By Tanner Bowen
Tanner Bowen is a freshman at the University of Pennsylvania.
Bob Marley has become one of the most influential figures in modern pop culture, as well as a notoriously cited musical influence ever since his death over three decades ago. However, since his death, numerous attempts to falsely endorse his famous image upon t-shirts and other merchandise found at large retailers such as K-Mart, Wal-Mart, and J.C. Penney have arisen. Hope Road, an entity made up of Marley’s descendants, once again took up this battle in an attempt to stop the dispersal of Marley’s image and recuperate lost revenue from such actions.
In Fifty-Six Hope Road Music v. A.V.E.L.A., Hope Road sued A.V.E.L.A., Inc., X One X Movie Archive, Inc., and other defendants for acquiring photographs of Bob Marley in 2004. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals recently ruled that A.V.E.L.A. and other defendants were guilty of knowingly using Bob Marley’s image on their merchandise as well as falsely endorsing it to other customers in Nevada. In addition, Hope Road was entitled to the net profits generated by all of the defendant entities from the merchandise sold which had Marley’s image illegally placed upon it and finally reimbursement for attorney fees.
By Alexandra Aaron
Alexandra Aaron is a sophomore at the University of Wisconsin-Madison studying Political Science and History.
In October 2014, a federal district court in Oregon ruled that Secular Humanism qualifies as a religion and adherents are thus entitled to the same constitutional—and, more specifically, First Amendment—protections as other religious groups. This decision has significant implications for atheists and agnostics who have been fighting for recognition and equality under the law. In this case, senior Judge Lance Haggerty agreed with the plaintiffs that denying Humanists the same rights as so called “mainstream” religious groups such as Christianity violated the Establishment Clause, which states that Congress “shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.” 
The case was brought by the American Humanist Association (AHA) and federal prisoner Jason Holder who attempted to organize a Humanist study group but was prohibited from doing so. Should Judge Haggerty’s decision be upheld, Humanist prisoners will be able to meet and study with one another, which is generally only permitted for religious reasons.  Moreover, such a ruling has the potential to expand religious protections to atheists and agnostics.