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Anthony Taibi is keynote speaker at University of Connecticut School of Law
Anthony Taibi is keynote speaker at University of Connecticut School of Law conference entitled, “Race and the La ...
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Anthony Taibi is keynote speaker at University of Connecticut School of Law

30 Nov 2011

On March 3, 2006 the Black Law Students Association (BLSA) and Latino Law Students Association (LLSA) presented a conference entitled, “Race and the Law for the New Millennium.” According to the organizers of the day-long event, the conference, which featured keynote speaker Anthony Taibi sought to “construct a forward looking model where all communities participate in the new dialogue on race and the law.”

Joining Taibi was a wide range of panelists who are making significant contributions to enhancing racial and social justice, including Roderick V.O. Boggs, the executive director of the Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs; Juan Cartagena, general counsel for Community Service Society in New York City; Carolyn Hebsgaard, executive director of the Connecticut-based Lawyers Collaborative for Diversity, Inc.; and Darren Hutchinson, a professor at American University’s Washington College of Law. Boggs, who led off a discussion (moderated by Law School Associate Professor Kaaryn Gustafson) on the impact of exclusion and/or color-blindness on the practical application of the law, noted that in his 35 years with the Washington Lawyers’ Committee he has “been fortunate to see significant elements of progress (overcoming discrimination), as well as significant barriers” to progress. “The questions of addressing the subtle aspects of discrimination will be the biggest challenges ahead,” he said. “Compared to whites, a black or Latino person is still far more likely to be stopped, charged, convicted and sentenced, as opposed to given probation,” added Cartagena, who “dedicated (his) life to leveling the playing field” after witnessing abuses of power toward people of color. “There are 493,000 elected positions in the U.S. Only one percent is held by Latinos and a little more than one-and-a-half percent by blacks.” In his remarks, Hutchinson, who taught at the Law School in the summers of 2005 and 2006, commented on the long history of affirmative action in the courts, noting that the “rhetoric of exhaustion is being used to beat down racial issues.”