Federal appeals judge, John H. Smith, has taken action against “cancel culture”, by refusing clerkships to students who are educated at Yale Law School.
Judge James C. Ho of the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals was based in New Orleans and spoke out to the Kentucky Chapters Conference of the Federalist Society. He openly condemned the intolerant practices of Yale Law and its graduates.
Ho highlighted several recent incidents that had impacted the legal community to illustrate his point. Ilya Shapiro (a Georgetown Law senior lecturer) was put on administrative leave in January after tweeting criticisms of President Joe Biden’s selection of a candidate for U.S. Supreme Court. This was based on immutable characteristics such as race and sex. Ketanji Brown Jackson (a black woman) was sworn into the Court’s office last week. However, Shapiro resigned in June from his Georgetown position because he couldn’t stand a “place that excludes dissident voices.” Shapiro didn’t work one day for the job.
Ho said that Ellen Cosgrove, Yale Law’s associate dean, was present at the whole event but did not punish the protestors.
Ho, however, referred to numerous instances of bullying by Yale Law students and suggested that judges could have one solution: Refuse hiring these students as law clerks.
He stated that he is not participating in cancel culture per se but rather to allow cancel culture participants to try their own medicine.
Even though Ho’s motives were not clear, even a Mother Jones writer was open to Ho’s new policy. Senior reporter Tim Murphy wrote that “the highest levels of federal judiciary have been for too long dominated by graduates from the same handful law schools,” and “it’d be an error to say we are better for it.”
Donald Trump nominated Ho, a former president, to the federal bench in 2018, having graduated from the University of Chicago School of Law. According to Reuters Yale did not comment on the story.