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SCHOLARSHIP ESSAY COMPETITION

2021 Essay Topic & Competition Information
Choose One:

First Question:
Olympian Caster Semenya is a South African intersex woman, assigned female at birth. She has both XY chromosomes and naturally elevated testosterone levels. After winning a gold medal in the 2009 World Championships, she was made to undergo sex testing, to determine her sex, and be cleared to compete the following year, as a woman. Subsequently, new World Athletics rules came into force preventing women like Semenya from participating in certain events unless they took medication to suppress their testosterone levels.
 
In 2015, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) issued new guidelines that require trans women athletes to declare their gender and not change that assertion for four (4) years, as well as demonstrate a testosterone level of less than ten (10) nanomoles per liter for at least one (1) year prior to competition and throughout the period of eligibility. Laurel Hubbard competed in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics making history as the first transgender weightlifter to compete in the Olympics. Hubbard qualified after having met international weightlifting rules following the IOC’s 2015 guidelines, which allowed her to compete without surgery provided that she took medication to lower her testosterone to below 10 nmol/l for 12 months. In recent months, the IOC has acknowledged that their guidelines are outdated and are working to publish new guidelines in the next few months that would provide guidance for International Federations in devising their own rules. 
 
Draft a memo advising of the following:
As the IOC creates its new guidelines that include the appropriate testosterone levels for intersex and transgender athletes that should be used, would mandates requiring the lowering of testosterone levels in trans athletes violate: (1) Title IX; (2) Title VII; (3) the U.S. Constitution’s Equal Protection Clause; or (4) the right to privacy cited in Griswold v Connecticut, 381 U.S. 479 (1965) [or the Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment]?
 
 
Second Question:
Recently, customizers of retail goods have come under scrutiny for wittingly selling customized lines of goods from well-known consumer product brands. There have been a number of lawsuits alleging trademark infringement, trademark dilution, and Unfair Competition, among other causes of action, by retailers whose goods were customized or upcycled by these companies and resold.

In 2015, Swatch Group sued Vortic (Hamilton International Ltd. v. Vortic LLC, 17-CV-5575 (AJN) (OTW) (S.D.N.Y. 2017)).  In 2017, Chanel sued What Goes Around Comes Around (Chanel, Inc. v. WHAT COMES AROUND GOES AROUND LLC, Dist. Court, SD New York 2020).  Most recently, Nike sued MSCHF for trademark infringement for the designer’s sale of 666 pairs of modified Nike sneakers, named “Satan Shoes” (Nike, Inc. v. MSCHF Product Studio, Inc., Docket No. 1:21-cv-01679 (E.D.N.Y.)).  Nike alleged MSCHF and its unauthorized Satan Shoes are likely to cause confusion and dilution and create an erroneous association between MSCHF's products and Nike’s products.

Draft a memo advising of the following:
  a.    In the case of Nike v. MSCHF, did MSCHF violate U.S.C. 1114, 15 U.S.C 1125(a) or 15 U.S.C 1125(c)? 
  b.    Does the First Sale Doctrine apply?

Please also consider the following in preparing your submission:
  1.    The Complaint: Nike, Inc. v. MSCHF Product Studio, Inc., Docket No. 1:21-cv-01679 (E.D.N.Y. (Please
         click here for a copy of the Complaint
).
  2.    Nike’s Motion for TRO (Please click here for a copy of Nike’s TRO).
  3.    MSCHF’s Letter in Response to Nike’s Motion for TRO (Please click here for a copy MSCHF’s
         Response
).