Wednesday, April 13, 2011


My beloved alma mater has emphasized racial diversity since the glory days of rioting, the 1960s. I thought this was a good idea, despite the school taking the idea too far. For instance, it sets aside law review seats. Its URM alumni have mostly done well, and better than me in any event.

"Diversity" is a code word for "straight, white males need not apply." Guided by the AMA and ADA -- whatever they do, do the opposite -- the ABA wants the US Snooze rankings to incorporate diversity. Basically, enshrine the concept that "diverse" students benefit a law school more than, uh, non-"diverse" ones. Black student from Chicago, good. White student who emigrated from Serbia, bad. Diversity, good. Merit, bad.

This letter could have been written by Lewis Carroll. We're talking about a so-called professional organization, the ABA, which is controlled by large firms whose equity partners are nearly lily white. Sure, they employ "diverse" graduates, as non-partnership-track staff attorneys, contract attorneys, and coders. See Tom the Temp's blog.

To its credit, USNWR has so far resisted this effort to torture its rankings to appease the ABA. Seems measuring "diversity," and how much "diversity" to include in the ranking, is problematic.

Want diversity? Go to Cooley.

1 comment:

  1. Um, look, there really isn't a logically consistent way to complain that straight white males are being excluded by a power structure that consists almost completely of straight white males.

    I think people who try this have a valid complaint about being excluded, but they're also falling for a bait and switch. Instead of saying, "Those other guys are getting our slots!" Maybe look at the larger picture here. THERE ARE NO SLOTS YOU DOPES.

    Very, very few people will start out in law and enjoy a decent quality of life that allows repayment of loans. That's the problem. Not who gets a couple of the crumbs that are left.

    So instead of fighting over crumbs, maybe focus on the people doling out crumbs and direct complaints to things like, "Why are only crumbs available to a few people?" "Why are arbitrary distinctions being used to select the very few crumb recipients?" And, of course, "Who the hell put you in charge and why do I still accept your bullshit, let alone FIGHT for your approval?"

    So get over your small I-want-my-piece-of-the-pie quibbling and just demand the whole pie, dude. Who cares if some power structure is giving a little bit more here and a little bit less there, the problem is that the power structure is doling out small favors and kicks in return for boot licking. So pull in your tongue, stand up for yourself, and stop helping them do it.