Religion

A Canon Law Digression: Sins 2.0?

Madonna Like A Prayer Above the Law blog.jpgPalm Sunday is this coming weekend, and Easter isn’t far away. So please indulge us as we go on a little religious digression.
The Vatican just rolled out seven new deadly sins. From the Telegraph:

Failing to recycle plastic bags could find you spending eternity in Hell, the Vatican said after drawing up a list of seven deadly sins for our times.

The seven, which include polluting the environment, were announced by Monsignor Gianfranco Girotti, a close ally of the Pope and the head of the Apostolic Penitentiary, one of the Roman Curia’s main court….

According to Roman Catholic doctrine, mortal sins are a “grave violation of God’s law” and bring about “eternal death” if unrepented by the act of confession.

One ATL reader, who sounds a bit like a sentencing geek, observes: “In addition to providing Nino with a new tranche of doctrinal fodder, it takes the average soft-core sinner right out of sinner-safety-valve territory.”
So what are these seven new, deadly sins?

Mgr Girotti said genetic modification, carrying out experiments on humans, polluting the environment, causing social injustice, causing poverty, becoming obscenely wealthy and taking drugs were all mortal sins.

Some Biglaw partners “carry[] out experiments on humans,” i.e., hapless associates. Some lawyers — e.g., Biglaw partners, top trial lawyers — “becom[e] obscenely wealthy.” Many lawyers, as well as paralegals, “pollut[e] the environment” — remember all the times you didn’t recycle Westlaw print-outs? — and “tak[e] drugs” occasionally (or regularly).
But since not all of you are Roman Catholic, you might not put much stock in the Holy See’s list. So we’ve tried to adapt it, by coming up with a “Seven Deadly Sins” list for law-firm life.
Check it out, after the jump.


The first three sins on our list are pretty straightforward. If you engage in them as an associate, don’t expect to make partner. If you commit these sins as a summer associate, you risk not getting an offer.

1. Dishonoring thy partner / senior associate.

2. Abusing paralegals or secretaries.

3. Stealing the firm’s Swiss Miss.

The remaining four sins are more tricky. It’s easy for associates to find themselves in a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” situation.

4. Overbilling.

5. Underbilling.

6. Sleeping with a partner.

7. Not sleeping with a partner.

So what would you name as being among the seven deadly sins of law firm life? We welcome your input, in the comments.
Recycle or go to Hell, warns Vatican [Telegraph]

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