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News Updates: The Crusaders

Vivia Chen

April 3, 2011

Tiger_mother-1We love lawyers who fight for what they believe in. So let's take a look at some recent news about lawyers with passion:

• Tiger Mom is vindicated

I know you've been on the edge of your chair wondering where Sophia Rubenfeld is going to college. The acceptance letters came out last week, and the suspense is over. The progeny of Yale Law professors Amy Chua and Jed Rubenfeld is going to--drum roll, please--Harvard!

Was there ever any doubt? Chua, of course, is the author of Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother (see Supermom, Chinese-Style), which advocates extreme parenting as the way to ensure a child's success. The tenacious David Lat of  Above the Law broke the happy news. As Lat succinctly puts it: "You can criticize all you want, but you can’t argue with success."

• Big-firm alum fights for the boys

Do you secretly feel the male sex has been getting the short end of the stick? Are you tired of the feminist agenda and all that politically correct stuff? Well, there's a lawyer who feels your pain and will fight for your rights. Last week The Colbert Report featured New York lawyer Roy Den Hollander as one of its "difference makers"--someone who fights for justice against overwhelming odds. Check it out. It's hilarious.

The Colbert Report Mon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Difference Makers - Roy Den Hollander
Colbert Report Full Episodes Political Humor & Satire Blog Video Archive


On Colbert, Hollander ranted about the oppression of men and how society gives unfair advantages to women. One manifestation of this grave injustice, according to Hollander, is the way women get free rides--or free drinks. So he sued a bunch of clubs in New York for hosting "ladies night." (The show noted that he took the case all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, where he was basically told to "get lost," in Hollander's own words.)

You have to give Hollander credit for standing up for his quaint beliefs--not to mention having the chutzpah to dance hip-hop before a national audience. ("When I go to my hip-hop club, my heart is not full of malice," he explained on the segment.)

But before you diss Hollander as a wack job, take note: He was once an associate at Cravath Swaine & Moore--the Harvard of law firms! His Web site says he worked there from 1986 to 1989. (We've asked Cravath to confirm about Hollander, and will update when we hear back from the firm.)

Is this what happens when you work too hard at Big Law? Are there other stories like Hollander's among big-firm alums? If you know any (or remember Hollander from Cravath), won't you please share?


Do you have topics you'd like to discuss or tips to share? E-mail The Careerist's chief blogger, Vivia Chen, at [email protected].

Follow The Careerist on Twitter: twitter.com/lawcareerist


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I like the "tiger mom".

She puts in a lot of work raising her kids and should be honored for it.

How in h*@# does someone at Cravath - supposedly filled with smart people - pay $20,000 to a prostitute for sex?

I rarely ever pay for than $200.

Anyone as sick of this supposed "Tiger Mom" as I am? Seriously what an attention whore. She's almost as bad as that so called "victim" Casey Heynes: http://lawblog.legalmatch.com/2011/03/29/how-to-fix-the-school-bullying-problem/

You know who else was also a Cravath attorney? This guy:

So, um, yeah, presTTTige and five cents will get you a nickel.

It's too soon to tell if Chua's parenting techniques are a success. I'm sure Sophia feels she has to go to Harvard whether she wants to or not. I did, and my parents weren't nearly as involved with me as Chua is with her daughters. In fact, they were abusive and neglectful and Chua's parenting sounds like a nightmare to me because I had similar experiences with my parents (and teachers and society) forcing me to do things and ignoring my feelings, inclinations and interests.
People usually aren't fully independent of their parents until they're around 30 - sometimes much later. I'd like to see how her daughters are doing in, say, 15 years, and what they have to say then about Chua's parenting.

As funny as the Hollander piece is, what's even funnier is the notion that using B.F. Skinner-like behavioral mod techniques to get your kid into Harvard spells "success."

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About The Careerist

The Careerist takes an inside look at how lawyers shape their careers and manage their lives. The blog aims to dissect developments in the profession, provide useful information and advice, and give lawyers a platform to voice their views. The goal is to provide a fresh, provocative take on the state of lawyering.

About Vivia Chen

Vivia Chen

Vivia Chen, The Careerist's chief blogger, has been covering the business and culture of law firms for a decade. A former corporate lawyer, Chen is fascinated by those who thrive (as well as those who don't) in the legal profession. Her take: Success in the law (and life) doesn't always travel a linear path. If you have topics you'd like to discuss or information to share, contact her: [email protected]

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