Boom! Lawyered

By Jessica Mason Pieklo, Imani Gandy

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Reviews: 5

 Sep 9, 2020

 May 17, 2020
Supreme court updates done with humor. Very helpful for non-lawyers.

 Apr 17, 2019

 Jan 23, 2019

 Jul 8, 2018


Jessica Mason Pieklo and Imani Gandy help you stay on top of everything happening at the intersection of sex, the law, and your body. You will never have more fun learning about the courts and our government, even in the middle of the dumpster fire known as 2020. Produced by Rewire News Group.

Episode Date
Amy Coney Barrett Is Already Out of Line

Amy Coney Barrett was confirmed to the Supreme Court on Monday evening. Imani Gandy and Jessica Mason Pieklo use her first day on the job to take stock of her wildly inappropriate appearance with Trump last night during her swearing-in ceremony, the effectiveness (or lack thereof?) of Senate opposition, and how the mainstream media handled itself during this unprecedented power-grab.

Rewire News Group has been covering Barrett's nomination and confirmation every step of the way. Check out our full coverage here.

And if you'd like to support Boom! Lawyered, please do so at

Oct 27, 2020
Amy Coney Barrett Is Confirmed. Does the Law Even Matter Anymore?

It's official. With the confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court today, conservatives now have a 6-3 majority and a death-grip on the institution and the law. But as grim as things seem, all is not lost. On this special episode of Boom! Lawyered, Jessica Mason Pieklo and Imani Gandy explain how Barrett's appointment will impact our rights immediately and what progressives can do to fight back.

If you'd like to support Boom! Lawyered, please visit:

Oct 27, 2020
Amy Coney Barrett Hearings, Day Three: Make Birth Control Illegal Again

Jessica Mason Pieklo and Imani Gandy recap the third day of Amy Coney Barrett's Supreme Court confirmation hearing.

On Wednesday, Barrett flubbed the basics of the First Amendment, refused to denounce poll taxes, and couldn't confirm that a right to privacy exists. Oh, and Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) seemed nostalgic about segregation? Join Jess and Imani as they wade through it all on our final podcast of the week (barring yet another huge surprise!).

If you'd like to support Boom! Lawyered, please do so here.

Oct 14, 2020
Amy Coney Barrett Hearings, Day Two: No Notes

Jessica Mason Pieklo and Imani Gandy recap the second day of Amy Coney Barrett's Supreme Court confirmation process.

On Tuesday, she refused to answer a lot of questions but still managed to make some pretty wild statements on health care, the LGBTQ community, and more. How did senators respond to them? And is any kind of meaningful opposition strategy emerging from the Democrats? Find out all of that and more!

If you'd like to support Boom! Lawyered, please do so here.

Oct 14, 2020
Amy Coney Barrett Hearings, Day One: None of This Is Normal

Amy Coney Barrett's Supreme Court confirmation process is officially underway. On Monday, we heard opening statements first from members of the Senate Judiciary Committee and then Barrett—and the day was almost too normal. Did Democrats do themselves a disservice by playing along? Did Barrett acknowledge any of the outrageous circumstances of her nomination? And what's next in the wild week ahead? Jessica Mason Pieklo and Imani Gandy recap all of that and more on the first of Boom! Lawyered's daily recaps of these hearings.

If you'd like to support Boom! Lawyered, please do so here.

Oct 12, 2020
Expand the Courts (Without Overthinking It)

As Boom! Lawyered returns for its fifth season, #TeamLegal has come to the inexorable conclusion that it's time to expand the courts. But is there a non-messy way to do that? How much math has to be involved? And what can be done about the conservative radicalization of the lower courts? Jessica Mason Pieklo and Imani Gandy dive into all of that and more.

If you'd like to support Boom! Lawyered, please visit:

Oct 08, 2020
The Wild Resume of Amy Coney Barrett

Trump's newest Supreme Court nominee, Amy Coney Barrett, has challenged marriage equality, opposed abortion rights, misgendered transgender people, and so much more. How likely is she to join the Court? And what's being done to block her nomination? #TeamLegal experts Imani Gandy and Jessica Mason Pieklo walk you through of that and more on this special episode of Boom! Lawyered.

If you'd like to support Boom! Lawyered please do so at: 


Sep 26, 2020
Tonight, We Lost a Giant

RIP, Justice Ginsburg. Nothing will be the same.

Sep 19, 2020
Rapid Reaction: A Good Day for Theocracy at SCOTUS

Employers who love to wield religious freedom as a cudgel scored a couple big wins at the U.S. Supreme Court today, including a decision allowing employers to meddle with the birth control of their employees based on "conscientious objections." Jess and Imani explain what happened and whether there's any logic to this expansion of your employer's power over your health-care decisions.

If you'd like to support Boom! Lawyered, please do so at or text "BOOMGIVE" to 44-321.

Jul 08, 2020
What It's Like to Argue—and Win—at the Supreme Court

Julie Rikelman of the Center for Reproductive Rights did the unthinkable in 2020: As the lead attorney representing June Medical in June Medical Services v. Russo, she convinced Chief Justice John Roberts to sign onto a decision protecting abortion rights! She joins Jessica Mason Pieklo and Imani Gandy to discuss what it's like to argue before the Supreme Court, to try and get some sleep the night before, and to call your client to deliver news of the win.

If you'd like to support Boom! Lawyered, please do so at or text "BOOMGIVE" to 44-321. Your support makes this show possible!

Jul 02, 2020
Rapid Reaction: A Great Decision (Plus a Roberts Time Bomb) on Abortion Access

The June Medical Services v. Russo decision is in, and it's 5-4 in favor of the very obvious truth: Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt already decided this shit. Chief Justice John Roberts is forced to concur, but his dissent lays out a troubling roadmap for the next round of anti-choice restrictions. Jess and Imani explain all of this and more.

And on Tuesday June 30 at 11am ET, join Jess and Imani for an Instagram Live discussion of the case at — tell your friends!

If you'd like to support Boom! Lawyered, please do so at or text "BOOMGIVE" to 44-321.



Jun 29, 2020
Rapid Reaction: Supreme Court Protects DREAMers
Jun 18, 2020
Rapid Reaction: Supreme Court Protects LGBTQ Employees

A big Supreme Court decision just arrived, and it's comprehensively awesome. In a 6-3 ruling, the Court confirmed that "an employer who fires an individual merely for being gay or transgender defies the law." In this emergency episode of Boom! Lawyered, Imani Gandy and Jessica Mason Pieklo react to the decision—written by Neil Gorsuch, of all people—and the extremely salty dissent.

If you'd like to support Boom! Lawyered, please donate at or text "BOOMGIVE" to 44-321.

Jun 15, 2020
How to Defund the Police

Racism is baked into the U.S. model of policing. More and more people are starting to believe that no amount of "reform" will help; a full tear-down is required. But what does "defunding the police" actually mean? What would happen to people who need to report a crime? And are we sure the police have ever actually been effective at any of the services they're supposed to provide? Imani Gandy and Jessica Mason Pieklo dive into those questions and more on the latest episode of Boom! Lawyered.


Support Boom! Lawyered at — or by texting "BOOMGIVE" to 44-321.

Jun 11, 2020
This School Keeps Fighting to Discriminate Against Trans Kids

Gavin Grimm has been challenging a policy at his former high school that requires transgender students to use separate bathroom facilities. On Tuesday, the case landed in federal appeals court. Jess and Imani break down the arguments and explain why the school's pleas to keep discriminating are so horribly misguided.

If you'd like to support Boom! Lawyered, text "BOOMGIVE" to 44-321 or go to today!

May 28, 2020
'Jane Roe' Lied to Us for Decades!

The Daily Beast just reported that the upcoming FX documentary AKA Jane Roe reveals that Norma McCorvey, aka "Jane Roe" of Roe v. Wade, admitted on film that her anti-choice conversion was "all an act." On this emergency episode of Boom! Lawyered, Jess and Imani react to the shocking news and what it means for the abortion rights fight ahead.

For more on Roe v. Wade, check out #TeamLegal's other podcast series, We'll Hear Arguments:

If you'd like to support Boom! Lawyered, please do so at

May 19, 2020
Arkansas Created a Pandemic Catch-22 to Block Abortions

On April 27, Arkansas officials issued a directive requiring anyone seeking elective surgery to obtain a negative COVID-19 test 48 hours prior to an abortion. Can you guess which elective procedure those officials were primarily targeting? Yep, that's right: procedural abortion.

Advocates almost immediately sued on behalf of three patients who needed an abortion, hadn’t been able to get a COVID-19 test, and were closing in on the deadline imposed by Arkansas' 20-week abortion ban. According to the lawsuit, Little Rock Family Planning Services had contacted more than 15 testing locations but couldn’t find a single place that would test asymptomatic people. Now the courts have weighed in, and it's a hot mess.

On this episode of Boom! Lawyered, Imani Gandy and Jessica Mason Pieklo explain everything happening in Arkansas and ask: Why can people go to the orthodontist without a test—but not the abortion provider?

Support Jess, Imani, and Boom! Lawyered at:

May 14, 2020
Rapid Reaction: The Latest Birth Control Battle at the Supreme Court

Believe it or not, the U.S. Supreme Court is still hearing cases on the birth control benefit! Jess and Imani hop on the mics after Wednesday's arguments to break down everything you need to know, including:

  • The highlights and lowlights from the arguments
  • The future of contraceptive coverage
  • Whether Brett Kavanaugh horribly embarrassed himself
  • The justices' ongoing battle with the mute button
  • And more!

Support Boom! Lawyered at

May 06, 2020
SCOTUS Preview: The Nuns Are Coming for Your Birth Control

On Wednesday, the Supreme Court will hear arguments in two consolidated cases that could kill off the birth control benefit for good. Jess and Imani preview everything you need to know.

If you'd like to support Boom! Lawyered, please visit:

Apr 30, 2020
Actual Good News on COVID-19 Abortion Bans

The landscape of abortion access is shifting rapidly, and it feels something new is happening every day. Which states are trying to use COVID-19 to try and ban abortion? How are the courts responding? It’s almost impossible to keep up. Fortunately, Jess and Imani are here to bring us up to speed on the latest developments in Texas, Ohio, Alabama, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Arkansas, Tennessee, and the rest of the country.

You can support Boom! Lawyered at today!

Apr 16, 2020
Shredding the Claim that Abortion Clinic Protests Are an 'Essential Service'

Do you know who's not staying home during the COVID-19 pandemic? Abortion clinic protesters. In this episode, Jess and Imani lay waste to the claim that protesting an abortion clinic during a global pandemic is an "essential service" and discuss whether the courts will look the other way, anyway.

Love Boom! Lawyered? Support us here:

Apr 09, 2020
Rapid Reaction: Texas Abortion Ban Takes Effect Immediately

On March 31, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals allowed Texas lawmakers to exploit the COVID-19 outbreak to ban abortion services—effective immediately. Imani Gandy and Jessica Mason Pieklo hop on the mic to discuss what happened, what this means, and what's likely to happen next in Texas and around the country.

Want to support Boom! Lawyered? Help us here!

Mar 31, 2020
Coronavirus and the Courts

The coronavirus crisis has forced the U.S. Supreme Court to hit pause. What will happen to cases that have been argued, like June Medical Services v. Russo? What will happen to other important cases yet to be argued? And how concerned should we be for Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg? Imani and Jess discuss these questions and more on the latest episode of Boom! Lawyered.

If you'd like to support our show, please donate here!

Mar 19, 2020
Texas Is Trying to Make 'Sanctuary Cities for the Unborn' a Thing

Eleven towns in East Texas recently declared themselves "sanctuary cities for the unborn." Seriously. Jess and Imani explain why this ridiculous idea might be the first step of a scary new strategy from the anti-choice movement.

Mar 12, 2020
June Medical Services v. Russo Arguments: Rapid Reaction

Jess was inside the Supreme Court for arguments in June Medical Services v. Russo. Then she literally ran across the street to record this podcast with Imani to bring the rest of us up to speed on the most important and surprising moments of the day.

Mar 04, 2020
June Medical Services v. Russo Preview

On March 4th, the Supreme Court will hear the first major abortion rights case since Brett Kavanaugh joined the bench. Jess and Imani preview what's at stake and explain the sleeper issue that could upend abortion rights law as we know it.

Feb 27, 2020
Anti-Choice Lawmakers Declare the Constitution Null and Void in Indiana

ALERT: Our new series We'll Hear Arguments comes out on 2/25! Subscribe here for the coolest breakdown of Roe v. Wade ever:

Now back to our regular programming: An alarming new bill in Indiana asserts that life begins at conception, and federal laws that “fail to protect a person’s inalienable right to life” are null and void in the Hoosier State. In other words, anti-choice lawmakers claim that the Constitution is null and void in Indiana—and their counterparts in other states could soon follow suit. On this episode of Boom! Lawyered, Jessica Mason Pieklo and Imani Gandy explain the latest fad in anti-choice legislation and whether it could actually hold up in court.

Feb 20, 2020
COMING FEBRUARY 25: A new Roe v. Wade podcast series from the Boom! Lawyered team!

We have some big news for Boom! Lawyered subscribers: Jess and Imani are launching a second podcast series on February 25th!  It's not available yet, but we wanted to give our listeners a special preview...

The new show is called We'll Hear Arguments, and it explores the dramatic, inspiring, and infuriating arguments of Roe v. Wade from 1971 and 1972.

This journey into the past is extremely relevant to the present as the Supreme Court prepares to take its first crack at decimating Roe in March. So we hope you’ll join us for our five-part series when it launches.

Stay tuned for links to the new feed and more! And don’t worry, B!L will still be going strong as we cover current news and events around the courts and our rights, as well.

Feb 03, 2020
Leonard Leo's Next Evil Venture

Federalist Society heavyweight Leonard Leo is one of the primary architects of the conservative takeover of the federal courts. Now, he's got a new dark money project that could cement that takeover for a generation or more. Imani and Jess explain Leo's new plan and just how scary things could get if it works.

Jan 16, 2020
Everything You Need to Know About the Abortion Rights Fight in 2020

Reason bans! D&E bans! Pre-viability bans! TRAP laws! And a landmark Supreme Court case. 

2020 is shaping up to be a wild ride for abortion rights in the United States. In our final Boom! Lawyered episode of 2019, Imani and Jess map out everything worth following in the year ahead.

Dec 19, 2019
Emergency Pod: The Supreme Court Rubber-Stamps Kentucky Forced Ultrasound Law

Today, the Supreme Court declined an appeal challenging a Kentucky law that forces doctors to show and describe ultrasound images before performing an abortion—even if patients avert their eyes or ask the doctor to stop. In this emergency episode, Jess and Imani explain what this means for the First Amendment and abortion rights in Kentucky and around the country.

Dec 09, 2019
Will the Supreme Court Block Abortion Providers from Suing on Behalf of Their Patients?

June Medical Services v. Gee could upend over four decades of abortion rights precedent when the case goes before the U.S. Supreme Court in March. That's because, as part of their decision, the justices will rule on whether abortion providers can sue on behalf of their patients. Imani and Jess explain why this is a big deal and how the Court is likely to decide.

Dec 05, 2019
'He Performed an Abortion and Then Burned Down My House!'

Have you ever wondered what would happen if someone tried to perform an abortion while committing arson or burglary? Ohio lawmakers have, and they've proposed a massive new ban to deal with that hypothetical—and a whole lot more. Jess and Imani break down a 723-page bill that will leave your jaw on the floor.

Nov 27, 2019
Arkansas Is Trying to Invent the 'Abortion Deadline'

When is a ban not a ban? When it's a deadline! Imani and Jess dive into the absurd arguments that Arkansas is making in the hopes that its pre-viability abortion ban will stick. Will the courts buy these new claims? Are other states following suit? B!L answers those questions and more. 

Nov 21, 2019
'Abortion Reversal' Is B.S.

Imani and Jess debunk the latest frontier in junk science: "abortion reversal." As more states pass laws forcing doctors to promote this myth, the courts continue to step in and block them. But if more people don't recognize the bad-faith claims underlying "abortion reversal," that could change—and sooner than we might think.

Nov 07, 2019
Bathroom Panic at the Supreme Court

During recent Supreme Court arguments about trans rights under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, one of the justices appeared to buy into the idea of "bathroom panic." That may not seem surprising—except that the justice in question was Sonia Sotomayor. Imani and Jess explain what happened, where Justice Sotomayor went wrong, and why "bathroom panic" arguments don't hold up under scrutiny.

Oct 24, 2019
Forced Ultrasound and the First Amendment

There's only one abortion clinic left in Kentucky, and by law its doctors must place ultrasound images in the patient’s view and read a state-mandated script. Recently, the ACLU filed a petition on behalf of the clinic asking the Supreme Court to step in. Imani and Jess explain the forced ultrasound law, its harms, and how the Roberts Court could protect—or devastate—the free speech rights of providers if they take the case.

Oct 17, 2019
Rapid Reaction: The Supreme Court Hears Arguments on Whether You Can Be Fired for Being Gay or Trans
This morning, the Supreme Court heard arguments in the three cases that will ultimately decide whether Title VII of the Civil Rights Act protects gay and trans employees from employment discrimination. Jess attended the arguments and then joined Imani for a breakdown of the most important moments. Jess then interviews Claudia Trevor-Wright about the experience of being arrested during Court-related protest actions.
Oct 08, 2019
Emergency Pod: The Supreme Court Takes June Medical Services v. Gee
Friday morning, the Supreme Court announced it was taking June Medical Services v. Gee. In this emergency episode of Boom! Lawyered, Jessica Mason Pieklo and Imani Gandy discuss why this is a direct threat to reproductive rights and the value of legal precedent.
Oct 04, 2019
The Supreme Court Will Decide If an Employer Can Fire Someone for Being Gay or Trans
On October 8, the Supreme Court will hear arguments in a trio of cases to determine whether sexual orientation discrimination is sex discrimination and thus prevented under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. Jess and Imani explain these landmark cases and what to expect from the day of arguments next week.
Oct 03, 2019
The Big, Bad 2019 Abortion Rights Supreme Court Preview Episode
The first full Supreme Court term featuring Brett Kavanaugh is less than a week away. Jess and Imani preview the important abortion rights cases to keep an eye on and everything that hangs in the balance.
Sep 26, 2019
Predicting the Next Two Years
The last couple years have been a wild ride, to say the least. Boom! Lawyered celebrates our two-year anniversary by looking ahead to the next two years. What's in store for reproductive rights, LGBTQ equality, and the integrity of the Supreme Court? Jess and Imani offer their predictions—and a ray of hope.
Sep 19, 2019
Will the Supreme Court Make It Easier for Abortion Protesters to Threaten People?
In Chicago, no one within 50 feet of an abortion clinic is allowed to get closer than eight feet to another person. Anti-choice groups have challenged this "bubble zone" ordinance, and the Supreme Court is about to decide whether to hear them out. Jess and Imani explain what's at stake for clinics, providers, and patients in Chicago and around the country if John Roberts and friends take the case.
Sep 12, 2019
Scalia's Son May Be Trump's New Tool (to Dismantle Civil Rights)
The Department of Labor has proposed a rule that could gut civil rights protections for the employees of more than 42,000 businesses that hold a federal contract. Imani and Jess explain the rule, its impact, and why former Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia might roll over in his grave if he knew his son could be tasked with enforcing it.  Anyone can comment on this law here:
Sep 05, 2019
The Missouri Abortion Ban You Didn’t Hear About
This week, a federal court blocked Missouri’s multi-week gestational ban. But did you know that another restriction banning abortions based on the race, sex, or Down syndrome diagnosis of a fetus was allowed to take effect? Jess and Imani explain the faulty logic of these bans and how this decision paves the way for more trouble down the road.
Aug 29, 2019
How John Roberts Helped Trump Defund Planned Parenthood
Planned Parenthood recently announced it will withdraw from the federal family planning program known as Title X because of President Donald Trump’s domestic "gag rule." Imani and Jess explain this crisis and how Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts helped lay the foundation for it.
Aug 22, 2019
This New Challenge to Roe Might Be the Most Dangerous Yet
Shameless Tennessee lawmakers are trying to redefine fetal viability in a way that makes no medical sense and is designed as a direct attack on Roe v. Wade. Jess and Imani explain what makes this bill a dangerous escalation in the decades-long crusade to overturn Roe.
Aug 15, 2019
Trump Judge Approves Manslaughter Charges for Pregnancy Loss
Recently, the ultra-conservative 8th Circuit Court of Appeals reinstated an involuntary manslaughter charge against a Native woman from Sisseton, South Dakota. That charge is based on allegations that she ingested illegal drugs while pregnant, resulting in the death of her newborn. Jess and Imani explain why this decision is an alarming escalation of the anti-choice efforts to establish fetal personhood and punish people for their pregnancy outcomes.
Aug 08, 2019
The Hidden Secrets of Jess and Imani
It's no secret that Imani and Jess are as close as they are smart. But what secrets have they kept from each other? And what secrets have they kept from us? All is revealed on this special episode of Boom! Lawyered.
Jul 18, 2019
This Lawsuit Could Bring Reproductive Justice to the Supreme Court
SisterSong v. Kemp may be the first major lawsuit centering the reality that attacks on access to abortion care disproportionately harm communities of color. Imani and Jess explain the case and how it could introduce the concept of reproductive justice to the Supreme Court.  
Jul 11, 2019
There Are Concentration Camps for Kids at the Border. Is Any of This Legal?
Last week, a Department of Justice lawyer stunned the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals when she argued that it is “safe and sanitary” to confine immigrant children for indefinite periods of time without basic needs like soap or toothbrushes. Jess and Imani explain the legal framework meant to protect these children and how the Trump administration intends to dismantle it.
Jun 27, 2019
This Case Could Define Transgender Rights for a Generation
Last week, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that policies targeting transgender people are sex-based discrimination that must meet heightened scrutiny to be constitutional. This is a big deal! Imani and Jess evaluate this important—but qualified—win for transgender rights and what it means for those rights in the future.
Jun 20, 2019
How the Supreme Court Could Use the Census to Bless White Power in America
The fight over the Trump administration’s questionable efforts to add a citizenship question to the census has reached the Supreme Court, and a decision looms. Jess and Imani explain the case and how a bad decision could cement inequality for generations.
Jun 13, 2019
What’s It Like to Sue the Trump Administration?
Jess sits down with Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum to discuss the challenges facing progressive attorneys general in the era of Trump and how they are fighting back against his administration.
Jun 06, 2019
Clarence Thomas Just Declared War on Your Birth Control
This week, the Supreme Court ruled that a provision of an Indiana law mandating the burial or cremation of fetal remains could take effect. At the same time, it blocked a separate provision of the Indiana law banning abortions based on the race, sex, or disability of a fetus. Imani and Jess explain Tuesday’s decision, Justice Clarence Thomas’s opinion equating modern-day family planning with eugenics, and signals from the Court’s conservatives that access to birth control is in their crosshairs.
May 30, 2019
What a Challenge to 'Roe' Will Actually Look Like
Conservative lawmakers are passing total and near-total abortion bans with the explicit hope that they will be used to overturn Roe v. Wade. But how would that work, exactly? Imani and Jess explain the arguments that would fuel a legal challenge to Roe and how a bad decision could then be used to attack state laws protecting abortion rights.
May 23, 2019
The Supreme Court Just Trashed 40 Years of Precedent and Sounded the Alarm for Roe
Franchise Board of California v. Hyatt may not be the most important case of the Supreme Court term, but the fallout from the Court's decision to overturn decades of precedent could have major ramifications for Roe v. Wade. In fact, Justice Stephen Breyer sounded the alarm himself in his dissenting opinion. Jess and Imani explain what happened and what it could mean for abortion rights, marriage equality, and more.
May 16, 2019
How Georgia and Kansas Reveal the Future Battleground for Abortion Rights
The near-total ban on abortion recently passed in Georgia contrasts sharply with the landmark decision in Kansas that declared abortion a natural right. Jess and Imani explore which of those paths other states are likely to follow and the main reason there's still hope for abortion rights in America.
May 09, 2019
The Master Plan to Dismantle LGBTQ Rights Is in Its Endgame
The Supreme Court announced this week that it will hear three cases that could determine what, if any, protections LGBTQ employees have from job discrimination. Jess and Imani explain what it means that the Court agreed to hear all three cases together and how the effects of a bad ruling could extend into housing and health-care discrimination.
Apr 25, 2019
If You're a Rapper, Your Lyrics Can Send You to Jail
Imani and Jess discuss the case of Jamal Knox, a young rapper who was convicted for terroristic threats and witness intimidation based on the lyrics of his music. When are words “true threats,” and when are they protected free speech? And why do most court cases on speech seem to be decided in whichever direction benefits white Christian patriarchy?
Apr 18, 2019
‘Reverse Discrimination’ Isn’t a Thing, but the Roberts Court Might Disagree
The Supreme Court will soon decide whether to take a case that would give school districts the ability to affirmatively discriminate against transgender students. Jess and Imani explain how a bad decision in this case could enshrine the bogus concept of "reverse discrimination" into law, putting even more rights—and lives—at risk.
Apr 11, 2019
The GOP Is Using the Courts to Do What Congress Couldn't: Repeal the ACA
In a new filing this week, President Donald Trump's Justice Department declared that it wants the courts to strike down the entirety of the Affordable Care Act as unconstitutional. This comes on the heels of a recent district court decision making the same argument by U.S. District Court Judge and noted malcontent Reed O'Connor. Jess and Imani explain this new strategy, the legal errors underpinning it, and its odds of success in the Era of Kavanaugh.
Mar 28, 2019
Mailbag Edition!
Jess and Imani answer listener questions across a range of important issues. Where can we find hope for the future of reproductive rights? How soon will people feel the impact of so many recent ultra-conservative judges appointed to the lower courts? And what beverage pairs well with a delicious criminal indictment?
Mar 21, 2019
A Dude Is Suing an Alabama Abortion Clinic for 'Wrongful Death'...of an Embryo
Ryan Magers is suing the Alabama Women's Center for wrongful death because his girlfriend, who was 16 at the time, got an abortion—with the consent of her parents—against Magers's wishes. How is this even possible? And how does this case fit into the ongoing anti-choice campaign for "fetal personhood?" Imani and Jess have those answers and more. 
Mar 14, 2019
Myth-Busting the Anti-Choice 'Born Alive' Bills
Anti-choice politicians are pushing a new legislative strategy to demonize their opponents and confuse the public: so-called Born Alive bills. In this episode of Boom! Lawyered, Imani and Jess dissect the myths propping up this strategy and give you all the tools you need to combat anti-choice lies about later abortion.
Mar 07, 2019
The Cohen Hearing vs. the Kavanaugh Hearings
An unforgettable day of testimony on Capitol Hill began with Republicans demanding a do-over because—wait for it—they didn't get documents on time. For anyone who followed the Kavanaugh hearings, that might be funny if it wasn't so sad. And that was just the beginning! In this emergency episode of Boom! Lawyered, Jess and Imani discuss some of the most pressing legal questions and concerning developments from Michael Cohen's day of testimony before the House oversight committee.
Feb 27, 2019
Clarence Thomas Wants to Blow Up Defamation Law
This week, the Supreme Court declined to take up an appeal by Kathrine McKee, a woman who publicly accused Bill Cosby of raping her more than 40 years ago. As part of this decision, Clarence Thomas issued an alarming concurring opinion that may signal the start of a prolonged attack on the First Amendment in the courts. Imani and Jess explain how this fight may take shape and what could change forever if Thomas's position wins out.
Feb 21, 2019
Federal Funding to Discriminate?
In several states, there are evangelical adoption and foster care agencies trying to keep federal funding while refusing to place children in LGBTQ or non-Christian families—and now the Trump administration may help them. Jess and Imani break down who's behind these discriminatory efforts and what they mean for kids and parents around the country. 
Feb 14, 2019
The John Roberts Abortion Conundrum...Resolved?
Last night, the Supreme Court voted 5-4 to block an anti-choice law in Louisiana from taking effect while it is being challenged in the courts. John Roberts was the deciding vote. Yes, you read that correctly. Is this a one-time thing, or does this signal that Roberts is moving to the middle on abortion? And what's next for abortion rights in Louisiana and around the country? Join Jess and Imani for a discussion of all of this plus an interview with Center for Reproductive Rights senior counsel (and lead attorney on this case!) T.J. Tu.
Feb 08, 2019
The Supreme Court Head Fake on Abortion in Louisiana
The Supreme Court issued a stay against an anti-choice law in Louisiana—but only for a few days? Jess and Imani try to make sense of this puzzling move by the Court and what might happen next.
Feb 04, 2019
The John Roberts Abortion Conundrum
The Fifth Circuit has teed up a big test for Chief Justice John Roberts in a case out of Louisiana that involves hospital admitting privilege requirements for abortion providers. If Roberts respects precedent as much as he says he does, the law should be dead in the water. But is it?
Jan 30, 2019
Day Two of William Barr’s Confirmation Hearings
In the second and final day of confirmation hearings for Attorney General nominee William Barr, witnesses testified both for and against his nomination. Some of it was fluff, but some of it was fire. Imani and Jess break down the key takeaways as a confirmation vote draws near.
Jan 16, 2019
Day One of William Barr's Confirmation Hearings
Jess and Imani sift through the testimony of Attorney General nominee William Barr, including his subtle but serious signals that he might be a danger to civil rights and immigration justice.
Jan 16, 2019
Bye-Bye, Birth Control Benefit?
The Trump administration plans to take a sledgehammer to the birth control benefit. Imani and Jess explain why its approach might not be entirely legal thanks to a little-known—but super-important—law called the Administrative Procedure Act.
Jan 10, 2019
Recapping the Wild Ride of 2018
It's the end of the year, but it's just the beginning of a slew of court battles that could reshape our rights. Imani and Jess take stock of the legal highs and lows of 2018 with an eye to what's ahead in 2019.
Dec 18, 2018
Why Clarence Thomas Has a Case of the Sads
Several states have tried to find ways to cut Planned Parenthood out of state Medicaid programs. Naturally, lawsuits followed, and this week, the Supreme Court finally weighed in. Jess and Imani discuss what happened and what it means for health care across the country.
Dec 14, 2018
Why Aren't LGBTQ People Protected in the Workplace?
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employers from discriminating against employees on the basis of race, national origin, color, sex, and religion. So why aren’t all LGBTQ people also definitively protected by this law, and whose fault is that? Jess and Imani explain.
Nov 28, 2018
The Ohio Abortion Ban Saga Is Bananas
A new bill making its way through the Ohio legislature would effectively ban abortion in the state. It’s called a “heartbeat ban," and Jess and Imani explain how the bill's sponsors plan to use this law to make abortion illegal in every state.
Nov 21, 2018
Midterm Results and the Voting Rights Battles That Will Follow
The midterms elections are (mostly) over. Now what? Jess and Imani sift through the results and lay out the high-stakes legal and political skirmishes that are likely to follow, especially regarding the right to vote.
Nov 07, 2018
Will Voter Suppression Swing the 2018 Midterms?
Voter suppression in the 2018 midterms is real, and it's scary. In this episode of Boom! Lawyered, Imani and Jess explain the creative and alarming ways Republicans in three states are trying to prevent people from voting.
Nov 01, 2018
They're Coming for Birthright Citizenship
President Trump claims he can end birthright citizenship with an executive order. Jess and Imani explain why that's simply not true—but how this move might be part of a scarier and potentially effective long-term strategy.
Oct 30, 2018
Trailer: Unladylike
Here's a podcast we think you’ll love. It’s called Unladylike, and it’s all about gender rules and the folks who break them. They put together this trailer to tell you more about the show and how to listen. Check it out!
Oct 30, 2018
Meet the Official Who May Lead the Attack on Transgender Rights
Imani and Jess introduce you to Roger Severino. He runs the Office for Civil Rights at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. He decorates his office with a Clarence Thomas bobblehead and a crucifix. And he’s the person likely to be driving the Trump Administration’s reported efforts to eliminate transgender
Oct 22, 2018
Kavanaugh Confirmed. Now What?
Well, that happened. What does it mean and where do we go from here? Jess and Imani break it down.
Oct 06, 2018
Ford Shines, Kavanaugh Whines
Imani and Jess break down an unforgettable day of testimony from Christine Blasey Ford and Judge Brett Kavanaugh. 
Sep 28, 2018
Meet the Awful Person Who Could Take Over the Mueller Investigation
Solicitor General Noel Francisco is well-positioned to take over supervision of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into Russian election interference should Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein resign or be fired. Everyone should be concerned about this line of succession.
Sep 24, 2018
The Kavanaugh Allegations
Imani and Jess discuss the attempted rape allegations against Brett Kavanaugh and whether they will meaningfully impact his nomination to the Supreme Court.
Sep 18, 2018
Kavanaugh Day 4: Witness
On the final day of the Bretty Kavanaugh confirmation hearings, Imani and Jess discuss the witnesses who spoke and what will happen next in the process.
Sep 08, 2018
Kavanaugh Day 3: Exposed
Jess and Imani explain the intrigue and events of day three of the Kavanaugh hearings.
Sep 07, 2018
Kavanaugh Day 2: Stolen Emails?
Imani and Jess recap the twists, turns, and gotchas of day two (which is still ongoing!) of the confirmation hearing for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
Sep 06, 2018
Kavanaugh Day 1: Changing the Rules
Imani and Jess recap and explain the most important takeaways—and most infuriating moments—from day one of the confirmation hearing for Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh.
Sep 04, 2018
What Are Republicans Hiding in Kavanaugh's Documents?
Jess and Imani make sense of the Senate battle over the release of hundreds of thousands of documents related to Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. Why have the Democrats threatened to sue, and what might we learn from the mountain of files if they are all released? Find out on Boom! Lawyered.
Aug 23, 2018
Emergency Pod on Brett Kavanaugh Nomination
Tonight, President Donald Trump nominated Judge Brett Kavanaugh to replace retiring Justice Anthony Kennedy on the U.S. Supreme Court. On yet another emergency episode of Boom! Lawyered, Rewire.News legal eagles Imani Gandy and Jessica Mason Pieklo explore Kavanaugh’s history on the bench and what his confirmation could mean for the Court and our rights.
Jul 10, 2018
Who Can Stop Trump's Court Takeover?
In the final Boom! Lawyered episode of this Supreme Court term, Imani and Jess sift through the wreckage of the Court's decisions, explore how deep Trump's stacking of other federal courts goes, and discuss the end-game options for progressives who want to turn the tide. 
Jul 05, 2018
Emergency Pod #2—Justice Kennedy Is Retiring
Boom! Lawyered is back—again—to discuss the implications of Justice Anthony Kennedy's retirement announcement. WHAT A WEEK.
Jun 27, 2018
Emergency Pod on Muslim Ban and CPC Decisions
Today, the Supreme Court gave a thumbs up to Donald Trump's Muslim ban and denied California's right to require factual disclosures by fake abortion clinics. Jess and Imani break down the key takeaways from a decision day that will live in infamy.
Jun 26, 2018
Pardon Me?
Can Donald Trump pardon himself? What happens next if he tries? Whose fault is it that the pardon became so powerful? And how did the pardon even come to exist, anyway? Imani and Jess answer all of these questions and more on the latest episode of Boom! Lawyered.
May 17, 2018
Sonia Sotomayor Is an Absolute Boss
When it comes to favorites on the Supreme Court, Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg gets a lot of love. And it’s deserved! But in the latest episode of Boom! Lawyered, Rewire.News legal experts Jessica Mason Pieklo and Imani Gandy explain why someone else is deserving of the same (possibly even more?) love: Justice Sonia Sotomayor.
Apr 26, 2018
The DOJ Is Bullying ACLU Attorneys and It's a Big Deal
Imani and Jess confront an extraordinary overreach by the Department of Justice. After failing to prevent immigrant minor Jane Doe from obtaining an abortion to which she's legally entitled, the Department is now asking the Supreme Court to punish the ACLU attorneys who represent her. Why? Because they dared to do their job. Listen to learn what this might mean for those attorneys – and for all of us.
Apr 12, 2018
BREAKING: Today's SCOTUS Arguments in NIFLA v. Becerra
Jess was inside the courtroom this morning as the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in NIFLA v. Becerra, which will decide whether a clinic can be required to reveal whether they are a licensed reproductive health-care provider or an unlicensed fake clinic. She talks with Imani about the key arguments, memorable moments, and potential outcomes from the morning's events.
Mar 20, 2018
Does the First Amendment Allow CPCs to Lie to Pregnant People?
When a pregnant person walks into a clinic, should that clinic be forced to reveal whether they are a licensed reproductive health care provider or an unlicensed fake clinic? Imani and Jess break down NIFLA v. Becerra, the Supreme Court case that's about to answer that question.
Mar 15, 2018
The Racist Ideology Neil Gorsuch Will Use to Break Unions
Imani and Jess discuss a Supreme Court case that could spell the end of public sector unions as we know them. Who is bringing this case and what do they hope to achieve? Which justice could be the one to swing the wrecking ball? And why do conservatives always talk about the "right to work" when trying to end unionization? Answers to those questions and more await you on Boom! Lawyered.
Mar 01, 2018
Pregnant and Going to the Doctor? You Might End Up in Jail
Jess and Imani explain the laws and policies that pipeline pregnant people into the criminal justice system. Then they speak with the reproductive justice advocates at the SIA Legal Team about their important work on behalf of people who self-induce abortions. 
Feb 15, 2018
Every Terrible Anti-Choice Bill Coming to a State Near You
Jess and Imani delve into the laundry list of state abortion restrictions already introduced in 2018. Spoiler alert: not only are anti-choice legislators drafting many different kinds of restrictions, they are also employing new legal strategies to try and undo Roe v. Wade one bad bill at a time.
Feb 01, 2018
Hello! It's 2018 and Your Right to Vote Has Been Canceled
Jess and Imani explain which states are trying to prevent you from voting, why the Department of Justice went from helping to hurting, and how this all might play out in the courts in 2018.
Jan 18, 2018
'The Handmaid’s Tale' Is Coming to Life
In this episode, Jess and Imani talk with Rewire's Jenn Stanley and Sofia Resnick about their new audio documentary, "Marching Toward Gilead: The Rise of American Theocracy." This two-part documentary dives deep on Operation Save America (OSA), an organization committed to a theocratic vision of America, and reveals the alarming ways OSA’s fundamentalist far-right ideology has wormed its way into state and federal government. Jess and Imani also unpack the key laws involved, including the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act and the concept of "justifiable homicide."
Dec 14, 2017
Bakers and Bare Breasts Will Determine the Limits of Free Speech
Jess and Imani discuss protected speech, expressive conduct, going topless as protest speech, and whether or not you can refuse to bake a cake for a same-sex couple and call it "free speech." They also explain the convoluted process by which cases make it to the U.S. Supreme Court and read the latest listener reviews.
Nov 30, 2017
Eggs Are Not People and Your Sperm Is Not Sacred
Jess and Imani dive into the laws that define the concept of a person and how Congress and President Donald Trump are trying to sneak the anti-choice concept of "personhood" into everything from the Supreme Court to the latest tax legislation.
Nov 16, 2017
Beckett Lansbury and Ally Sheedy on How to Be a Better Ally to Trans People
Jess and Imani are joined by Ally Sheedy and her son Beckett Lansbury, a Title IX activist who is also transgender. Beckett explains why asking someone for their pronouns is important, why he decided to be public about his journey, and what allies to trans people can do to make a difference. Ally discusses her experience as the parent of a child coming out as transgender and what scares her the most about life under the Trump administration.
Nov 02, 2017
How the 14th Amendment Protects Your Freedom to Get Laid
Jess and Imani discuss how a few key clauses in the Constitution are being deployed in new lawsuits to fend off the latest attacks on sexual rights and the Affordable Care Act's birth control benefit. Plus, Satanists fight for abortion rights in Missouri and Imani reads the latest listener reviews.
Oct 19, 2017
The Government Can Make Me Say WHAT?
Whether you're a doctor in a private room with a patient or a football player kneeling during the national anthem, legal precedents defining your speech rights are being debated and established all the way up to the Supreme Court. Boom! Lawyered will help you make sense of it all.
Oct 05, 2017
Four Ways Neil Gorsuch Could Ruin Your Life
In the inaugural episode of Boom! Lawyered, Jessica and Imani discuss the opening of the Supreme Court term and the big decisions on the horizon. With newly-added Justice Neil Gorsuch, the Court may be lurching back to the right on cases that address immigrant detention, President Trump's Muslim ban, Ohio voter roll purges, and whether or not evangelicals can refuse service to same sex couples. What does that mean for anyone who might be affected? Listen and find out.
Sep 21, 2017
Coming 9/21: Boom! Lawyered
Coming on Thursday, 9/21: the premiere episode of Rewire Radio's new podcast, Boom! Lawyered. Every other week, Jess Pieklo and Imani Gandy deliver entertaining and helpful legal analysis for resistance-minded folks, including important justice issues coming up in the courts, how legal processes work, and what cases and their outcomes mean for all of us. Subscribe now!
Sep 12, 2017