Friday, June 25, 2010

GW: Submission of Legal Writing Samples

January 13, 1993
3801 Connecticut Avenue, NW
Apartment 136
Washington, DC  20008

Dr. Suzanne M. Pitts
Dept. of Psychiatry
George Washington University
Medical Center
2150 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC  20037

Dear Dr. Pitts:

Attached are two legal writing samples: one written by a senior partner in a major law firm, the other written by a first-semester law student who had just completed his 12th week of law school.  (I had begun law school in late August 1979; shortly thereafter, on November 30, 1979, I submitted the attached writing for a course in legal writing and research).

Review of the two writings will give you some idea of what really troubles me about my former employer's Response, which I first read on the evening of December 23, 1992, and, indeed what troubles me about the termination itself.  From the onset one is vaguely reminded of the decision in 1987 by the great legal scholars on the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee to refuse to affirm the nomination of Judge Robert Bork to the U.S. Supreme Court.


Gary Freedman

[Handwritten note by Dr. Pitts: "Pt considered this letter very aggressive & hostile."  Dr. Pitts underlined the word "very" three times.]


Gary Freedman said...

I felt insulted by the quality of Akin Gump's Response that it submitted to the D.C. Department of Human Rights on May 22, 1992. In effect, I was saying that a first year law student could have written something better.

I felt that I had gotten "borked" by someone who couldn't even write a decent legal document.

Bork as verb

According to columnist William Safire, the first published use of bork as a verb was "possibly" The Atlanta Journal-Constitution of August 20, 1987. Safire defines to bork by reference "to the way Democrats savaged Ronald Reagan's nominee, the Appeals Court judge Robert H. Bork, the year before."

Perhaps the best known use of the verb to bork occurred in July 1991 at a conference of the National Organization for Women in New York City. Feminist Florynce Kennedy addressed the conference on the importance of defeating the nomination of Clarence Thomas to the U.S. Supreme Court. She said, "We're going to bork him. We're going to kill him politically ... This little creep, where did he come from?"

Thomas was subsequently confirmed after one of the most divisive confirmation fights in Supreme Court history.

In March 2002, the Oxford English Dictionary added an entry for the verb Bork as U.S. political slang, with this definition: "To defame or vilify (a person) systematically, esp. in the mass media, usually with the aim of preventing his or her appointment to public office; to obstruct or thwart (a person) in this way."

Gary Freedman said...

Message for the DOJ: This is me in a VERY angry state! Frightening, isn't it?

Gary Freedman said...

Dennis Race had used the phrase "from the onset" in his pleading, which I mock in the posted letter to Dr. Pitts.

Apparently, Race meant to say "from the outset."