Seventeen Supreme Court Cases in Seventeen Syllables — Term Highlights in Haiku

For those of you who don’t want to review all seventy-nine Supreme Court opinion haiku authored this term, I’ve extracted the wheat from the chaff, and present seventeen haiku from seventeen major cases this term.  I’ve included at least one opinion from each of the Justices.  I considered at least ten other cases to include, which included several important decisions related to habeas corpus, arbitration clauses, and constitutional criminal procedure, but when close calls needed to be made, I erred on the side of picking the more interesting haiku.  You can click on the case names, arranged in reverse-chronological order, to access the actual opinions.  Enjoy!

Hollingsworth v. Perry (June 26, 2013)

Official_roberts_CJProposition 8

Initiatives’ proponents

Do not have standing


United States v. Windsor (June 26, 2013)

220px-Anthony_Kennedy_official_SCOTUS_portraitDOMA Invalid

States decide what “marriage” means

Equal protection


Shelby County, Alabama v. Holder (June 25, 2013)

Official_roberts_CJ“Decades-old data”

Can’t justify preclearance

In Voting Rights Act


Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin (June 24, 2013)

220px-Anthony_Kennedy_official_SCOTUS_portraitRace in admissions

Strict scrutiny required

Good faith not enough


Vance v. Ball State University (June 24, 2013)

010_alitoTitle VII Claim

A “supervisor” defined

“Tangible” actions


Agency for Int’l Development v. Alliance for Open Society Int’l (June 20, 2013)

Official_roberts_CJTying AIDS funds to

Prostitution policy

Violates Free Speech


Arizona v. Inter Tribal Council of Arizona, Inc. (June 17, 2013)

220px-Antonin_Scalia,_SCOTUS_photo_portraitState cannot require

For Federal elections

Extra documents


Salinas v. Texas (June 17, 2013)

010_alitoFailure to answer

Before Miranda invoked

May use at trial


Association for Molecular Pathology v. Myriad Genetics, Inc. (June 13, 2013)

220px-Clarence_Thomas_official_SCOTUS_portraitCan you patent it?

A DNA sequence, no

cDNA, yes


Maryland v. King (June 3, 2013)

220px-Anthony_Kennedy_official_SCOTUS_portraitSerious offense

Cheek swab for DNA test

Reasonable search


Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum Co. (Apr. 17, 2013)

Official_roberts_CJAlien Tort law

Does not reach to foreign lands

Just U.S., pirates


Missouri v. McNeely (Apr. 17, 2013)

220px-Sonia_Sotomayor_in_SCOTUS_robeDUI arrest

Cops need warrant for blood test

Sans exigency


Florida v. Jardines (Mar. 26, 2013)

220px-Antonin_Scalia,_SCOTUS_photo_portraitDrug sniffing canine

A front porch is curtilage

Evidence suppressed


Kirtsaeng v. John Wiley & Sons, Inc. (Mar. 19, 2013)

220px-Stephen_Breyer,_SCOTUS_photo_portraitThe “first sale” doctrine

Allows student to resell

Books bought in Thailand


Clapper v. Amnesty Int’l USA (Feb. 26, 2013)

010_alitoForeign surveillance

Possible future contacts

No standing for you


Florida v. Harris (Feb. 19, 2013)

Elena_Kagan_Official_SCOTUS_Portrait_(2013)Search based on dog’s sniff

Performance log not needed

For probable cause


Arkansas Game & Fish Comm’n v. U.S. (Dec. 4, 2012)

220px-Ruth_Bader_Ginsburg_official_SCOTUS_portraitFlooded timberland

Seasonal release from dam

Might be a Taking


If I missed any of your favorites, you can find them here, or write your own below.  Happy haiku-ing!

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