Event Overview

Wednesday, January 18, 2023

4:15 PM – 4:55 PM — Welcome & Awards Ceremony

4:55 PM – 6:00 PM — CLE Program

Free to attend- registration required

Constance Baker Motley Symposium & Diversity Awards Program

Fitisemanu v. United States: The Argument That Could Have Been

In October 2022, SCOTUS declined to hear the case of Fitisemanu v. United States that sought to challenge the lack of birthright citizenship in U.S. territories compared to those in U.S. states. The case is an example of a legal issue fraught with tension rooted in a series of legal decisions regarding U.S. territories: “The Insular Cases.” The cases have been criticized as being emblematic of racism that justified the denial of rights to residents of American colonial territories. Yet, proponents view the cases as form of protection of the unique customs of many indigenous communities within these territories.

This interactive presentation will discuss the key issues that could have been argued before SCOTUS and discuss the broader implications of how the lack of clarity around the applicability of the Constitution to U.S territories impacts not only U.S. nationals but also the rights of U.S. citizens.

Free to attend, registration required


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