Book Review: The Path Of The Law

Title: The Path Of The Law

•Sub-title: Learning, Understanding, and Mastering the Law

•Author: Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

•Publication Date: 2009

•ISBN: 978-1933230-08-5

Introduction

The thoughtful reader of The Path of the Law will enjoy the sensation of having at his side a guide, philosopher, and teacher who carefully guides him to learning, understanding, and mastering the law. To read and reread this book is to experience taking on from a great teacher some of the things he has learned and to become excited about the subject too.

The Path of the Law presents the conclusions drawn by Holmes after more than 30 years of legal observation, thought, and practice of law. He probably wrote this essay to further discuss what he began in his most famous publication, The Common Law. The Path of The Law was written not as a manual about the practice of law, but a manual to show students how to think like a lawyer; what it means to be a good lawyer; and what it means to have a successful law career.

What Is This Book About?

Obviously, many changes and improvements have taken place in the legal profession and in legal education since Holmes wrote this essay in 1897. But in this book Holmes is not concerned with the practical minute details of learning about the law: “Theory is my subject, not practical details. The modes of teaching have been improved since my time, but ability and industry will master the raw material with any mode. Theory is the most important part of the dogma of the law, as the architect is the most important man who takes part in the building of a house.”

Who Was Holmes?

Holmes was in a position to speak about American law with great authority. After graduating from Harvard with his law degree, he taught law there. He then served for 20 years on the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts. Then he was appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court as an Associate Justice, where he served for 30 years. Despite his fancy titles and very extensive experience, Holmes never talks down to the reader of this book. Holmes’ obvious love of the law and his desire to help others understand this attraction comes through to the reader loud and clear. Holmes uses many easy-to-understand examples throughout the essay to make his point.

The “Bad Man Theory” and “Morality Vs. Law”

The quality and simplicity of Holmes’ writing is reason enough to attract readers – especially law students. His illustrations are obviously chosen from wide experiences and are like vivid pictures flashed on a miniature screen. Everyone’s favorite illustration is usually Holmes’ explanation of his “bad man theory”. Holmes explains “that a bad man has as much reason as a good one for wishing to avoid an encounter with the public force, and therefore you can see the practical importance of the distinction between morality and law”. In other words, a bad man will want to know only what the material consequences of his conduct will be; he will not be motivated by morality or conscience. This example sets the stage for most of the book. Holmes puts a lot of effort into giving examples of the differences between morality and law.

History and Tradition

A large portion of the book discusses the importance of history, or tradition, as an important part of the study of law. Holmes tells us that “The rational study of law is still to a large extent the study of history. History must be a part of the study, because without it we cannot know the precise scope of rules which it is our business to know. It is a part of the rational study, because it is the first step toward an enlightened skepticism, that is, toward a deliberate reconsideration of the worth of those rules.”

Isn’t This Book Outdated?

The hasty reader might assume that this book was written too long ago to be of any practical use to a modern law student or lawyer. But a careful reader will immediately realize that Holmes has much to offer us today. Holmes sums up his entire book in two short paragraphs:

“I take it for granted that no hearer of mine will misinterpret what I have to say as the language of cynicism. The law is the witness and external deposit of our moral life. Its history is the history of the moral development of the race. The practice of it, in spite of popular jests, tends to make good citizens and good men. When I emphasize the difference between law and morals I do so with reference to a single end, that of learning and understanding the law. For that purpose you must definitely master its specific marks, and it is for that I ask you for the moment to imagine yourselves indifferent to other and greater things.”

“If a man goes into law it pays to be a master of it, and to be a master of it means to look straight through all the dramatic incidents and to discern the true basis for prophecy. Therefore, it is well to have an accurate notion of what you mean by law, by a right, by a duty, by malice, intent, and negligence, by ownership, by possession, and so forth.”

Conclusion

Those of you reading this book before entering law school should make an effort to re-read it several times during your law school studies. It is then that you will begin to understand more of The Path of the Law each time you read it, and really begin to understand what Holmes was trying to tell us – at a deeper level – and enjoy his message even more.

This article was originally published on my Kunz On Publishing blog about all aspects of self-publishing https://kunzonpublishing.com/

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Choosing the Most Suitable Law Education for Your Career

After you have decided to consider law education as a career after completing your graduation there are two things to be considered even then. First of all you will have to choose the most suitable field of law education for you to be adopted as your career. There are several fields in legal education that can be specialized for better career prospects. Secondly the suitable and reputed law school that can provide you law education in the field of your choice. You can research through the prospectuses of various schools of legal studies to choose for a suitable law college with a reputation to get a worthy certificate in legal practice. You should not confine your search for good law institute to your region only as it is better to shift to other states to get admission in a reputed law institute for better prospect in your legal career.

The candidate of law education must have A Level certification for his undergraduate courses and passed out the aptitude tests to get admission in some reputed law school. It is necessary for a good career prospects to get admission in good law college as it ensures the standard of knowledge of the candidate. After getting admission in your desired field of law you can get specialization in that field that will add to your practice of law.

Most of the reputed law colleges select the candidates for there institution with A level certification in their undergraduate education and having good scoring in ethical and professional records from the undergraduate institute. SAT and LSAT results also control the admission process of good schools of law as these tests also include the test for writing skills of the candidates that is very much necessary for the candidates of law courses. If any candidate does not perform as per the expectation of law institute authorities, he can be turned out and most of them are strict in this respect as it effects their reputation.

It is not easy to get any law course cleared easily as every field of law has its own challenges to be cleared to make good career in it. The candidate for degree in law must be prepared to face all the difficulties in the way of getting law degree with excellent scoring to make a flourishing career throughout his life. The job prospects become bright for the candidates who become successful in getting law degree with good scoring as it is not easy to get a good job these days due to recession in world economy. There are long queues of job seekers even with excellent scores in their degree courses.

Some of the law institutions providing law education also help bachelors of law who had cleared out from their schools in placing them, through their placement cells, for some legal services with certain establishments that contact them for this purpose. But even then the placement involves the reputation of both entities, the law institute and the candidate himself. So the aspirant of bachelor of law degree must clear all his doubt during his law education well in time to be clear for all the relevant concepts of law.

Thus, you should choose the most suitable law education for you to get a certificate in legal practice with excellence for a prospective future in that field.

Thomas Lee explores the many options for law education such as a Degree in Law or a Certificate of Legal Practice available at prestigious law schools.

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The Secret Law Of Wealth Revealed

The universe is made up of distinct laws and principles that govern our way of life. Both success and failure are within your control. The key to success in living a happy life depends on your understanding of the laws of the universe. Everyone is using these laws knowingly or unknowingly. Despite your current condition, you are able to make a difference in your life and start attracting better things. Using these laws is quite simple and if you are at that point in your life when you need something that works, something which is able to provide you with credible results and something which can transform your life and business within a short time, the following laws are all you need.

Law of attraction is common to most people, but this law does not work in solitude. So if you are seated there wondering why you are not getting best results in your life even though you are using this law, it is because there are some basic laws which are lacking. You have the opportunity to live in abundance and you will discover that the only obstacle separating you from your success is your mind. Your mind can be your biggest enemy if you do not condition it to think right. Some of the laws that work side by side with attraction law include the following;

Working with the law is the first law. Humans live in two worlds; there is the seen and the unseen world. Events and circumstances in our lives takes place in the seen world but that is not where they originate. In working with the law, you will be able to distinguish between the two types of human thoughts. Grasp this truth and you will have grasped the reason behind success and failure in life. The second law is the law of thinking. Everyone is able to think, but constructive thinking takes effort and purpose. This law will enable you to quickly develop organized thinking. In the end, you will be able to manifest everything you have ever though about while erasing bad or negative thought from your mind.

The law of supply will leave you with much more abundance than any ATM machine. This law positions you for greater success and you can break your own record in life practicing the law of abundance. Your life long accomplishments, your achievements and your desires are all attainable and are within your reach. The law of receiving requires you to give. Givers gain and the more you give the more you will get. It is through giving that you open up space for more to come in. The law of increase states that what you praise grows. It does not matter what issues you are dealing with in your life because this law will help you generate confidence and raise your self esteem within no time.

The law of compensation will help you move from where you are to where you belong. This law will help you to seize opportunities and show you how to identify and attract wealth. The law of non-resistance is key to having emotional freedom. It puts you in total control of your surrounding. The laws of forgiveness, sacrifice, obedience and success are the other laws which work side by side with the laws of attraction. Your volatile circumstance can turn around when you learn the secret and start using these laws.

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California’s Gun Control Laws and Legislation

California is considered to have some of the strictest gun control laws in the country with approximately 950 firearm laws currently in effect. Supporters of stricter gun laws argue that these laws are necessary to curb crime and enhance safety, while critics of gun control argue that the laws infringe upon the Constitutional right to bear arms afforded to all citizens by the Second Amendment, and that safety is reduced because citizens are less able to use firearms to protect themselves. Because there are very few federal firearms laws, individual states have been left to regulate the sale, possession, and use of firearms and ammunition. As a result, state laws vary significantly from state-to-state.

In 2012 alone, no fewer than six bills have been introduced in California that address existing gun laws or create new gun laws. These bills include:

  • Senate Bill 610 – Concealed Handgun Permit Application (in effect since January 2012)
  • Senate Bill 819 – Transfer of Background Check Fees (in effect since January 2012)
  • Assembly Bill 144 – Unloaded Handgun Open Carry Ban (in effect since January 2012)
  • Assembly Bill 809 – Long Gun Registration Law (effective in 2014)
  • Assembly Bill 1527 – Long Gun Open Carry Ban (pending)
  • Senate Bill 427 – Ammunition Registration (vetoed)

Senate Bill 610 states that Gun owners are not required to obtain liability insurance before getting a permit to carry a concealed weapon. The law also standardizes the application process and does not require an applicant to pay for training courses prior to obtaining a permit. This was the only recent legislation that was applauded by groups who urge less restrictive gun laws.

Senate Bill 819 allows the Department of Justice to access the Dealer Record of Sales (DROS) funds in order to pay for the enforcement of certain gun possession laws. Originally, DROS funds were used only to pay for the administrative costs of obtaining background checks. Critics of this law argue that there will be insufficient DROS funds to fund enforcement.

Gun control advocates supported both Assembly Bill 144 and 809. AB 144 prohibits a person from openly carrying an unloaded handgun in most public places; and is already effective; and AB 809 will become effective on January 1, 2014, and requires the registration of all newly purchased rifles and shotguns. Currently, there is no state law that requires registration of rifles or shotguns, and only new residents of California are required to register handguns within 60 days. Failure to register a handgun is a misdemeanor; however, law enforcement typically will not charge gun owners who comply with the registration law after the 60 days.

In the wake of the recent gun crimes in Arizona and Colorado, Assembly Bill 1527 was recently passed in California and is now awaiting the governor to approve or veto. The bill would prohibit the open carry of long guns, which includes rifles and shotguns. Critics of AB 1527 argue that this is unconstitutional, while supporters argue that this is merely a necessary expansion of AB 144, which now outlaws the carry of open unloaded handguns. Supporters argue that the sight of rifles and shotguns can be frightening and should be prohibited in most public places.

Governor Jerry Brown, who is a gun-owner, vetoed Senate Bill 427, which would have allowed police to collect sales records from ammunition retailers, required retailers to notify the police if they intended to sell ammunition; and prohibited the online and mail order purchase of certain calibers of ammunition. Critics of SB 427 argued that many of the calibers of ammunition that were identified in the law are popular among hunters, and would have an impact on sales.

In general, groups that advocate for gun laws argue that strict gun laws help reduce violence, particularly domestic violence. Advocates point out that states with strict gun laws have lower incidences of suicides and crimes of passion that result in homicide. In 2010, 8,775 out of almost 13,000 murders were committed with firearms. Opponents of gun laws, however, argue that the right to bear arms must not be infringed upon, and that law abiding citizens do not need restrictions; while non law-abiding gun owners will not be deterred from criminal activity regardless of gun laws. A 2010 survey estimates that approximately 300 million firearms are owned by civilians in the United States, which is 50% of all guns in the world. It is estimated that there are 88 guns per 100 U.S. residents, the highest per capita in the world. In comparison, the second highest gun ownership per capital is Serbia, with 58 guns per 100 residents.

The debate regarding gun control extends beyond California and the United States. The United Nations has tried to create an international treaty to regulate global arms trades, which is estimated at $60 billion every year. The treaty would require all countries to establish national regulations to control the transfer of firearms and to regulate firearms brokers. It would also require countries to determine whether exported weapons would be used to violate international human rights or humanitarian laws, or be used by terrorists or organized crime. Presently, there are 192 member States of the United Nations.

California Criminal Law Specialist Doreen B. Boxer, Esq., protects individuals and companies charged with – or under investigation for – criminal offenses. If your life, liberty or reputation are at stake, you need Boxer in your corner. http://orangecounty-criminaldefenselawyer.com

(c) Copyright – Doreen B. Boxer. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

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State Gun Laws

There are an estimated 270,000,000 private citizens in the United States that own firearms (approximately 88.8 people per 100 own a firearm). According to an analysis of the number of background checks conducted by each state for prospective gun owners, the states with the most firearms are Kentucky, Utah, Montana, Wyoming, and Alaska. Although there is no clear consensus as to what correlation, if any, the number of guns in a state has on the number of gun deaths, the top five states for gun deaths are:

  • Mississippi (18.3 gun deaths per 100,000 persons)
  • Arizona (15 gun deaths per 100,000 persons)
  • Alabama (17.6 gun deaths per 100,000 persons)
  • Arkansas (15.1 gun deaths per 100,000 persons)
  • Louisiana (14.9 gun deaths per 100,000 persons).

Not surprisingly, state gun laws vary greatly from state to state. Most gun laws focus on three categories: (1) laws prohibiting the possession of firearms by certain people; (2) laws regulating the sale and transfer of firearms; and (3) the possession of firearms in public places.

  • State laws prohibiting the purchase or possession of firearms

Every state except Vermont has state laws that ban the transfer or sale of firearms to a convicted felon. In most states, the gun laws use the traditional definition of felony which include crimes that are punishable by more than one year of incarceration. Some states have additional specified crimes, including misdemeanors, that will also prevent people from possessing firearms. For example, in Indiana, persons with convictions for resisting arrest may not possess a firearm. Overall, twenty-three states have gun laws that include some misdemeanors as crimes that will prohibit the transfer, purchase or possession of a firearm.

Thirty-three states prohibit persons with mental illness to purchase or possess firearms. Five of those states prohibit only the purchase or possession of handguns. Other state laws prohibit persons who are subject to a restraining order from purchasing a handgun (20 states); persons who are drug abusers (28 states); persons who suffer from alcoholism (18 states); and all states except for Wyoming prohibit the transfer of firearms to juveniles.

  • State laws regulating the sale and transfer of firearms

The Brady Act is a federal law that requires all federally licensed firearms dealers (FFLs) to conduct background checks on all potential buyers of firearms. However, it is estimated that 40 percent of all firearms purchases are from private sellers, and therefore not subject to background checks pursuant to federal law. Every state, however, except Vermont, has state laws that require some sort of background checks for potential gun purchasers or possessors.

Only three states, California, Maryland, and New Jersey, have state laws that limit the number of handgun sales or purchases to one per 30 day period. These laws are based on studies that show that multiple handguns purchased by the same person are often used for criminal activity. New York gun laws, however, are even stricter, and limit the sale of all firearms to one purchase every 90 days.

Eleven states require some sort of waiting period between the purchase of a firearm and the delivery of the firearm. These laws apply to the sale of all firearms, handguns only, long guns only, or handguns and assault weapons; and vary in length from 48 hours to two weeks for delivery. There are three additional policy considerations that are triggered with current state laws requiring waiting periods:

  • is the “cooling-off” period established of sufficient duration between the sale of a firearm and delivery
  • valid permits to possess a firearm do not exempt a purchaser from the waiting period
  • transfer of the firearm must not occur until after the required background checks have been completed regardless of any waiting period.

State laws regulating firearms in public places

Various state laws regulate what circumstances, if any, in which a person may carry a concealed weapon in public. Only two states, Illinois and Wisconsin, do not allow the carrying of concealed weapons. Two other states, Alaska and Vermont, do not require a permit to carry a concealed weapon, while the remaining states allow for concealed weapons, but only with a valid permit.

Only three states, Florida, Illinois, and Texas, prohibit the open carrying of handguns in public. Thirty-five states allow persons to carry handguns in public without a permit, but three of those states require the handgun be unloaded. The remaining twelve states allow for the open carry of handguns but require a valid permit. Most states, however, do have exceptions that prohibit the open carry of handguns in certain places such as schools and school zones, state-owned buildings, courthouses, places where alcohol is served or sold, and on public transportation.

As the debate regarding gun laws continue, state laws will become more complex and varied. Many commentators argue that stricter federal laws are required to assist existing state laws, which are often powerless to control the flow of weapons from a less restrictive gun law state to a more restrictive gun law state. There are no simple answers to the ongoing controversy over gun laws.

California Criminal Law Specialist Doreen B. Boxer, Esq., protects individuals and companies charged with – or under investigation for – criminal offenses. If your life, liberty or reputation are at stake, you need Boxer in your corner. http://orangecounty-criminaldefenselawyer.com

(c) Copyright – Doreen B. Boxer. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

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