Monday, January 29, 2007

Examples and choices

This story troubles me.

Apparently there's a new criminal penal statute in Florida making hazing a felony if it results in serious bodily injury. It's about damn time we stopped the cycle of abuse just so you can join an on-campus gang (frats may get more legitimacy -- but I'm not sure what else to call it when the initiated undergo a series of tasks that used to be silly and embarrassing, and have increasingly become physically harmful and psychologically damaging). I am all for holding fraternity members to account for abusing pledges for no other reason than that they can.

Similarly, I understand the judge's desire to make an example of some of the first people convicted under this new statute. I truly do.

But, frankly, I have to wonder about a conviction that results in two young black males going to prison for an admittedly unnecessarily lengthy period of time, for doing something white men have been doing for decades without punishment. I understand that ex post facto laws are unconstitutional, but let's look at some facts.

According to the 2000 census, 14% of college students were black, compared with the roughly 70% who were white. Florida A&M, the university in question, is the only historically black college in the state. Interstingly, white students are more likely to engage in the binge drinking which has served as the focal point for much of the concern revolving around fraternity initiation rites in the past several years. Indeed, the Florida statute in question was inspired by a drinking-related death in 2001.

To be clear, what those boys did to the victim was atrocious. It was vile and disgusting and, frankly, I can't say I'd be against simply banning fraternities outright to prevent this sort of behavior. Treating a fellow human being that way is, well, inhuman. What these boys did was wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong, and about five million more "wrong"s. They absolutely deserve to be punished.

But I'm troubled that Florida prosecutors and a Florida judge are deciding to make an example out of black students at a predominantly black university for problems that appear to largely stem from behavior more (statistically) commonly undertaken by whites. I would be very surprised indeed if there weren't white students engaging in behavior at least this bad. The difference, I suspect, is that those white students have rich white parents.


Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Happy belated birthday!

Well, I inadvertently missed my blog's second birthday a few days ago. I blame work, which has been KE-razy.

Anyway, happy birthday, blog! Thanks for being so awesome!


Friday, January 19, 2007


This pisses me off.

He'll probably tie up more of our courts' precious time suing me, and waste more of our media's resources calling me "fat" or "slutty" or something similarly mature and well-reasoned if he ever finds my blog, but I'll say it: DONALD TRUMP IS A PATHETIC WEASELLY DELUSIONAL LITTLE BOOGER OF A MAN. Donald, I don't even hate you. I just think so little of you I can barely even believe we're the same species.

The King of Idiots' latest addle-brained ploy is apparently to hang a flag on a flagpole that exceeds the height permitted by content-neutral regulations regarding the height of building structures. Including, you know, flagpoles. The city gave him notice that he was violating the regulations and graciously gave him a month and a half to take down the flag or seek a permit to keep it flying. Apparently this wasn't good enough for the little man-child. Here is an actual, honest-to-God quote from the article:

"The town council of Palm Beach should be ashamed of itself," Trump said Thursday in a telephone interview with The Associated Press. "They're fining me for putting up the American flag. This is probably a first in United States history."

Wow. Just. Wow.

This man is a billionaire? Seriously???

Fuck, if being this stupid makes you billions, then why did I waste all that time in law school, learning unimportant little things like the fact that content-neutral regulations on the size of public structures do not implicate the First Amendment? What a sucker I was! Here I could be wasting the country's resources by filing a twenty-five million dollar lawsuit because I didn't bother complying with perfectly legal and reasonable city ordinances. And running a overhyped network series, to boot.

My God. Did I just step into the Twilight Zone?

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Thursday, January 18, 2007

Say what you want to your boyfriends

This is currently my favorite music video:

I heart Pink. She was on the radio this morning or yesterday morning (it all blends together into one insanely busy too-much-work-not-enough-time blur) and I learned that she proposed to her now-husband. Go Pink!

I would blog more, but back to work I must go :(

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Thursday, January 11, 2007

As promised

A few pictures from Christmas.

First, Teh Swag.

This isn't quite everything, but it's my favorite part. Sister bought me a couple PS2 games, brother got me the Firefly and Brak DVDs, and mumsie (and Dad) got me Pirates, NWN2, and some Vickie's Secret perfume. Not shown: VS nightshirt, pretty sweater, jingle bell socks, calendar, candy, Starbucks gift card, a couple joke gifts, and mooolah. And, of course, my fab new camera, without which I could not have taken these photos. I love going home for Christmas. Sometimes it's fun to be treated like a kid, even if you're technically a "grown up" with a "full time job" and "bills."

Next, the sad. Probably the last picture ever of me and my sweet baby sheltie.

Finally, the sweet. Photos of the dog that isn't dying, and my beautiful Christmas tree. My Scrooge-tastic family doesn't do trees anymore, but at least I love Christmas enough to get one. Cujo liked to curl up under the Christmas tree and nap while I sat at the computer and worked. I tried to get a picture, but the damn dog is camera shy. I seriously can't get a good picture of him.

(If you look closely, you can see the part of the carpet he demolished a couple months ago.)

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Wednesday, January 10, 2007


I just can't help but laugh at this.

The masterful Stephen Colbert and his oafish muse, Bill O'Reilly, are appearing on each other's shows. Ohhhh, this is delicious.

I think this part is my favorite:
"I'm really looking forward to speaking to a man who owes his entire career to me," O'Reilly said.

::hooting laughter::

Yes, Bill, it has nothing to do with Stephen's remarkable talent of making fun of people to their faces with them not being a hundred percent sure he's doing it. Nope, it's all you, buddy. And don't you worry about that monster ego of yours getting crushed when the two of you go face-to-face. I have absolute confidence that you're oblivious enough that you won't even realize how brilliantly he's insulting you.

Oh man. I cannot wait to see Billy boy taken down a peg or seventy.

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Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Who is this "smenita" person

and why is her name the verification word for every comment I've posted today?

Seriously. Is she haunting anyone else?

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Friday, January 05, 2007

Sad news

Bernie Meltzer has died.

I never had a class with him, but from my limited encounters with him, I can say with authority that he was one of the nicest people at the Law School. No matter how gloomy a day you might be having, if you walked by him you couldn't help but smile. His incredible cheery attitude was infectious. Not content to merely project an aura of sunshine onto the Law School, he also kept himself in good shape at an age when most have long given up on their bodies. While we lazy law students opted for the library elevator to take us up three floors, Professor Meltzer always took the stairs. And sometimes he still managed to beat us. And, needless to say, he was an incredibly smart guy. Yet he was astonishingly humble, a quality even rarer in the law than in everyday life. I didn't know him very well, but the news of his passing makes me very sad.

Rest in peace, Professor Meltzer.

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Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Oh fun

I've been summoned for jury duty.

I get that it's my civic duty, etc., etc. But it's horrifically inconvenient. Don't they get how badly this will cut into my billable hours? It's too bad I can't be a juror on a client's case. I'd think they'd give at LEAST double billable credit for that.

Why did I never get jury duty when I wanted it, when I was in college and thought it would be cool experience for a future attorney? (Yes, I've known for a long time I was a weird kid.)

Seriously, what good will it do me now? It won't teach me a damn thing at this point. My first ever trial is scheduled for later this month (and I'm pretty psyched about it). Jury duty is set for the week of February 13. As in, after the trial's over.

It's like it was planned out to be as unuseful to me as possible. Stupid government.


Well, I could've told you that

Apparently some Hall of Famer owes over a million in back taxes.

Come on, people. He has a handlebar moustache. Nothing screams "crook!" like a handlebar moustache.

Seriously, you'd think these people had never seen a movie made before, uh, 1930.