BOSTON COLLEGE
Boston College Third World Law Journal

Student
Publications

Volume 22 2002 Number 2

[Pages 225-280]
THE "DIVIDEND OF DEMOCRACY": ANALYZING U.S. SUPPORT FOR NIGERIAN DEMOCRATIZATION
Philip C. Aka*

Abstract:  For centuries, United States foreign policy has been outwardly characterized by its diplomatic and economic encouragement of fledgling democracies around the world. In particular, the nations of Africa are seen to benefit from America’s idealistic foreign agenda. After forty years of independent stuggle and civil war, Nigeria has freely elected a leader who expresses willingness to strengthen his nation’s global position through international trade and assistance. At this critical stage in Nigeria’s political development, will U.S. policymakers pay lip service to democracy through limited “unrewarding social work” or will it recognize common national interests to further a “genuinely reciprocal and mutually beneficial” relationship? This Article critiques the quantity and quality of U.S. aid to Nigeria, examining underlying tensions and motivations, and the forces of globalization. In order for Nigeria to find a true and stable democracy, this Article contends, U.S. policy must establish Nigeria’s role as an independent partner in the exchange of cultural and natural resources, as part of a genuine effort to bolster its domestic capability.

[Pages 281-354]
"SUCCESS-AT LONG LAST": THE ABOLITION OF THE DEATH PENALTY IN MASSACHUSETTS, 1928-1984
Alan Rogers*

Abstract:  The national debate regarding the death penalty has raged for decades, consistently attracting a high degree of media, political, and legal attention. The effort to abolish the death penalty in Massachusetts was no different; the movement was a decades-long struggle that ensnared politicians, activists, falsely accused defendants, and the Supreme Judicial Court. This Article traces the contours of the anti-death penalty movement through the work of Sara Ehrmann, head of the Massachusetts Council Against the Death Penalty (MCADP), the numerous governors who had to confront this politically vexing issue, and the Supreme Judicial Court, which drove the final nail into the death penalty coffin in Massachusetts. This Article illustrates that the death penalty met its demise in Massachusetts because of tireless activists like Ehrmann, steadfast governors, and principled Supreme Judicial Court judges who used the law to invalidate the ultimate penalty.

[Pages 355-388]
BUT I DIDN'T DO IT: PROTECTING THE RIGHTS OF JUVENILES DURING INTERROGATION
Lisa M. Krzewinski*

Abstract:  Juveniles’ susceptibility to suggestion, coupled with their inherent naiveties and immature thought processes, raise considerable doubt as to their ability to understand and exercise their Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination. Furthermore, they are extremely vulnerable to overimplicating themselves in crimes or, even more unfortunate for all involved, confessing to crimes they did not even commit. To protect the rights and interests of juveniles, states must enact several safeguards. This Note suggests, for example, that courts which currently use a totality of the circumstances test to determine whether a juvenile confession is voluntary, and thus not a violation of the Fifth Amendment, should abandon it in favor of a less-flexible per se rule. Additionally, states need to simplify the Miranda warning into language more conducive to juveniles’ comprehension. To increase the reliability of confessions and prevent false confessions altogether, interrogators need to cease using the same interrogation tactics, such as leading questions and the presentation of false evidence, on juveniles as they do on adults.

[Pages 389-418]
WAS BLIND BUT NOW I SEE: THE ARGUMENT FOR ADA APPLICABILITY TO THE INTERNET
Jeffrey Scott Ranen*

Abstract:  This Note argues that the “public accommodations” provision of Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act applies to the Internet. A broad reading of the public accommodation clause in Title III in conjunction with the supporting case law and the statute’s legislative history suggests that public accommodations are not limited to physical structures. Therefore, Internet companies that do not provide software compatible with the technology that visually disabled people use to access the Internet are liable for violating the ADA. The Note concludes with a summary of the first litigation on this issue between the National Federation of the Blind and America Online which was settled in July of 2000.

[Pages 419-443]
RESISTING "UTMOST RESISTANCE":USING RAPE TRAUMA SYNDROME TO COMBAT UNDERLYING RAPE MYTHS INFLUENCING ACQUAINTANCE RAPE TRIALS
Kara M. DelTufo*

Abstract:  Susan Ehrlich’s book examines the linguistic practices of acquaintance rape trials. She contends that the proceedings are framed by the ideology of the “utmost resistance standard.” This ideology, as represented in the language of a rape trial, tries to reconstruct strategic acts into consensual sex. Ehrlich suggests that by viewing the events and the participants in a rape trial through an alternate ideology—one informed by the cultural knowledge of women’s social and physical vulnerability to sexual violence—alternative forms of agency and notions of gender can be understood. This Book Review examines the role of rape myths in acquaintance rape trials and explores how Rape Trauma Syndrome can foster alternative ideologies in the courtroom.