February 3, 2010

Why Clarence Thomas went to law school: "I was lost."

Said yesterday, in answer to a student's question, at Stetson University College of Law.

26 comments:

Julius Ray Hoffman said...

"Not until we are lost do we begin to understand ourselves."

- Thoreau

eve said...

I would urge everyone to read Thomas' biography and compare it to the President's.

bagoh20 said...

I just really like that guy. He would be a fantastic dad/grandfather/uncle. I wish we had more men like him in our celebrity ranks.

I'm gonna read his book this month.

traditionalguy said...

The biggest decisions in life are made that way. When the time comes we decide to go in a direction and that takes us down a long path. There may have been some counsel we received at an early age that subconsciously makes us feel good about what we decide. Advice from a good mentor that spent time to know us and direct us towards our strength can also be in our minds when we chose what to do next. All humans have free will, and that gives us responsibility for our lives.

Awesome said...

Here's NY Times' Adam Liptak's interesting take on Thomas in FL:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/04/us/politics/04scotus.html?hp

El Pollo Real said...

I thought about studying law as a young man but got lucky instead.

Peano said...

Odd that in blogging on this, you picked for your headline, "I was lost."

Of all the quotes in the story, I would have chosen this one: "The law can't solve all our problems."

Interesting contrast.

chuck b. said...

Did he write "I'm lost" on his personal statement?

chuck b. said...

"Or do you think he felt compelled to lie?" being the obvious follow-up question.

chuck b. said...

wrote, not write. Duh.

chuck b. said...

No, write is right. There's something wrong with me tonight.


I'm lost.

Let me in.

chuck b. said...

(Just kidding. I don't want to get in.)

Bob_R said...

What percentage of 22 year old kids who are lost actually realize that fact?

chuck b. said...

If you're not crying, then you're not lost.

Big Mike said...

The law can't solve all our problems.

That should be chiseled into the lintel over the front door of every law school in America, not to mention into the lintel of every courthouse in America.

Lem said...

For Chuck

mccullough said...

Thomas got into Yale. Unlike Obama. I wonder if Thomas ribbed Obama about that.

Mark O said...

What a luxury it would be to be able to take the time to be "lost." As for me:

You know, I've often thought
of becoming a golf club.

Seven Machos said...

Mark -- What's even better is growing up dirt poor. You?

amba said...

Half the people I knew from the late 1960s who went to law school did so b/c they were lost. They were artists or filmmakers or activists who were tired of being broke and aimless.

AJ Lynch said...

Big Mike:

Better yet, put that over the doorway of every legislative body. Since that is where the bad laws and the good laws get made.


[wv words have been boring lately]

AJ Lynch said...

The average person didn't pick his career in the 60's and 70's. The career picked us.

The Gold Digger said...

I would urge everyone to read Thomas' biography and compare it to the President's.

I just read Thomas' autobiography for my book club. He is pretty remarkable. Very intelligent. Very hard working. Moved from radical Angry Black Man (his own words) to conservative.

President Bush (41) promised him when he nominated him for the Supreme Court that he would never criticize any of Thomas' judicial decisions in public.

But then, Bush has class.

Balfegor said...

Re: Seven Machos:

Mark -- What's even better is growing up dirt poor. You?

Bah! I had to get up in the morning at ten o'clock at night half an hour before I went to bed, drink a cup of sulphuric acid, work twenty-nine hours a day down mill, and pay mill owner for permission to come to work, and when we got home, our Dad and our mother would kill us and dance about on our graves singing Hallelujah.

Mark O said...

Growing up dirt poor, but with nature, not in a city, is a good thing. Or, that's what my familiy said.

Gunga.

lyssalovelyredhead said...

Mark said: "Growing up dirt poor, but with nature, not in a city, is a good thing. Or, that's what my familiy said."

Actually, that's what Justice Thomas said (sort of) as well. His story starts in the backwoods of Georgia, no electricity or running water, but plenty of nature to keep young boys occupied. I think around age 10, his home burned down and his mother moved them to a tenement in the city. She was working most of the time, and he and his brother were pretty much left to wander city streets when they weren't in school.

BTW, I'd like to echo everyone who suggests reading Thomas's book, even if they're not a fan of his SCOTUS work- it's a great American story, very moving and well-written, and tells you a lot about how he became the man he is.