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Law Prof. Nancy Leong writes inane law review article about the american dream and traffic stops.

Sturm Professor of Law Nancy Leong, JD 2006, a comely young dybbuk09/22/12
You are quite obsessed with "comely" law professors, aren't aduren09/22/12
No, just irritated with incompetent and self-important ones. dybbuk09/22/12
True, McCormick, Horwitz and Leiter aren't very comely. aduren09/22/12
Comeliness never hurts; it's always a selling point. You ca dupednontraditional09/23/12
We are asking students to hoist mountains of non-dischargeab lawlawtemp09/22/12
...seriously? THis is what passes for scholarship these days mnem09/22/12
What is this article about again? I can't figure this one ou karlmarx09/22/12
Basically, this is article was just college senior quality c dybbuk09/22/12
LOL. I hope you guys are aware you've given this academic a georgecostanza09/22/12
And it got published in the Florida Law Review. Why do stud justme09/24/12
This is what happens when people with a ba in english and 'v dopesmokeresquire09/24/12
Bring out the pitchforks! Honestly, I would join. guyingorillasuit09/24/12
Is there a Drang Professor of Law somewhere? I can't wait kmc66610/27/13
That would be probable cause to believe the driver was under patentesq10/27/13
Officer, I refuse to be denied full participation in this ab murdock10/27/13
This paper did manage a couple citations. http://scholar. 123fakestreet10/28/13
"About 43 percent of law review articles have never been cit notanattorney10/28/13
dybbuk (Sep 22, 2012 - 3:35 pm)

Sturm Professor of Law Nancy Leong, JD 2006, a comely young scam defender whose practice experience consists of a one year federal judicial clerkship and co-authoring a few amicus briefs for a do-gooder organization, has published a singularly inane law review article, called “The Open Road and the Traffic Stop: Narratives and Counter-Narratives of the American Dream,” 64 Florida Law Review, 305 (2012).

http://www.floridalawreview.com/2012/nancy-leong-the-open-road-and-the-traffic-stop-narratives-and-counter-narratives-of-the-american-dream/
(click on download option)

Nancy argues that the “stultifying” framework of probable cause/ reasonable suspicion, with its “incessant focus on detail” does not accord with the “concept of possibility” represented by the “open road” as promoted by “iconic cultural texts,” such as Jack Kerouac novels, Christian Lander’s “Stuff White People Like Coast to Coast,” songs by the Chili Peppers, Springsteen, and LL Cool J., Volkswagon commercials, movies such as Thelma and Louise, Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle, Bonnie and Clyde, and Jennifer Aniston’s character in the Goodbye Girl (etc. etc. etc., for 42 pages). (In a footnote, Nancy states that she “feel[s] compelled” to mention that she didn’t like didn’t like the movie Crash because she “thought it was over-the-top didactic and full of itself.” Leong at f.n. 123. Probably it was, but over-the-top didactic and full of one’s self is also a criticism applicable to Ms. Leong).

Leong explains: “These dry judicial narratives contrast starkly with the joyful, liberated narrative of the open road that we find in our most exalted cultural texts. But they are no less a part of our collective imagination. When courts reiterate the traffic stop narrative, it filters into our consciousness as their decisions are reinterpreted via other cultural texts.” Leong, at 328. Belaboring the point, she adds: “If we read the open road as a rosy-hued tale about the American dream, the traffic stop jolts us into an entirely different kind of narrative. In addition to the sort of cultural texts in which we find the narrative of the open road, another highly influential chronicle of the traffic stop is the judicial opinion—a cultural text antithetical to our literary and cinematic staples. That dry medium has nothing of the poetry or magic of our best novels and our favorite movies. Rather, the sterile chronology of a typical judicial opinion examining a traffic stop represents an abrupt awakening from the American dream of the open road.” Leong, at 325-326.

The phrase “American dream” appears again and again in this nonsense-- 44 times in the text of the article and in the title as well. See e.g. Leong, at 330 (“The symbolism of the road as a route to a better life-one free and unencumbered-dissipates in the face of bickering over whether a host of minutiae means that a police officer saw enough or heard enough or knew enough to establish “reasonable suspicion.” The American dream has no time for such details; put another way, someone whose fate hangs on those details has no time to chase the American dream”).

I note with dismay that Nancy Leong’s slop (or, if you prefer Nancy’s terms: “medley” or “melange”) was actually cited in a concurring opinion in a traffic stop case, U.S. v. Mubdi, __F3d.__(4th Cir., Aug. 10, 2012), though naturally it did not influence the legal analysis or the result of the case.

I wonder: Will the Supreme Court reconsider its unanimous decision to allow pretextual traffic stops where reasonable suspicion exists (Whren v. United States, 517 U.S. 806 (1996)), now that Nancy has yapped about a bunch of pop culture crap in which the “open road” is a motif? Will state supreme courts depart from lockstep? Will practitioners cite to this joke of a law review article in their suppression motions and briefs? Will Sturm students remain deceived for three long years that material like this contributes to their legal educations? (See note, below)

Notes:

http://du.academia.edu/NancyLeong/CurriculumVitae
(Leong’s CV, photo included!)

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/laborprof_blog/2012/08/job-security-the-changing-face-of-legal-education-and-the-bigger-picture.html
(See Comment at Aug 11 2012 11:14:41 PM for Nancy Leong’s pricelessly full-of-herself comment defending the importance of law professors’ scholarship for students and the public which, among other contributions, saves students from becoming “narrow-minded legal technicians who never pause to think about the normative implications of what they’re doing")

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aduren (Sep 22, 2012 - 3:45 pm)

You are quite obsessed with "comely" law professors, aren't you?

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dybbuk (Sep 22, 2012 - 3:52 pm)

No, just irritated with incompetent and self-important ones. I have also criticized Brian Leiter, a decidedly non-comely individual.

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aduren (Sep 22, 2012 - 3:56 pm)

True, McCormick, Horwitz and Leiter aren't very comely.

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dupednontraditional (Sep 23, 2012 - 1:20 pm)

Comeliness never hurts; it's always a selling point. You can write drivel all day, but, hey, at least she's hot! That's gotta be worth something!

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lawlawtemp (Sep 22, 2012 - 3:49 pm)

We are asking students to hoist mountains of non-dischargeable debt on their shoulders, so garbage like this can be published?

As a monkey clicker, I would feel less bad if my onerous monthly Sallie Mae payment at least would have been used to help subsidize beneficial research which would help improve the profession and benefit society. When I see crap like this being published, it makes me mad. Half these joker law professors are a complete & utter waste, and are merely fooling around and having a grand old time as they skate to their retirements. There is no accountability.

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mnem (Sep 22, 2012 - 9:09 pm)

...seriously? THis is what passes for scholarship these days? *sigh* Even my articles and papers were more practical than this shit.

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karlmarx (Sep 22, 2012 - 9:30 pm)

What is this article about again? I can't figure this one out.

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dybbuk (Sep 22, 2012 - 10:28 pm)

Basically, this is article was just college senior quality cultural criticism (the “American dream,” Nancy, really?) with some poorly integrated and laughably shallow stuff about how judicial decisions, with their dry analytical framework of probable cause/ reasonable suspicion, are a total bummer in comparison to all those cool movies and songs.

* The word “narrative” appears 149 times in the text of this 42-page article (not counting its numerous appearances in the footnotes). It also appears twice in the title.

* The phrase “open road” appears 134 times in the text and once in the title.

* As noted, the phrase “American dream” appears 44 times in the text and once in the title.

* The word “movie” appears 22 times and the word “song” appears 20 times.

* The word "scamming" appears not at all, but scamming was the "narrative" on my mind as I perused this masterpiece.

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georgecostanza (Sep 22, 2012 - 11:22 pm)

LOL. I hope you guys are aware you've given this academic article more attention in these previous 8 posts than most article do in their entire lifetimes...

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justme (Sep 24, 2012 - 8:15 am)

And it got published in the Florida Law Review. Why do students publish this nonsense?

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dopesmokeresquire (Sep 24, 2012 - 11:10 am)

This is what happens when people with a ba in english and 'violin'...and never practice...become law professors.

This sort of navel gazing isn't worth 50k/year in tuition.

Yes, mnem, it's time to storm the Bastille.

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guyingorillasuit (Sep 24, 2012 - 11:13 am)

Bring out the pitchforks! Honestly, I would join.

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kmc666 (Oct 27, 2013 - 8:31 am)

Is there a Drang Professor of Law somewhere?

I can't wait for someone to get pulled over and tell the cop that he is "devastating my open road narrative". If anything this is going to result in a search of the car for drugs or a tazering for backtalk.

EDIT - Dear god, the article has an analysis of a Weird Al song.

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patentesq (Oct 27, 2013 - 12:29 pm)

That would be probable cause to believe the driver was under the influence of drugs.

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murdock (Oct 27, 2013 - 12:39 pm)

Officer, I refuse to be denied full participation in this abiding national fantasy.

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123fakestreet (Oct 28, 2013 - 11:37 am)

This paper did manage a couple citations.

http://scholar.google.com/scholar?cites=6174013555183799971&as_sdt=400005&sciodt=0,14&hl=en

What is normal for these things?

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notanattorney (Oct 28, 2013 - 11:59 am)

"About 43 percent of law review articles have never been cited in another article or in a judicial decision."

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/22/us/law-scholarships-lackluster-reviews.html?_r=0

So, actually probably above average. That doesn't mean it's good, though.

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