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AND SPEAKING OF ABORTION

Filed at 5:03 am under by dcobranchi

This line, about a young anti-choice activist, threw me:

Burton has no undergraduate degree but is enrolled in an online law school for home-schoolers, Oak Brook College of Law in Fresno, Calif.

It’s a law school for HEKs? Not really. It’s a “law school” for fundies:

Oak Brook College approaches law and government policy from a Biblical and historical perspective. Oak Brook College students are committed to the self-evident truths articulated by our Founding Fathers in the Declaration of Independence and they reject the faith of evolution and the religion of secular humanism. Students learn the Biblical foundations of the Common Law and are challenged to make conventional application of these principles to resolve today’s legal and governmental issues.

Oak Brook College trains its students by using innovative distance-learning techniques, seminars, workshops and on-line instruction. The faculty and students pursue Godly wisdom by memorizing and meditating upon God’s word, the Bible, and seek to use this wisdom in resolving conflicts, developing strategies, and implementing policy. As believers in the Lord Jesus Christ as their personal Savior, Oak Brook College students rely upon the indwelling Holy Spirit to give them the power to develop within them Christ-like character qualities such as meekness, humility, truthfulness, boldness, diligence, initiative and responsibility.

I wonder how many, if any, of its graduates have ever passed the bar exam.

20 Responses to “AND SPEAKING OF ABORTION”


Comment by
Pete Darby
July 24th, 2007
at 5:28 am

There’s something nagging at the back of my head, something about “division of church and state”.

Probably nothing.


Comment by
Skip Oliva
July 24th, 2007
at 7:11 am

Daryl’s religious bigotry aside–and I laugh anytime someone uses the phrase “anti-choice”–there’s no inherent virtue in passing the bar exam, a state barrier to entry that deprives individuals of the right to seek legal services from providers of their choice. Speaking as a paralegal, there are many services I can perform for lawyers but not directly for clients. Oftentimes I do *all* of the work but the lawyers gets the credit and a fee that’s higher than what I would charge in a free market.


Comment by
Daryl Cobranchi
July 24th, 2007
at 7:35 am

Why is “anti-choice” funny?

And if you bother reading through their website, you’ll see that the lack of ABA accreditation isn’t their only problem. They don’t require a BA/BS or the LSAT. The courtroom training consists of a few HOURS during a seminar. And they imply that the only reason they’re not ABA accredited is that they are a distance-learning school.

Dodgy at best.


Comment by
Daryl Cobranchi
July 24th, 2007
at 7:45 am

Oh yeah– I freely acknowledge that I’m bigoted against any creationist claptrap.


Comment by
Daryl Cobranchi
July 24th, 2007
at 7:51 am

From their “Statement of Faith”

We believe the Bible is the verbally inspired Word of God and is the sole, infallible rule of faith and practice…

We believe Adam was directly created in innocence and in the image of God and did not evolve from preexisting forms of life.


Comment by
Skip Oliva
July 24th, 2007
at 7:59 am

“Anti-choice” is funny to me because many people who identify themselves as “pro-choice”–I’m not necessarily saying you–tend to favor “choice” only when it comes to abortion. Many pro-choicers are happy to let the government take away people’s decision-making rights i other areas. And while I think that abortion is a matter that falls outside the proper scope of politics, it is a form of self-mutilation that should not be celebrated for its own sake.

Back on the main subject, I’ll again cite personal experience. I have a BS/paralegal certificate from the University of Maryland, hardly a bastion of creationist wingnuttery. Yet I’ve often been told my credential is insufficient because the ABA won’t separately accredit the UM paralegal program (in fact, I believe among DC-area schools, only Georgetown has that honor.) The main reason? UM offers most of its paralegal courses through distance education — mostly taught by practicing lawyers who serve as adjunct faculty. The ABA prefers expensive facilities and tenured full-time professors. So whatever Oak Brook’s other faults, the ABA certainly does have a bias against distance education.


Comment by
Skip Oliva
July 24th, 2007
at 8:03 am

I’ll add that California has many non-ABA accredited law schools because it is the only state where such students may even sit for the bar exam. The ABA monopoly forbids all but their own students from even *attempting* to become a lawyer. But I guess Daryl’s okay with such practices as long as it fuels his hatred for people who don’t think like him.


Comment by
Daryl Cobranchi
July 24th, 2007
at 8:11 am

So whatever Oak Brook’s other faults, the ABA certainly does have a bias against distance education.

No doubt. I expect that will change eventually as the ABA oozes into the 21st century.

And while I think that abortion is a matter that falls outside the proper scope of politics, it is a form of self-mutilation that should not be celebrated for its own sake.

I don’t think many pro-choicers “celebrate” abortion. President Clinton had a good take on it– abortion should be safe, legal, and rare. I use the term “anti-choice” as a small protest against the framing I see all the time. There’s a big billboard here in Fayetteville that I drive by all the time that reads “RU Pro-Life or RU pro-death?” I figure if their side can try to label me as “pro-death” my framing them as “anti-choice” is mild.


Comment by
Unique
July 24th, 2007
at 8:26 am

Wingnuttery aside –

it sounds like another ‘Regent’ Law School. Where fundies can pretend to be lawyers and get jobs they aren’t qualified to hold in the Justice Department.

Just sayin’.


Comment by
sam
July 24th, 2007
at 9:12 am

Or we could approach their problems with the fact that law is not in fact based on the Bible, and no amount of wish-it-was is going to change that. Maybe that’s the real problem with this school and those like it. Nice of Skip to skirt the real issue though, which is what people on the right seem to love to do. Wanting things to be your way and framing them how you think they should be does not turn myth into fact.


Comment by
Alasandra
July 24th, 2007
at 9:15 am

Carter had a good solution to the abortion problem. Give women more choices, including easy access to contraceptives and abortions will drop dramatically.

Too many of the ANTI-Choice contingent seem to be hell bent on limiting a woman’s choices to what they think is the right thing to do. They don’t want single parents so women are either suppose to get married or give the baby up for adoption. They don’t want women to use birth control so women are suppose to forego sex unless they want to have a baby.

This adds an interesting twist to the issue.
In what is being called a “wrongful birth” case, a jury awarded more than $21 million to a couple who claimed a doctor misdiagnosed a severe birth defect in their son, leading them to have a second child with similar problems.
sunher...7.html


Comment by
Darren
July 24th, 2007
at 10:18 am

Well, I guess it’s confession time 🙂 I’m an OBCL grad (the very first class – 96A), and I passed the Bar Exam on my first time, as did a number of my friends.

I would somewhat agree with commenter Skip Olivia, though – there’s not much inherent virtue in passing the Bar Exam, except the ability to take tests – pretty difficult tests, but just tests nonetheless. On the other hand, in my opinion, there’s some virtue in taking law by correspondence, because it gives you the opportunity to work in a practical legal environment while you study.

I suppose this is just further proof that I’ve drunk the Kool-Aid, right, Daryl? 🙂 Although I don’t agree with everything in their Statement of Faith.


Comment by
Skip Oliva
July 24th, 2007
at 11:54 am

sam —

I’m not “on the right” and I didn’t “skirt the issue.” I’m a libertarian anarchist (and an atheist to boot!) Frankly, I just don’t get worked up over religious folks the way Daryl does.

But I would make this observation: Law, unlike biology or economics, is not science. It’s a set of social institutions. Unless you’re prepared to evict all Christians and religious “wingnuts” from society, you do have to deal with them. Wishing them away won’t make it so. And they will have an influence on the law, whether through elections or participating in the judicial process.


Comment by
Skip Oliva
July 24th, 2007
at 12:08 pm

And just to stay on topic —

“I wonder how many, if any, of its graduates have ever passed the bar exam.”

Well, at least six of them did, according to the February 2006 California Bar Exam results. Oak Brook went 5-for-5 with first-time test takers and 6 for 13 overall. Maybe Jesus rigged the test.

See: calbar...TS.pdf


Comment by
Daryl Cobranchi
July 24th, 2007
at 12:13 pm

I’m an OBCL grad (the very first class – 96A)

Wow! And you seemed so sane. 🙂

To address the question of the Bar and non-accredited schools– I’ve read that four states allow students from non-accredited schools to sit for the bar. CA and WI for sure. I don’t know the others. But, Darren, maybe you can explain– states with reciprocity agreements. Does it matter if the school was unaccredited once you pass the bar in one state? So, for instance, if CA and OR had an agreement, could you practice in OR even though you went to OBCL?

One other question– were there really a bunch of former HEKs in the school?


Comment by
Skip Oliva
July 24th, 2007
at 12:37 pm

Daryl —

California has no reciprocity agreements except, I believe, with the District of Columbia (and there’s a five-year practice requirement there.) So you’d still have to take another state’s bar exam to get licensed outside CA. But they’d probably let you sit for the test after you practiced a few years.


Comment by
Daryl Cobranchi
July 24th, 2007
at 12:42 pm

I (briefly) considered law school after grad school. Chemical patent attorneys are in high demand, and there’s a national bar exam.


Comment by
Nance Confer
July 24th, 2007
at 12:56 pm

And while I think that abortion is a matter that falls outside the proper scope of politics, it is a form of self-mutilation that should not be celebrated for its own sake.
***
Gosh, I guess I’ll have to cancel that big abortion celebration I was planning.

What a ridiculous thing to say.

Nance


Comment by
Darren
July 24th, 2007
at 2:46 pm

Daryl,

Regarding reciprocity, each state has its own rules. As far as I know, OBCL students have had to sit for the Bar in other states if they want to practice in those states. I am not aware of any state that has automatically admitted any of the grads. However, a large part of this is due to California law – it requires any lawyer coming in from out of state to sit for the CA Bar Exam (which it views, in my opinion rightly, as the toughest one in the country). The statement of one of my bar preparers (a secular, non-OBCL-affiliated course I took) was that even Rehnquist or Ginsburg would have to take the Bar Exam before being allowed to practice. Many states have true reciprocity – what your home state requires, we require of you.

There are several who have gone into exclusive federal practice; as long as they’re licensed in one state, they’re okay.

As far as I know, the entire first class (95A – typo on my first comment) was either HEK or homeschooling parents. As far as I could tell, most of the idealists burned out sometime during the 4 year program; those of us who graduated were more the practical (although still quite right-wing) types.

I have no idea what the homeschool/non-homeschool mix is nowadays. At one time, my friend was on staff there, but I think he’s off running his private practice now (and doing pretty well, from what I hear).


Comment by
Crimson Wife
August 3rd, 2007
at 1:02 am

50% of all unplanned pregnancies are the result of contraceptive failures, so pushing artificial contraception would not eliminate abortion. The only 100% effective method of avoiding pregnancy is abstinence, and that’s what we as a society should be promoting for unmarried individuals, particularly teenagers.

I’m pro-choice *before* the act, and pro-Life afterwards!