Tuesday, November 17, 2015
The Supreme Court first formulated the “one person, one vote” rule in the 1960s, holding that the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment includes a “one-person, one-vote” principle. This principle requires that when members of an elected body are chosen from separate districts, each district must be established on a basis that will insure that equal numbers of voters can vote for proportionally equal numbers of officials. The Court, however, has never resolved the issue of what is the appropriate population to use for redistricting, whether it is total population, voting age population, citizen voting-age population, citizen-eligible voting-age population, or some variant.
Evenwel v. Abbott, a case now before the Supreme Court, focuses on this question and will the subject of this conversation. Participants include Christopher Skinnell ’99, a partner at Nielsen Merksamer and Ken Miller, professor of government at CMC.
Theresa Williamson is the founder of Catalytic Communities (CatComm) based in Rio de Janeiro. An outspoken and respected advocate on behalf of Rio’s favelas, Williamson is also editor-in-chief of RioOnWatch, a watchdog news site and favela news service which tracks the impact of the 2014 World Cup and 2016 Olympic Games on Rio's favelas.
Williamson will give an overview of Rio’s recent mega-event driven boom and bust, and the hope of and actual implementation of policies directed towards favelas. She will examine how favela communities have responded, developed, and grown resistance strategies in response to recent boom development policies in Rio.
What does pre-Olympic Rio teach us about poor urban planning and development policies, as well as effective community organizing and resistance? What can we learn from Rio's favelas about how to organize, and how not to organize our own communities and what would truly inclusionary policies look like? Case studies include the communities of Vila Autódromo, Favela do Metrô, Indiana, Horto, and Providência.
Dr. Williamson’s Athenaeum talk is sponsored by funds from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
A former member of the senior civil service, James P. Finkel served as the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum Center for the Prevention of Genocide's 2013-2014 Leonard and Sophie Davis Genocide Prevention Fellow. During the final 20 years of his 35-year federal service career, he held positions that provided him an insider's eye view of the evolution of U.S. policy toward international accountability and the prevention of genocide and mass atrocities. Well versed in the challenges of preventing mass genocides and mass atrocities, Finkel was a participant in President Obama's Presidential Study Number Ten (on mass atrocities).
Finkel holds a master’s degree in international affairs from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and a B.A. from Rutgers University.
Mr. Finkel’s talk is sponsored by CMC’s Mgrublian Center for Human Rights.