Quick, what would you name your new diversity program if you were a major, global law firm?
If you said anything other than “Partner Miscegenation,” you’re a little bit ahead of DLA Piper….
A friend tweeted at me: “Is the name for DLA Piper’s diversity initiative ‘Break into Law’ supposed to be tongue in cheek?”
Of course, I thought she, or DLA Piper, was joking. Who in the hell would name their diversity program “Break into Law” as if helping minorities advance through the ranks of Biglaw is akin to helping somebody jack your car?
But, it’s true. DLA Piper, man:
DLA Piper today launches Break Into Law, a global initiative that will use the firm’s resources and the skills of its people to remove barriers to careers within the legal sector for underrepresented young people; thereby improving equality, diversity and inclusion in the industry.
You know, doesn’t DLA Piper have any “diverse” members on its “diversity initiative naming committee” that could have said, “Uhh… what?” You don’t want your diversity initiative as meme-able as commenter Learned Paw just showed us:
I’m going to go on and say, without asking, that this unfortunate phrasing was completely accidental. I’m not asking in part because, like Justice Roberts, I so want to live in a world where this kind of thing is accidental that I’m going to resist looking for any other facts.
And DLA Piper has corrected mistakes before. Remember that story about how DLA Piper was referring to Africa as if it were a country instead of continent? They fixed that!
I’m not saying that DLA Piper needs to go back and change this particular name. Let’s not be ridiculous, it’s an unfortunate name, not an offense to non-white people all over the globe.
But maybe next time, the DLA Piper Office of Overcoming could make up a more uplifting name for its diversity programs? Something like “The DLA Dream UN-Deferred,” or at the very least, “The Deluxe DLA Corner Office In The Sky.”