitution’s application (Chambers, 2019). As technology advances, it may eliminate the requirement for some particular laws. Therefore, the Court justifiably rejected the lawsuit.
According to criminal law, an individual’s plea is the answer they give after the court of law has charged them with a crime. The class reading indicates that two types of the plea are made in the court of law. And plea being the formal answer, a defendant can either plead guilty by admitting charges after trial before a jury or pleading not guilty to deny the charges. Hessick & Saujani (2002) discusses the standards for plea through plea bargaining, although to some extent, post-trial reviews of guilty pleas are stricter compared to trial convictions and may take time. One of the standards for the plea is voluntary, whereby a prosecutor in Supreme Court may choose to close a case in a criminal justice court by offering the defendant incentives. This means that the prosecutor provides a bargain that constitutes the incentive. Intelligently is another standard for plea discussed in the readings. This means that innocent defendants have the truth regarding a particular crime they never committed, but when they enter a guilty plea, they do so forcefully. However, the defendant’s plea may be entered intelligently because the judicial officer has convinced the individual that has committed the crime (Hessick & Saujani, 2002).
In the criminal justice system, there are various forms of plea bargains that defendants may rise in a Supreme Court, which include charge bargaining, fact and sentence bargaining concerning innocent defendant convictions. Safeguards concerning the prevention of innocent conviction through plea bargaining indicate that when an innocent defendant pleads guilty in Supreme Court, it raises troubling questions of integrity to the entire criminal justice system (Hessick & Saujani, 2002). Even though convictions are assured by plea bargain. Prevention of innocent convictions through plea bargaining has to factor in significant safeguards, such as considering the gravity of the crime the defendant is alleged to have committed (Hessick & Saujani, 2002). This is because the severity of the crime to have been committed provides a starting point for prosecutors to impose or give out their ruling. Defendant’s criminal record and characteristics are another safeguard and consideration that help prevent innocent plea bargaining convictions. Additionally, finding evidence that the defendant has committed a crime is a way of safeguarding and preventing an innocent conviction.
The criminal justice system offers a legal plea bargaining framework that enables accused persons to exercise their constitutional right to trial. Through this framework, the prosecutor can drop a criminal case charge over a defendant if the evidence against the defendant is not strong or its bases are not ethical. In this framework, lawyers are involved as gladiators and problem solvers. Gladiator lawyer is a lawyering model whereby lawyers reason back from the ultimate fight while in the courtroom during the bargaining process. This dominant model and practice type of lawyering is based on legal education and practice, as indicated in reading six. However, problem-solving lawyer utilizes their community connections to determine the right individuals to use based on various logical, socially sensitive, intuitive, and practical thinking styles (Sturm, 1997). Based on their definition, gladiator types of lawyers are effective since they utilize their legal bargaining power to defend their defendants in court without considering their originality.
Shoben (2006) defines tort reform as an initiative with the effort to minimize the number of tort lawsuits. And its related expenses in the legal system, frequently by legislation that, among other things, may limit the legal theories used to support plaintiff complaints or set a limit on damage awards. In simple terms, tort reforms limit peoples’ constitutional right to file a lawsuit, complicate the process of obtaining a trial by jury, and minimize the cost of damage awarded to the affected party. Generally, tort reform is the immodest proposal aimed at reforming personal injury damages to let indemnities fit the erroneous. According to the tort reform proposal, there are three proposed changes by this proposal to reform emotional injury damages as indicated by the Shoben. The proposed tort reform certificates compensatory damages based on the following factors: the severity of the tort offense, the seriousness of the harm, and the close relation between the offense/crime and harm caused/plaintiff injury. Additionally, the proposed changes provide a more dependable and predictable framework for damage assessment. Moreover, the proposed changes and reforms include compensation or award of attorney’s fees.
The McDonald’s coffee spill case discussed by Cain (2007) is a frivolous lawsuit. Frivolous lawsuit/litigation is a legal action within the criminal justice system in Texas that is presented without sufficient legal, factual or realistic grounds, basically aimed at annoying the other party. McDonald’s coffee spill case is considered frivolous because the patient had adequate evidence that Stella Liebeck spelled coffee to any restaurant workers. This is because she had bought a cup of takeout coffee at McDonald’s drive, spilled it on her lap, and ended up on the court against McDonald’s. And as a result of the case, it was ruled in favor, and a jury awarded her, which cost around $3M.
Following the McDonald’s coffee spill case, it is based on the comparative negligence doctrine. This is because, as discussed in the reading, comparative negligence is a principle of tort law in module 12 by Shoben (2006) that applies to casualty insurance in some regions/states. It is based on the doctrine that when an accident happens, both parties fault and/or negligence is included based on their respective possible contribution to the occurrence of the accident. In this case, if it were not for McDonald to make the coffee, then Liebeck could not have spilled it on her lap.
Cain, K. G. (2007). The McDonald’s Coffee Lawsuit. Journal of Consumer & Commercial Law, 11(1).
Chambers, H. (2019). Technological Change, Voting Rights, and Strict Scrutiny. Maryland Law Review, 79(1), 191-215.
Hessick III, F. A., & Saujani, R. M. (2002). Plea bargaining and convicting the innocent: The role of the prosecutor, the defense counsel, and the judge. Byu j. puB. L., 16, 189.
Mensik, H. (2022). SCOTUS narrowly upholds health worker vaccine mandate. Healthcare Dive. https://www.healthcaredive.com/news/scotus-narrowly-upholds-health-worker-vaccine-mandate/617000/
Shoben, E. W. (2006). Let the Damages Fit the Wrong: An Immodest Proposal for Reforming Personal Injury Damages. Akron L. Rev., 39, 1069.
Sturm, S. P. (1997). From gladiators to problem-solvers: connective conversations about women, the academy, and the legal profession. Duke J. Gender L. & Pol’y, 4, 119.