Great moments in law school outreach

by Walter Olson on April 2, 2013

After 22 years in prison for political murder, Kathy Boudin is now NYU Law “scholar in residence” [NYPost; relevant section of Schools for Misrule recounting cases of Bernardine Dohrn, Angela Davis, Lynne Stewart, etc.]

From Twitter: “She is probably more conservative than the rest of the faculty.” [@MartelPlieiades] “Outrageous sexism: If a man had served 22 years in prison for political murder, he’d be NYU Law’s Dean.” [@Sam_Schulman]

Update: PowerLine has now reprinted the pertinent section of Schools for Misrule.

{ 16 comments }

1 Ron Miller 04.02.13 at 1:05 pm

I’m not sure exactly what a “Sheinberg Scholar-in-Residence” is. But, I agree, it is pretty awful that she is teaching at NYU in any capacity. She has a right to find employment and all, but NYU is making a mistake in my opinion.

2 Ed 04.02.13 at 1:06 pm

“She teaches about the issues facing convicts and their families when a person is released from prison”. Maybe she should be teaching about the issues facing wives and children when growing up after their father (spouse) was killed by a left wing terrorist group intent on committing treason by overthrowing the government..

3 Tina Trent 04.02.13 at 2:28 pm

I’ve always wondered why nobody mentions Eleanor Raskin (nee Stein). She teaches at Albany Law School, has taught at SUNY Albany as a “human rights” professor, and was even a NY Administrative Judge in transnational environmental law, I think.

Closer to home, she saw no environmental problem with stuffing her own apartment full of explosives and going on the lam with a toddler (baby crawling under SWAT team feet). Hubby Jeff Jones is tied to several of the WU’s nastier gigs (and Obama’s Recovery Act planning). These domestic scenes will not be featured in Robert Redford’s new “humanizing” WU film, The Company You Keep.

Larry Grathwohl’s 1976 memoir of infiltrating the Weathermen and dealing with pre-tenure-track Ayers and Dohrn has been re-released this week: bringingdownamerica.com.

4 Robert 04.02.13 at 9:55 pm

“…the laundering of evil…”

And why is a woman who commits “Political Murder” somehow tolerated more than say, a man who kills a convenience store clerk.

5 MattS 04.03.13 at 8:43 am

Ed,

“left wing terrorist group intent on committing treason by overthrowing the government”

Technically if they had succeeded in overthrowing the government it wouldn’t be treason. :)

6 Tina Trent 04.03.13 at 8:46 am

It’s worse than you think, Robert. There are law profs who tout their violent criminal pasts of the non-political sort, too. It’s a badge of sincerity in higher education to have once held a knife to some old sack’s throat in a bank line.

I looked for the link to a group of profs with felonies — couldn’t find it. They had some catchy name. Maybe someone else here knows.

7 Ron Miller 04.03.13 at 11:39 am

Really? Do we always have to go to far? Law professors who “tout their violent past” is a big epidemic? Geez. NYU should not have hired this woman. Period.

Everyone here wants it both ways. Leftist who want to overthrow the government are awful but we all need guns to fight government oppression.

8 wfjag 04.03.13 at 3:22 pm

It would be interesting to find out how these professors feel about the 2d Amendment, and see if that is a factor in their being hired and honored.

Perhaps in contrast, Prof. Roger Roots, J.D., Ph.D., was fired by Macon State Univ. purportedly because of his past felony convictions, which he had disclosed on his application. See, Professor Who Disclosed Felony Convictions is Fired (Nov. 19, 2004), The Chronicle of Higher Education, http://chronicle.com/article/Professor-Who-Disclosed-Felony/16030

His views on the 2d Amendment probably do not jive with those of the current administration:

“The actual intent of the Second Amendment — that it protect a right of people to maintain the means “of violently checking the power of government — has been all but lost in modern American society.” (ftn. omitted).

R. Roots, ARE COPS CONSTITUTIONAL? , Seton Hall Constitutional L.J. 2001, 685

9 Joe 04.09.13 at 11:29 pm

Stein hasn’t taught at Albany Law for years; she’s an administrative law judge at the NY public service commission.

10 Tina Trent 04.10.13 at 8:46 am

She’s still listed there. Professors often maintain their perks, as if they’ve been granted a principality, not a job. Such selective feudalism lies at the heart of the academic mess.

11 J 04.17.13 at 5:38 pm

Tina and Joe, you know what they say about making assumptions…
I can state through firsthand experience that she was still teaching in the Spring 2012 semester. Whatever you think of her past and her politics, she extremely knowledgable and in energy, environmental and climate change law.

12 Tina Trent 04.17.13 at 6:38 pm

J — Ted Bundy was reportedly a great suicide crisis hotline counselor, too. No matter what he did.

And hiding behind anonymity to excuse a person who tried to kill cops makes you a coward, too.

13 J 04.17.13 at 9:53 pm

Tina- Your comparison is faulty, on all counts. First, in your assumptions that she’s not actually working and just taking advantage of the “perks.” Which you conveniently failed to address, even though you took the time to personally insult me.

Second, in your attempt to equate Ted Bundy with Eleanor Stein. I do not condone what she may have done in her youth, but to put her on the same page as a serial killer and necrophiliac who went out and hunted his numerous victims? You really think that’s a reasonable comparison? That’s almost comical. And comparing each doing their job well? Please, a crisis hotline counselor that was “reportedly” great and a law school professor that you have been provided with firsthand knowledge about? No dice lady. Do I even need to state the obvious? Besides the fact that there’s a good chance I wouldn’t be here to share this wonderful discussion with you if I’d spent that kind of time with Mr. Bundy, the face-to-face interaction and intellect needed of a law school professor, to a class of law school students is nowhere near comparable to a psychopath honing his skills with the most vulnerable of people during a crisis. It’s like comparing apples to bunnies. And I must say, your initial description of Eleanor Stein sounds like it’s ripped right off her Wikipedia page. Makes me think you discovered who she was 5 minutes before making your post, and like a giddy school child, felt the need to share your discovery with the world.

Finally, nice job for criticizing me for being anonymous. Because “Joe” and “Ed” and “MattS” aren’t anonymous either…I’m so sorry for having to happen upon this web page by chance on a google search and wanting to do a public service by correcting a factual inaccuracy. I did not realize that I was required to set up a blog with my “real name” just like you, so that you find my comments acceptable. I’ll keep that in mind for next time. Would you like my address and ss# as well?

14 Tina Trent 04.18.13 at 9:05 am

Try reading harder.

I never said that she wasn’t currently teaching — I stated what was written on the school’s website about her official status and made a general comment about academia. The rest is your extraordinarily long projection.

Try casual googling before accusing.

Funny, wasn’t it . . . me . . . who just republished a book about the Weather Underground? Oh yeah, it was. So I didn’t just find Ms. Rankin on Wikipedia.

Try not being ignorant of history.

Ms. Rankin was a co-conspirator in a bomb plot that, had it been successful, would have murdered and maimed hundreds of innocent soldiers and their girlfriends. As respected historian Harvey Klehr has observed, “[t]he only reason they were not guilty of mass murder is mere incompetence. I don’t know what sort of defense that is.”

Try growing a spine. I challenge you to put your name to these absurd comments. For, perhaps then your law professors can offer you some remedial intervention, because if this is an example of the research and advocacy skills they imparted to you, their teaching skills don’t shine any brighter than their ability to discern the ethical problem of granting academic honors to unrepentant terrorists.

15 J 04.18.13 at 3:41 pm

Tina- Book publication or not, you were careless (or clueless?) enough to spell her name incorrectly multiple times in your post. Maybe you should try reading your own words a bit harder? Or thinking more when you write them? You said: “Professors often maintain their perks, as if they’ve been granted a principality, not a job.” The word “maintain” implies that she is still granted those perks, even when she is not teaching.

Your initial post about her, especially the first paragraph is nearly verbatim from her Wikipedia page. So my observation that you seem like a giddy schoolchild still holds true. Maybe I’ll change it to a giddy child with a clear agenda.

Why didn’t I do a simple Google search on you and your self-anointed expertise? Sorry, I’m just not that into you.

Also, your loose usage of the word terrorist is bad form. And how would you know if she is unrepentant about her past? Not everything needs to be public to be true or real.

So you’re back to throwing insults because I choose not to disclose my name. Again, you never answered why are you picking on lil’ ol’ me and not Joe, Dick and Harry who have posted anonymously here as well? Here’s the deal Tina, unlike you I’m not really into trying to get my “15 minutes.” I value my privacy. The part that I still don’t understand though is, because I am pretty clearly a private person, why you have such urgency in getting my name? It’s not going to get you anywhere. There’s very little about me out there in the google world. You will not be able to put a face with the name, so to speak.

So why should I “grow a spine?” So you can start a vendetta against me as well, for saying that one of my professors with a less than stellar past was a respectable teacher? If your purpose is anything other than trying to harm my name, please inform me why I should forgo my privacy for your desires.

16 Paul 04.18.13 at 5:24 pm

“loose usage of the word terrorist is bad form”

Look, all the ad hominem aside, it sounds like you’re basically saying it’s okay for people to attempt mass murder over politics and then go on to become a professor and judge without ever publicly expressing anything that sounds like sincere remorse. Am I right?

Whereas it’s very, very wrong of me to call her a terrorist?

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