Volume 2008, No. 6


Is Prison Increasing Crime?

By Martin H. Pritikin

Scholars have identified various ways in which incarceration may unintentionally cause crime. What the literature lacks, however, is an attempt to catalog all of the crime-causing, or “criminogenic,” effects of incarceration, and estimate their aggregate impact. This Article makes an initial attempt to do just that. Drawing inferences from existing data, the Article estimates that as of roughly a decade ago, incarceration practices were driving up crime rates by at least 7 percent, and were preventing as little as 13 percent of would-be crime. However, given trends since then, we may now be at or near a tipping point where prison is causing a net increase in crime. The implications of this phenomenon are also addressed.

“Good Reason to Believe”: Widespread Constitutional Violations in the Course of Immigration Enforcement and the Case for Revisiting Lopez-Mendoza

By Stella Burch Elias

In 1984, the United States Supreme Court held in INS v. Lopez-Mendoza that the exclusionary rule does not ordinarily apply to respondents in immigration proceedings. However, the Court suggested that its opinion about the applicability of the exclusionary rule might change if constitutional violations by immigration officers became a widespread problem. First, this Article proposes that constitutional violations by immigration officers have become both geographically and institutionally widespread in the years since Lopez-Mendoza. Second, this Article argues that immigration law and the practice of immigration enforcement have changed fundamentally in the twenty-five years since Lopez-Mendoza was decided, undermining the assumptions on which the majority in 1984 based its arguments against the use of the exclusionary rule. This Article concludes that, in the modern context, remaining faithful to Lopez-Mendoza requires the reintroduction of the exclusionary rule in immigration proceedings.


A State of Disorder: An Analysis of Mental-Health Parity in Wisconsin and a Suggestion for Future Legislation

By Jeffrey M. Barrett

Health-insurance plans routinely offer less coverage for mental-health care than for medical care. Mental-health parity laws, therefore, seek to equalize insurance financing between mental-health and other health services. This Comment analyzes the conspicuous absence of true parity legislation in Wisconsin and suggests the form such legislation should take. Building on the experience of other states and powerful public-policy arguments, this Comment concludes that mental-health parity legislation in Wisconsin should reflect a mandated-benefit statute, define mental illness by referencing the DSM-IV, require that the terms and conditions of mental-health coverage be equal to those offered for physical-health coverage, and include a modest cost-increase exemption, but not a small-business exception. With such a law, Wisconsin will finally achieve true mental-health parity.


Unsuspected Shoals in Equal Protection: Adapting Wisconsin’s Special-Transfer Program to Survive Parents-Involved

By Matthew C. Greene

In the 2007 case Parents Involved in Community Schools v. Seattle School District No. 1, the United States Supreme Court ruled that public school special-transfer programs may not reject student applications solely on the basis of the applicant’s race. While only a few school districts across the country currently incorporate racial criteria in their special-transfer programs, Parents Involved will have dramatic consequences for districts that use these programs to pursue racial integration.

Wisconsin’s Chapter 220 is one of these programs. After reviewing Wisconsin’s desegregation efforts, this Note finds that eliminating Chapter 220’s rejection procedure to comply with the Parents Involved majority opinion will effectively eliminate thirty years of desegregation efforts in Wisconsin schools. This Note argues Wisconsin lawmakers should instead revise the program to follow Justice Kennedy’s concurrence, transforming Chapter 220 from a school-integration program into a school-diversity initiative. This will allow Chapter 220 to pursue its original goals in a limited fashion, and prevent relitigating every desegregation case in Milwaukee public schools since Brown v. Board of Education.