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Author Topic: Advice on PS topic idea -- my arrests  (Read 1815 times)

Jennaye

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Advice on PS topic idea -- my arrests
« on: October 06, 2004, 11:09:21 PM »
I want to write about my political activism, using my arrests (yes, arrests) part of my PS... was arrested twice during political demonstrations... One was a planned civil disobedience aimed at stopping DEA raids on medical marijuana facilities, the other was an unplanned (and illegal) mass-arrest during and anti-war rally (lawsuit pending).  The rest would talk about the other activities (teach-ins, lectures, etc.) that I've planned. 

But do you think that talking about the arrests would be a turn-off for the admissions committee?

I also have more academic stuff to talk about... senior honors thesis, research assistantships, federal internship, etc. Would that be a safer bet?

TheDecline

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Re: Advice on PS topic idea -- my arrests
« Reply #1 on: October 06, 2004, 11:18:38 PM »
Sounds like addendum or optional essay material to me.

dr_draino

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Re: Advice on PS topic idea -- my arrests
« Reply #2 on: October 06, 2004, 11:26:07 PM »
Can't you talk about this stuff without actually talking about the arrests?  I'd leave the arrests for an addendum.  You don't wanna look like you don't respect the law, and you could easily come across that way.

Jennaye

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Re: Advice on PS topic idea -- my arrests
« Reply #3 on: October 07, 2004, 12:00:02 AM »
The arrests don't have to be disclosed on (most) applications, since I was never convicted of anything (it's basically like a traffic fine).  If an application asks about arrests, I'll definitley talk about it.

I see the point about respect for the law with regards to the planned arrest (although I'd make the argument that civil disobedience, in the spirit of Thoreau, et. al. is an important feature of a working democracy). 

As for the second, unplanned arrest -- it was during a permitted rally, and was the subject of much journalistic and political criticism (an internal investigation by the DC police found that they were unlawful arrests, etc.).  So maybe that one would be more appropriate to talk about?  The reason I want to inclue it is because I think it really shows my dedication to and depth of involvement in the issues I work on, and would be very distinctive...

dr_draino

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Re: Advice on PS topic idea -- my arrests
« Reply #4 on: October 07, 2004, 12:08:20 AM »
I still don't understand why you would WANT to talk about your arrests.  Even if you spin it, you're gonna come across sounding arrogant like "I already understand the law and know my rights damnit".  I'd stay away.

TheDecline

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Re: Advice on PS topic idea -- my arrests
« Reply #5 on: October 07, 2004, 09:07:39 AM »
I agree with Doc 100%.

desmo

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Re: Advice on PS topic idea -- my arrests
« Reply #6 on: October 07, 2004, 09:19:36 AM »
My normal reply would be:

Try - "I'm a loser, please let me in"

But for you I'm changing it to:

"I'm a hot-headed Liberal loser, please let me in"

jgomez

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Re: Advice on PS topic idea -- my arrests
« Reply #7 on: October 07, 2004, 09:46:46 AM »
I'm not too fond of the arrest approach either.  It would seem to me that ad coms would be on the more conservative side.  I don't know if they would really like the pro marajuna, etc.

If I were you, I would go the safer route and write about the honor/internship stuff. 

Jennaye

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Re: Advice on PS topic idea -- my arrests
« Reply #8 on: October 07, 2004, 09:48:59 AM »
Wow, thanks for the kind words.  But I don't think that there's anything loser-ish (loser-eque?) about exercising one's First Amendment rights to express one's beliefs.  

After being on this board for awhile, I'm becoming worried about law school.  I'd heard the rumors that law school students tend to be conformist, wanna-be-corporate (or government) slaves.  But I'm still holding on to the (perhaps) mistaken belief that law schools value diversity of beliefs and free-thinking individuals who aren't afraid to take risks.

jgomez

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Re: Advice on PS topic idea -- my arrests
« Reply #9 on: October 07, 2004, 09:52:25 AM »
After being on this board for awhile, I'm becoming worried about law school.  I'd heard the rumors that law school students tend to be conformist, wanna-be-corporate (or government) slaves.

From experience as a 1L, this is pretty true.  But maybe people like you will break that stereotype. 

Good luck.