January 11, 2006

Law Schools as Left-Wing Incubators

Here are some excerpts from this wonderful piece in the Wall St. Journal: Law school clinics weren't always incubators of left-wing advocacy. But once the Ford Foundation started disbursing $12 million in 1968 to persuade law schools to make clinics part of their curriculum, the enterprise turned into a political battering ram. Clinics came to embody a radical new conception that emerged in the 1960s -- the lawyer as social-change agent. --- Florence Roisman, a housing rights activist at the Indiana University School of Law, has inspired clinicians nationwide with her supremely self-confident call to arms: "If it offends your sense of justice, there's a cause of action." --- Students help lead protests and then rustle up media coverage for those protests -- part of what the clinic calls "explor[ing] . . . ways of being a social justice lawyer." Students in Georgetown's State Policy Clinic work on "building a new economy that is inclusive, participatory and environmentally sustainable." Yale's Legislative Advocacy Clinic aims to move Connecticut toward "a more progressive agenda in taxing and spending revenue." --- Jeez... Wasn't it Shakespeare who wrote, "The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers."


Bruce -- Harper Blue said...

That last has always been the belief; it has nothing to do with politics. Indeed, someone on another planet once wrote, "The best way to solve a law question is to kill the legists arguing it; then the gods will have to listen to them instead of us."

Anonymous said...

The shakespear quote is out of context. Shakespeare's acknowledgment that the first thing any potential tyrant must do to eliminate freedom is to "kill all the lawyers" is, actually, acompliment to lawyers. He says that all lawyers must be killed first in order to implment tyranny. A lot of people use this quote wihtout knowing how it was used in context.