I’ve always been constantly been bombarded with becoming a lawyer as a career option. I got sucked into Mock Trial in high school and continued it for three years in college. All the reproductive justice & assisted reproductive technologies work done by my idols (i.e. Dorothy Roberts) seemed to be in the realm of law. I memorized case law, wrote up public statements on court rulings, and testified at hearings advocating/opposing certain bills. In many ways, the work that I’ve fallen into holds law at its crux, whether it be legislative or judiciary law. But I’ve never personally considered pursuing a career in law, let alone a practicing lawyer.
With college graduation, a flock of my fellow classmates went onto enroll at Harvard, Yale, and Columbia law schools. When I talked about social justice and organizing, people pointed me towards elite law schools — where in fact, many of my most misogynist, racist, conservative “friends” will soon graduate from and go on to actively maintain & defend our capitalist, racist system. Our world seems unable to conceive “justice” outside of the legal system, especially for a privileged Ivy League graduate like me. We are immediately pushed towards “prestigious” jobs and expected to “succeed”; certain careers are considered “beneath us.” But that’s a conversation on classism for another time.
I’m still not sold on the idea of law as a radical practice, as it seems fundamentally rooted in the system. However, a friend of mine, Brian, shared this toolkit with me: A Handbook for Social Justice Activists Thinking About Law School, developed by folks at the Center for Constitutional Rights.
I hope that it reaches the minds of young, aspiring pre-law students, who also want to change the world — through more than settlements & corporation mergers. #Down4TheRevolution