Accepting the proposition that many people go to law school who won't, in the end, enjoy being a lawyer, I don't see the connection to the recent policy change. We've had unhappy lawyers for a long time, when the LSAT was required. Why assume reaching out to the GRE-takers will bring in people who are even less likely to be happy?
I myself was not happy to be a lawyer, but my law degree got me to a great non-lawyer job — law professor. So there's that. I don't know if Green got her Netflix writing job in part because of her law degree, but I just want to nail down the point that law school is not just for those who picture themselves as transmogrifying into Atticus Finch or whatever. But the main thing I want to say about my having been a law professor is that over the years as I witnessed young people struggling to understand law, I often thought that the wrong people are going to law school. Many people have an inaccurate idea of what law will be and that they will learn specific rules and doctrines and gain authority in a system of order. But the law is a much more complex struggle with language and policy. Maybe it would be more suitable for the very people who are thinking it's not their sort of thing.
So why not open admissions up to the smart, industrious career-seekers who have opted to take the GRE? Green — a TV comedy writer — may only be trying to get funny words into print but she says:
See, the LSAT is a speed bump.... The LSAT was rough. The logic games that make up its most infamous section are real killers... Studying was grueling, repetitive and at times mind-numbingly boring, adjectives that happen to have quite a bit of overlap with the way some lawyers would describe their jobs.As if law schools should set up a barrier so that only the grinds get in! That's not the diverse and exciting classroom experience we're looking for. And if being a lawyer is so terrible, what does it matter what kind of a barrier to entry we set up?
And remember, studying for the LSAT creates a lot of angst — but so will being a lawyer, if being a lawyer isn’t for you.But that's the question: Who is it for? Green seems to be saying that being a lawyer is for people who put up with a lot of grueling, boring angst and that taking the LSAT is evidence that you do. But Green is talking about studying for the LSAT, not merely taking it — studying and studying hard. That may be something that boring, grind-y strivers do, but it's not necessary. I don't remember studying hard for the LSAT, and I scored in the top percentile. I know other people who can say that too. So the LSAT doesn't really measure for this quality Green assumes is key to being a happy lawyer. And I'm sure that many people who concentrated on taking the GRE are also capable of knuckling down to some hard work.
Why exclude them? Let them throw applications at law schools if they like. At least with law school, you are done in 3 years, and there are lots of well-paying jobs in the end. Compare that to the grad schools that are reaching out to the GRE-takers. What's the happiness percentage coming out of PhD programs?