Distractions

Shon Hopwood

* Thanks to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, the Department of Justice will be declassifying some secret opinions from the FISA Court. We wonder who’ll be hosting the giant redaction party. [Associated Press]

* Morgan Lewis paid out a $1.15 million settlement over unfinished business claims to this defunct firm. Great work, Mr. Diamond, but Howrey going to get the rest to do the same? [Am Law Daily (sub. req.)]

* “[Shon] Hopwood proves that my sentencing instincts suck.” Now that this former bank robber has a clerkship with the D.C. Circuit, the judge who sentenced him is having second thoughts. [The Two-Way / NPR]

* Laptops are useful tools for students in law school classrooms, but they’re also great for checking Above the Law and buying shoes while professors are droning on and on. Apparently we needed a study to confirm this. [National Law Journal (sub. req.)]

* George Zimmerman’s wife filed for divorce, citing “disappointment” as one of her reasons for ending the marriage. Don’t worry, Shellie, half of the nation was disappointed with the verdict too. [Washington Post]

Bar takers, the big day approacheth. We hope you’ve given up alcohol, television, Facebook, and daily showers, and are making progress on packing as much law into your brains as the remaining time allows. We’ve offered you lots of advice here at ATL: how to go through BAR/BRI faster, how to fail the BAR/BRI midterm and still pass, and how 2 avoid language that will hurt your score.

Some bar takers have had their fill of studying, though, and are looking for distractions. A Mizzou Law grad is in this camp:

I’m studying for the bar right now, and to be honest, little of this sounds like what I learned in law school. So I said to myself, if I didn’t pick up these 20-odd topics, what did I learn?

He came up with a list of the 17 things he learned in law school. Some excerpts:

  • Walk, don’t run from the police. See Illinois v. Wardlow, 528 U.S. 119 (2000).
  • A good lawyer knows the law. A great lawyer knows the judge. See DeMentas v. Estate of Tallas, 764 P.2d 628, 632 n.6 (Utah App. 1988) (quoting the “colorful, if occasionally irreverent” trial judge: “It’s hearsay, I agree, but it’s damn good hearsay, and I want to hear it.”).
  • Criminal defendants tend to be idiots. See State v. Gaw, 285 S.W.3d 318, 320 (Mo. banc 2009) (After approaching Gaw’s vehicle, “Sgt. Frazier asked Gaw to give him his marijuana. Gaw reached into his pants pocket, pulled out a small baggie and handed it to the officer.” Gaw was then arrested.).
  • People litigate some really bizarre stuff. See Tulare Irrigation Dist. v. Lindsay-Strathmore Irrigation Dist., 45 P.2d 972, 1007 (Cal. 1935) (use of water by farmers to drown gophers not allowed in area with chronic water shortage).

The full list of lessons learned in law school, after the jump.

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