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Law School Students Turn Catty after Scalia’s Example
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Antonin Scalia

Summary: Mr. Chemerinsky, dean at UC-Irvine School of Law, complains about Justice Scalia’s lack of respect to others with differing beliefs, but an opera about Scalia as a great friend to all challenges that.

The dean of UC-Irvine School of Law, Erwin Chemerinsky, has noticed a disturbing trend in the writing of his students. They have turned mean, filling their legal briefs with “derision and ad hominem barbs.” Chemerinsky knows who to blame for this sudden mean streak.

  
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Justice Antonin Scalia is known as the king of sarcasm in the high court but Chemerinsky thinks his latest remarks in the gay marriage case Obergefell v. Hodges have gone too far. Scalia compared the legal reasoning of the ruling majority votes to “fortune cookie” adages. He implied that Justice Anthony Kennedy should “hide his head in a bag”.

In Chemerinsky’s op-ed in the Los Angeles Times he wrote “Such mockery does not amount to a legal argument, it’s nothing more than an attack on the author’s writing technique. A litigator who compared an opponent’s brief to a fortune cookie likely would be, and should be, sanctioned by the court.”

Not everyone agrees with Chemerinsky’s criticism. The New Republic praised Scalia in an article but calling him the “foremost living practitioner of performative legal prose.” An opera just debuted about his friendship with political foe Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. It is a little ironic that Chemerinsky is complaining about Scalia’s lack of respect when there is an opera focused on how great a friend he is to others.

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Source: http://blogs.wsj.com/law/2015/07/15/law-school-dean-worries-that-scalias-sarcasm-is-spreading/

Photo: wikipedia.org





 

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