Media lawyer Ian Rosenberg teams up with veteran illustrator Mike Cavallaro for a graphic work that vividly and creatively explains the complexities of America’s free speech protections. The pair cover ten concepts, including such areas of protected speech as criticism of public figures, profanity in broadcasting, leaks of confidential information, and the line between parody and libel. They cite recent examples to illustrate each major concept, as well as a number of past cases to show how legal precedents have been set. All in all, this is an informative and inspiring guide.
As The New York Times economics correspondent Peter Goodman notes in his prologue, many people do a lot of ogling at the lives of billionaires, marveling at their outlandish parties, their trophy estates, and the details of their vastly expensive divorce settlements. But Goodman makes an impassioned and detailed case that these richest people in the world have done great harm to the rest of us. He describes how, while often extolling philanthropy and social justice, they’ve deliberately engineered systems of business and government to serve their own interests and, in doing so, have enhanced their own wealth at the expense of the welfare and economic security of many others. All the more so, Goodman asserts, during the current pandemic.
Drawing on her experiences as both a former trial attorney in the Civil Rights Division of the Justice Department and an ex-assistant U.S. attorney for the District of Columbia, Coates provides a searing first-hand account of injustice and ineptitude in the judicial system. Through a collection of engaging vignettes, she tracks her own growing disillusionment with how justice often is carried out. While she had high hopes when she became a prosecutor, she writes that her work put her at odds with her principles and her experience as a Black woman and caused her to question her own role in the criminal justice system. As she says, her stories sharply illustrate the problem of defining and achieving justice in the midst of this country's ongoing racial reckoning.