should i go to law school :Having worked in legal education for numerous years, I have arrived at the conclusion that most people working in law schools don’t care about the ethical and moral integrity of their students. I have talked to dozens of law deans, heads of school, staff members and professors in the UK, America and Australia.
In my experience, very few want to talk about the problem, let alone do anything about it. Even if law schools are a conversion procedure (from morality, integrity and credibility to melancholy and gain ), it is one which makes the law faculties rich. To many in the faculty buildings, pupils are nothing more than a few on a page, a box to tick along with a hassle getting in the way of their real work; writing academic papers which no one will read.
If you struggle for it, you can receive an education that will teach you how you can think, how to criticize the law and how to create your own opinions about what exactly you examine. It is possible to pursue your dreams, pursue the job you need and resist the pull of free lunches, big salaries, famous paintings and million-dollar viewpoints. Now is the time to think about the individual who you need to be. Now’s the time to change a broken system. Now is the time to require a true education.
In a profession that was once so closely related to honor and public service, how did we can make a system which routinely churns out morally detached graduates, who’ve lost their way so deeply that their brains are literally damaged? Just how do we churned out pupils so detached from society that they never question the legislation, no matter how unjust that law could become?
Instead of public company, they are focused on private practice. Rather than helping the community, they’re concentrated on helping themselves. Instead of advancing society, they are focused on enriching their status, power and bank balance.
I understand your fantasies. I know them since I had been you, after. If you get one thing from this article it is this. Anything you know about law school isn’t right and whatever you know about lawyers is a fiction and not a realistic fiction in that.
The vast majority of attorneys spend their days working on paperwork, out of court, on morally neutral or negative cases. They are not working to make the planet a better location. They’re working to cement the existing system set up. They’re bastions of the status quo, however unjust that status quo may be. Law school is a training ground for this particular role, a conversion procedure made to take morally righteous young people and turn them into grey adults.
I knew of the word’selling out’ before I went to law school, but law school has been an instruction in the scale and extent of the issue. Cowered in unshaven rooms in underwear, nude with drunk and vision on pride.
The picture forms in your head of your prospective , standing in a court. It is the future so that you’re taller and sexier. All your workout patterns have paid . In your luxurious (pant) suit, you deliver a monologue in phrases so beautiful they place Shakespeare to pity. The jury are clinging to your word. The monologue lasts for just two minutes, but it says it all. The room is quiet while you pause radically for the finish. My client is INNOCENT.
When I walk past a lawyer on the road now, I would like to think that he or she cares about the poor, the downtrodden, the marginalised and the oppressed. Unfortunately, with few exceptions, I understand better.
You have spent years watching legal dramas, gut tingling at every argument spoken at a Hollywood courtroom. You have honed your skills in argumentation, practicing in your parents, parents and sexually inferior pals. You have trodden through the history books, digging out biographies of Nelson Mandela, Gandhi and Jefferson. You understand the speeches of Atticus Finch off by heart. “Courage isn’t a guy with a gun in his hand,” you continue telling the mirror, persuasively.
Graduate survey after grad survey shows a massive shift in priorities taking place in the intervening years. It’s difficult to blame this on anything aside from the instruction they have received. If law students become self-centred careerists during the course of their studies, then surely law schools are to blame?
You are living the fantasy. You are fighting for the little man against THE MAN. You are a pursuer of justice, wanting to change the world, to save humanity from itself, to correct the wrongs and to heal the ill, or at least to secure their adequate reimbursement from negligent malfeasance.
Someone in the public gallery starts clapping. The other person joins in and the whole room bursts into applause. The jury stands, announcing the defendant NOT GUILTY. Your telephone rings. It is the U.N.. They want you for their most recent case. You are the only man/woman for your job.
I’m writing this article in a part for a message to my younger self. There’s hope. There’s hope beyond law school, in different professions that can contribute to society. There is hope inside of law school also, so long as you can cling onto your ethical decency while your education tries to rip it away from you.
At the time, my hope was warranted. When you survey first year law students, they want to assist others, help the community, alter the world and serve people. When asked in their professions, they tip to law, charity, public service and individual rights. Very few mention working in investment banks or petroleum companies. Nobody mentions consulting.
I recall having hope. I was like you , recall. In my first-year, I remember sitting in the rear of the class, looking around at everybody in the room. These were the intellectual heavyweights of my generation. They’d scored over 99 percent in their high school examinations, for God’s sake.
They were brilliant, organized and diligent, and many of them knew it and weren’t afraid to brag. I envisioned the difficulties they would solve at graduation. Imagine what all this mind power can do if place towards the problems in the world, that I thought to myself.
Within their first year, law students display the very same levels of mental illness, on average, as the rest of the population. But by the time they graduatethey have three times as many mental disorders as everybody else. It ends up that caring just about yourself is not just bad for society, it is bad for your mind too. It gets even worse in law firms, where 60% of attorneys state they have depression or know a colleague who does.
You do not just wish to be a lawyer; you’re able to see it.
Just like their students, law schools themselves have sold out. You may view it in everything in the libraries to the’complimentary’ student events. Free lunches don’t pay for themselves. Law firms do not provide free ship cruises to pupils for nothing. There’s a chain attached to every deal, to each donation and also to every consultation that law businesses provide to the faculty.
There is much too much vested interest on the behalf of our law schools to allow them to objectively see the scale of this problem that they have created. Instead, law schools are secure in the idea they are delivering the right type of student that the economy needs. So long as law students have the proper skills, everything else is irrelevant.
It does not matter what those skills are utilized for. Nor does it matter if anyone benefits from the skills they are taught whilst beneath the university’s care.