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Letters to the Editor

bc law magazine

Humbling Memories
I just received BC Law Magazine (Fall/Winter 2003) and discovered the picture of Paul Kane ’70, John Oxman ’70, and me leaving the BC Legal Assistance Bureau about twenty- five years ago.

My first case at the LAB was the representation of a client in an uncontested divorce, on the ground of abandonment, in the fall of 1969. Scared out of my wits, I put her on the stand, where she volunteered she’d take her husband back, raising a possible defense against the abandonment claim.

The judge immediately asked if I would like a short recess. I said yes, feeling sweat break out on my forehead. I took my client into the hallway and explained the problem to her. After the case was recalled, I asked the question again, and she said she’d take her husband back but only if the judge ordered her to. As soon as she answered, the judge announced he was granting the divorce.

I wonder what Father Drinan, who taught me family law, would have thought of my performance.

Michael Dale ’70
Professor, Nova Southeastern University

Letting Go of ‘Race’
I commend Holly English, who in “Striking a Balance” (Fall/Winter 2003), wrote “…the sooner concerns are seen as human-based rather than gender-based, the sooner true workplace equity can be achieved,” as I believe the same could be said for many “race”- based concerns. I appreciate the courage it takes to tell “one’s group” that its interests are better served by embracing the whole of humanity.

After thirty years of being in the equal opportunity business, I quit my position last year because I view the way the evolving notion of diversity is being employed as contrary to the goal I’ve been pursuing— the acceptance of humanity’s oneness. I was hopeful the Human Genome Project finding that all humans are genetically 99.95 percent the same would lay to rest the myth of race. But race has found new life under the guise of diversity.

To get beyond race in our society, we must first let go of the idea. I hope the references to diversity in BC Law’s mission statement and strategic plan are meant as extensions of Boston College’s Jesuit tradition of the dignity of the human person, and that in the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, students and faculty will be judged on the content of their character, rather than the color of their skin.

Lawrence C. Johnson ’75
Springfield, Illinois

A Yes Vote
I strongly desire to have Senator John Kerry ’76 (“Public Life and the Law,” Fall/Winter 2003), one of our most distinguished and popular alums, first nominated and then elected as President of the United States this year. We desperately need a person as strong and knowledgeable as he during these difficult and dangerous times.

Joseph E. Marino ’57
Fort Myers, Florida

Picture Perfect
Page forty-two of the Fall/Winter 2003 issue energized a dull winter’s day. I was the female student standing in the photograph with three male classmates at a row of filing cabinets in the registrar’s office. A couple of other classmates called me when they saw the picture. I got a kick out of the caption: “Low-Tech Law: In the good old days, a helpful assistant and paper and pencil were law students’ best tools.”

Frances Spillane ’58
Foxboro, Massachusetts

Politically Incorrect
In the article, “Collecting Your Stories” (Fall/Winter 2003), the author writes: “Perhaps you remember when students opposed Dean Robert Drinan’s support of the Vietnam War wore their military uniforms to class.” If my memory serves, Father Drinan strongly opposed the war in Vietnam.

Sanford Katz
Professor, Boston College Law School

Ed. Note: Professor Katz is correct. Father Drinan was an opponent of the Vietnam War.

Correction
The number of consecutive years in which John Kavanaugh III ’97 has given to the Boston College Law School Fund was listed incorrectly in the Report on Giving 2002– 2003, published in the Fall/ Winter issue. The number of years should have been five.

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