Justice Ginsburg: a full-service wedding provider.
Ed. note: We’ll return to our normal publication schedule on Monday, December 2. We hope to see you at our holiday happy hour on Thursday, December 5 — for details and to RSVP (to this free event with an open bar), click here.
I just got back from visiting my family in Indiana. While I was out there, I was reminded that while “Naptown” is actually fairly diverse in terms of color, it’s shockingly devoid of religious diversity. There aren’t a lot of Jews in Indianapolis. When I lived in Indy (for 13 months and nine days… not that I was counting), it struck me that people would believe pretty much any Eric Cartman-level stereotype about Jewish people. They all wore pouches with gold coins around their necks? Why not! My classmates would believe almost anything I said about Jewish people — since I was from New York, which is apparently a Zionist capital city. (They’d also believe almost anything I said about living in New York, like “there are underground cites in the subway tunnels” and “radiation levels are higher” there.)
So, here’s a question: would it have been “offensive” if my high school had “Jewish sensitivity day,” and class was all about dispelling really stupid and offensive myths about Jewish people? “Here, class, is a Jewish-American. As we can clearly see, there are no hooves or horns.”
Now, I think the answer to my question is, “Yes! Clearly! It would have been horribly offensive.” But on the other hand, people can be really, really stupid about cultures they haven’t been exposed to.
This question is going to face a California court thanks to a discrimination lawsuit filed by three Hispanic employees at Target. The employees claim, and Target admits, to keeping a list of “minority tips” that’s crazy offensive. But I don’t know, depending on how dumb the white people were that worked at Target, maybe they needed this kind of remedial help?
If you want to see something really racist, check out what her lawyers are saying.
Look, I think the Paula Deen controversy is more theater than news. The only people who need the information that there are still white people in the South who are horribly racist are John Roberts and his band of conservatives. Deen is awful, but I don’t have a lot of spare outrage to waste on a television fry cook.
There is, however, a really interesting and novel legal argument being launched by Paula Deen and her attorneys. I think the argument is arguably just as racist as anything Deen actually said, but that doesn’t mean it’s legally incorrect. Deen’s lawyers are saying that white people, namely the white plaintiff suing Paula Deen, don’t have standing to claim a “hostile work environment” if all Deen did was run around saying awful things about non-whites.
And her lawyers are now using the Supreme Court’s recent decision in Hollingsworth v. Perry, the constitutional challenge to California’s Proposition 8, as the basis for their objections…
It doesn't help that Rich Whitney kind of looks like a Rich Whitey.
Sometimes, typos matter — a lot. We’ve seen typos get law firms into all kinds of trouble. And now a typo might ruin the already slim gubernatorial chances of a Green Party candidate.
Running on the Green Party line, Rich Whitney wasn’t likely to become the next Governor of Illinois anyway. But an error at the Chicago Board of Elections will cause Whitney’s name to be misspelled as “Whitey” on some touch screen ballots this November. Of the 23 wards affected by this typo, half of them are in largely African-American districts. And the error cannot not be fixed in time for Election Day.
So yeah, black people in Chicago will be able to vote for “Rich Whitey” this fall.
You remember that scene in Die Hard With a Vengeance where Bruce Willis has to stand in the middle of Harlem while wearing an offensive sandwich board? Things are going to turn out marginally better for Rich Whitney, but clearly Whitney would have been better off changing his last name to “not the whiteman’s bitch.” Or even “Kill Whitey,” as Juggalo Law suggests…
* I’ll bite: I think a tanning tax is racist. It’s textbook disparate impact. African-Americans have been through enough; we shouldn’t be forced to look at pasty-faced white people all winter. [Concurring Opinions]
* DWI fines are so expensive drunk drivers can’t pay them, so a Texas state senator suggests repealing the law. The things that pass for logic down there are amazing. [Legal Blog Watch]
* Arizona Governor Jan Brewer finds a way to blame Mexico for everything. [Color Lines]
* Meanwhile, in Sacramento, the solution to police budget cuts is to make sure it’s easier for people to carry around concealed handguns. D’uh. When they’re not enough cops you absolutely need people walking around armed to the teeth. Don’t you know that safety smells like hot lead and fresh blood? [Volokh Conspiracy]
* Court orders joint custody … of a Lhasa Apso. I have a Lhasa Apso, and I’m pretty sure my wife only puts up with me so she can see the dog. [ABA Journal]
* This is a pretty interesting way of looking at the LeBron coverage. [Breaking Media]
Even in these dark days, as an anxious nation awaits the latest dispatch from the associate salary wars, the wedding machine grinds on. We salute the brave couples who choose to go ahead with their ceremonies in the face of all this uncertainty — after all, how crushing would it be to return from your honeymoon and find your employer on someone’s List of Shame!
Honorable mention this week goes to this couple. (The father of the bride, William Barr, was once Attorney General under George H.W. Bush.) Unfortunately, those two did not make the cut. Here are the lucky lovebirds who did:
A quirky and fun story in the Saturday New York Times (which nobody reads except us) describes the legal crusade of one John Lagana. He’d like to ride his WaveRunner around the shores of East Hampton, but can’t, thanks to the wealthy beach town’s ban on water scooters.
So like any good American, Lagana is taking the matter to court. And he has an interesting historical argument:
The case is now pending in state appellate court, where a panel of judges must decide if an obscure 17th century charter known as the Dongan Patent does indeed protect a man’s right to buzz around the waterways on a machine its signers could hardly have imagined.
When King James II deeded the eastern tip of the South Fork — which now includes East Hampton, Amagansett and Montauk — to a group of settlers in 1686, the governor in chief of the province of New York, Thomas Dongan, drew up the patent, granting “freeholders and inhabitants” of the area the right to “enjoy without hindrance” recreational activities like “fishing, hawking, hunting and fowling.”
The legal power of such deeding documents, which exist throughout Long Island and in other early-settled places, has been upheld by courts including the United States Supreme Court.
Lagana buttresses this with constitutional contentions:
Among Mr. Lagana’s arguments is that a passage in the federal Constitution prohibiting the creation of “any law impairing the obligation of contracts,” and a provision in the original New York State Constitution protecting “grants of land made by the authority of the king,” gives Dongan power in perpetuity. “If you’re going to ignore the Dongan Patent, you might as well throw out the Constitution,” he said.
The tony town has several counterarguments. Their main point is that “the patent is too vague and out of date to govern a modern municipality.” But they also have historical contentions of their own:
[Gary] Weintraub, the town’s lawyer, pointed out that if East Hampton were to live by the centuries-old patent, it would have other obligations, including the annual tax to the king of “the Sum of one Lamb Yearly and fourty shillings, curant money.”
Assuming East Hampton was not in arrears at the time of the American Revolution, that would amount to 230 lambs and 9,200 shillings the town owes, payable to Queen Elizabeth.
No, definitely not. Due to their variegated hair and eye color, white people have the best claim to internal diversity in appearance.
But these two white people DO look alike:
As a result, this screw-up — while mortifying and GI-normous — is somewhat understandable:
“We are horribly sorry,” the cop said. The 17-year-old girl who was wrongly locked in jail for seven days might be feeling terribly lucky.
Amanda Sylvester might still be in jail, facing criminal charges that included aiding and abetting a robbery [of a Kwik Stop convenience store], were it not for an anonymous tip to a Crimestopper hotline….
A week later, the Crimestopper tip led to the arrest of Kayce Schildhauer, 19, of North Platte.
Here at Above the Law, we offered up lavishcoverage of the magnificent wedding of Ted Olson and Lady Booth. Given Olson’s status as a giant of the legal profession, a former Solicitor General and leading Supreme Court advocate, this coverage was fitting and proper.
But, alas, it was not complete — and it may have been inaccurate in certain respects, for which we apologize. These omissions and possible errors were brought to our attention by some helpful reader comments.
Here are the items we’d like to address. Please refer back to this post and this post for background, as needed.
1. We assumed that the gentleman who escorted the beautiful Lady Booth down the aisle was her father. It appears we were correct. According to this comment, by Wayne N. Perkey II, “that is our father (Wayne N. Perkey) walking her down the aisle. It was indeed a beautiful wedding, and a good time was had by all.”
2. We said we didn’t know the identity of “the Margaret Thatcher doppelganger in the floral print dress.” We were enlightened by this comment:
Although Mary Ellen Bork would not likely quarrel with an analogy in any aspect to the Iron Lady, the term Margaret Thacher “doppelganger”… is hardly ‘fair’ to the very lovely Mary Ellen, wife of the esteemed Judge — and unintended style-celebrant on these pages.
We thank this commenter for the information, also corroborated by an email we received: “The [woman in the floral print dress] is Mary Ellen Bork. She read two Shakespeare sonnets picked out by Ted and Lady, and then gave a prayer. She’s a former nun.”
(That observation, of course, begs another question: Did Mary Ellen Bork cast off her nun’s habit in order to be with Bob Bork? If so, it’s tremendously romantic. As the Mother Superior said to Maria in “The Sound of Music”: “Follow your heart! Even if that beard is a bit scratchy.”)
3. “Napa Casual.” This has generated controversy more heated than Bush v. Gore, Ted Olson’s most famous case. We originally wrote:
Despite the tremendous collective brainpower of these august guests, we hear that several of them were left scratching their impressive craniums by one wedding detail: the request on the wedding invite for “Napa Casual” attire.
These leading minds of the bench and bar can slice, dice, define and parse the most complex legal terms known to man. But throw two innocent little words at them — “Napa Casual” — and watch them panic.
There’s disagreement among the commenters about this detail (which we received from a source we regard as highly reliable). Some commenters say that the “Napa Casual” request was “a myth.” Others say that yes, there was such a request, but it was made with respect to the rehearsal dinner (not the wedding).
How can we settle this dispute between anonymous commenters? Like good lawyers, we’re going to issue a document request. We’d very much appreciate it if someone would send us a digital photograph or pdf scan of the Olson-Booth wedding invitation and/or the rehearsal dinner invitation. The only way to settle this disagreement is by recourse to ocular proof.
We’re still having email problems, so please contact us at our temporary address: abovethelawtips AT gmail DOT com. Thank you. Earlier: Lady and Ted’s Excellent Adventure: Wedding Photos That Rock The Eyes of the Law: Ted Olson’s Star-Studded Nuptials
Now we have an update to our prior coverage, an ATL exclusive: WEDDING PICTURES!!! And they’re not boring, like the ones your college roommate makes you look at every time you visit her house. Did Justice Sandra Day O’Connor attend your college roommate’s wedding?
Check out the pics — there are just a few of them, it won’t take you long — after the jump.
If your firm is in ‘go’ mode when it comes to recruiting lateral partners with loyal clients, then take this quiz to see how well you measure up. Keep track of your ‘yes’ and ‘no’ responses.
1. Does your firm have a clearly defined strategy of practice groups that are priorities of growth for your office? Nothing gets done by random chance, but with a clear vision for the future. Identify the top practice areas for which you wish to add lateral partners. Seek input from practice group leaders and get specifics on needs, outcomes, and ideal target profiles.
2. In addition to clarifying your firm’s growth strategy, are you still open to the hire of a partner outside of your plan? I’ve made several placements that fit this category. The partner’s practice was not within the strategic growth plan of my client, but once the two parties started talking with each other, we all saw how it could indeed be a seamless fit. Be open to “Opportunistic Hires.” You never know where your next producing partner might come from, so you have to be open to it. I will be the first to admit that there is a quirky element of randomness in recruiting.
Ed. note: The Asia Chronicles column is authored by Kinney Recruiting. Kinney has made more placements of U.S. associates, counsels and partners in Asia than any other recruiting firm in each of the past six years. You can reach them by email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
We currently have a very exciting and rare type of in-house opening in China at one of the world’s leading internet and social media companies. Our client is looking for an IP Transactional / TMT / Licensing attorney with 2 to 6 years experience. The new hire will be based in Shenzhen or Shanghai. Mandarin is not required (deal documentation will be in English) but is preferred. A solid reason to be in China and a commitment to that market is required of course. This new hire will likely be US qualified (but could also be qualified in UK or other jurisdictions) and with experience and training at a top law firm’s IP transactional / TMT practice and could be currently at a law firm or in-house. Qualified candidates currently Asia based, Europe based or US based will be considered. The new hire’s supervisors in this technology transactions in-house team are very well regarded US trained IP transactional lawyers, with substantial experience at Silicon Valley firms. The culture and atmosphere in this in-house group and the company in general is entrepreneurial, team oriented, and the work is cutting edge, even for a cutting edge industry. The upside of being in an important strategic in-house position in this fast growing and world leading internet company is of the “sky is the limit” variety. Its a very exciting place to be in China for a rising IP transactional lawyer in our opinion, for many reasons beyond the basic info we can share here in this ad / post. This is a special A+ opportunity.
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