Tuesday, October 17, 2017

The Assault on Arizona Summit Continues; Have Bar Examiners No Shame?

Predictable and sad.
Pass rates for first-time test takers from Arizona Summit Law School dipped to 26 percent in July after having improved to nearly 30 percent in February. Results hit a low of 25 percent in July 2016, according to results released Monday by the Arizona Supreme Court.
...
Arizona Summit once boasted State Bar exam passage rates as high as 97 percent.
I'm sure the self-appointed critics will see this as validation of what they've been saying about Arizona Summit.  They're such mental midgets they would use a term like "mental midget."  Lord knows I wouldn't.  I'm sophisticated and well-endowed. 

The only variable that matters with bar passage rates is whiners bitching about the law school scam and thereby driving bar examiners to make the test more ludicrously difficult for would-be lawyers.  When Phoenix has a shortage of qualified attorneys in a few short years, there's going to be plenty of blame to go around, but squarely, indisputably, it can be directed at the legal media who have driven intelligent, hard-working students towards less-"scammy" professions premised on a presentation of evidence that is unnecessarily and absurdly objective and even-handed.

But-for you assholes, Summit would still be scoring 97 percent on the bar exam.  No doubt in my mind, as the test-makers would have no incentive to make the test more difficult.

I heard there's now a math section on the bar examination.  That's how bad it's gotten.  Did you know that?  Like why are they making future criminal law defense attorneys do integral calculus?

Oh well...

What you all don't realize is that the survivors of this ludicrous system are going to the baddest millennial badass attorneys to ever badass.  It's called evolution.  More resistance makes the trainees who escape the cruel system even stronger.  The fascist cretins at the bar association may be unjustifiably shredding tickets to the Express but the ones who can board are going for a long, multi-million dollar ride.  Most of us would prefer a more egalitarian approach, but to each his own.

Scam on.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

The Blunt Beauty of Dean Chemerinsky

Four years ago, Richard Susskind published a book about the future of lawyering.  Befitting the role of academics to always be publishing, Susskind has published a second edition.  Here is an excerpt from it that will restore your cynic-shot faith in academic writing.

In this section, Susskind addresses what law students should be teaching their students, i.e., how to train them for the post-Terminator reality of a legal profession that has no practical jobs for lawyers (spoiler alert: in the year 2000, the Million Dollar Express will run on solar power fuel cells and the money we swim in will be digital!).

As some of Susskind's more agressive conclusions could be perceived as potentially contradictory to the pump 'n' dump strategy of America's fine institutions of legal education, AMR appropriately asked for comments for the salted cashew gallery of American legal academia. 

As might be expected, Dean Chemerinsky cuts to the heart of the matter:
Legal education is better than Richard Susskind realizes.
Chemerinsky, the Graham Greene thoracic surgeon of legal academia. If he didn't believe in the long-term prosperity of legal education, he wouldn't have built a brand new vanity project law school in a congested metro area and bail to Berkeley.

Go to law school, kids.  It's better than Richard Susskind realizes.  If that doesn't convince you, you may not be law school material, but it's okay - someone's going to have to program our robots and clean the digital money pool.

Monday, September 25, 2017

The Megyn Kelly Plan

Today, former Fox News all-star and Donald Trump advisor Megyn Kelly debuted her morning show/segment/whever on NBC, ready to complete her makeover from bitter MILFish icon of conservative propaganda to a mid-morning MILFish matron for middle America.

As many of you know, Kelly is a proud graduate of Albany Law School (the number one law school between NYC and the border!).  Like many Albany graduates, she's making millions each year, albeit in a slightly different field than most lawyers.

That isn't to say she doesn't have advice for would-be attorneys.  Just check out this sage career wisdom that - apparently - many of you are missing.
In her memoir released last year, "Settle for More," Kelly described how she landed her first job as a lawyer fresh out of law school in 1995, and she offered advice for anyone applying for a new job in any field.

"I did something all job applicants should do — I asked for the job," she wrote. "I told them that if they extended an offer, I would accept it on the spot, that I had done the research and investigation, and this was where I wanted to be."
...
"Don't underestimate the power this message can have on a potential employer," Kelly wrote. "Everyone likes to be flattered. Of course it works better if it's true."
She, a simple third-tier K-JDer, parlayed that job into a nine-year run at Jones Day followed by landing a gig at Fox News.

So, kids, what's your problem?  Why are you bitching about $40k jobs in Boston with many applicants?

Maybe you could start with something as simple as your cover letter.  Are YOU telling prospective employers you're desperate enough to accept on the spot?  If not, what are you waiting for? 

Your spot at Fox News may be waiting.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Dean Satan Q&A: Lawyers... In "Love"

Q.  Howdy, Deano!  Love the new feature and thanks for taking my question.  I've been a lawyer a few years now, and while I absolutely love being in the front ranks slicing the Slimy Orcs of Injustice with my handy TruthSaber - motion for judgment on the pleadings POW - I notice my marriage is sort-of...sad.  Like two ships passing in the night, although we're both taking on excess cargo and I think the other ship may be mingling around the harbor.  What can we do to keep the romance smooth smiling while steering this million dollar cruise ship?

-Drydocked in Des Moines

A:  Ambiguously gendered writer, I'm something of an expert on this topic, as I have been married five times.  You might ask yourself why a philanderer diametrically opposed to Juedo-Christian norms would indulge the institution of marriage and the answer is:  networking.

Once you hit a certain age, professionalism requires that you take a spouse or else everyone will think you're a [weirdo/closet queer/nympho/commitmentphobic/incel/predator/super-feminist/etc.].  Don't believe me?  Show up to a lawyer networking event as a 40-year-old, wait the obligatory hour for the alcohol to set in, and start telling people that you're "single."  Not divorced.  Not separated.  Not "we've been together for a few years now."  Single.

Drydocked, you may as well unbutton your shirt and show everyone oozing, festering boils.

The point is that - much like your decision to go to law school - you have already made an excellent professional life decision.  Congratulations!  Breed a future lawyer or two - they're like sprinkles on your networking sundae, or, to use your boating metaphor, a gilded anchor.

Unfortunately, almost all marriages are superficial scams.  Just as the depression and substance abuse reported in the legal industry are common across all professions and therefore not of concern, please know that no one really has a blissful, fully satisfied domestic life, lawyer or no.

Major unhappiness in relationships, I have found, is the result of unrealistic expectations.  Once you accept the fact that romance is a delusion propagated by other industries' scam operators, you'll find a certain peace with that awkward co-existence with another person from your class in a dull, emotionally vacant, and relatively sexless suburb.  Again, pop a litter out if you really need to add some gravy to that IV of sad mashed potatoes running into your ass.

Sadly, Drydocked, sometimes the significant others of lawyers don't appreciate these truths that you and I, as superior intellects, can grasp.  They still believe in "communication," "emotional support," "work-life balance," "intimacy," and "not stress drinking until you scream-cry pass out," that Disney-fantasy existence of cartoon characters and pop psychology textbooks.

The silver lining - on top of the literal silver lining you can now afford in your bathtub - is that if you find yourself in one of these totally toxic, ahistorical, and unrealistic partnerships, law school gives you the legal resources to fight tooth and nail for what is yours when she sees the "other" credit card statement, at least in theory - you'll still want to hire a peer lest you represent a fool.  My legal acumen has saved me one of my three houses and at least 40% of my earned income over the years.

Many things in law and life are an issue of perspective.  Once you accept that long-term monogamy is a multinational scam and that you should simply approach it as a Machiavellian means to an end, your life is going to get a whole lot better.  When your partner bitches about not doing housework, smile and think "All for the networking."

Your one true love is yourself.  Second-place?  The Law.

My approach to marriage - which is now 5 for 5 - is heads I win, tails she loses.  Non-lawyers won't crack that code until after they've called one of our esteemed peers, which means - yet again - law school put you in a winning position.  Works every fucking time, and you know what?  The network loves crazy ex- stories, too! 

Smooth sailing!

Friday, September 8, 2017

Dean Satan Q&A: Akron-y Capitalism

Q:  Yo, Supreme Law Prof of Darkness, love the new feature.  What do you think of the University of Akron dumping $21 Mil into remodeling its law school?  The school stockpiled $9M from tuition hikes over the last decade and bilked another $5M from the state of Ohio.  Enrollment is up 49 students from last year to a meaty 473.  I think it's great, but some other lawyer - probably one of the very few alcoholic narcissistic shitbirds that sneaks into the profession given our generous entry requirements and the promise of fortune and fame - told me the school only had a 44% employment score (da fuq?) and that Akron is a rust belt dumpster fire with no need for its own law school.  What's wrong with these dust-licking dorks? 

- Can't-Lose in Canton

A:  The greatest basketball player in the world, Lebron James, is from Akron, Ohio.  I'm now going to cut and paste his stats as a way to fill space:

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
2003–04 Cleveland 79 79 39.5 .417 .290 .754 5.5 5.9 1.6 .7 20.9
2004–05 Cleveland 80 80 42.4* .472 .351 .750 7.4 7.2 2.2 .7 27.2
2005–06 Cleveland 79 79 42.5 .480 .335 .738 7.0 6.6 1.6 .8 31.4
2006–07 Cleveland 78 78 40.9 .476 .319 .698 6.7 6.0 1.6 .7 27.3
2007–08 Cleveland 75 74 40.4 .484 .315 .712 7.9 7.2 1.8 1.1 30.0*
2008–09 Cleveland 81 81 37.7 .489 .344 .780 7.6 7.2 1.7 1.1 28.4
2009–10 Cleveland 76 76 39.0 .503 .333 .767 7.3 8.6 1.6 1.0 29.7
2010–11 Miami 79 79 38.8 .510 .330 .759 7.5 7.0 1.6 .6 26.7
2011–12 Miami 62 62 37.5 .531 .362 .771 7.9 6.2 1.9 .8 27.1
2012–13 Miami 76 76 37.9 .565 .406 .753 8.0 7.3 1.7 .9 26.8
2013–14 Miami 77 77 37.7 .567 .379 .750 6.9 6.4 1.6 .3 27.1
2014–15 Cleveland 69 69 36.1 .488 .354 .710 6.0 7.4 1.6 .7 25.3
2015–16 Cleveland 76 76 35.6 .520 .309 .731 7.4 6.8 1.4 .6 25.3
2016–17 Cleveland 74 74 37.8* .548 .363 .674 8.6 8.7 1.2 .6 26.4
Career 1,061 1,060 38.9 .501 .342 .740 7.3 7.0 1.6 .8 27.1

That, my dear readers, is some kick-ass dominance, and that's only the regular season.  His playoff numbers are even better:

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
2006 Cleveland 13 13 46.5 .476 .333 .737 8.1 5.8 1.4 .7 30.8
2007 Cleveland 20 20 44.7 .416 .280 .755 8.1 8.0 1.7 .5 25.1
2008 Cleveland 13 13 42.5 .411 .257 .731 7.8 7.6 1.8 1.3 28.2
2009 Cleveland 14 14 41.4 .510 .333 .749 9.1 7.3 1.6 .9 35.3
2010 Cleveland 11 11 41.8 .502 .400 .733 9.3 7.6 1.7 1.8 29.1
2011 Miami 21 21 43.9 .466 .353 .763 8.4 5.9 1.7 1.2 23.7
2012 Miami 23 23 42.7 .500 .259 .739 9.7 5.6 1.9 .7 30.3
2013 Miami 23 23 41.7 .491 .375 .777 8.4 6.6 1.8 .8 25.9
2014 Miami 20 20 38.2 .565 .407 .806 7.1 4.8 1.9 .6 27.4
2015 Cleveland 20 20 42.2 .417 .227 .731 11.3 8.5 1.7 1.1 30.1
2016 Cleveland 21 21 39.1 .525 .340 .661 9.5 7.6 2.3 1.3 26.3
2017 Cleveland 18 18 41.3 .565 .411 .698 9.1 7.8 1.9 1.3 32.8
Career 217 217 42.1 .485 .330 .742 8.9 6.9 1.8 1.0 28.4

How can you deny this man's awesome power?

Yet some people claim the University of Akron shouldn't spend hard-earned cash to improve itself?  What if Akron produces a Lebron James of the law?  Paul Clement was born in a town of 6,000.  Clarence Darrow is from a super-small Ohio town not terribly far from Akron.

You want to deny them a local place to go to law school?  You don't think it's worth a measly $21M to ensure their teachers have a decent lounge and there's a mock courtroom worthy of the term?

At 150 graduates a year, the anticipated lifetime premium for the class is $150M.  Ten years' worth of graduates is a $1.5B.  If just 1% of those earnings are donated back to the school, it's $15M.  Tax revenue to the state will pay back that $5M with ludicrous, mouth-watering interest.

Can't Lose - and you can't - I'm frankly growing quite tired of our nation's petulant attitude towards public education.  Men like me gave up lucrative salaries to make slightly less lucrative salaries educating tomorrow's leaders.  Akron fills the Ohio Bar with top-shelf material.  We must support such ventures, and if that means dumping $21M for new windows and a coat of paint, we should dump $50M, or else we run the severe risk of seeing the would-be Lebrons of the world taking their talents to other fields.

Scam on, Ohio.

Monday, September 4, 2017

Dean Satan Q&A: A Holiday in the Life

Q:  Hi Dean Satan!  Mega-dittos and scam on!  Beautiful tan you have.  Did you enjoy the eclipse?  (That's not my question, just my go-to conversation starter until Halloween; "always be networking").

As I write this question, it is the morning of Labor Day, that annual sabbath for capitalism, ostensibly the one day where the overlords give non-essential worker bees a day of repose just because.  By all accounts a holiday.  One of a handful that close the courts, our sacred vanguards of  justice.

Yet, instead of feeling relaxed, I have a weighty sense of guilt about not billing anything yesterday and an anxiety about hitting n hours in a shorter month.  No pending trials or looming deadlines, just a feeling of worthlessness and dread because I should be working.  Most of November and December will be the same, only the rest of the rational world slows down even more, and the sense of missing out on a standardized cultural celebration is even higher.

Why does the legal profession inflect this mental strain on itself through a ludicrous business model?  And why do law schools not prepare students for this sort of thing?  Where's the thought leadership in addressing a common cause of burnout and ensuring that law firms are staffed with sane, healthy, well-adjusted people instead of narcissistic schmoozers and shell-shocked survivors?

-"Down in Denver"

A:  First of all, I'm going to rename you "Up."  Attitude is everything!

Up, yours...that's a great question!   And thanks for the kind words on the tan.  (I had a research project in Costa Rica, and the answer is yes, I can have sex with four lovely lapsed Catholics at the same time.  Thanks, science!)

Naturally, though, being out of the country means that I missed the eclipse, including my opportunity to post super-meta "normal idiot" pics of me with ABA-approved eclipse glasses over my cell phone. 

Eclipses are not really my thing anyway, as I prefer to smother the nation with a more intangible form of darkness. If I want literal darkness, I'll just close my damn eyes.  I'm a literal man; if I see a Corona, it means I'm at the wrong bar.  Know what I mean, Up?

But you're absolutely correct to always be networking and to value the contribution of our courts in ensuring civic order.  It sounds like you have the pitch-perfect idea of what makes a lawyer a lawyer.

Additionally, Up, as a law school dean, it's a gentle island breeze on my hellishly hot heart to see a lawyer thinking through client matters on a day the rest of the world believes is best left to barbecues, clearance sales, and Hurricane relief efforts.

After all, if you treat life like a holiday, you will never do anything amazing.  That anxiety is just the world's way of getting you prepared for greatness.  If you shoot for the moon, you may still land among the stars.  Etc.

Granted, I think it's a bit egotistical to seek validation through an advice column, but as a professional narcissist, I like the cut of your jib.  So here you go, bro:  Your clients chose wisely.  Your thinking of their interests, of how to protect them and what work needs to be done on a "day off" is proof positive that you have the Right Stuff(c).  

The fact that you're able to formulate such a question is an affirmation that the legal education industrial complex produced a properly calibrated weapon of justice.

Thanks for writing, Up. Looking ahead to November and December, remember that it's never too early to make an end-of-year tax-purposes donation!  Giddy-up and scam on!

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Make the Right Choice, Ex-Charlotte Students

The options:
The department's guidance identifies April 12 as the earliest date students could have withdrawn from the program and still qualify for a closed-school discharge, which provides a path for students to receive full forgiveness of federal student loans if their institution closes while they are enrolled.
...
The department did not have an estimate of the number of students expected to qualify for closed school discharge, but 100 were still enrolled and about 70 were on leave when the school shut down. Stein's office estimated that more than 300 students would qualify if exceptional circumstances were declared by DeVos. A Charlotte Law degree cost upward of $100,000.

Students who withdrew before April 12 will have the option to pursue loan discharge through a borrower-defense claim, which requires borrowers to meet a higher standard than a closed-school discharge. Borrowers seeking loan forgiveness through that route must demonstrate their program violated state law through an act or omission related to their federal student loan. (Students can also seek to transfer their Chalotte credits to another program but would not be eligible for closed school discharge if they do.)
The evidence:
A federal criminal investigation involving Charlotte School of Law was opened more than a year ago, according to recently unsealed court documents in a qui tam lawsuit....

The lawsuit was filed by Barbara Bernier, a former Charlotte School of Law professor, the Charlotte Observer reports. Her complaint (PDF)—which also names InfiLaw as a defendant and was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, claims that Charlotte School of Law manipulated bar exam and employment statistics by offering students who seemed unlikely to pass a $5,000 stipend to not take the test.
Another article:
Bernier claims she has inside knowledge that hundreds of unqualified students were admitted to the school. She also alleges that student records were manipulated and that enrollment was inflated in an effort to increase profits through government-backed tuitions.

"Many candidates for admission (were) academically unqualified, and would be improbable candidates for admission in most other law schools," the lawsuit read.
The potential roadblock:
The U.S. Department of Education has not approved any borrower defense applications since the beginning of the Trump administration, a department official told Democratic senators this month. 
A solution.

Another solution.

Another good choice you can enter with street cred.

Stay local for this one.

A final option for the truly dedicated.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Classes Begin: A Letter to the Class of 2020

Dear Class of 2020:

You're likely back at law school now.  You've begun a three-year suborgasm and a forty year super-orgasm.  In three years' time, most of you will be starting jobs as BigLaw lawyers, federal prosecutors, or judicial clerks.

At the same time, you're already behind, if only by a hair.

Look at this SuperLawyer in the making!
Now [Aaron Parnas] is entering George Washington University Law School at age 18, with hopes of one day becoming president.

Parnas told Law.com that he has wanted to go into law school since he was about 10 or 11 years old, though he didn’t know what kind of law he wanted to practice. He volunteered in Donald Trump’s election campaign, and the election spurred his interest in a political career. “I felt like law school was the perfect stepping stone to that goal,” he said.
Yeah, remember when Donald Trump graduated from college at 18, snapped his fingers, and headed to law school inspired by the example of... JFK, I suppose?

It'll be just like that.

I don't bring up our li'l' Doogie Howser here to discourage you all, but you should probably get used to the fact that law school (and lawyering, and life) is a massive pyramid scheme competition and if you don't know where you're at on the pyramid, you're a bottom bitch slave.

The Good News is that even lawyer slaves make it rich and happy.  Law school, with its focus on appellate law and reading cases from the 1920s, doesn't really prepare you for the euphoria of satisfaction with leaving work at 7:30 on a Friday after billing 60 hours in a week.  But trust me, it's real, and way better than the stressful torpor these sadistic professors put you through.

Given how little law school matters in the grand scheme of things - we all buy our liquor from the same shelves, friends - you should really just enjoy yourselves.  Eurotravel, fine dining, Adderall, disgraceful self-pleasure - whatever your recreation of choice, just go nuts.  Borrow from Uncle Sam and pay it back it back later.

But remember a few ground rules:
Dean Nicholas Allard gave the final speech, confessing to the class that he might not understand their generation, but he urged them to take care of each other and “play well in the sandbox.”

Before concluding the ceremony, he offered them a piece of modern-day advice, to “stay woke.”
Have a good time, bros 'n' ironic hos.  When you're fully cooked and members of the bar barely standing, we'll see you in court...in a good way.

P.S. - ProTip:  When in the sandbox, remember that it often gets in places you may not want.  

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Goodbye, Charlotte, and Remember: Law School Lives Matter

Charlotte Law appears to have died with the silent nobility of an old, used-up lawyer, a gentle, unadorned suicide when ends can no longer meet, the supply of inner justice has been exhausted, and the Million Dollar Express has reached its terminus.  CLS made it a valiant eleven years, in the end losing a noble battle against the pernicious disease of educational pessimism.  It was a preventable death, a testament to how far society still must go in the unyielding march of justice.

Preceded in death by a cousin.  Survived by its loving parents, two siblings, and many many friends.  Hobbies included understanding the nuances of justice in a postmodern multicultural democracy and rigorous, safe butt play.

Donations can be made to the American Bar Association.  Or, you can find a lemming to help console the survivors with a fat tuition check.  Have you considered that with one less law school, the demand for lawyers in the future just went from outstanding to outstanding plus?  The forecast hasn't been this good in years.

As an aside, over the last week, the nation has become gripped by racial tension in the aftermath of events in Charlottesville because particularly inane white supremacists decided to support a cause that died one hundred and fifty two years ago.  As the President has indicated, there are some fine, upstanding citizens in that group taking such a position that, on the surface, appears far more reprehensible than anything any law school has ever done.  Indeed, you critics should consider yourselves lucky that law schools are bitterly fighting for the continuation of a status quo merely decades overdue for abandonment.

In any event, as the President noted, there's blame to go all around in Charlottesville, a position that could only be reached from the safe, philosophically nurturing environment of his gilded Manhattan tower upon appropriate reflection.  There's lots that can be learned and applied to the law school context. 

For one thing, consider the absurd chain of events that has led you to reading this particular blog with an intentionally tasteless invocation of a ridiculous national tragedy in an obituary for a shit-tacular law school.  Given this sheer senselessness of human life, why not blow three years and run up six figure debt for a pointless degree?

The most important lesson, however, it's that law school lives matter.  We forgot that lesson in letting Charlotte Law School die and leave our nation's 22nd largest metropolitan area without a functioning law school.  As the President indicated, there's lots of blame on all sides in these situations.  Fie on the students for refusing to pay tuition.  Fie on the oppressive governments.  Fie on the rival law schools for not taking a stand.  Fie on the ABA.  Fie on the fake new media.

In the wake of Charlotte's premature death, it's important that  we heal and learn this vital lesson.  Because God forbid we let it happen to any of the others.  Paraphrasing Stalin, a single law school death is a tragic; a whole wave of them is really really tragic.

RIP, Charlotte.  Here's to hoping your branch in the afterlife has a line of ghost marks out the door so you can, as we say, scam on.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

So Much Heartwarming My Blood's Gonna Boil and My Lungs Will Burst into Spontaneous Flame

We pause on the threshold of yet another throbbing erection of a law school year.  Like clockwork, the virgin crop of lemmings is thrust into the harvester, the alchemy-forged machinery of Socrates, Darrow, and Westlaw grinding and churning them into that sweet, low-calorie gel that lubricates the wheels of justice.

Another year. Another convicted felon suiting up for the legal education feelgood all-stars.
When UCF graduate Angel Sanchez starts law school in Miami this week, it will be a strange sort of homecoming. After all, the last time Sanchez lived there, he was a 16-year-old gang member being sentenced to 30 years for attempted murder.

...All-American bootstraps-pulling...

[W]hen he transferred to the University of Central Florida in 2014, he helped to collect more than 300 books for the Orange County Jail’s inmate library while becoming one of the top moot-court competitors in the nation and graduating with top honors this year.
Undergrad moot court?  Shit yeah.  So good Homeboy got the judge at his probation hearing to terminate his probation entirely instead of merely reducing it and she offered him a spot as a clerk.  Dude's paying his dues with interest.

God damn, every year these stories get better and better and better.  Next year's felon will be a blind single mother who escaped sex slavery and taught herself law by working as a courthouse janitor.  Year after, a stray dog who bit the head off a child will decide to be a human lawyer. 

These stories thrust more deeply at that innate sense of Dickensian justice buried in the beating hearts of every member of the character and fitness committees, even the most hardened and treacherous monopolists who want to keep these bad-ass upstart millennial social justice fighters from the hoary, conservative bar merely because of a few unfortunate felonies.

The problem for most of you is that you tried to stay on the straight and narrow path, forgetting that the first rule of getting anywhere in law, if not life, is to network.  And networking requires being memorable.  Who's more memorable to a state court judge, Mr. Kenneth Cole Suit and his K-JD 3.5 GPA or a reformed gunslinger who can sustain a grown-up conversation without saying "'n' shit" every now and then?  Who do you think His Honor is more likely to hire?

A resume is a nice sheet of paper.  A pricey JD, even better.  But a rap sheet?  Now you're sitting pretty to be the talk of the judicial hobnobbing.

Rob a bank.  Become a lawyer.  Dirty, wash, rinse, repeat.  The machinery can baptize you, grant you beautiful narrative redemption, if only you let it - and law schools will.