In the Land of the Midgets, Alberto Gonzales is King

The American Bar Association Journal has named ex-Attorney General Alberto Gonzales as 2007 Lawyer of the Year.

Runners up included convicted felon Lewis “Scooter” Libby and Michael Nifong, prosecutor in the false prosecution of the Duke University lacrosse team.

The ABA Journal has taken a mighty step to improve the public image of lawyers everywhere. Congratulations!

I woncer what they were smoking, and then I’m reminded that there are people who really should just stick to bourbon.

Please read the link. He got Lawyer Of The Year for being in the news more than any other lawyer, not for being the best lawyer.

It seems clear to me, from reading your linked article, that this “Lawyer of the Year” honor is awarded to the lawyer who makes the news most often and in the most headline-grabbing way, not to the lawyer that the ABA believes best exemplifies the qualities of being a lawyer. In fact, it’s clear from the entries that the ABA is very critical of quite a few people on the shortlist.

A few years ago, i believe that Time magazine contemplated naming Osama bin Laden (or was it Saddam?) its Person of the Year. Similar sort of reason.

On preview: what Czarcasm said.

But, you know what? Most people who see that headline, or even read the original article Won’t! understand that. All this will do is bring negative publicity to the journal and to lawyers in general. Fox News–you’ve met your match.

You have to be surfing the ABA Journal website to see it. I think most people doing that might know a little more about it than Joe Shmoe.

Yup, and the magazine’s editor compared him to Hitler and Stalin this morning:

That’s not where I heard about it; Dan Abrams on MSNBC featured it on his show tonight. I imagine others will play it for yucks as well. **samclem ** is right; most people won’t hear the explanation, and be just as confused as those who complain when the Time Person of the Year goes to some notorious newsmaker. The difference is, Time Magaziine is not representing an entire profession. Personally, I don’t really care if they don’t care, I just find it odd that they failed to anticipate the unintended consequences.

The few that I know have a wry attitude to the disdain for their profession, and a “Well, if you’re gonna whore, do it big time!” sense of humor.

But if that’s the case, why not link to (and Pit) a news story that misrepresents the nature of the award, rather than to the ABA’s page which makes very clear the reasons for giving the award? Is it the ABA’s fault that other outlets (including your OP) misrepresent their award?

I think the disclamer that the award is like the Time Magazine award is lame, and linking to the ABA Journal is no less damning than any other.

Maybe because that news story explains the award is a “dubious honor”, too.

I find it peculiar that the ABA publicizes its members that are worthy of “dubious honors” . Do any other professional organizations do this? Does the AMA give awards to the doctors who get sued the most?

I’m a former ABA member. I understand the analogy to TIME’s Person of the Year award, but I’m afraid the subtlety of the distinction (most headlines vs. best) will be lost on a lot of people. I’d rather the ABA recognize excellence and public service in the profession, rather than mere notoriety.

Wasn’t Henry Luce an admirer of Hitler’s at the time he was made “Man of the Year” (1932, or 33)?

It’s a damn shame that OJ never passed the bar exam.

What about the guy who was sueing over the pants? He acted as his own atty…
He should make the top ten.

Seems to me they might do better to call it something like “Most notorious lawyer of the year.” Other than the obvious example of TIME, ISTM that “X of the year” implies complimentary connotations.

But I’m not a big fan of bar associations and belong to none. Hell, lawyering - and bar associations - are largely about self promotion, so maybe intentionally being provocative in this manner serves their purpose!

I’m now wondering what horrible thing Brett Farve must have done to win Sportsman of the Year.

Hitler was named Man of the Year in 1938, Stalin in 1939 and 1942.