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  • Columbia Univ. Offers Student Body ‘Trauma Specialists’ To Cope With Grand Jury Rulings

    It really is becoming harder and harder to mock liberals, and that’s because they do it to themselves unintentionally better than we could ever. Take this memo from Columbia University’s law school, which was obtained by Powerline, for instance.

    In it, the school’s administration outlines that final exams will be postponed, trauma specialists will be provided, special office hours will be coordinated, further ‘teach-ins’ will be explored, and a host of other action items arranged by the University befitting a kindergarten class, all for the sake of dealing with the alleged agony inflicted on the student body by the grand jury decisions in both Ferguson and Staten Island.

    For real:

    The grand juries’ determinations to return non-indictments in the Michael Brown and Eric Garner cases have shaken the faith of some in the integrity of the grand jury system and in the law more generally. For some law students, particularly, though not only, students of color, this chain of events is all the more profound as it threatens to undermine a sense that the law is a fundamental pillar of society designed to protect fairness, due process and equality.

    For these reasons, after consultation with students in the law school and with colleagues on the law faculty and in the administration, I am taking the following steps to assure our responsiveness and involvement in this particular moment:

    – In recognition of the traumatic effects these events have had on some of the members of our community, Dean Greenberg-Kobrin and Yadira Ramos-Herbert, Director, Academic Counseling, have arranged to have Dr. Shirley Matthews, a trauma specialist, hold sessions next Monday and Wednesday for anyone interested in participating to discuss the trauma that recent events may have caused .

    – Several members of the faculty have agreed to schedule special office hours next week to be available for students who would like support and/or would like to talk about the implications of the Brown and Garner non-indictments. …

    – I support the idea of an open community dialogue to discuss the concerns of students in the wake of recent events, and to share diverse and collective notions of injustice that these cases raise. I will encourage all members of our community to attend.

    – The law school has a policy and set of procedures for students who experience trauma during exam period. In accordance with these procedures and policy, students who feel that their performance on examinations will be sufficiently impaired due to the effects of these recent events may petition Dean Alice Rigas to have an examination rescheduled.

    – Several members of the faculty have agreed to work with students to develop a reading group, speaker series, and/or longitudinal teach-in next semester in which the group would explore a series of sessions where we educate ourselves and formulate a response to the implications, including racial meanings, of these non-indictments. In an effort to include the larger community in which we live and study, this work may include a collaboration with Columbia’s Center for Justice and with the Schomberg Center.

    In closing let me just add my hope that through these and other efforts all members of the Columbia Law School community can can come to have a greater sense of mutual support and trust.

    Would you believe us if we told you that memo was written by Columbia Law School’s interim dean, Robert Scott?

    Of course you would!

    Where else would you find such puerile narcism coated in a mindless sauce of buzzwords that no one outside of academia uses? Hell, unless these students have some immediate connection to the Garner/Brown families, which isn’t the case, why would they — the student body — need counseling? And are these the type of future lawyers Columbia is training to enter the real world, ones that need a support group each time a grand jury decision doesn’t go their way?

    Good luck with being a, er, lawyer!

    Exit question: How many students will feign trauma in order to cram in more studying for the final exams?

    We would.

    Related story: ‘Traumatized’ Georgetown, Harvard Law Students Demand Postponed Finals


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