School Board Offers Theological Defense of Homosexuality, Gets Taken to Task

In case you haven’t heard, the Montgomery County (Maryland) Public Schools tried to implement a sex education curriculum that endorses homosexuality as a normal and amoral (not “immoral,” “amoral”) lifestyle choice. Whether or not one agrees with that proposal, the fact is that the school system gets its facts wrong and makes theological arguments – including making statements about the proper interpretation of the Bible and other religious texts and endorsing specific religious groups over others – in the proposed course materials. Eugene Volokh does a good job explaining the problems.

You can view the court ruling against the school system here.

UPDATE: I should note that the question of whether or not the school system can implement this curriculum is still open; the ruling above is only on granting a restraining order.

Going to Yale Law at 16???

Seamus Farrow, only son of Woody Allen and Mia Farrow, is heading to Yale Law, at age 16. It sounds like he’s had a very interesting life, for somebody of that age, but I can’t say that it makes sense for a 16-year old to go to law school, or for any law school to admit a 16-year old. I have known a lot of people who felt they had it all together at that age – I was one of them – but I have yet to meet a person who really knew himself or herself and what he or she really wanted in life before age 20 or so. Well, best of luck to him.

Hat tip to JD2B.

University of Texas Student Earns a 180 on the LSAT…

… and advises students to sell their souls. Okay, not really, that’s what the article says a lot of students would do, but the student in question, Jesse Townsend, does advise aspiring law students to pick a major based on the GPA they would expect to earn.

Congratulations to Jesse, by the way, but his advice is just what’s wrong with the law profession, from what I can see. Too many people go to law school because it’s “just what to do” if one isn’t going to med school or business school. If the deciding factor in your choice of a subject to spend 3 or 4 years on is the GPA you expect to get, you can expect to be unhappy and stressed as an undergrad, possibly unhappy as a law student, and probably unhappy as a lawyer. Have a life! Pick something you like! Be different; law schools like that. If I were admitting law school students, I’d take somebody with modest grades and a passion for ancient languages over yet another 3.9 GPA PoliSci student, who chose his or her major to get that 3.9, any day.

That’s just my $0.02, but if you’re pre-law and reading this, I strongly encourage you to explore different subjects and figure out who you really are before getting to the LSAT or applying to law schools.

Hat tip to JD2B.

Brian Leiter, Political Incompetent

For those who don’t know, Brian Leiter is a University of Texas law and philosophy professor. His information on law school rankings and the academic job market may be great, but his political theory is horrible. In his latest post, John Howard the Ostrich, he tries to argue that foreign policy – of any nation – ought to be determined by the goals of that nation’s enemies. He argues, among other things, that the U.S. should have pulled its military forces out of Saudi Arabia in the 1990s, in order to prevent attacks like those of 9/11/01, naïvely believing that those forces are only there to prop up the Saudi royals. Of course, this same logic would imply that Churchill should have surrendered British sovereignty to Hitler, to avoid the blitz, or that a duly elected Lincoln should have been impeached in the Senate, to avoid civil war.

Leiter even complains about the use of strawmen, even as he deliberately misinterprets the comments of Howard and others. At least, I assume it’s deliberate, because I give Leiter credit for more intelligence than he shows in this essay. Nobody is arguing that the current war in Iraq inspired the Bali bombings or the September 11 attacks, obviously. Howard’s point is that terrorism against Westerners and Western nations is motivated by an ideology, not by specific actions. Leiter, apparently, does not credit those who disagree with him with much intelligence.

Perhaps I’m wrong, and Leiter really has convinced himself that appeasement makes sense. Perhaps he really believes that satisfying terrorist groups – by destroying Israel, withdrawing the U.S. military from all foreign locations, and implementing Shari’a (Muslim law) in the United States – is the best, most logical way to avoid terrorist attacks. I think he’s smarter than that, though, in which case he’s just venting political nonsense for the sake of being, well, political.