We live in arguably the most desirable and the most beautiful city in the country. I, like many of you, am a transplant to the San Diego area and came to Cal Western to pursue my dream of becoming a lawyer. Originally from Seattle, I chose to attend law school in San Diego because I had heard so many great things about the city and how San Diego has something for everyone.
During my first few months in San Diego, I have had the fortunate opportunity to explore the city with a fresh and uninitiated perspective. Now as I begin my second trimester of law school, I want to share my transplant’s guide to San Diego and give you all some ideas for dates, day trips, or a much-deserved study break.
Grades release last month was a stressful time for Cal Western students, especially second-trimester 1Ls who were receiving law school scores for the first time ever. Although grades are certainly important, it’s also important to forgive shortcomings and remember that no one is perfect. Everyone is human, including our awesome faculty.
To illustrate this point in a lighthearted fashion, The Commentary asked professors to share their worst grade or failure when they were in law school. Read their stories below, and then vote for your favorite.
These offensive, and what most would call belittling, words are from Fox News journalist Laura Ingraham. Ingraham exclaimed, on live national television, how she felt about LeBron James and Kevin Durant expressing their negative political opinions toward the current administration. Ingraham went on to say that it is unwise to take political advice from people who get paid $100 million to bounce a ball, so they should just “shut up and dribble.”
LeBron James may be a professional basketball player, but there is one thing Mr. James and I have in common: strong feelings for doing and saying what is right. Mr. James took this opportunity to do just that. He turned Ingraham’s negative insult into a Showtime title. This three-part series, called Shut up and Dribble, is currently on its second episode.
By Oliver Fredrickson / Tandis Taghavi, Editor-in-Chief
The Starting Line
On Saturday, November 10, 2018, 4,000 strangers dusted off their running shoes, taped up their ankles, and lined up behind a red ribbon to fight for one cause.
But these people weren’t just strangers. They are community leaders. They are wives. They are husbands. They are brothers. They are sisters. They are aunts. They are uncles. They are co-workers. They are neighbors. They are friends. They are kids.
Some of them have direct experience with the nagging 20 finger pricks a day and emergency Skittles stash. Others now carry a tube of glucose gel in their back pocket after witnessing a friend’s blood sugar drop to 54 mg/dL.
Heart pounding, I jolted upright in confusion. Wiping the tiny salt bubbles from my forehead, I only hoped this was all a nightmare. Unlike Lord Voldem….who, in his weakest form, boldly took away Frank Bryce’s last breath, the Senate, in its weakest form, chose to look away as millions took their last breath on Saturday, October 6th.
The well-established eras of our history remind us that a Portkey is not necessary to refresh our recollection [FRE 612] on the fact that it is worse to be poor and innocent than rich and guilty. This is true even in the Wizard World. When a group of masked Wizards start a riot at the 422nd Quidditch World Cup, the Ministry of Magic arrives immediately only to blame Harry Potter (the one unconscious person) for the attacks and the illuminated Dark Mark floating in the sky.
What’s worse? Funny you should ask…the tiny, female house-elf, Winky, is then found holding Harry Potter’s wand. But rather than investigate the crime and rationalize how and what motive Winky could have had for casting the Dark Mark, Winky is instead publicly and embarrassingly fired by her master, Barty Crouch Senior (who was an influential Ministry of Magic official). But who dare question Barty’s authority and listen to a poor house-elf testify to her innocence? Did Winky even have the necessary personal knowledge to cast the Dark Mark? [FRE 602]. When such a powerful political figure has a reputation for fighting fire with fire, does it even matter? [FRE 608] According to this high ranked official, obviously it had to be Winky…especially since Barty is neither clearly bias nor is looking out for his own political welfare (*wink* *wink*…see impeachment below).
Similar to the process of becoming a Justice of the Supreme Court, one of the highest and most powerful positions in the nation, being selected for the Triwizard Tournament requires some minimum standards and skill. The Goblet of Fire (President) is supposed to be a magical and “impartial” object that ONLY chooses the worthiest and most competent [FRE 601] candidates to compete in the tournament (appointment). After a delegate passes the magical “Age Line” test (preliminary procedural standards and questionnaire), their name is entered on the ballot and the games begin. Continue reading “Spotting the Issue: Confessions of a “Half-Blood” 2L (Pt. 4)”→
R&B Artist 'Comes Through and Chills' in San Diego
-- Vincent Chiaverini
The artist simply known as Miguel is a contemporary and alternative R&B artist who has been on everyone’s playlist. His new Ascention Tour is selling out music venues all over North America, and even made a stop in sunny San Diego. Whether you need some new study tunes, or you’re trying let loose like a weekend warrior, Miguel is the musical talent you have been missing out on.
On Sept. 17, the Cal Coast Credit Union Open Air Theatre in San Diego was host to one of the 26 shows lined up on Miguel’s new Ascension tour. The singer showcased his War & Leisure album that debuted less than a year ago. Some of his top hits featured included: “Come Through and Chill,” “Pineapple Skies,” “Banana Clip,” and my personal favorite “How Many Drinks.”
Ryan Stygar is a full-time 2L student at California Western School of Law. He is also a former firefighter, a current SBA class representative, and a published fiction author. His latest book, an educational outer space-themed novel called “Snot Rocket and the Weapon of Math Destruction,” was released on Amazon last week.
Chapter 3: The Prisoner of Azkaban (read Chapters One and Two)
As a 1L, you may have thought your first semester of Legal Skills wasn’t that bad…after all, how hard can writing formal and informal memos be? You may have boogied into your Legal Skills II class with the same impression. However, as you cheerfully picked out your seat on the first day of class and briefly glanced at the syllabus, suddenly your palms became sweaty, your knees were weak, your arms were heavy, and you were trying not to vomit your mom’s spaghetti (Eminem can relate). While the words, “Oral Argument Assignment,” violently jumped off the page, only 2% of your class seemed to rejoice. If you are like most, you were probably ignited with a prickly case of hives and suddenly had a “Sirius” urge to grab your backpack and run to the unplottable graveyard of Azkaban.
“I felt weird, like I’d never be cheerful again…”—Ron Weasley
Like Harry (and myself), you may have felt chills as the windows turned to ice and a cloaked, dreary dark creature (Oh no…. Dementors!!) hovered behind you and slowly began to suck the happiness, hope, life, and peace out of you.
Chapter 2: The Chamber of Secrets (read Chapter 1 here)
Class of 2020!! Can you believe it? Our first year of law school is winding down. With less than 10 weeks to go, the closer we get to finals, appellate briefs being due, and oral arguments, the more it feels like walking into a colony of Acromantulas (this can be quite a sticky situation). Rightfully named the “Forbidden Forest,” its eerie roots are known to domicile these spooky creatures and mystical secrets. Aragog’s lair is considered unsafe for man, and therefore Hogwarts prohibits students from entry (beware ejectment). While trespassing onto these treacherous lands in search of the ultimate secret (how to survive law school), might delay studying for a Civil Procedure midterm, entering Aragog’s lair will make learning about affirmative defenses (FRCP 8(c)) seem like less of an intentional tort.
Congratulations, you’ve been accepted into Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry! Here you will learn the secrets of magic and the laws behind it. Your transformation from a muggle to a witch or wizard will be lengthy and stressful. Through these chapters, I hope to ease the process and explain some challenges you will face, like learning spells (also known as the rules of law).
Both in law school and in the world of Hogwarts, the common phrase “knowledge is power” has been known as an overarching theme. Hogwarts selects students carefully and rigorously for an exclusive education, although the acceptance letter arrives by an owl rather than through ordinary mail (after your first semester of Contracts you might see this again and think Mailbox/Dispatch Rule). The same is true of law school. You will face Professor Snape who smells the fear of 1L’s, abides by the Socratic method, and is terrifying. You may encounter Professor McGonagall who is firm but fair. You could even have a Moody Professor who has a “Mad-Eye” for the law.