Drifting towards CrimLaw

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Feb 10, 2010 in The 1L Life | Subscribe

It was only a couple weeks into law school when I first wrote that CivPro had become my favorite class, an opinion that endured throughout the semester.

CrimLaw has quickly displaced Torts at #2 on my list… and as the semester continues I’m pretty sure this is where I want to spend my career :)

I fumbled at the start of class today when Professor CrimLaw asked me to detail the 4 types of homicide under the common law — totally forgot about involuntary manslaughter :beatup: — but later in the class we got into Justice Blackmun’s dissent in Callins v. Collins, 510 U.S. 1141 (1994).

Prof. CrimLaw asked what I took out of the dissent, which I characterized as Blackmun “whining” about the death penalty. That opened the door for a class-wide discussion on capital punishment… where I ended up being the only one to openly support executing murderers :crack:

My once-hostile philosophy on the death penalty notwithstanding,1 the debate itself was engaging. Even in CivPro I’m rarely more than half-certain on my opinions in class discussion; that percentage is far lower in something like Ks. But CrimLaw seems intuitive and comes naturally (at least thus far).

I was already planning on going the public service route in the Marine Corps, and had developed a growing interest in being a litigator from the Kilpatrick-Stockton competition last month. The downside of course is that it doesn’t pay much, but it’s one of the most direct ways for me to help improve my community. I’d argue that’s well worth the pay differential :)

My opinion might change after taking Evidence, but for now I think this is what I’ll be doing for a living :D I’ll keep you posted over the next couple years ;)

  1. Personally, I found Scalia’s concurrence in Callins persuasive on the legal justification for the death penalty, and the 4 men who raped an 11-year-old girl and killed her by stuffing her panties down her throat persuasive on the moral justification. See the fact background in State v. McCollum, 334 N.C. 208 (1993). []

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