Scottsboro Boys Case Study

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Memorandum of Law in Support of Defendants Motion for Partial Summary Judgment INTRODUCTION The court should find in favor of “Niles Weekly” and grant the motion for summary judgment filed under Federal Rules of Civil Procedure 56. The issue up for scrutiny is whether there was a public controversy. Here there was a public controversy simply because the invasion of a small community by a corporation will have a detrimental effect on that community, including but not limited to: (i) causing a significant increase in traffic, (ii) detrimental environmental impact and (iii) depression of wages. A large corporation will fundamentally interrupt the existing relationship between small business owners and the community they serve. Further, a public…show more content…
NBC, the public controversy consisted of the events surrounding the Scottsboro Boys’ case that Street was a primary witness in. 512 F. Supp. 398, 404 (E.D. Tenn. 1977). The Scottsboro Boys’ case is a public controversy because many Americans thought their lives would be at risk if the Scottsboro Boys’ were not sentenced. Id. Street was entrenched in the public controversy while the trial was ongoing because she was the prosecutions main witness. Id. When the trial was rehashed in the NBC film ‘Judge Horton and the Scottsboro Boys’ the public controversy picked up exactly where it left off. Id. The controversy was live because the same people were involved, the same story was being told, and the same effect to the community was present. In Clark v. ABC., the public controversy was the effects of prostitution in a middle-class neighborhood. 684 F.2d 1208, 1218 (6th Cir. 1982). The effects of prostitution can be felt across the community. The film made community members fearful that their own family members might be swept into the culture of prostitution. Id. ABC highlighted the effects that prostitution can have on the larger community in doing so, they created a hyper awareness of the dangers of prostitution, which made this a public controversy.

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