This morning Keith Lee directed me to a a post written by a law school scam blogger telling anyone who decided to offer productive advice to young lawyers to just go away. I normally ignore “law school scam blogs”, which are usually stupid blogs filled with juvenile rants about the legal profession, written anonymously by disgruntled, underemployed, lawyers using toilet humor.
However, I was shocked that “The Forgotten Attorney” actually got it right on why they are so angry:
Some people hoped to win the biglaw lottery and lost. Others went because they had a choice between law school, getting a McJob or becoming a commission only insurance salesman and law school seemed a hell of a lot easier and more respectable. But most people just wanted to be glorified and highly paid employees. Basically, a large number of us should not have gone to law school in the first place and if given the opportunity, will leave the profession in a heartbeat.
You can’t motivate these people. They want to escape. They want revenge or justice as they see it. They don’t want to learn the ropes on their own. They don’t want to observe court hearings. They don’t want mentors. They don’t want to go to networking events and probably can’t afford to go either. They are angry and bitter and in my opinion, rightfully so.
Many people went to law school because they wanted a big paycheck and a fancy sounding job. They didn’t want to actually become lawyers, let alone good ones – they wanted to look like lawyers, impress their friends with a fancy sounding degree, and of course and make the money they think good lawyers make.
It all looks so cool on TV, right?
So it comes to no great surprise that they are deeply disappointed to learn that law is a profession, and it requires a lot of work to build a practice, build a worthwhile skill set, and develop a reputation. It’s kind of a bummer to learn that a law license alone is not a ticket to easy money, a cushy job, or the guarantee of an upper-middle class lifestyle. A license to practice law is just an opportunity to maybe one day develop into a good lawyer that people want to hire.
And you know what’s the absolute worst? When they learned that becoming good at being a lawyer, one that people actually want to hire, requires a lifetime of dedication to learning and improving your craft.
But now they can’t be bothered to learn the craft by finding a mentor, watching a court hearing, or engaging in civic participation. That stuff is boring and it will take forever. No, they want a job, an easy one, with a big paycheck. And they want it right now. Regardless of how much value they add to a client or employer, and they are not interested in doing the work it takes to get there.
And when they can’t have all that in a nice, gift wrapped box, moping on the internet will have to do. Because the problem couldn’t possibly be them. It’s the law schools’ fault, the state bar’s fault, it’s the profession’s fault, and the boomer’s fault.
It’s everyone’s fault but theirs… it couldn’t possibly be their fault.