Whom to Blame For Trump? You

A few days ago, I spoke to a Harvard Law alumnus, inter alia, about the recent presidential election. The alumnus had supported Barack Obama, worked as a plaintiff-side civil rights litigator, and also happens to be black. Ordinarily, he votes Democratic. Yet this year, he voted for Donald Trump.

There are many people to blame for Trump’s victory.[1] But one among the blameworthy is you, dear reader. The Democrat. The liberal who’s too cool to be a Democrat. The leftist who’s too cool to be a liberal.[2] When the American Left has lost a black Harvard-Law-educated civil rights attorney to Donald Trump,[3] it has done something very, very wrong.

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People I Blame* For Trump

  1. The Republican establishment since 1960
  2. The media
  3. James Comey
  4. Minorities who voted for Trump[1]
  5. Democrats/liberals who didn’t vote
  6. Mark Zuckerberg
  7. Jill Stein voters
  8. Whites who voted for Trump
  9. Liberals who couldn’t stop labeling every Trump voter and/or white person a racist
  10. Liberals who didn’t call out the people in group 9

*The ordering is somewhat arbitrary, but I do mean to say that I saw each of these individuals/groups as but-for causes of Trump’s victory.


[1] A friend of mine would have replaced 4. with “Women who voted for Trump” (and I imagine 8. with “Men who voted for Trump”). I suppose that exposes our respective biases.

Striking Workers Optimistic for Win on Vacation Work, Benefits

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For the second day, Harvard University Dining Workers were on strike, clamoring for higher pay, vacation work, and better health insurance benefits.

Negotiators for Local 26, the union that represents HUDS employees, met with two non-Harvard mediators on Thursday, and representatives for Local 26 expressed optimism that they would see their demands met.

“We’re winning,” Local 26 negotiator Michael Kramer said to a crowd of striking workers and supporters in a rally this afternoon. “They have been knocked back on their heels.”

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#SaveNelly

Despite the fact that Nelly was one of the best-selling artists of the 2000s, he apparently owes the IRS a $2.4 million tax bill and may be having trouble paying it off. Based on the figures for royalties per stream, some websites have estimated that Nelly needs somewhere between 287 to 400 million streams to pay off his debts. However, as any tax student knows, Nelly will owe more taxes on these royalties, so he’d actually need as many as 660 million streams in order to pay off his debts. Anyway, if you’re in the mood to help Nelly out, here are the ten best Nelly songs to stream.

10. Pimp Juice – The music video for this song begins with a shot of a man driving a woman in labor to presumably a hospital. It is unclear what this scene has to do with the eponymous “pimp juice.” Could “pimp juice” refer to the amniotic fluid that leaks out of a woman whose water has broken? Perhaps. But it is unlikely.
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Six Easy Steps to Fun and Profit in Law School and Life

Hello 1Ls! You all have just entered a strange and wonderful world, and I hope each one of you has an amazing time. That said, I’d like to give y’all just a few tips to help you make the most of your time in law school.

  1. Go to class

It’s true that a lot of things can be learned directly from your casebooks. But sometimes professors say things during class not covered in the casebooks or talk about what they like to emphasize on exams. Sometimes somebody in your class says something smart, and you’ll want to know who the smart people are so you can ask them for their outlines. And sometimes a professor does a one-person reenactment of The Hangover and everyone has a nice laugh. I’m not saying that the last thing has ever happened to me, but if it did, you wouldn’t want to miss it. Continue reading “Six Easy Steps to Fun and Profit in Law School and Life”

Disney Princesses, Ranked

With newly released research that maybe Disney Princesses are bad for your kids, the Record hereby presents the ranking of Disney Princesses* so you know how to mess up your kids the worst.

  1. MulanMulan_disney

While the whole princess enterprise, being based on a system of inherited privilege, is un-American and is probably Communist, this is a ranking of princesses, and Mulan is not a princess. Whatever might be said about saving all of China is wholly negated by the fact that she marries a non-prince army captain and has no royal parentage.

Pros: Mysterious as the dark side of the moon; is possibly the best princess but for the fact that she is not a princess

Cons: Not a princess

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Record Review: In Eligible, Austen’s characters find a home in modern America

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a valuable piece of intellectual property[1] must be want of money-grubbing spinoffs, sequels, and adaptations.

Pride and Prejudice is a tough tale to adapt to modern times, with the fee tail and male-only inheritance being main plot devices of the novel. Today, of course, women can hold jobs, inherit property, and are not generally obliged to marry by 22.

Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld addresses these limitations by upping the age of the characters (Jane is now 39, while Lizzy, now called Liz, is 38). The novel introduces new financial troubles and creates new causes for familial and romantic strife. Among them is the Bachelor-like reality show called “Eligible,” which recurs throughout to incite action and variously separate and reunite characters.

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Federal Housing Agency Head Shouted Down By Protestors

Last Monday afternoon, protestors shouted down Melvin Watt, director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, from an event hosted at Harvard Law School.

As Watt began to speak, the protestors stood up and began to complain loudly of malfeasance from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which the FHFA oversees. With chants of “Mel Watt you can’t hide, we can see your greedy side,” the protestors drove Watt and Professor Hal Scott, who introduced Watt, from the room. The protestors were affiliated with City Life/Vida Urbana, a non-profit that HLS supports through the Harvard Legal Aid Bureau and Project No One Leaves.

While protestors filled much of the room, there were only a few students at the event, which was sponsored by the Program on International Financial Systems and Fidelity Investments.

However, some of the students who were there were impressed by what they saw.

“I thought it was really cool,” said 2L Joshua Friedmann. “We don’t get the chance to see really organic community organizing. We’re pretty used to our walls being closed off.”

Talking Past Each Other

A few weeks ago, I was at a restaurant up near Porter Square with two other law students. The three of us were eating and talking about race issues in the United States. Besides one other table, the place was basically empty.

After the three of us had been talking for a while, a young Asian woman from the other table interrupted us, saying that she was extremely offended to have overheard what we had been saying (in particular, by what I had been saying), demanded that we respect her right to have dinner without having to be in the presence of such disagreeable talk, and finally, insisted that I had no understanding of race issues at all. She told me that she was a law student, that she suffers constantly from people thinking less of her because of her race, and that I could not possibly even imagine the racism and prejudice that she endures daily as an Asian law student. (As it happens, I actually am also an Asian law student.[1])

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Reclaim HLS Activists Occupy Student Lounge

Reclaim HLS protesters hold a discussion over dinner. The protesters have continuously occupied the Wasserstein Lounge since last Monday.
Reclaim HLS protesters hold a discussion over dinner. The protesters have continuously occupied the Wasserstein Lounge since last Monday.

After a quiet winter term, student activism is back in the air at Harvard Law School.

Since February 15, dozens of students have staged an indefinite occupation of the Wasserstein Lounge in a protest against what they see as an unjust institution and an opaque administration. Representing Reclaim Harvard Law School, the protestors have stayed day and night, bringing in air mattresses and sheets to help them weather the evenings. In a move to bring about the administrative transparency they’ve demanded, they’ve also released a confidential email from Dean Martha Minow with the list of faculty committee assignments.

“We’re here to bring visibility to Reclaim Harvard Law School,” said 3L Annaleigh Curtis. “But we’re also here to create the spaces we’re asking the administration to create.”

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Protesters Draw Criticism over Actions, Proposals

In the past week, Reclaim Harvard Law School protesters have occupied Wasserstein Lounge, drawing dozens of supporters and holding free meals, speaker talks, and group meetings.

However, the protesters, who are demanding changing to the Law School seal, hiring several critical race theory professors, and evaluating professors on the basis of implicit bias, among other things, have drawn criticism as well.

“It makes me feel uncomfortable,” 3L Kurt Krieger said. “One of the problems with this movement is that it silences a large group of people.”

“Many of the students who disagree with [Reclaim HLS] aren’t willing to speak up about it from fear of being called racist,” 2L James D’Cruz said, though “people at Harvard are already the most accepting of race that I’ve ever seen.”

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Bluebook Origin Myth Hides Newly Found, Controversial Past

Everything you know is wrong.

At least that’s what a forthcoming article by Harvard Law School graduate and current Yale Law librarian Fred Shapiro ‘80 and co-author Julie Graves Krishnaswami claims about the Bluebook.

The received origins of the Bluebook, bane of lawyers and lawyers-to-be everywhere, goes a little something like this:

Once upon a time, there was a Harvard Law Review citation pamphlet, compiled by no less a figure than Griswold Hall’s namesake and Dean of Harvard Law School, Erwin Griswold.

Through sheer force of will, Griswold and the Harvard Law Review grew his little pamphlet into the 582-page monstrosity we have today. This story is itself printed in publications no less illustrious than the Harvard Law Review and the Wikipedia article for the Bluebook.

However, if you were to think that the Harvard Law Review is not only responsible for the annual disappointment of 1Ls who failed to write on, but also responsible for the wretched citation manual that has an italicization error in its own explanation on how to italicize introductory signals in its most recent 20thedition, well, you’d be wrong, or at least, partly wrong.

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