The Enlightened Bar

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A couple years ago I clipped some pages from recent Texas Bar Journal issues that had me shaking my head. I planned to write up a little article for Lew on it, but never got ’round to it and there was not enough for an article anyway. Glory be, the Internet and blogs makes it possible now. I just came across it cleaning out some old paper files, so here it is. “The Back Page” is interesting because here, in a magazine for Texas’ tens of thousands of lawyers, one would expect news about law or lawyers, tips for lawyers, etc., but the headlines on that page include: “Attorneys Answer Call for Cell Phones” (donating old cell phones for battered women to help prevent domestic violence); “Siebert, Cisneros to Headline TMCP [Texas Minority Counsel Program],” and “Lawyers Provide Legal Help to Flood Victims.” And see the July 2001 Executive Report, “Protecting the Best Interests of our Children,” full of 3rd grade civics class platitudes about public education and democracy.Why should I be surprised? Just because it’s Texas doesn’t mean the legal establishment isn’t liberal and rotten to the core. This is the same journal to which I submitted an article back in July 1993–”Oilfield Indemnity and ‘Separate Insurance’ Provisions in the Wake of Getty Oil”; I got a letter back saying that accepted my article for publication and it might take 9-12 months, but that if I qualified for the “Affirmative Action Plan for Legal Publications Policy”–i.e. if I proved I was black or Hispanic–they would publish it within a couple months. In other words, if you’re white, you get moved to the back of the bus. I was so offended by the rudeness that I withdrew my article and published it elsewhere.

2:54 pm on April 29, 2004