So why do we worry about McLaughlin’s decision to go to law school? Perhaps we shouldn’t. She certainly seems interested in social causes: “I’m an idealist; I want to change the world,” she said. “I bleed blue; I’m a Democrat. I’m an ardent feminist. I’m big on LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) rights – Prop. 8 was a big issue for me.”Shouldn't we all do what gets us "most riled up" — what interests us? But if you love and excel at writing and you want to "change the world," law school is a fine choice. And a legal education could be the foundation for a fiction-writing career... perhaps even science fiction writing.
At the same time, she says being a lawyer isn’t at the top of her to-do list. Rather, she wants to be a science fiction writer. “Writing and reading are my passions,” she said. “I get the most riled up discussing fiction.”
And on law school, she says: “I’m worried I’ll hate law school because it will take up too much of my time on things I’m not interested in.” McLaughlin, who keeps a blog, will take out student loans to pay for Northwestern.
Whatever. It's her choice. It must be weird to be a teenager and have the Wall Street Street journal and the legal blogosphere opining about something you decided to do.
And here's her blog, evilprodigy. Sample:
I'm a writer. First and foremost, I'm a writer. I write fantasy, science fiction and horror: specifically, I most often write historically based fantasy set in 1820s England -- because the world needs more historical fantasy that takes the messed-up and oligarchic nature of European imperialism seriously rather than further celebrating how wonderful and clever it was to be rich and pretty and white and rich in the 19th century, and clever, and witty, and rich, and pretty. Also because I like cravats, otherworlds and Judeo-Christian myth. I love fantasy. I love comics: I love fantasy comics, DC's Vertigo imprint and many of its titles being near and dear to my heart. I'm a very budding artist (possibly an embryonic artist, or perhaps a zygote artist). In other words, creativity in some form or another is my passion and my life, and has been as long as I've been old enough to know what I want out of life....Ha ha. Excellent. Snazzy. Good luck.
I've also had a school background of academic acceleration. And I'm Asian....
[P]eople love to dismiss the academic and professional achievements of Asian-Americans of every shape and size, and people especially love to dismiss it with the word logical. Or hard-working. Or any number of other words, and they all boil down to the same thing -- automaton. Robot. Time and time again white people dismiss the intelligence, the talent, the creativity of Asian people with these words -- "pointing out" that "Asians are only good at math," or that Asians are only good at science, and the only reason why they're good at these things is that they're Vulcans hardwired to compute (which has drastically taken away from their other human capacities, of course) -- ignoring the economic reasons why immigrant Asian families might encourage their second-gen kids to study lucrative subjects, of course, ignoring the all-around high scores. It's robotics. No other explanation. They all do math, anyway. Just human calculators. Just automatons. Just Spock, with pocket protectors and SAT academies.
I point to this astoundingly atrocious CNN article, Why right-brainers will rule this century, for an example: In "A Whole New Mind," he explains that one of the trademarks of the Conceptual Age is the outsourcing of traditional white-collar jobs such as law, accounting, and engineering to less-expensive overseas workers, particularly in Asia. But as he points out, you can't outsource creativity. Not to Asians you can't! They ain't born with it!
As you can see, as soon as an Asian starts doing something, it becomes a robot job. Even if it's the practice of law. Even if it's engineering.
My last name is McLaughlin and I have brown hair, so I have the lucky privilege of more people being willing to believe that my accomplishments are my own, that my ideas are my own, that I might actually just be a smart human being. However, my mother's last name was Kwon and I have that unlucky old friend, the epicanthic fold, so I'm still faced with legions of people willing to self-justify themselves into believing that verbal acuity is just another form of Asian Spock -- for real. People who have the nerve to say, "well, writing isn't really art." People who have the nerve to say, "well, you don't play music as an artist." People who have the nerve to say, you scored that high because you're Asian -- you skipped those grades because you're Asian -- you're good at that because you're Asian -- well, you had an Asian parent (a slavedriver) -- your mom's a tough parent (a dragon lady) -- you're Asian -- you're a robot -- you're Asian, you're Asian --
Maybe that guy scored higher than you on the SAT because he wasn't raised with the complacent knowledge that he could get into a good old boys' club whether he was Einstein or dumb as a post. Maybe that Asian engineer won the Nobel because he had a great idea. Maybe that girl has better grades than you because she deserves them. And maybe, just maybe -- maybe it doesn't take a robot to kick your lazy, self-satisfied, entitled ass to the curb anyway.
ADDED: Remember when Seamus Farrow went to Yale Law School at the age of 16. What's he up to now?