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."