Law Students Suffer as Elite Law Schools Take a Step to the Left

There’s a conservative legal movement across the country, though it’s not happening at the top law schools in America. Harvard Law School is lacking any right-of-center educational opportunities, even though students are asking for them.

Originalism has grown from a niche perspective in the past few decades to more of a widespread philosophy, especially within the judiciary field. There are plenty of new federal judges that have been appointed by the Trump administration that focus on originalism. This means that lawyers are going to argue in front of judges that are open to originalist reasoning. There is a need for right-of-center advocacy in a number of underserved communities, as organizations such as the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) and the Pacific Legal Foundation have pointed out. The Left is constantly ignoring this aspect.

The law schools responsible for educating tomorrow’s lawyers are taking a step to the left, ignoring the right-of-center and originalist aspect that is needed in the legal field. Students have taken notice, too.

A Look at the Faculty

Harvard Law is a perfect example of not having enough faculty that is willing to teach the originalist components that students want to learn about. There are more than 100 professors with tenure along with lecturers and clinical professors. However, there are less than a handful who are openly right-of-center. Additionally, none focus on originalism.

Harvard (and plenty of other law schools) have room to make things better. Harvard established a professorship that was named after the late Justice, Antonin Scalia. One of the best ways that they could honor his legacy is by choosing a professor for the slot that would advance the jurisprudential approach that Scalia popularized.

It would be better for law students to have a more diverse faculty. Conservative students need to have opportunities that allow them to cultivate relationships with potential mentors. Additionally, progressive students would benefit from seeing a different approach. It can provide a more balanced legal education and ensure that they can articulate arguments on either side as a way to advocate more effectively, particularly in the more conservative federal courts.

Law Clinics Provide Experience

There are law clinics at many of the law schools across the United States. It is a chance for students to get hands-on experience as a lawyer in exchange for academic credit. While this used to be a method for providing free representation, it has subtly transformed itself into legal representation for various issue advocacy, particularly regarding the progressive consensus.

Progressive students at Harvard Law have the opportunity to live their values through a clinical program known as Environmental Law and Policy Clinic. It is the opportunity to challenge agency and presidential actions to open up waters and public lands to development. Then, there’s another opportunity to spend a semester in the Health Law and Policy Clinic to work with coalitions that advocate as a way of protecting Medicare and Medicaid.

Conservative students don’t have the same opportunities. They don’t have a way to live their values through policy clinics, and it’s creating a huge disservice to the student population, particularly those who lean more to the right than to the left.

There’s no problem with having left-leaning clinics. However, Harvard is a major player when it comes to law schools in the United States. If they have left-leaning clinics, they need to establish a balance by creating right-leaning clinics, too. The fact that there are none creates a problem – and students have created a petition to call for Harvard law to expand their clinical offerings. This way, they can cater to the full spectrum of student interests. The petition has garnered over 80 signatures in just four days, with most coming from first-year law students.

Harvard law isn’t the only one falling short of right-of-center clinics and courses, either. Stanford and yell have been guilty of catering to the left more than the right, too.

Students are identifying that law schools are less effective when they become ideological uniform echo chambers. They need to train tomorrow’s leaders in order to be more effective in the courtrooms – and that means knowing how to argue to the right and to the left. Schools need to be conscious about their hiring decisions so that faculty can provide conservative viewpoints. Just as the law schools provide for progressives, they also need to provide for conservatives. With so many originalists filling the ranks of the Supreme Court, right-of-center legal advocacy opportunities need to be considerably more visible than they are currently.

Comments (12)

  1. I’m a retired lawyer. Over my career, I achieved an enviable, almost unprecedented win record. How? Two ways: Firstly, I never assumed the win. Quite the opposite, I assumed I might well lose up to the time the decision was rendered. Secondly, I always tried my case from my opponent’s perspective. If I were in his shoes, how would I try it? How could I win? Then, having figured out his likely case, I would prepare my own, making sure that I hit all of his issues and arguments. If law students are not taught this skill, then they are not lawyers. They’re mouthpieces, repeating their clients arguments and prejudices. If Harvard cannot understand that, then they are not the “top law school” they pretend to be.

  2. Harvard is done. Wouldn’t hire anyone with a Harvard Law Degree. Also aren’t too swift at business.

  3. Good start is toignore the “elite status” and find a school that ismore centrist. These socialist leasning professors love their pay, go on strike for more of it Hit them where it hurts the most. Their wallets

  4. I was an Educator for 30+ years, and I hope a good one, but colleges and high schools have been teaching liberalism for in excess of 40 years, when I went to a California State College, (and I paid every Damn Dime for the 4 years) there many VERY liberal instructors if they actually did the classes, instead of their assistants, but the one thing which could be done in those days was discuss differences like adults not Brown Shirt Nazis, it is sad what many institutes of higher education have done to today’s “Snowflakes” and “Millennials”. My comments are not ment to discredit the many fine teacher who did and continue to do an excellent

  5. Well, it’s changing and in many cases has already changed. In my youth, I wouldn’t have ever believed that Socialism would be taking such a grip on America. I was 17 when I enlisted in the USMC and 21 when I joined the LAPD. In those days, we were decades away from Socialism & criminals shooting heron on the sidewalks & living in tents. LAPD used to enforce the law.

  6. The man whom started Harvard College was a pastor of Christianity and many of the Founding Fathers were Christians. Ben Franklin said “without God this whole experiment will fail.” Russia could not have done a better job of hurting America then what has happen in the left leaning news and Demo party. The Democratic party has been taken over by a group of criminals whom want to destroy America and Christianity.

  7. You would have to terminate the employment of 99.9% of those within what is at this moment an indoctrination system and replace them with people who received PhDs from Hillsdale college.

  8. All part of the Marxist handbook. Create and maintain chaos from the legal angle to better push the radical socialist movement.

  9. As twisted as litigators and judges interpreted the law in the past it has gotten even worse, I wonder how many of those students realize it is illegal for judges to make law, bastardize the law, or in numerous occasions simply disregard the law.

  10. Faculty are former left wing hippiees, socialists by nature and drug addicts who hate the USA and capitalism. They are Suma Cum Laude professors in indoctrination of our youth and the law so that the US is destroyed from within.!

  11. Leftism’s lack of balance is devastatingly ignorant of the need to have some absolute values. The lack of regard for having laws defended in keeping with the U.S. Constitution is the seed and feed of destruction of the foundational standard of this nation. Of course, leftists are proving their disrespect of this nation, by trying to “fundamentally change” it out of being what the founders of this great country established. They are being very short-sighted. Many of the goals currently being pursued by the left are targeted to the ruin and destruction of this nation, insofar as how America now exists. Leftists are unwittingly bringing this country closer to adopting some of the tyrannies which were intentionally escaped, from a beginning some 243 years ago, in 1776. This country is better than every other one in the world ; which is the principle reason that people from every other country want to move and live here. Those people have had numerous experiences which have motivated them to want to live in The United States Of America. People of the left need to start realizing that !!!

  12. DUMP the SO called PROFESSORS, we have enough Socialist lovers out there!!!
    They are way over paid for what Bull Shit they teach, It’s either their way or no way?

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