Paul L. Caron
Dean




Saturday, October 1, 2022

This Week's Ten Most Popular TaxProf Blog Posts

Kerr: Conservatives Should Oppose Boycott Of Yale Law Students In Judicial Law Clerk Hiring

Orin Kerr (UC-Berkeley), Boycotting Law Schools in Clerk Hiring As a Way to Influence Law School Culture:

Yale Law Logo (2020)Fifth Circuit Judge James Ho recently announced that he will be taking on cancel culture through his law clerk hiring practices. Judge Ho believes that the most significant cancel culture problems in legal education today are at Yale Law School. He has therefore decided that, in his capacity as a United States judge, he will no longer hire any Yale Law graduates as law clerks. And he is encouraging other judges to join him.

As I understand things from David Lat's useful coverage, Judge Ho's goal is to change the culture of law schools. By imposing a boycott, and by getting as many other conservative judges as he can to join him, he might discourage conservative applicants from enrolling at Yale Law School. That might pressure Yale Law School to change its culture. And that in turn might cause a shift in the culture at other schools.

This a bad idea, and I hope other judges do not adopt it. Given our blog's traditional readership among conservative judges and clerks, I thought I would take a minute here to say why. ...

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October 1, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Friday, September 30, 2022

Weekly Legal Education Roundup

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September 30, 2022 in Legal Education, Scott Fruehwald, Weekly Legal Ed Roundup | Permalink

A Prominent Federal Judge Says He Will No Longer Hire Law Clerks From Yale. Will Other Judges Follow?

David Lat (Original Jurisdiction), A Prominent Federal Judge Declares He Will No Longer Hire Clerks From Yale Law School:

Yale Law Logo (2020)And he's trying to get his fellow judges to join his boycott of YLS clerks—will it work?

Actions have consequences. And the problematic actions of Yale Law School when it comes to free speech, chronicled ad nauseam in these pages, could have consequences for YLS and its graduates—at least if one high-profile federal judge has his way.

This afternoon, at the Kentucky Chapters Conference of the Federalist Society, Judge James Ho of the Fifth Circuit delivered remarks about cancel culture, free speech, and intellectual diversity. After he discussed a series of distressing developments for free expression at several law schools, including but not limited to Yale Law—developments I won’t rehash here, having previously covered most of them in great detail—Judge Ho asked the audience: if cancel culture is a problem, then what can we do about it?

Judge Ho offered a few ideas. First, we should speak out against cancel culture and threats to free speech when we see them. Second, we should stop censoring ourselves, which is how cancel culture takes hold. Third, we can boycott institutions that engage in cancel culture.

To kick things off, Judge Ho announced a bold boycott of his own: starting today, he will no longer hire clerks from Yale Law School. And he explicitly invited his fellow federal judges to join him in adopting this policy. (News of Judge Ho’s boycott of YLS clerks was first reported by Nate Hochman of the National Review.) ...

Will other judges, most likely fellow conservative or Republican-appointed judges, join Judge Ho? I think it’s quite possible—because this is actually not the first time I’ve heard the idea floated. Judge Ho is the first judge to announce the anti-YLS policy publicly and to encourage others to join him. But I do know that other judges have already quietly adopted such a policy—and even privately encouraged others to join them. ...

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September 30, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Next Week’s Tax Workshops

Next Week's Tax Workshops - twitterMonday, October 3: Reuven Avi-Yonah (Michigan; Google Scholar) will present A New Framework For Taxing Cryptocurrencies (with Mohanad Salaimi (S.J.D. 2022, Michigan)) as part of the Loyola-L.A. Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please RSVP here.

Monday, October 3: Jeesoo Nam (USC; Google Scholar) will present Just Taxation of Crime as part of the San Diego Tax Law Speaker Series

Tuesday, October 4: Cliff Fleming (BYU; Google Scholar) will present Viewing the GILTI Rates Through a Tax Expenditure Lens (with Stephen Shay (Boston College; Google Scholar) & Robert Peroni (Texas)) at the Vienna University of Economics and Business.

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September 30, 2022 in Colloquia, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Struggling San Francisco Law School Slashes Class Size, Cancels Tuition

Reuters, Struggling San Francisco Law School Slashes Class Size, Cancels Tuition:

Golden Gate Logo (2023)Golden Gate University’s law school dramatically reduced the size of its first-year class and provided full scholarships to all new fulltime J.D. students this fall in a bid to improve sagging bar pass rates, reduce graduate debt loads and remain accredited.

The San Francisco law school intentionally enrolled just 21 new full-time J.D. students and 24 part-time students, down from 103 and 42, respectively, last year, law dean Colin Crawford said after the school announced the initiative on Thursday. That amounts to a 67% reduction in new students from a year ago.

All new full-time students are receiving scholarships covering three years of tuition—currently set at $52,500 a year—while about half of the new part-time students are also receiving free rides, Crawford said. He said he is unaware of any other law school that has eliminated tuition for an entire class of students.

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September 30, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Thursday, September 29, 2022

An Empirical Analysis Of The Environmental Law Hiring Market From 2011 - 2022

Alex Erwin (Florida International), So You Want to be an Environmental Law Professor …: An Empirical Analysis of the Environmental Law Hiring Market from 2011 - 2022, 49 Ecology L. Currents __ (2022):

EnvUsing data collected by Professor Sarah Lawsky for her annual entry level hiring report, I analyzed trends in the hiring of environmental law professors (“ELPs”) from 2011 - 2022.

Key findings include:

  • 2022 was a strong year for ELP hiring – 11 ELPs were hired. This made up 9% of the total market.
  • 60% of new ELPs attended a “T-14” school for their initial law degree – this is lower than the percentage of new hires from “T-14” schools across the market as a whole (75%).
  • 92% of new ELPs had a fellowship and/or an additional degree.
  • Additional degrees were more common among new ELPs (79%) than across the market as a whole (58%).
  • Since 2017, 50% of new ELPs possessed a doctorate degree.
  • Clerkships were less common among ELPs (43%) than across the market as a whole (57%).
  • 66% of new ELPs practiced law in some capacity before entering academia.
  • Women made up 60% of ELP hires, while they made up only 46% of hires across the market as a whole

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September 29, 2022 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education, Scholarship | Permalink

Are Discipline Code Proceedings Another Example Of Racial Disparities In Legal Education?

Andrea Anne Curcio (Georgia State) & Alexis Martinez (Georgia Tech), Are Discipline Code Proceedings Another Example of Racial Disparities in Legal Education?, 22 Md. J. Race Religion Gender & Class __ (2022):

Addressing racism within legal education has historically focused on diversifying the faculty and student body, as well as integrating teaching about institutional and structural racism into the law school curriculum. More recently, law school faculty have begun to focus on creating an inclusive campus culture, which requires looking at all systems and procedures that affect our students' sense of belonging and potential success as students and lawyers. One system that merits this attention is law school disciplinary code proceedings. This Article reviews studies from K-12, undergraduate, and lawyer disciplinary proceedings--all of which have found disparities exist. Given those findings, it is unlikely law school disciplinary code proceedings are a disparity-free zone. Because of the effect of disciplinary code proceedings on students' academic and career trajectories, as well as their emotional well-being, if law schools truly seek to address the institutional, structural, and interpersonal racism within our institutions, this area needs to be explored. 

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September 29, 2022 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education, Scholarship | Permalink

What Trump Gets Right About Harvard

Politico Magazine: What Trump Gets Right about Harvard, by Evan Mandery (CUNY; Google Scholar; Author, Poison Ivy: How Elite Colleges Divide Us (2022)):

Poison IvyClad in his trademark red sweater, Hall of Fame college basketball coach Bobby Knight introduced Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump to an enthusiastic audience of supporters in late September 2016. “I’ll tell you one thing for damn sure,” Knight bellowed. “I know how to win and he’s going to be the best winner we’ve had in a long time.”

Trump emerged to the theme from Rocky, praised Knight’s incredible winning record, and then launched into a diatribe about elite colleges and universities. Two months earlier, Hillary Clinton had proposed to make public college free for middle-class families. Trump would have none of that. “Universities get massive tax breaks for massive endowments,” Trump said, to boos and catcalls. “These huge multi-billion-dollar endowments are tax free,” he explained. “But too many of these universities don’t use the money to help with tuition and student debt. Instead, these universities use the money to pay their administrators or put donors’ names on buildings or just store the money, keep it, and invest it.” The chorus of boos loudened. “In fact, many universities spend more on private equity managers than on tuition programs.”

Trump’s persistent attacks on elites were a major component of his electoral strategy and remained a key part of his message during his presidency and subsequent exile. Condemning elites — particularly in higher education — has long been a part of the GOP playbook, but it’s even more key today. Last November, Republican Senate candidate J.D. Vance delivered a half-hour speech at the National Conservatism Conference titled, “The Universities are the Enemy.” Vance accused universities of pursuing “deceit and lies.” To applause, he said, “I think if any of us want to do the things that we want to do for our country and for the people who live in it, we have to honestly and aggressively attack the universities in this country.” Vance’s would-be Senate colleagues Josh Hawley — like Vance, a graduate of Yale Law School — and Ted Cruz — a graduate of Harvard — routinely attack elites and elite institutions.

To some extent, elite colleges are simply collateral damage in the culture war. Indeed, the thrust of Vance’s speech is about the need to break through the indoctrination of the liberal intelligentsia — via what he calls “red pilling,” a reference to The Matrix — where the “fundamental corruption” at the root of the system, as Vance put it, can’t be unseen once seen. “So much of what drives truth and knowledge, as we understand it in this country,” Vance said, “is fundamentally determined by, supported by and reinforced by the universities in this country.”

But that’s not the whole story. Another line of attack is about access. It’s about who gets to be part of the elite, and whether America has gotten a fair return on the massive investment that it has made in elite colleges. For, difficult as this might be for liberals to hear, almost everything Trump said to the crowd Bobby Knight had warmed up was true.

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September 29, 2022 in Book Club, Legal Education, Tax | Permalink

Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Subversive Legal Education: Reformist Steps Toward Abolitionist Visions

Christina John (New Jersey Appellate Division), Russell G. Pearce (Fordham), Aundray Jermaine Archer (Legal Aid Society of Westchester County), Sarah Medina Camiscoli (Public Counsel, Peer Defense Project, Yale) & Aron Pines (PEN America Writing for Justice), Subversive Legal Education: Reformist Steps Toward Abolitionist Visions, 90 Fordham L. Rev. 2089 (2022):

Fordham Law ReviewExclusivity in legal education divides traditional scholars, students, and impacted communities most disproportionately harmed by the legal education system. While traditional legal scholars tend to embrace traditional legal education, organic jurists—those who are historically excluded from legal education and those who educate themselves and their communities about their legal rights and realities—often reject the inaccessibility of legal education and its power. This Essay joins a team of community legal writers to imagine a set of principles for subversive legal education. Together, we—formerly incarcerated pro se litigants, paralegals for intergenerational movement lawyering initiatives, first-generation law students and lawyers, persons with years of formal legal expertise, and people who have gained expertise outside of law schools—bring together critical insight about the impact of legal education’s exclusivity and the means by which we have worked to expand access necessary for our survival. The Essay explores the frameworks of movement law, Black feminism, and abolition as impacted people look to reclaim experiences and create tools for subversive legal education that teaches that the law belongs to the people and how they themselves can make and change the law. 

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September 28, 2022 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education, Scholarship | Permalink

Early Decision Programs Pose Risks To Applicants And Law Schools Alike

Following up on my previous posts (links):  Law.com, Early Decision Programs Pose Risks to Applicants and Law Schools Alike:

A number of law schools offer Early Decision application programs, giving prospective students the benefit of an expedited application review process in exchange for a commitment to attend that institution. But history has shown there are a number of potential downsides for applicants, as well as for the schools offering these programs.

Overall, less than 40% of American Bar Association-accredited law schools in the U.S. offer Early Decision applications. However, among the top 52 law schools (top 50, including ties), that number jumps to approximately 67%, according to various sources, including PowerScore Test Preparation’s LSAT and Law School Admissions blog and Spivey Consulting’s blog.

Eleven of the T14s have Early Decision—Yale, Stanford and Harvard do not. ...

Early Decision acceptance almost always has a “binding” requirement, meaning that prospective students must sign on the dotted line that they will be attending that school and withdraw any applications to other schools, according to Powerscore’s blog.

Just within the past month, two law schools changed their policies—one adding Early Decision and another eliminating it.

Last week, Boston College Law School launched a new Early Decision admissions program to provide an expedited review. ...

But some schools have found Early Decision programs to be detrimental to the admissions process overall. On Aug. 31, the Office of Admissions at Notre Dame Law School announced the elimination of the Early Decision application program in an effort to promote a more inclusive admissions process, according to the school’s announcement.

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September 28, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Arkansas Law Professor Files State Claim Over Denial Of Named Professorship With $10,250 Stipend

Arkansas Democrat Gazette, UALR Law Professor Files Claim With State Claims Commission over Named Professorship:

SteinbuchA University of Arkansas at Little Rock law professor has filed a claim with the Arkansas State Claims Commission saying he was improperly denied a named professorship despite being the best-qualified faculty member for the position.

Robert Steinbuch said that his failure to receive the Arkansas Bar Foundation Professorship — which comes with a $10,250 stipend annually for four years — was "at least an abuse of discretion" by Dean Theresa Beiner of the W.H. Bowen School of Law at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, and he seeks an award of $10,250.

Beiner "did not employ the required donor selection criteria for the position, and improperly adopted a series of her own created substantive criteria, including arbitrarily limiting the time period of accomplishments considered to five years, which obviously benefits candidates without a long history of accomplishments," according to the claim. "Named Professorships are designed to reflect a career of accomplishments, which inevitably includes recent years, but are not designed to only consider recent accomplishments at the expense of also considering" the full records of candidates.

"Beiner filled the one Named Professorship she advertised with an applicant," Lindsey Gustafson — who has been a member of the faculty since 1998 and was appointed Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in 2020 — "who at minimum demonstrably and significantly didn't fulfill the requirements of the Arkansas Bar Foundation Professorship as well as Steinbuch did, if she (did) at all, which does not appear the case," according to the claim. "Had the rules been properly applied, Steinbuch would have received the Named Professorship and the accompanying $10,250, which he seeks in damages."

Arkansas Democrat Gazette, Conflict Continues:

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September 28, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Table Of Links To U.S. Law School Statements On Antiracism/Diversity

Elizabeth Mertz (Wisconsin; Google Scholar) & Frances Tung (American Bar Foundation), Table of Links to U.S. Law School Statements on Antiracism/Diversity:

This Table continues a data-sharing effort begun by Scharf & Merton, and continued by Tung & Mertz in a 2021 SSRN posting as part of a larger project on law school education funded by the American Bar Foundation and directed by Elizabeth Mertz. For this Table, we collected links and information posted on law schools' websites regarding diversity and antiracism. We searched using law schools' websites, Google, and the Law Deans Antiracist Clearinghouse Project (https://www.aals.org/antiracist-clearinghouse/). 

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September 27, 2022 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education, Scholarship | Permalink

If Legal Education Embraced Pay Transparency, Would Law Professors Emulate Hockey Players And Focus More On Scholarship And Less On Students?

Wall Street Journal, Success at Work Is Warped by Your Co-Workers’ Salaries:

Like most people with regular jobs that don’t require wearing skates to work, professional hockey players had no idea how much money their colleagues made—until one morning in 1990 when a newspaper published the salary of everyone in the National Hockey League.

It was an extreme case of a topic that captivates economists: pay transparency.

So not long ago, intrigued by the consequences of that overnight shock, a researcher decided to exploit this natural experiment hiding in plain sight. It led to insights that have never been so relevant about how one industry’s wage disclosure affected the performance of those employees and their entire teams.

Now a version of what happened in hockey is on the verge of happening across the U.S.

The country is nearing a crossroads in the battle over salary transparency that would bring major changes to some of the nation’s most powerful companies from Wall Street to Silicon Valley.

small number of states already have wage-disclosure laws that require most workplaces to list pay ranges on their job postings. These policies meant to narrow gender pay gaps could become more common, as New York City is set to enact sweeping legislation in November and California sent a bill to the governor’s desk for a decision by the end of September.

Talking about money in the office used to be taboo. But younger workers are more comfortable discussing how much they make, a phenomenon their older colleagues find as befuddling as TikTok. As it turns out, there are hidden effects of pay transparency that warp the way people view success, and that’s why hockey’s unplanned experiment is worth another look today: We could all learn a thing or two from a few hundred people a few decades ago.

That moment of mass disclosure in the NHL is the focus of a new paper by James Flynn, an economics Ph.D. candidate at the University of Colorado [Salary disclosure and individual effort: Evidence from the National Hockey League]. Plenty of studies have shown that salary transparency affects employee satisfaction. This one measures their production.

The employees who discovered they were paid less than their peers didn’t suddenly put in less effort at work. They just exerted a different kind of effort.

In a likely response to what they perceived as unfair pay, these NHL players sacrificed defense and shifted their attention to offense, since players who were better at offense commanded higher salaries in contract negotiations. They had seen the skills their labor market rewarded—and they were following the money. But this was counterproductive. The performance of their teams suffered when they altered their individual play. ...

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September 27, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Ruth Markel Publishes Book On Her Son Dan's Murder, Sees Her Grandchildren For The First Time In Six Years

Ruth Markel, The Unveiling: A Mother's Reflection on Murder, Grief, and Trial Life (Sept. 20, 2022):

Markel Book (2022)Ruth Markel is the mother of the late Dan Markel, a noted law professor who was murdered in Tallahassee, Florida in 2014.

In The Unveiling, she describes her experiences since the day of Dan’s death from several distinct perspectives:

  • As a devastated mother with the unique human perspective of becoming a homicide survivor and victim.
  • As a woman whose attempts to achieve normalcy and live a healthy life are continually interrupted by painful reminders, a rollercoaster of hearings, frequently changing trial dates, verdicts, and appeals.
  • As an engaged citizen using what she has learned to help other victims of homicide and violent crimes recover from trauma and begin an optimistic outlook on life.
  • As an insider who shows how our collective network of family, friends, and experts—including a murder coach—have helped her family remain involved, motivated, and hopeful.
  • As a grandmother who had not been allowed to see her grandchildren in many years, she used advocacy to inspire the Florida State Legislature to pass a grandparent visitation bill.
  • And as an experienced author of nine books using the written word to effectively address the shift from grief to promise.

Toronto Sun, Mom's Quest to Solve University Professor's Murder:

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September 27, 2022 in Book Club, Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Monday, September 26, 2022

Legal Ed News Roundup

Richmond And UC-Hastings Law Schools Remove Names With Racist Pasts

ABC 8 News, University of Richmond Renames Law School:

Richmond (2018)The name of a businessman who owned slaves will no longer be on the University of Richmond Law School, according to an announcement.

The name T.C. Williams will be removed from the University of Richmond Law School, adhering to the university’s naming principals which prohibit the school from naming buildings, programs, professorships or other entities for a person who directly engaged in trafficking and/or enslavement of others of openly advocated for the enslavement of people.

University of Richmond president Kevin Hallock and the Board of Trustees announced the name change to members of the UR community via email just after 5 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 23. ...

The email explained the university’s board voted unanimously to change the official name of the law school from the T.C. Williams School of Law, which it has held since 1920, to the University of Richmond School of Law.

The nine-paragraph message detailed T.C. Williams’ connection to the university as a student at Richmond College from 1846 to 1849, a trustee from 1881 until his death in 1889 and a donor who helped establish the School of Law. William’s descendants also served on the board.

The email included research garnered from legal documents that showed Williams, who owned a tobacco businesses in the area, enslaved dozens of people to work for the business and serve him in his personal life.

Chancellor & Dean David Faigman, Statement on Governor Signing AB 1936:

UC-Hastings (San Francisco) (2022)I write to you today with further updates on our name change journey since my last message on July 27th. In August, Assembly Bill 1936 successfully passed in both the California Senate and Assembly with resounding support. In fact, there were zero “no” votes in either house. This bill allows us to legally change the name of the College and reaffirm our commitment to restorative justice initiatives with the California tribes most impacted by the acts of our founder and first dean, Serranus Hastings.

Today, Governor Newsom signed the bill, with an effective date of January 1, 2023. ...

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September 26, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

TaxProf Blog Weekend Roundup

Sunday, September 25, 2022

NY Times Op-Ed: Parents, Dementia, Memory, And God

New York Times Op-Ed:  Our Memory Is Flawed. Luckily, God’s Isn’t., by Tish Harrison Warren (Priest, Anglican Church; Author, Prayer in the Night: For Those Who Work or Watch or Weep (2021) (Christianity Today's 2022 Book of the Year)):

Warren 3Mom is in the middle stages of Alzheimer’s disease. She knows who we are and remembers everyone’s names. She can tell you who her third-grade teacher was, but not what happened a week ago or a month ago or 10 minutes ago. ... I wonder in the months and years to come what she will continue to remember about her life, about who she used to be.

Memory, for all of us, speaks to our inherent limitations. Forgetting is part of what it is to be human. That becomes more evident when facing Alzheimer’s. But even for those of us who do not have dementia, almost all of our days have faded from view.

What was I doing three years ago today? Or five? Or ten? What conversations did I have? Who was I with? Did I find joy or discouragement that day? I have no idea. I can only tell you the broad outline: where I lived, where I worked, how old I was. The details — those invaluable and ordinary conversations, coincidences and choices that make up each day of our lives — are lost to time. There are, of course, beautiful memories that we hold onto, moments that glow amber in our minds. And dark moments that we may rather erase. But even our most precious days may eventually be forgotten. ...

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September 25, 2022 in Faith, Legal Education | Permalink

Cardozo Law School Fights Fallout From Yeshiva University LGBT Club Case

Following up on last Sunday's post, Supreme Court (5-4) Denies Yeshiva University Request To Block State Ruling On Recognition Of LGBTQ Club; Yeshiva Responds By Canceling All Student Groups:  Reuters, Cardozo Law Fights Fallout From Yeshiva University LGBT Club Case:

Yeshiva Pride LogoThe Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law is taking steps to distance itself from the policies of its parent institution Yeshiva University, after Yeshiva's legal efforts to block an undergraduate LGBT student group reached the U.S. Supreme Court.

More than 50 Cardozo law faculty have signed a letter opposing the university's ban, and the law school is launching a six-week course devoted to the LGBT civil rights movement, which it announced to students as the Supreme Court was weighing the case.

"Cardozo Law School will continue to support our LGBTQ+ students, faculty, administrators and alumni fully and without reservation," Cardozo spokesperson John DeNatale said on Monday. He declined to comment on the Yeshiva litigation.

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September 25, 2022 in Faith, Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Saturday, September 24, 2022

This Week's Ten Most Popular TaxProf Blog Posts

Death Of John Donaldson (William & Mary)

Virginia Gazette, Former W&M Law Professor Remembered as a ‘Great and Good Man’:

DonaldsonFormer William & Mary law professor John Edward Donaldson, recognized nationally and throughout Virginia for his knowledge of tax law, died Tuesday after a short illness. He was 84.

Donaldson retired after a 35-year teaching career at the college in 2001 as the Ball Professor of Law. Additionally, he worked for years in various leadership capacities with the Virginia Bar Association and served two four-year terms on the James City County Board of Supervisors.

“John Donaldson was a great and good man,” said former William & Mary president and law school dean Timothy J. Sullivan, who joined the law school faculty when Donaldson was already “a respected colleague.” ...

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September 24, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education, Obituaries, Tax, Tax News | Permalink

Deflect, Delay, Deny: A Case Study Of Segregation By Law School Faculty

Briana Rosenbaum (Tennessee), Deflect, Delay, Deny: A Case Study of Segregation by Law School Faculty, 90 Tenn. L. Rev. __ (2022):

Many histories of school desegregation litigation center on the natural protagonists, such as the lawyers and plaintiffs who fought the status quo. Little attention is paid to the role that individual faculty members played in the perpetuation of segregated legal education. When the antagonists in the historiographies do appear, it is usually as anonymous individuals and groups. Thus, “the Board of Regents” refused to change its policy and “the University” denied a person’s application.

But recently discovered and rarely accessed historic documents provide proof of the direct role that some law school faculty members played in the perpetuation of segregation. For example, records at the University of Tennessee College of Law (“UT Law”) reveal that several UT Law faculty members helped to design and implement UT’s segregation strategy, including by acting as legal and policy advisers to state and university officials and by organizing and executing a concerted obfuscation plan to deny black applicants based not on their race, but on “neutral” technicalities. These faculty members are honored and memorialized still today, including through a named professorship and in portraits hanging on campus walls.

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September 24, 2022 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education, Scholarship | Permalink

Celebrating 50 Years Of Pepperdine's Malibu Campus

Friday, September 23, 2022

Weekly Legal Education Roundup

Next Week’s Tax Workshops

Tax Workshops (Big)Monday, September 26: Alex Raskolnikov (Columbia) will present Should Only the Richest Pay More? as part of the UC-Irvine Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please RSVP here

Monday, September 26: Jose Pedro Bastos Neves (The New School) & Willi Semmler (The New School) will present A Proposal for a Carbon Wealth Tax: Modelling, Empirics, and Policy as part of the Loyola-L.A. Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please contact Thedore Seto

Tuesday, September 27: Jennifer Taub (Western New England; Google Scholar) will present No Income Taxation Until Basic Accommodations: Toward Tax Justice in America as part of the NYU Tax Policy and Public Finance Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please contact Daniel Shaviro.

Tuesday, September 27: Roberta Mann (Oregon) will present Taxation Support for Zero-Emission Cars in Fleets: Cases from the US and Australia (with Diane Kraal (Monash; Google Scholar)) as part of the UC-Hastings Tax Speaker Series. If you would like to attend, please contact Heather Field.

Thursday, September 29: Alex Raskolnikov (Columbia) will present Should Only the Richest Pay More? as part of the Columbia Faculty Workshop.

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September 23, 2022 in Colloquia, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

BC Law School Launches Binding Early Decision Admissions Program After Notre Dame Ditched Theirs Due To Equity And Diversity Concerns

Following up on my previous post, Notre Dame Ditches Binding Early Admissions. Will Other Top 30 Law Schools Follow?:  BC Law Magazine, Early Decision Added to Admission Options:

BC Law Logo (2018)Boston College Law School has launched a new Early Decision admissions program to provide an expedited review, with special consideration that BC Law is the applicant’s first choice. ...

Early Decision is different from Early Action. The latter is a means for prospective students to apply for and receive a determination of admission in advance of a school’s regular response date, according to the National Association for College Admission Counseling. No strings are attached.

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September 23, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Thursday, September 22, 2022

Putting The Bar Exam On Constitutional Notice: Cut Scores, Race & Ethnicity, And The Public Good

Scott Johns (Denver), Putting the Bar Exam on Constitutional Notice: Cut Scores, Race & Ethnicity, and the Public Good, 45 Seattle U. L. Rev. __ (2022):

Nothing to see here. Season in and season out, bar examiners, experts, supreme courts, and bar associations seem nonplussed, trapped by what they see as the facts, namely, that the bar exam has no possible weaknesses, at least when it comes to alternative licensure mechanisms, that the bar exam is not to blame for disparate racial impacts that spring from administration of this ritualistic process, and that there are no viable alternatives in the harsh cold world of determining minimal competency for the noble purpose of protecting the public from legal harms. All a lie, of course.

But rather than challenging our assumptions, state bar associations and bar examiners keep going as business as usual. We might even say that it’s just the cost of doing business. Yes, some bar applicants will pay the price, they admit, by not passing bar exams, but protecting the public good demands that we be demanding, that we not yield to temptation to soften our approach. We can never be too cautious when it comes to protecting the public. After all, the public good is at risk. Or is it?

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September 22, 2022 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education, Scholarship | Permalink

Doug Shackelford Abruptly Retires As UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School Dean: ‘I’m Very Tired’

Triangle Business Journal, UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School Searching For New Leader After Shackelford Abruptly Retires:

Shackleford (2022)After nearly a decade in the role, Doug Shackelford has suddenly stepped down as the dean of the UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School.

Shackelford's abrupt retirement is effective today following the university announcing the move on Friday afternoon. A specific reason for the timing of the decision was not given. ...

Shackelford's retirement comes a few weeks after a former UNC-Chapel Hill student, Angelica Rose Brown, filed a lawsuit against three Kenan-Flagler professors and the UNC Board of Governors alleging race discrimination and retaliation. Shackelford is not mentioned in the lawsuit, which was filed Aug. 30 in the U.S. District Court for North Carolina’s Middle District.

The Daily Tar Heel reports that in a letter sent to faculty and staff Friday morning, Shackelford said, "I have run as hard as I could for as long as I could. I can’t continue at the pace this School deserves. I regret that I didn’t anticipate things better. I could tell that I was not recovering from long weeks as quickly as I had in the past and I was unduly frustrated at times, but I failed to foresee this timing." ...

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September 22, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education, Tax, Tax News, Tax Prof Moves | Permalink

Former Texas Southern Dean Sues Law School Over Loss Of Tenure

Following up on my previous posts (links below):  Houston Chronicle, Former Texas Southern University Law School Dean Sues School Over Loss of Tenure:

BullockTexas Southern University’s former law school dean sued her ex-employer in federal court Wednesday, alleging that she was stripped of her position and tenure without cause.

Joan R. M. Bullock has also accused the university of breaching her contract and retaliating for bringing to the president and provost “matters of public concern” — including ones that she said could potentially affect the school’s ability to remain accredited.

“This affects me in a dramatic way,” Bullock said. “I believe in (Texas Southern’s) mission and its goals, and now it is putting me in an awkward position in looking for other employment. I think it is highly unfair what they have done.” ...

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September 22, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Wednesday, September 21, 2022

Explicit Instruction In Legal Education: Boon Or Spoon?

Beth A. Brennan (Montana), Explicit Instruction in Legal Education: Boon or Spoon?, 52 U. Mem. L. Rev. 1 (2021): 

While legal education unquestionably hones students’ critical thinking skills, it also privileges students who are faster readers and have prior background knowledge or larger working memories. According to the prevailing mythology of law school pedagogy, students learn by struggling to find their way out of chaos. Only then is their learning deep enough to permit them to engage in critical thinking and legal reasoning.

Learning theory and research suggest this type of “inquiry” learning is not an effective way to introduce novice learners to a subject. Lacking basic substantive and procedural knowledge, students’ struggles are often unproductive and dispiriting.

Initial explicit instruction early in a student’s learning more predictably creates stable, accurate knowledge. Because higher-order thinking depends on having some knowledge, ensuring students have a strong foundation of substantive and procedural knowledge increases the likelihood that they will develop critical thinking skills.

However, legal education uniformly dismisses anything that looks like “spoon-feeding.” If the academy is going to incorporate learning theory into its pedagogy, it must understand and articulate the differences between spoon-feeding and explicit instruction.

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September 21, 2022 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education, Scholarship | Permalink

Tax Prof Moves, 2020-23

Here is a list of (1) visiting assistant professor hires; (2) entry-level hires; (3) lateral moves; (4) promotions, tenures, chairs, and professorships; (5) administrative appointments: (6) visits; and (7) retirements involving tax professors in 2016-2020. (Email me any omissions.) 

MovesVAP Hires

Entry Level Hires

Lateral Moves

Promotions, Tenures, Chairs, and Professorships

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September 21, 2022 in Legal Education, Tax, Tax Prof Moves | Permalink

Where Have All The (Aspiring) Law Profs Gone?

Following up on my previous post, Law School Entry-Level Faculty Hiring Is Down 22% (59% From 2008):  The Verdict Op-Ed:  Where Have All the (Aspiring) Law Profs Gone?, by Vikram Amar (Dean, Illinois) & Jason Mazzone (Illinois):

It’s law professor hiring season again, the time of year when (most of) the nation’s 200 or so ABA-accredited law schools begin the search to add to their full-time tenured/tenure-track ranks. ... Even though the in-person recruitment conference has been scrapped since the pandemic began, candidates still fill out [Faculty Appointments Register (FAR)] forms, and hiring committees still comb through the entries in order to set up screening interviews (often virtual) to help schools decide which candidates to invite (and candidates to decide which invitations to accept) for full-blown multi-day on-campus visits that include “job talks” (formal presentations of academic works in front of the whole faculty), small-group faculty interviews, meetings with deans and perhaps other administrators, campus tours, and social events. ...

One trend is striking: the relatively small (and decreasing) number of FAR entries the last few years. Whereas a decade or so ago it was not uncommon to see between 1,000 and 2,000 FAR entries, this year the number will likely be (the tally isn’t yet final since there are a few separate installments over the August-October timeframe) between 300 and 400. ...

[I]t behooves all of us to think (and even speculate) a bit about what accounts for the decline. Here are a handful of possibilities:

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September 21, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Amy Wax Submits 59-Page Memo Seeking Postponement Of Penn Disciplinary Proceedings, Citing Cancer Treatment

Following up on my previous posts (links below):  Daily Pennsylvanian, Amy Wax Submits Memorandum For Dismissal of Disciplinary Proceedings, Citing Cancer Treatment:

WaxAmy Wax's legal team submitted a memorandum seeking the dismissal of the ongoing University disciplinary proceedings against her on grounds of a "disabled state" from illness.

The 59-page memorandum claims that Wax — the tenured Penn Law School professor who is facing potential punishment for her inflammatory conduct — is undergoing treatment for “life-threatening” cancer, and asks for postponement of the ongoing proceedings until “at least” the end of the year. David Shapiro, Wax’s lawyer, sent the document to Faculty Senate Chair Vivian L. Gadsden, who is overseeing the proceedings, on Aug. 31:

The substantive and procedural problems with the proceedings instituted by Dean Ruger are immense and require immediate rectification before any more harm is done to the University, the Law School, Professor Wax, and other University stakeholders. As Chair of the Faculty Senate, you are “the principal executive officer” of the Senate, and you have “such powers as are appropriate to the office.” Faculty Senate Rules, Rule 4 (“Duties of the Chair”). I therefore respectfully submit this memorandum in support of Prof. Wax’s request that you, as Chair:

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September 20, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

St. Thomas (FL) Seeks To Hire A Clinical Tax Professor

St. Thomas (FL) Faculty Posting:

St-thomas-lawBased on the College of Law’s primary curriculum needs we are especially interested in candidates with teaching, scholarship and research interests in the subject-matter areas of Constitutional Law, Civil Procedure, Criminal Law and Procedure, Evidence, Professional Responsibility, Property, Torts, Wills and Trusts, as well as Appellate Advocacy Clinic and Tax Clinic. ...

We are now accepting applications for start dates of January 2023 and August 2023, and applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until the positions are filled. Application materials must include a cover letter addressing teaching interests, a detailed research agenda, the title of the applicant’s job-talk, a C.V., preferably with links to publications, and at least three references.

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September 20, 2022 in Legal Education, Tax, Tax Prof Jobs | Permalink

July 2022 Florida Bar Exam Results: Florida International Is #1 For 8th Year In A Row

Florida Bar 2The July 2022 Florida bar passage rates by school are out. For the eighth year in a row, Florida International is #1. Here are the results for the 11 Florida law schools, along with each school's U.S. News ranking (Florida and overall):

Bar Pass

Rank (Rate)

 

School

US News Rank

FL (Overall)

1 (81.2%)

Florida Int'l

4 (98)

2 (78.7%)

Florida

1 (21)

3 (74.9%)

Florida State

2 (47)

4 (72.0%)

Miami 

3 (73)

5 (71.4%)

Ave Maria

Tier 2

6 (64.0%)

Stetson

5 (111)

7 (60.5%)

St. Thomas

Tier 2

8 (54.5%)

Nova

Tier 2

9 (52.6%)

Florida A&M

Tier 2

10 (49.2%)

Barry

Tier 2

11 (30.8%)

Florida Coastal

Tier 2

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September 20, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Ed Rankings, Legal Education | Permalink

ABA Gives Puerto Rico Law Schools 3 Additional Years To Meet 75% Bar Pass Standard; Supreme Court Lowers Bar Exam Cut Score To Help Schools Keep Accreditation

ABA Journal, 2 of Puerto Rico's 3 Law Schools Will Get More Time to Meet Bar Pass Standard:

ABA Legal Ed (2021)Following repeated failures to show compliance with Standard 316, which requires a bar passage rate of at least 75% within two years, the ABA has given an extension of up to three years to Inter American University of Puerto Rico School of Law and Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico School of Law. ...

At Inter American, the pass rate was 60% for 2019 graduates, 55.43% for 2018 graduates, and 64.49% for 2017 graduates, according to ABA data.

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September 20, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Monday, September 19, 2022

Legal Ed News Roundup

2022 Meta-Ranking Of Flagship U.S. Law Reviews

Bryce Clayton Newell (Oregon), 2022 Meta-Ranking of Flagship US Law Reviews:

This is an updated ranking of the top flagship law reviews at US law schools (updated as of September 16, 2022). For a summary and more details about method, see below the table. You can also compare MetaRanking since 2018, including changes in ranking over time here: MetaRank Comparison 2018-2022.

The MetaRank was computed by averaging ranks (using a 25% weighting from each) of the following rankings:

prRank = US News Peer Reputation score ranking (averaged over 10 years);
usnRank = overall US News school ranking (averaged over 10 years);
wluRank = Washington & Lee Law Journal Ranking;
gRank = Google Scholar Metrics ranking (note: “1000” means journal was not indexed).

Journal MetaRank prRank usnRank wluRank gRank
Harvard Law Review 1 1 3 1 1
Yale Law Journal 2 3 1 2 2
Stanford Law Review 3 2 2 3 5
Columbia Law Review 4 4 5 5 3
California Law Review 5 7 9 4 4
University of Chicago Law Review 6 5 4 12 6
University of Pennsylvania Law Review 7 9 7 6 8
New York University Law Review 8 6 6 13 9
Michigan Law Review 8 8 9 8 9
Georgetown Law Journal 10 14 14 7 9
Duke Law Journal 11 11 11 11 12
Northwestern University Law Review 12 13 12 14 16
Virginia Law Review 13 10 8 22 17
Texas Law Review 13 15 15 15 12
Vanderbilt Law Review 15 17 17 18 7
UCLA Law Review 16 16 16 10 18
Notre Dame Law Review 17 22 21 9 12
Minnesota Law Review 18 20 20 16 20
Cornell Law Review 19 12 13 23 29
Boston University Law Review 20 24 21 20 15
Southern California Law Review 21 19 19 26 27
Iowa Law Review 22 29 25 21 18
Washington University Law Review 23 18 18 29 34
Emory Law Journal 24 21 23 33 24
George Washington Law Review 25 25 24 31 23
Boston College Law Review 26 29 30 25 21
UC Davis Law Review 27 26 37 19 25
Fordham Law Review 28 34 39 17 22
William & Mary Law Review 29 33 33 24 31
Indiana Law Journal 30 32 34 27 29
North Carolina Law Review 31 23 31 35 34
Washington Law Review 32 36 38 30 28
University of Illinois Law Review 33 39 43 28 26
Wisconsin Law Review 34 27 32 39 39
Alabama Law Review 35 38 25 36 41
Ohio State Law Journal 36 31 35 37 43
Florida Law Review 37 37 41 32 38
Washington and Lee Law Review 38 41 36 44 42
Arizona State Law Journal 39 40 27 47 51
UC Irvine Law Review 40 28 28 56 55
Arizona Law Review 41 44 45 41 39
Hastings Law Journal 42 43 55 40 32
Georgia Law Review 43 35 29 43 64
Maryland Law Review 44 48 48 45 37
University of Colorado Law Review 45 42 46 46 45
Cardozo Law Review 46 53 59 34 36
Wake Forest Law Review 47 45 42 50 48
Brigham Young University Law Review 48 50 40 55 48
Utah Law Review 49 49 47 49 50
American University Law Review 50 51 77 38 32
University of Richmond Law Review 51 69 52 53 53
Houston Law Review 52 60 56 58 55
Tulane Law Review 53 46 51 73 64
Temple Law Review 54 57 54 64 64
Connecticut Law Review 55 52 57 52 83
SMU Law Review 55 65 50 74 55
George Mason Law Review 57 58 44 59 85
Denver Law Review 58 56 74 75 52
Lewis & Clark Law Review 59 86 90 42 43
Chicago-Kent Law Review 59 75 87 54 45
Georgia State University Law Review 61 64 65 80 53
University of Miami Law Review 62 54 69 81 60
Brooklyn Law Review 62 70 88 51 55
Tennessee Law Review 64 66 60 72 1000
Pepperdine Law Review 65 62 58 83 70
Nevada Law Journal 66 76 66 62 71
Case Western Reserve Law Review 67 68 67 81 61
Florida State University Law Review 68 47 49 98 85
Oklahoma Law Review 68 78 72 68 61
University of Kansas Law Review 70 67 73 85 61
Missouri Law Review 71 71 64 79 75
Seton Hall Law Review 72 88 61 69 73
Nebraska Law Review 73 84 70 78 64
Villanova Law Review 74 82 75 77 64
Penn State Law Review 75 92 68 61 80
Michigan State Law Review 76 91 92 48 75
Kentucky Law Journal 76 72 63 86 85
Buffalo Law Review 78 99 101 60 55
South Carolina Law Review 79 85 94 66 72
Seattle University Law Review 80 93 115 67 45
Loyola University Chicago Law Journal 81 73 76 89 83
Oregon Law Review 82 54 86 96 1000
San Diego Law Review 83 59 81 115 85
Saint Louis University Law Journal 83 98 91 87 64
University of Cincinnati Law Review 85 89 79 98 79
Texas A&M Law Review 86 105 100 71 1000
CUNY Law Review 87 112 122 57 1000
Hofstra Law Review 88 101 114 63 73
Marquette Law Review 89 95 103 75 80
Rutgers University Law Review 90 74 82 126 75
Santa Clara Law Review 91 80 113 70 102
Baylor Law Review 92 87 53 113 1000
Indiana Law Review 93 81 104 101 85
University of Pittsburgh Law Review 93 63 80 121 107
Arkansas Law Review 95 94 84 103 91
Loyola of L.A. Law Review 96 61 71 132 110
UMKC Law Review 97 108 117 65 91
New Mexico Law Review 97 90 83 104 1000
Louisiana Law Review 99 104 93 95 91
Syracuse Law Review 100 96 99 97 101

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September 19, 2022 in Law Review Rankings, Legal Ed Rankings, Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education | Permalink

CSI: Law School. Forensic Science In Legal Education.

Brandon L. Garrett (Duke; Google Scholar), Glinda Cooper (Yeshiva) & Quinn Beckham (Duke), Forensic Science in Legal Education, 51 J.L. & Educ. 1 (2022):

CSIIn criminal cases, forensic science reports and expert testimony play an increasingly important role in adjudication. More states now follow a federal reliability standard, following Daubert v. Merrell Dow Pharmaceuticals and Rule 702, which call upon judges to assess the reliability and validity of such scientific evidence. Little is known about what education law schools provide regarding forensic and scientific evidence, or what types of specialized training they receive on scientific methods or evidence. Whether law schools have added forensic science courses to their curricula in recent years was not known. In order to better understand the answers to those questions, in late 2019 and Spring 2020, we conducted searches to identify course offerings in forensic sciences at U.S. law schools and then surveyed their instructors, asking for syllabi and information concerning how the courses are offered, how regularly, and with what coverage.

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September 19, 2022 in Legal Ed Scholarship, Legal Education, Scholarship | Permalink

TaxProf Blog Weekend Roundup

Sunday, September 18, 2022

Low Anthropology: The Unlikely Key To A Gracious View Of Others (And Yourself)

David Zahl (Director, Mockingbird Ministries), Low Anthropology: The Unlikely Key to a Gracious View of Others (and Yourself) (2022):

Low AnthropologyMany of us spend our days feeling like we're the only one with problems, while everyone else has their act together. But the sooner we realize that everyone struggles like we do, the sooner we can show grace to ourselves and others.

In Low Anthropology, popular author and theologian David Zahl explores how our ideas about human nature influence our expectations in friendship, work, marriage, and politics. We all go through life with an "anthropology"—an idea about what humans are like, our potentials and our limitations. A high anthropology—thinking optimistically about human nature—can breed perfectionism, anxiety, burnout, loneliness, and resentment. Meanwhile, Zahl invites readers into a biblically rooted and surprisingly life-giving low anthropology, which fosters hope, deep connection with others, lasting love, vulnerability, compassion, and happiness.

Zahl offers a liberating view of human nature, sin, and grace, showing why the good news of Christianity is both urgent and appealing. By embracing a more accurate view of human beings, readers will discover a true and lasting hope.

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September 18, 2022 in Book Club, Faith, Legal Education | Permalink

Celebrities For Jesus: How Personas, Platforms, And Profits Are Hurting The Church

Katelyn Beaty (Editorial Director, Brazos Press), Celebrities for Jesus: How Personas, Platforms, and Profits Are Hurting the Church (2022):

BeatyMany Christian leaders use their fame and influence to great effect. Whether that popularity resides at the local church level or represents national or international influence, many leaders have effectively said to their followers, "Follow me as I follow Christ." But fame that is cultivated for its own sake, without attendant spiritual maturity and accountability, has a shadow side that runs counter to the heart of the gospel. Celebrity--defined as social power without proximity--has led to abuses of power, the cultivation of persona, and a fixation on profits.

In light of the fall of famous Christian leaders in recent years, the time has come for the church to reexamine its relationship to celebrity. Award-winning journalist Katelyn Beaty explores the ways fame has reshaped the American church, explains how and why celebrity is woven into the fabric of the evangelical movement, and identifies many ways fame has gone awry in recent years. She shows us how evangelical culture is uniquely attracted to celebrity gurus over and against institutions, and she offers a renewed vision of ordinary faithfulness, helping us all keep fame in its proper place.

With insight and empathy, Katelyn Beaty diagnoses the broken patterns of leadership we see in the church. This book shows us the isolation and loneliness and abuse that can come from, and contribute to, these expectations of celebrity. But this book is no mere jeremiad. It points the way forward to renewed visions of power, accountability, and humility.
Russell Moore, chair of public theology, Christianity Today

Christianity Today Book Review, Christian Celebrity Isn’t a Problem to Fix, But an Eye to Gouge Out:

There is such a thing as making a problem too easy. And there are times where that error can yield devastating consequences.

This thought came to mind while reading Katelyn Beaty’s book Celebrities for Jesus: How Personas, Platforms, and Profits Are Hurting the Church. The book has much to admire. Beaty, a writer and former CT editor, is a keen observer of power dynamics within institutions and movements, for starters. She also is a good student of contemporary technological trends, with a well-developed understanding of how digital technology has transformed and exacerbated the problems of fame and celebrity both in the church and outside.

What’s more, I found her prudent counsel for how we might curb the worst excesses of celebrity to be wise and admirable. Her conversation partners in the final chapter are, if predictable, also wise: Henri Nouwen, Eugene Peterson, Andy Crouch, Dallas Willard.

Pulling punches
Yet for all its merits, I found the book to be ultimately too moderate in its critique. While Celebrities for Jesus is a wise book, it is also, for a certain type of evangelical, a relatively pleasant book. ... As Beaty profiles the many cases of egregious moral failure and abuse of power by Christian celebrities ranging from Mark Driscoll to Ravi Zacharias to Bill Hybels, she consistently tries to keep the fact of evangelical celebrity separate from the abuse of evangelical celebrity, holding out hope that we can have one without the other. Effectively, she holds out hope that you can have the huge online platform, get the massive six-figure book deal, enjoy the luxurious mansion, and be okay as long as you recognize the dangers of celebrity and don’t abuse your power.

In one passage she writes,

Christian leaders should always ask whether their spending signals modesty or opulence—especially to those they are ministering to. The point here is not that private jets are always evil (although, on the whole, I’d argue their problems far outweigh their temporary conveniences). Or that nice meals, second homes, and expensive clothes are always and everywhere wrong. The point here is that all these things in our time signify lavish displays of wealth. To keep the worldly lure of money in check, Christian leaders should cultivate financial modesty—and ask others to hold them accountable to it.

There is a tension between discussing problems inherent to celebrity and problems dealing with the abuse of celebrity. Teasing the two apart is seldom easy. Yet it seemed like much of the book’s rhetorical firepower was fixed on the latter rather than the former. Thus there are points where Beaty’s analysis suggests that we might avoid the pitfalls of celebrity if only the celebrities themselves would cut back on ostentation and excess, instead adopting healthier habits (and even pursuing a kind of obscurity).

But this doesn’t altogether work, as the passage above illustrates: If you have a private jet, you are being opulent. There is not a modest way of buying a private jet or, to use another example Beaty offers in that chapter, a $2,000 purse. By refusing to just say no to these displays, Beaty shrinks back from saying the hard thing and gives readers an out from the problem she’s highlighting. By pulling her punches in this way, Beaty tames the force of her critique.

Yet the fuller, more assertive version of Beaty’s critique is precisely what American evangelicals need to hear today. ...

When I survey the wreckage of evangelical celebrity, I don’t see any reason for moderation. The seeker-sensitive movement and its natural descendant, online church, is the evangelical version of the eye that we must gouge out and cast into the fire before it condemns our entire movement to those flames. Yet Beaty seems hesitant to go there. Even as she ends the book she writes, “To be sure, screens are not inherently evil, nor are large churches, social media platforms, or charismatic personalities.” ...

It’s possible I am wrong, of course, and that calling on Christian leaders to distance themselves from social media, break up their megachurches into smaller neighborhood parishes, and fully repudiate the lavish lifestyles of Hillsong preachers is asking too much. But when I survey the American church today, I see no reason to think celebrity of any sort should be preserved. And I see many reasons to think it’s leading us to hell.

Editor's Note:  If you would like to receive a weekly email each Sunday with links to the faith posts on TaxProf Blog, email me here.

September 18, 2022 in Book Club, Faith, Legal Education | Permalink

Supreme Court (5-4) Denies Yeshiva University Request To Block State Ruling On Recognition Of LGBTQ Club; Yeshiva Responds By Canceling All Student Groups

Following up on my previous posts (links below):  Wall Street Journal, Supreme Court Declines Yeshiva University’s Bid to Deny Recognition of Gay Student Group:

Yeshiva Pride LogoThe Supreme Court on Wednesday denied Yeshiva University’s emergency request to block New York state court orders requiring it to recognize an LGBT student club, but left room for the Orthodox Jewish institution to object again in future proceedings.

The YU Pride Alliance and several students sued the university in state court last year after administrators refused to recognize the undergraduate group as an official student club.

A trial judge, finding Yeshiva’s position violated New York City’s Human Rights Law, ordered it to recognize the Pride Alliance on the same terms as other student clubs. After state appellate courts declined to block the ruling’s implementation while the university appealed, Yeshiva filed an emergency motion asking the Supreme Court to intervene.

Last Friday, Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who oversees the judicial circuit including New York, granted a temporary stay while the justices weighed the request.

The Supreme Court, on a 5-4 vote, lifted that stay Wednesday and said in an order that Yeshiva had yet to exhaust its options in the state court system [Yeshiva University v. YU Pride Alliance, No. 22A184 (Sept. 14, 2022)]. ... Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Sotomayor, Elena Kagan, Brett Kavanaugh and Ketanji Brown Jackson were in the majority.

New York Times, Yeshiva University Halts All Student Clubs to Block L.G.B.T.Q. Group:

Yeshiva University abruptly announced on Friday that it had placed all undergraduate club activities on hold, the latest maneuver in the legal battle by the Modern Orthodox Jewish institution to keep from recognizing an L.G.B.T.Q. student group.

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September 18, 2022 in Faith, Legal Education | Permalink

Saturday, September 17, 2022

This Week's Ten Most Popular TaxProf Blog Posts

Cleveland State Committee Votes Unanimously To Remove John Marshall From The Name Of Its Law School

Following up on my previous posts (links below):  a Cleveland State committee unanimously recommended removing "Marshall" from its law school's name:

Cleveland StateConclusion and Recommendation
Based on our study of the issues and the reasons set forth above, the Ad Hoc Committee voted unanimously to recommend to President Bloomberg that the name Marshall be removed from the name of CSU’s College of Law.

The reasons for this recommendation are set forth in greater detail throughout the report. However, in summary, the primary reasons include:

  • The naming of Cleveland Marshall College of Law was an honorific naming that was inherited when Cleveland State University acquired the Cleveland Marshall Law School in 1969. Neither Chief John Marshall himself nor any of his descendants have a documented connection to CSU, the City of Cleveland or the Cleveland legal community.
  • Chief Justice John Marshall was a slaveholder who bought and sold slaves throughout his life. Unlike many of his contemporaries, he chose not to free his slaves, and his questionable record on emancipation included active participation in attempts to repatriate freed Black people to Liberia.

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September 17, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

NY Times: Can/Should Progressive Law Grads Work In BigLaw?

New York Times Magazine, The Ethicist: Is It OK to Take a Law-Firm Job Defending Climate Villains?, by Kwame Anthony Appiah (NYU):

NY Timnes EthicistThe magazine’s Ethicist columnist on whether taking a corporate law job means abandoning your values.

I come from a working-class family. I have worked very hard in school and graduated college with little debt, so when I was given the opportunity to attend an elite law school, I took it — along with a $150,000 price tag. Some people may scorn me for such a decision, but this was my dream school, and I saw it as a ticket to an echelon of society and opportunity that was otherwise entirely barred to me.

While I entered law school hoping to work in the public interest, I now face the reality of paying back my loans. I took an internship at a big law firm where I am paid very well, and I’ve been invited to work for them once I graduate. The salary would be enough for me to pay off my loans, help my family and establish a basic standard of living for myself — plus maybe own a house or even save for retirement, which would be impossible for me on a public-interest or government salary.

But the firm’s work entails defending large corporations that I’m ethically opposed to, including many polluters and companies that I feel are making the apocalyptic climate situation even worse. Even if I only stay at the firm for a short time to pay off my loans, I would be helping in these efforts for some time.

Basically, I feel torn between two value systems. The first is the value system of my parents, which prizes hard work and self-sufficiency. My parents are very proud of me for working in a high-level job that allows me to support myself. The second is my own personal moral code — the little idealist within me who wants me to drop the corporate angle in order to help as many people as I can, even if it results in a difficult life for me.

I know it is selfish to take this corporate job. But is it unforgivable? Will defending polluters, even for a short time in a junior position, be a permanent black mark on my life? Name Withheld

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September 17, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink

Friday, September 16, 2022

Weekly Legal Education Roundup

Next Week’s Tax Workshops

Tax Workshops (Big)Monday, September 19: Kathleen Delaney Thomas (North Carolina; Google Scholar) will present Fake News and the Tax Law (with Erin Scharff (Arizona State)) as part of the Loyola-L.A. Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please RSVP here

Tuesday, September 20: Jeremy Bearer-Friend (George Washington; Google Scholar) will present Poll Taxes, Revisited as part of the UC-Hastings Tax Speaker Series. If you would like to attend, please contact Heather Field.

Friday, September 23: James R. Repetti (Boston College; Google Scholar) will present International Tax Policy, Manufacturing, and U.S. National Interests as part of the Florida Tax Policy Colloquium. If you would like to attend, please contact Charlene Luke.

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September 16, 2022 in Colloquia, Legal Education, Scholarship, Tax, Tax Scholarship, Tax Workshops | Permalink

Multistate Bar Exam Scores Are Little Changed Over The Past Five Years

NCBE, National Mean of 140.3 for July 2022 MBE:

Average Scores on Multistate Bar Exam Remain Consistent with Previous Years 

NCBE

Derek Muller (Iowa; Google Scholar) offers this 47-year perspective on MBE scores:

Muller

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September 16, 2022 in Legal Ed News, Legal Education | Permalink