Crime, Law Schools

Law School: A Den of Thieves

Jesus would go apes*** in a law school library.

It’s exam time. Kids are living in the library and generally oblivious. This is high season for thieves!

But we’ve got an email from a law student who is determined to take action. He had his textbooks stolen (add sabotage to the list of things wrong with law school), and he’s mad as hell. He wants to do away with his law school’s honor code and go with more medieval punishments should they apprehend the thief.

And since it’s the middle of finals, the whole letter has the scent of desperation clinging to it like the smell of dog poop lingers on a shoe long after it’s been cleansed.

It’s quite entertaining….

Today’s act of theft comes from heartland at the University of Missouri School of Law. The victim’s email is below. If the thief was trying to get into this guy’s head before finals, I think he succeeded.

To whom it may concern:

I’ve had enough. This morning, I came to school to discover that all of my textbooks and one of my class supplements has been stolen from my study carrel. It happened last night after the library had been closed to the general public. That means it was someone amongst us who stole my books.

I know, some might say it was my fault for not locking up my books in my locker. True, I’m partly to blame. But that doesn’t mean this thief can simply just take what he wants because the librarians warned me to be on alert. A five year old knows that it doesn’t make it right to steal from a candy store if the clerk was too lazy to see her do it.

Because of this latest incident and the many other frequent instances of theft in our library, I suggest some changes. I propose an immediate repeal of our “Honor” Code. Because a few have failed to abide by it, it is no use for any of us. Why pay lip service to something that doesn’t work.

I submit the following ideas to correct the “Honor” Code’s shortcomings:

First, we all must be on high alert. As soon as you see a thief attempting to steal an item in the library, call them out by yelling “Halt, thief!” After that person is apprehended for stealing, they will have to stand up on the circulation desk with that item hung around their neck for an entire day. A sign that says “thief” will be pasted on them. In addition, any person who steals has to show up every morning for a month at 5 AM to help out the custodial engineers with their morning duties.

Second, the thief has to tell every other person in the general vicinity of their carrel that they are a thief. If they fail to do this, or any other person objects to the thief having a carrel near them, they cannot have a carrel there. They can go study in the Ellis stacks.

Third, their picture is permanently pasted up on the entrance to the library under the heading “BEWARE: THIS THIEF STUDIES HERE.”

Fourth, I get to go Ricky Roma from Glengarry Glen Ross on you:

In conclusion, the thief out there should be on the lookout. I hope we find out who you are, and can use you as a test case for our reformed policies. More than that, you are scum. I hope you get caught. I will be happy to write a letter to the Character and Fitness committee of the Missouri Bar to make sure you never become a lawyer. You had better pray those cheap bastards at the bookstore value my books under $500, because if I find you, I will make a police report and ensure that you get convicted of stealing, a class C Felony.

I am willing to listen to alternative proposals and join forces with others to address this theft problem. Please feel free to e-mail me with your suggestions.

[True Victim]

(hidden for your protection)

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