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Home Page Official Publication of the State Bar of California October2002
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Letters to the Editor

Sympathy for the lawyer

I was disturbed to read that Milton Lathan will lose his law license due to his insistence on being paid for his work (September Bar Journal). State Bar prosecutor Esther Rogers claimed Lathan "will go to any lengths to collect his fee" and that "his conduct is ongoing and he has no intention of repaying any money."

Why should Mr. Lathan repay deadbeats who attempted to cheat him out of his fee? What I wanted to know is did Mr. Lathan do the legal work he agreed to do, was he entitled to payment and did his clients attempt to cheat him out of his fee? As one who has several worthless judgments on deadbeats, I feel strong sympathy for Mr. Lathan.

Lee Clark
La Mesa

The field still tips

Clark Kelso's article on the California Supreme Court's First Amendment cases was well argued, but I disagree with his finding that the rulings muddied the waters. In fact, Kasky v. Nike rocked! The court rightly recognized "that when a business enterprise, to promote and defend its sales and profits, makes factual misrepresentations about its own products or its own operations, it must speak truthfully."

Contrary to Kelso's assertion that Kasky has created an unlevel playing field, the field still tips in favor of corporations. The field will be leveled only when commercial corporations no longer are protected by the absurb legal fiction that they are "persons." Corporations are legal entities created for the purpose of promoting "the general welfare" under the Constitution. When corporations are returned to their original status as subservient to the police power of the state and are required to give up their charters when they no longer benefit the general welfare, i.e., when their damages to the environment, justice or economic opportunity outweigh their benefits, then the field will be level.

Gregory Wonderwheel
Santa Rosa

Students won in court

The stripes on Professor Erwin Chemerinsky's ideological underwear show through again. He editorializes (August) that "it was a bad year for students' rights in the Supreme Court." In fact, Zelman v. Simmons-Harris was a huge victory for students, especially inner city students, affording them and their parents the right to choose better educational opportunities than those presented by failing inner city schools.

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