Status Quo

Status Quo is Not Good Enough

Does it matter if judges are elected or appointed? How independent they are? How much innovation is going on in the court system? As you may know, United States Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor (Ret.) has been busy in…
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Justice in Gym Shoes

Justice in Gym Shoes

Help me here.  Does promoting professionalism and respect for our justice system include dictating appropriate attire in the courthouse? Courthouses generally have awe-inspiring architecture, a multitude of whispering visitors and a tradition of respect. The tradition of respectful attire is…
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Right to be forgotten

Do Lawyers Have A Right to Be Forgotten?

Earlier this week, Google definitively lost a case before the highest court in the European Union. As you’re no doubt aware by now, the EU’s Court of Justice ruled that, in keeping with the EU’s robust privacy laws, Google must…
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Voter

Why I Vote

Do you remember the first time you voted in a governmental election? I certainly do. It was six weeks ago. I spent thirty years as a dual citizen of Trinidad & Tobago and Jamaica. However for the latter twelve years,…
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Never and Never Again

I wrote recently about 12 Years A Slave and how the movie starkly captured the brutality and inhumanity that legally existed in this country for 246 years. I ended my blog post cheering on the movie at the upcoming Oscars…
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Slave

12 Years A Slave

The year is 1841. A 32 year-old free black violinist named Solomon Northup is performing in Saratoga Springs when he meets two white men, Alexander Merrill and Joseph Russell. They invite him to travel to New York City to play for…
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power to change

The Power to Change

Last week was Celebrate Pro Bono week. I attended the Second Annual Conference on Access to Justice, devoted to using pro bono service to help close the justice gap. All seven Illinois Supreme Court Justices and at least 350 people attended.  The Court established…
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For the Public Good

The professional lawyer performs pro bono service.  Pro Bono Publico means “for the public good.” We have been exhorted to live out these words since law school. And for good reason.  It is estimated that Illinois’ pro bono legal service…
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Sound or Silence

Emotions ran high yesterday on the historic 50th anniversary of the March on Washington.  The speeches were inspiring, the mood reflective of progress made and yet to be accomplished.  Nearly everyone I know my age or older who heard Rev….
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It’s a Calling

Since joining the Commission on Professionalism, I have had more conversations than I can count as to why attorneys chose the profession, and the reasons, not surprisingly, are varied and inspiring.  Inspiring and noble doesn’t make good entertainment or news,…
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We Are George

I agree with the lawyer pundits who opined that the George Zimmerman “Not Guilty” jury verdict was practically pre-ordained under Florida law.  I appreciate the critiques that the prosecution was always on thin ice under the law.  True enough.  But…
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Access To Justice

Talk about a professionalism issue that will make a difference.  As you may know, less than a year ago, Illinois became the 29th state to have a Supreme Court Access to Justice Commission.  The mission is simple:  to improve access…
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