My post below, suggesting that searching for "any job I can get," may not be the best move, angered a reader. I'll call him "Juan," because that's his name when he comments.
Juan pulled out the "must be nice" script in response to my post.
Unfortunately, this is a new era. The jobs just aren't there
Personally, after seven years of school, a six figure loan balance (undergrad and LS), rent to pay, car payments, insurance, gas, etc etc, I cannot afford to cherry pick employment. I would never grovel or sound deseprate either, but I did have to accept emplyoment in a practice area I am certainly not enamored with. This is not a sense of entitlement. This is reality.
Do you hear that? Let me translate:
I put myself in deep debt for the promise of a $150,000 salary when I graduated, and now that it's not there, I really don't need you telling me creative ways to enter the legal profession. I went to law school for a job, not to be a lawyer. Maybe you did that 15 years ago, but things are different now, and you just don't understand. Please stop talking about this, it upsets us.
So let me clear things up.
I understand, completely.
I spend a pretty good amount of time with law students. I also talk to law professors and others involved in the Bar admission process.
Yes Juan, the jobs just aren't there. But neither is the same character that was there "when I went to law school."
Sure, there were students who were looking to get that $55,000 BigLaw job.
I learned that in my last year of school. I never knew when I went to law school what BigLaw lawyers made, it wasn't important, it wasn't really discussed. Now, it's the reason college graduates fill out the law school applications. It's not an application for a legal education for the purpose of becoming an advocate, it's a lottery ticket for a job.
Think I'm the only one who sees this? A few weeks ago I was speaking with a Professional Responsibility professor who oddly, likes what I write here. I asked him if the students were "different" today.
Most of them see the practice of law as just a job, he said.
I appreciate Juan coming here and speaking for the new generation of graduates, those that don't want to hear anyone tell them the truth about anything. Sure, I know there are law students and graduates that are looking for a career as a lawyer, and not just a six-figure salary, but they are in the minority these days.
What is clear is that those that went to law school for the cash are now stuck. No one wants to pay them their entitled to salary, and the grads really aren't looking to make much of an effort to create the career they want.
Nor do they want to hear any advice that doesn't comport with their wants and needs.
I don't write this blog for anyone. I owe my readers nothing but my honest thoughts. I've been blogging 5 years now and am well aware of those out there that will never put thought to keyboard except to comment on other's writings, but who feel I should write what they want me to write. Read any blog, and you'll see comments asking why the author wrote about a certain topic, why the author didn't write about a certain topic and demanding that the author write what the reader wants. We all see these comments, and mainly laugh before telling the commenter that when they get their own blog, they can write anything they want - subject to angry commenters.
While I was writing this post, a commenter asked what was more "angry," Juan's comment, or my response.
I don't know. I don't care. Am I angry? Angry that a bunch of entitled kids tried to enter a serious profession and are now upset that people like me are telling them the truth, which they would rather not hear? Nah, I don't call it anger. It's more like disgust.
"Must be nice" is what jealous, angry, entitled people say when they see others who have what they want.
So let me anger you further with more advice.
You want a serious legal career that makes you happy.
Spend less time telling me I don't know what I'm talking about, and go build a career. No one owes you shit, and no one cares about how much you "need" to make.
Stop the whining, grow up, get to work, or get the hell out.
Located in Miami, Florida, Brian Tannebaum practices Bar Admission and Discipline and Criminal Defense. He is the author of I Got A Bar Complaint.