Technology and the Future of the U.S. Constitution

In recognition of Constitution Day on Wednesday, Sept. 17, Regent University's College of Arts & Sciences (CAS) hosted "Technology and the Future of the U.S. Constitution."

The event discussed a question that's been gaining momentum over the years: how do Americans guarantee natural liberties, constitutional rights and security in light of increasing dependence on government intelligence and technologies?

The question was addressed by a panel of faculty experts and moderated by Dr. Gerson Moreno-Riaño, dean of CAS. Dr. Josh McMullen, associate CAS professor; Dr. Dale Coulter, assistant professor in the School of Divinity; Dr. Mary Manjikian, assistant professor in the Robertson School of Government; and Professor Robert W. "Skip" Ash, the Senior Litigation Counsel for National Security Law at the American Center for Law & Justice comprised the panel.

McMullen began the discussion by drawing attention to public desire for government intervention in response to terrorist attacks throughout U.S. history.

Highlighting the War of 1812, Pearl Harbor, and Sept. 11, he explained that Americans seek government intervention in response to attacks on American soil.

"After a period we see that Americans tend to then reevaluate those initial decisions and begin to question, or maybe even fear, the role of the American government in their lives," said McMullen.

While Americans don't know where we they are in the cycle of attack, reaction, and reevaluation since 9/11, it's much harder to divest than it is to invest the government in power, according to McMullen.

Coulter addressed the balance between democracy, freedom, community and the individual. Offering a theological framework, he explained that radical individualism resides behind certain interpretations of the Constitution and brings us back to the doctrine of original sin, which he defined as "inordinate self-love."

Coulter explained that the challenge of technological innovations is that it can be interpreted as increasing the liberation of the individual from all forms of community life.

"There's irony in American history that we seek to liberate the individual and this quest to liberate actually makes us more dependent upon the state to secure that liberty," said Coulter.

Addressing the issue of technology and constitutional rights, Manjikian challenged the mindset that views technology as inherently unconstitutional or threatening.

"If we think about the constitutionality of new technologies, we really need to think about why we are attributing a particular ideological position to a technology," said Manjikian. She explained that America's use of weaponry, the first technology regulated by the Constitution in the Second Amendment, is still controversial today because people base their arguments on what they think weapons are for.

"I don't think there is anything inherently wrong with technologies like surveillance," she said. "There is nothing inherently wrong with regulating technologies either, but we need to be careful about how we construct these arguments regarding constitutionality or unconstitutionality of emerging technologies."

Ash ended the panel discussion by asking, "Are we at war or not?" With the War on Terror being a debate, there are questions that remain unanswered.

"It makes a difference because there are different laws that apply in peacetime compared to laws in wartime," said Ash.

He explained that when war is declared there are implications on individual rights and determining whether or not a combatant is lawful.

"You'll notice that when war is underway there is a balancing act that goes on between individual rights and the rights or obligations of security," said Ash.

by Esther Keane

JGJPP - Tina Ramirez - The Struggle to End Religious Oppression

Now when it was evening, the disciples came to him and said, “This is a desolate place, and the day is now over; send the crowds away to go into the villages and buy food for themselves.” But Jesus said, “They need not go away; you give them something to eat.”
 Matthew 14:15-16

Before leaving for Iraq, Tina Ramirez was kind enough to take time out of her busy schedule to join the students of Regent Law in a lunch series event hosted by the Center for Global Justice and Journal of Global Justice & Public Policy on the issue of religious oppression. According to Tina Ramirez, founder and Executive Director of Hardwired Global, a non-profit organization dedicated to promoting religious freedom, religious oppression is a major contributor to numerous social evils, including human trafficking and child marriages. The antidote for change is religious freedom. Hardwired zealously advocates and promotes for the right of religious freedom by training individuals to bring the fight to their government’s front steps. The name “Hardwired” comes from the notion that everyone “of us [is] hardwired for something bigger” and that we are all made “for something spiritual.” Because of this “hardwiring,” Tina believes that everyone should be given the opportunity to pursue their special purpose, to seek the god of their choosing and to practice their religion without fear of oppression.
Tina introduced us to Meriam Ibrahim, a 27-year old Sudanese woman who was arrested last May and charged with adultery and apostasy in Sudan. Meriam was accused of adultery because the Sudanese government refused to recognize her marriage to a Christian man. The government considered Meriam an apostate because she left the Islamic tradition held by her father. After being convicted, she was forced not only to bear the weight of her chains attached to the floor of her jail cell, but also to bear the psychological weight of capital punishment until she agreed to recant her Christian faith. However, Meriam never lost her faith, and through the birth of her son in prison, Meriam has now been delivered from the oppressive country she once called home.
Hardwired focuses not just on rescuing individuals like Meriam, but also on carrying out a two-fold mission designed to affect systemic change: (1) advocating for laws in favor of religious freedom and (2) inspiring oppressive countries to adopt new customs shying away from religious oppression. Tina stands determined to train individuals to accomplish that goal in many areas of the globe, and her hope is that we become a generation of students that not only stay informed on the issues relating to religious oppression, but also diligently seek to compel our government to take action against countries that continue to violate the fundamental right to freedom of religion. Tina calls us to bear our cross, to help dispense religious freedom, and to strive to correct the oppression around the globe. I thank her for her passion and for her faith in letting God take the smallness of her portion and feed a multitude of nations.



Three More Regent Law Alumni Appointed as Judges

Three more Regent University School of Law alumni have been appointed to judgeships, bringing the total number of Regent Law alumni currently serving on the bench to 28.

The Virginia General Assembly filled eight vacant judgeships during a special session on Thursday, September 18.

Earle C. Mobley ’89 was appointed as a judge for the Portsmouth Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court. Mobley has served as the commonwealth’s attorney in Portsmouth since 2002.

Phillip C. Hollowell ’98 was appointed to the Virginia Beach Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court. Most recently, Hollowell has served as deputy commonwealth’s attorney in Virginia Beach.

David Morgan Barredo '01 was appointed Culpeper County’s Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney, as the new Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court Judge for Virginia’s 16th District.

In addition, Joseph A. Migliozzi ’94 (pictured), who had been serving as a judge in Norfolk General District Court since 2009, was promoted to the Norfolk Circuit Court.

“We praise God for his blessing – and we are thankful to have these men of strong intellect and character in such important positions,” said Jeffrey Brauch, dean of Regent School of Law.

To date, 34 Regent School of Law graduates have served as judges in Virginia and other states.

Learn more about Regent University School of Law.

Faculty Achievements: Week ending September 19, 2014

Professor James Boland's latest publication entitled, "Is Free Speech Compatible with Human Dignity, Equality, and Democratic Government: America, a Free Speech Island in a Sea of Censorship?" is now available on SSRN.

Professor Eleanor Brown is working on a piece entitled, "A Common Morality: Toward a Framework for Designing Fiscal Instruments to Respond to Global Climate Change" that will develop a common morality argument for environmental responsibility.

Professor Kenneth Ching presented to the University Faculty last week on his work on Bonhoeffer entitled, "Would Jesus Kill Hitler".

Professor C. Scott Pryor's paper, "Who Bears the Burden? The Place for Participation of Municipal Residents in Chapter 9", was recently listed on SSRN's Top Ten download list for: Political Economy: Budget, Deficit, & Debt eJournal.

The Honorable Patricia West will be the keynote speaker for the Second Annual Senator A. Willis Robertson Lecture on Virginia Politics on September 23, 2014, from 12-1pm in the Moot Courtroom.

Regent University Faculty Members Present Research

Regent University's faculty members and their research topics are as diverse as the subject matter they teach. To share their research and unite their interests, Regent's Faculty Senate hosted its second Faculty Research & Scholarship presentations on Friday, September 12.

"Academic excellence is fundamental to Regent's mission, and we look for excellence beyond teaching; we encourage our faculty's research activities and developed this event to help show our support," said Dr. Paul Bonicelli, executive vice president. "It's also valuable for faculty colleagues from Regent's diverse academic disciplines to have these opportunities to learn from each other and to possibly find common research interests for future collaborations."

Dr. Andrew Quicke, chair of the Faculty Senate, also prompted Regent's esteemed faculty members to share their interests and findings, and encouraged his peers to spur conversations about their involvement in projects related to their distinguished fields.

"These presentations have been a dream for the Faculty Senate for two years," said Quicke, professor in the School of Communication & the Arts (COM). "We love each other, but we don't know each other."

Dr. Emilyn Cabanda, associate professor in the School of Business & Leadership (SBL), opened the presentations, sharing findings from her book, Managing Service Productivity Using Data Envelopment Analysis. In the book, Cabanda along with her colleague, Dr. Ali Emrouznejad from Aston Business School, delve into recent developments in service productivity.

Kenneth Ching (pictured), professor in the School of Law, presented his paper "Would Jesus Kill Hitler? Bonhoeffer, Church, and State." In his research, Ching explored Christian life in a pluralistic society.

Dr. William Cox, professor in the School of Education (SOE), presented his paper "Inconclusive Teacher Impact Research—a Biblical Interpretation." Cox's research explored the effects that interpersonal relationships have on student learning.

In April 2014, Dr. Mary Manjikian, associate dean and associate professor in the Robertson School of Government, Dr. Ben Fraser, associate professor in the School of Communication & the Arts, and Dr. Mark Yarhouse, professor in the School of Psychology & Counseling, took part in the Faculty Senate's first round of presentations.

Learn more about Regent University's award-winning faculty.

By Brett Wilson

Faculty Achievements: Week ending September 12, 2014

Dean Jeffrey Brauch’s article, "Human Rights Protections in the Post-9/11 World", was recently listed on SSRN's Top Ten download list for: PSN: Effects of Terrorism (Topic).

Professor Eric DeGroff and alum Steve Fitschen ('99) completed an article on de facto parenthood & the rights of natural parents in same-sex relationships.  Is it Time for the Court to Accept the O.F.F.E.R.?  Applying Smith v. Organization of Foster Families for Equality and Reform to Promote Clarity, Consistency, and Federalism in the World of De Facto Parenthood will be published in the Spring 2015 edition of the Southern California Interdisciplinary L. J.

Professor Eric DeGroff has been invited to write a book chapter for publication as part of an international environmental law encyclopedia,  expected to be published next year by Edward Elgar Press.  The book will be one of 11 volumes and will focus on environmental decision making, with Eric's chapter addressing access to information in the U.S. and the E.U.

Professor Lynne Marie Kohm completed "A Brief Assessment of the 25 year Effect of the Convention on the Rights of the Child," which will be published by Cardozo Journal of International and Comparative Law.

Professor Lynne Marie Kohm's article with Elizabeth Oklevitch, "Federalism or Extreme Makeover of State Domestic Regulations Power? The Rules and Rhetoric of Windsor (and Perry)", was recently listed on SSRN's Top Ten download list for: LSN: Family Law (Sexuality) (Topic), LSN: Marriage (Topic), PSN: Domestic Politics & International Courts (Topic) and PSN: Other Social Welfare Policy (Topic).

On Sept. 4 at Liberty University, Law School Professor Lynne Marie Kohm presented "Unpacking Windsor and Subsequent Cases and Their Implications for Family Law," offering a presentation from the article posted on SSRN entitled "Federalism or Extreme Makeover of Family Law? Rules and Rhetoric of Windsor (and Perry)," published by the Elon Law Review.

Professor Lynne Marie Kohm's casebook with Lynn D. Wardle (BYU) and Mark S. Strasser (Capital), Family Law from Multiple Perspectives (West 2014) was completed and published.  See more about it at

Professor Lynne Marie Kohm's piece on Ray and Janay Rice was published in the commentary section.

School of Law Hosts Second Eagle Awards

As Regent University School of Law seeks to provide excellent education for its attorneys-in-training, it also esteems the students who have proven to be the best and brightest in their classes.

On Thursday, September 4, the School of Law hosted its second Eagle Awards ceremony in the Moot Court Room.

Jeffrey Brauch, dean of the School of Law, and Douglas Cook, professor and associate dean for Academic Affairs and Student Services, honored students who achieved the highest grades in all 87 of Regent's law classes for the 2014 spring and summer semesters.

The name of the ceremony comes from Isaiah 40:31 which says, "Those who hope in the Lord…will soar on wings like eagles."

"The Eagle Awards celebrate students and their dedication to excellence; this is especially important given our Christian mission," said Brauch. "Colossians 3 urges us: 'Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.' The Eagle Awards honor students who are worshipping God through excellent work. In doing so, they honor God as well."

While several students were honored for their highest ranking in more than one class, Diana McGraw '15 (pictured) earned the highest grade in four of her second-year law classes. McGraw is enrolled in Regent's accelerated J.D. program.

"I don't know which class was my favorite, they were all good," said McGraw. "It required a lot of reading, studying and doing homework assignments just to be prepared."

McGraw was recognized for outstanding performance in her Constitutional Criminal Procedure, Torts, Property and Civil Procedure courses. She accomplished this all while working and maintaining a household of four children.

"It's busy, but at the same time, I think it's a good balance," said McGraw. "I have to keep in mind everything that's going on in the house."

Regent began the Eagle Awards ceremony—also known as "the Book Awards"—in January 2014, at the prompting and generous donation of Ron Fick, a trust and estates attorney in Florida and father of Allison Fick '14.

"A lot of the top-notch law schools have Book Award ceremonies, and I just thought we should have the same thing here, and everyone agreed," said Fick. "It's a great thing for a student to have on his or her resumé because employers look at it, and it's a big deal to finish number one in your class."

Fick, who received his own Book Award in Criminal Law during his time in law school, was also present to witness Allison earn an award for her third-year class in Corporate Tax.

"That was special; that was one of the reasons this whole thing got started," said Fick.

He recalls bringing his daughter for a visit to campus in 2011. After she was accepted into several law schools, he explained it was a "blessing" that Allison chose Regent as the school that would prepare her for her job with the American Center for Law and Justice.

"She could have gotten a diploma at any university, but she got so much more at Regent," said Fick. "The professors love their students and love Jesus and it really comes across."

Learn more about Regent University School of Law.

JGJPP - The Human Trafficking Summit with Congressman Scott Rigell

       Do you know Lacy? A short film by the NGO Shared Hope International set the theme for the night. The film tracked the story of a young girl named Lacy who was courted by a charming older boy. As the boy took Lacy on expensive dates and lavished her with expensive gifts, she fell in love and he took advantage of her trust. Night after night, he sold Lacy for sex—multiple times per night. No one noticed and no one helped. This is the very real story of Lacy, which happens to be the same story of countless girls around the world and across the United States—including right here in Hampton Roads.

       On Wednesday, August 27th, 2014, Congressman Scott Rigell hosted “Justice Against Slavery: A Summit on Human Trafficking” at the Meyera E. Oberndorf Central Library in Virginia Beach. Congressman Rigell opened the summit by asserting that the first step to finding a solution is to acknowledge that the problem exists. While human trafficking is often not recognized as a local problem, Congressman Rigell called on those present to raise awareness of this exact problem in the Hampton Roads area. To bring about that awareness, several prevalent community members spoke about human trafficking in Hampton Roads.

       First, David Dennison from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) spoke about the leaps and bounds being made in the fight against human trafficking at the federal level. Last year alone, DHS initiated over 1000 cases against perpetrators of human trafficking. This number is dramatically up since 2010. So what makes the difference? “Support and collaboration,” said David. Working with local task forces that have been trained in combating trafficking has helped DHS be more effective in its efforts.

       DHS follows the approach set forth in the Palermo Protocol in the fight against human trafficking: prevention, protection, and prosecution. Prevention focuses on efficient outreach and effective education. Protective services are victim centered, and prosecution focuses on successful law enforcement investigations and criminal prosecutions. With respect to the protection aspect, Mr. Dennison noted that currently, Virginia has no shelters specifically for human trafficking victims. This is a huge problem that must be remedied.

       Next, Tanya Street spoke about her story as a victim of human trafficking. Tanya was jus another girl like Lacy. She was seduced and sold by a man she thought loved and cared for her. She now spends her time raising awareness about human trafficking and working towards breaking the stereotypes towards women seen on the street.

       The night ended with a panel of local professionals in the fight towards eradicating human trafficking in Hampton Roads. First, Officer Michael Hudgins of the Newport News Police Department informed the audience of recent human trafficking investigations in Newport News and the efforts local law enforcement is taking to apprehend the perpetrators. Virginia Beach Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Scott Alleman spoke next. Mr. Alleman spoke about the recent prosecutions of pimps in the area, including a case that resulted in a 35-year sentence for a trafficker. Finally, Meichell Worthing and Larisa Sutherland spoke about counseling services available to human trafficking victims in the area. Ms. Worthing provides counseling free of charge to those who have suffered from this crime. Ms. Sutherland works at Samaritan House, a local nonprofit with 11 emergency housing shelters in the area.

       The night ended with an unexpected plea. We were called on to think like traffickers. If we as a community are able to spot potential victims faster, we can beat the traffickers to the vulnerable among us, offering them love and care instead of exploitation.

Thank you, Congressman Rigell, for your efforts to combat this heinous crime in our own backyard.
Emily Arthur, 3L
Regent University School of Law
Graduate Assistant for the Center for Global Justice
Contact info:

For further information on how you can get involved:

Summit on Human Trafficking Resource Fair Participants
Virginia Beach Justice Initiative, Lighthouse Counseling, Virginia Beach Police Department: Crime Prevention Unit, Virginia Beach Commonwealth Attorney’s Office, Community Collaboration Center, Samaritan House, Center for Global Justice, Human Rights, and the Rule of Law, Awaken Church, Bon Secours Health Systems, Newport News Police Department, M1:Zero, Real Life Church, Identifiable Me, Homestead Ranch 

Human Smuggling and Trafficking Unit
This link is to the Homeland Security Investigation’s site, which Special Agent Dennis Davidson spoke on. It was not listed under the resource fair participants; however, it may be a helpful link to include if you ID his position with Homeland Security.

Faculty Achievements: Week ending September 5, 2014

Dean Jeffrey Brauch challenged the Law School faculty, students and staff, the deans of Regent's other graduate schools, along with its College of Arts & Sciences, and  Dr. Paul Bonicelli, Regent's executive vice president, to the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, and they accepted. Watch the video here.

Professor Scott Pryor's paper, "Who Bears the Burden? The Place for Participation of Municipal Residents in Chapter 9", was recently listed on SSRN's Top Ten download list for the topic of Other Political Economy: Budget, Deficit, & Debt.

Professor Brad Jacob Presents to Mexican Naval Officers at Old Dominion University

On August 8, Associate Professor Brad Jacob presented a lecture and answered questions from a group of Mexican naval officers on the history...