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4th Circuit says TSA can’t strip nearly naked protester of rights (access required)

We here at Sidebar collectively cringe when we have to remove our shoes at the airport security checkpoint – so the thought of stripping down to our underwear really sends us over the hygienic edge. But for Richmond, Va., airline passenger, Aaron Tobey, stripping was a statement — one that the Fourth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals agreed he could make under the First Amendment.

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All fun and games until free speech rights get violated (access required)

Charleston lawyer D. Dusty Rhoades is fed up with South Carolina’s vague policy on disciplining lawyers for bad behavior. He’s been champing at the bit to test that policy, which is why he’s defending Anderson attorney Charles Griffin. Griffin is facing sanctions for publicly trading barbs with a pro se litigant who recently shot himself in the head.

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Sign of the times (access required)

Sometimes it’s good to get things off your chest. That is precisely what William David Bowden did after years of fighting with the town of Cary, North Carolina over water damage to his property that he believed had been caused by a municipal construction project. Feeling like he’d been pushed to the limit, Bowden spray painted “Screwed by the Town of Cary” in bright orange paint across a 15-foot stretch of his home.

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Getting to Broke (access required)

This week, we analyze a court decision involving Anderson County and one of its former county administrators, Michael Cunningham. But the case is just part of a long—and very expensive—fight over contracts signed by the outgoing county council in late 2008.

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No, dear, you can’t have the car keys (access required)

Within every marriage, an undeniable sense of competition crops up from time to time – that certain unspoken smugness of knowing your mate’s driving ability, college grades, or Fantasy Football record, is not quite on par with your own sterling achievements. But rarely is it the subject of a court ruling.

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Because who doesn’t want to work more? (access required)

The mandatory retirement age for judges, solicitors and public defenders in South Carolina is now 72. But last month, state Sen. Gerald Malloy, an attorney from Hartsville, pre-filed a bill that would eliminate the age requirement—ostensibly meaning that lawyers working for the state could keep showing up at the office until the day they keel over in their chairs. Last week, that bill moved to the senate Judiciary Committee.

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So long, fake Bev, we’ll miss you (access required)

With the inauguration of North Carolina’s 74th governor, Pat McCrory, we mourn the passing of one of our all-time favorite parody Twitter accounts: @GovBevPerdue. The often scathing caricature depicted the former governor as a hillbilly disdainful of northerners, obsessed with food from Bojangles (particularly Boberries), and relishing taxpayer-funded trips to Myrtle Beach. It attracted thousands of followers from across the political spectrum and even sometimes fooled major media outlets.

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If you can’t retain ‘em, train ‘em (access required)

Practicing in a county where 70 percent of domestic court cases involve at least one pro se litigant—and 40 percent have no lawyer on either side—Raleigh attorney Ronnie Ansley came up with a creative way for lawyers to still derive a little revenue from these marriage-on-the-skids situations. This week, Ansley will begin offering “Countdown to Divorce,” an introductory course to instruct spouses who want to file for divorce but can’t afford to hire an attorney.

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