My incredible day started the exact moment I stepped out my dorm building. I took a step outside to find that it was raining, cold, and foggy- Bay Area weather. Hugely elated, I walked happily towards the cafeteria through the homely familiar weather. As usual, we had our weekly meeting with Ms. Thrift and discussed the logistical details behind our activities for the upcoming weekend. After exchanging some money and information, we went on with our lives in Columbia.
I came to class fully prepared as I had finally managed to achieve a full six hours of sleep, had all three cases fully briefed and detailed, and had had a double shot Starbucks energy drink an hour before hand. We went over the First Amendment's guarantee of the freedom of press by analyzing three cases: New York Times v. Sullivan, Cox Broadcasting Co. v. Cohn, and New York Times v. United States. In all three cases, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the press, to which I agree completely. Although in Cox Broadcasting Co. v. Cohn, I did have partial disagreement due to the fact that Cox Broadcasting presented the name of Cohn's deceased daughter on television without Cohn's acknowledgement, violating the right to privacy in the Ninth Amendment that the Court decided on in Griswold v. Connecticut.
The afternoon session of class really was interesting as we were split into groups once again and prepared for our first debate. We were assigned a fake case entitled Smith v. California arguing on the side of Smith. In this case, the defendant, Rita Smith, had her son killed in the line of duty in Iraq. Outraged, Smith joined an anti war protest in San Francisco and out of anguish over her son's death, burned a life sized effigy of President George W. Bush while shouting the words, "F*** Bush" on a megaphone. As a result, she was arrested for disorderly conduct although nobody was injured. Rita then sued the state of California for violating her First Amendment rights. Very detailed for a fake case isn't it?
We assigned different tasks to one another, with me giving the opening statement in our group. I could already tell that we were going to easily win as the arguments we came up with really hit the button in regards to the protection to Rita's First Amendment rights. Now I would tell you all our arguments and even a brief intro into my opening statement, but that information is deemed classified until tomorrow. Hey, you never know who's reading these blogs, I don't want such delicate information falling into the wrong hands!
Afterwards, Izabel, Alyanna and I had a chance to have a quick chat with Michelle. We had the chance to explain to her what the Ivy League Connection was about, our high school backgrounds, and our plans for the long term. As our conversation dove deeper down the abyss of fascination, I had to leave abruptly as I had to meet my uncle who was waiting outside for dinner.
|Uncle Jimmy and I|
|The stage overlooking the dance floor|
I really enjoyed my little bonding time with this distant uncle of mine. It really put a huge smile on my face to hear actual Tagalog coming from an actual Filipino. And whether it being Uncle Jimmy's affability or his hospitable attitude, it actually felt like I found a father in New York.