Friday, January 18, 2013

Sorry, been swamped the last few days

Plenty to update and talk about, like the travesty in New York State, or the mimics in neighboring states, but most of you should already be aware of that. 

Since I'm a lawyer in a parallel dimension, I follow some of the ABA's musings.  Some of you may have heard about the opinion in Moore v. Madigan, where the 7th Circuit struck down Illinois blanket ban on concealed carry.  It was an interesting case, and it set up a circuit split with the 2nd, over Kachalsky.  Splits are good things, since this gives SCOTUS a better reason to grant a cert petition.  Often SCOTUS will wait until there is a viable split, and only then step in to resolve the question.  Otherwise, you'd have different parts of the country operating under different interpretations of the Constitution (I'll leave 'interpretations' for a later entry). 

Well, the Intelligentsia is at it again, this time in the form of Garrett Epps writing in The Atlantic.  Mr. Epps teaches Constitutional Law of the University of Baltimore, and had not-so-nice things to say about Chief Judge Posner (author of the Moore opinion).  Epps completely misses the point, taking one piece of wry judicial humor out of context and proceeding toe excoriate Judge Posner. 

Epps fails to actually address the soundness of Posner's rationale, and that is unforgivable.  Lay people may easily dismiss a judge, and that's fine.  For a law professor to so flippantly lay bare such contempt without thoughtful discussion is foolish.  It hurts Epps's reputation and unfairly sullies the reputation of the court written about. 

The article.  It's worth the read, and it's not too full of legal mumbo-jumbo.  And for the record, I did send a polite email to Mr. Epps suggesting that he civilly debate the issues, rather than throw pejorative language at the court. 

I did stop short of suggesting that his use of phrases like "hebephrenic jape" might be indicative of a deeper, personal problem.  And for the record, yes, I had to look up "hebephrenic" and "jape" and I am not ashamed to admit it.  Odd that someone who teaches legal writing would resort to 50-cent words.  Hmm.

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