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Mixed-Race Artists Create New Images for New America

Mixed race individuals have increased 32 percent since the 2000 census in the number of Americans declaring multiracial identity, as well as by a biracial presi- dent, an explosion of blogs and Web sites about multi-racialism, and the advent of critical mixed-race studies on college campuses. Much of the work by mixed-race artists, though not all of it, reveals the fault lines and pressure points that exist in a quickly changing America. T e limits of tolerance, hidden or unacknowledged assumptions about identity, and issues of racial privilege and marginalization are some themes that are found in artists’ work. T e modern works off er a stark contrast to the previous generation’s views on mixed-race individuals, or mulat- tos, views that were put forth by predominately white artists. +2


Census Numbers Show Increased Gay Population

T e number of same-sex couples in Maryland rose from 11,243 to 16,987 households, the Census reported—a trend that has been refl ected in other states. Lesbian households account for more than half of the gay households in Maryland, about 10,000. Demographers said the change should be attributed to more accurate responses on census forms, rather than a rush of gay couples moving into the state. “T e most realistic explanation for such a large increase in the number of same-sex couples is increased acceptance and media campaigns that encouraged gay couples to be counted,” said demographics expert Amanda Baumle, an associate professor of sociology at the University of Houston. +2

New York Judges Leave the Bench for More Lucrative Positions

Judges are the ultimate legal career milestone. A judgeship is equated with power, respect, and reasonable hours. But more New York judges are leaving the bench because the salary isn’t competitive. New York judges have not had a raise in 12 years, making the state one of the more extreme examples of a growing pay gap nationally between judges and other professionals, including partners at top law fi rms, who can earn 10 times the salary of the judge before whom they are arguing. Now judges are returning to law practice. Turnover in New York has increased in the past few years: nearly 1 in 10 judges are now leaving annually. Critics contend that some judges do not work very hard and that many of them would never earn the profession’s top pay. Furthermore, it is diffi cult to hire new judges because talented attorneys are unlikely to join an institution that hasn’t had a cost of living increase in 12 years. -2


Students Use Their Education to Sue Law Schools

A group of students will put their education to the test when they sue their alma maters for allegedly misrepresenting post-graduation salaries and employment rates. Two class action lawsuits against T omas M. Cooley Law School and New York Law School allege that the job numbers provided by the schools were skewed because the schools included all graduate jobs in the data, not only legal positions. Furthermore, plaintiff s argue, the schools listed an average graduate salary derived only from graduates willing to share their income—something well-heeled graduates are more likely to put forth than underemployed graduates. T e defense argues that the suits are an attempt to bring attention to wide- spread complaints about American law school employment reporting, and the plaintiff s would have better luck taking their cause to the American Bar Association. T e Wall Street Journal quoted T omas M. Cooley’s chief lawyer saying, “T ese [lawsuits] are nothing other than attempts to bring public attention to this issue, and it certainly doesn’t seem like the right way to go about it.” -3

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