Legal Law

You Sniveling Little Cheats! (A Dialogue About Professionalism)

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By Your Bar Examiner

Greetings,

We Bar Examiners would like to remind you lazy students, who did not have to walk uphill, in the snow (both ways), that you are perhaps The Worst Generation Ever. Instead of studying for the bar with razor-like focus, you perpetually worry about whether you are going to die of COVID-19.  How does that help your client? You aren’t going to die of COVID-19! You’re going to be worked to death, if you’re lucky! Look at us! Do we look happy? No. And that’s why we are here to make you miserable. We had to go through the same thing. And so can you!

In any event, having fully considered in the course of five minutes whether there should be a live Bar Exam (of course there should be, you lazy nitwits!), we have turned our attention to cheating. Please pay close attention to the rules for the bar exam, as things have changed depending on your jurisdiction.

Online Bar Exam Takers

A proctor will move in with you three weeks before the exam. This is to assure the proctor has sufficient time to search your domicile for places you might stash answers as you take the test. Please clean your laundry before the proctor arrives. The point of the proctor is not to go through your dirty laundry. THAT is the point of the character and fitness portion of the program!
Please download our bar exam software (SpySoft) three weeks before the bar exam. Remember that your camera must be on at all times, and we will have access to your financial data and everything on your computer. Please refrain from picking your nose for three weeks, as that disgusts us.
Please take your laptop into the bathroom with you so we know you won’t cheat and have stuff written on the toilet paper in there. Oh, don’t whine. You know perfectly well some of you have already done this during Zoom classes.
If your internet crashes, we will assume you are cheating and flunk you.
If you do not have internet you should have thought about that before complaining about COVID-19 now, shouldn’t you?

In Person/”Live” Bar Exam Takers

After much argument from LadyLawyerDiaries, we have agreed to let you use your own tampons and pads. That isn’t true for some bars, but this bar is kind and compassionate. Instead, we will stand watch over you as you change your tampon to assure there are no answers written. To avoid being considered sexist, we will inspect “johnsons,” too. Men, we know some of you might have to write smaller than others, so your proctors will bring magnifying glasses.
We’ve decided to combine proctoring of the bar exam with character and fitness. Thus, our proctors will be collecting urine samples during the bar exam. Please avoid poppy seed dressings and bagels for three weeks before the exam. If you are bladder shy, our proctors are authorized to sing “Soft Kitty, Warm Kitty.”
This is probably a bad time to mention rectal exams.  But(t), we are very concerned about your cheating.  Much more so than we are about COVID-19. So, your proctor will become your proctologist. You may protest, saying we never had to undergo such invasive searches.  We counter that we could NOT possibly cheat like that because THAT is where we keep our heads.
Some of you have made the poor choice to be new mothers around the time of the bar exam. Babies are such a gift. But not for us! This is NOT a choice we as predominantly septuagenarian males would have made.  You made a bad (nonmale) choice. But now you want accommodations. Thus, we have a couch in the testing lobby to assure that you can either breast feed or pump as you deem necessary. Your baby/breast pump will be inspected to assure that no answers are written on anything. Blue light will be used on your breast to assure the answers aren’t written in invisible ink as your baby latched on because of whatever magical fairy lipstick you put on your baby prior to nursing.
If you speak to ANYONE during any restroom break, our proctors are authorized (and you agree with the 20 waivers we made you sign) to kick you in your nether regions. That will be your first warning. Second warning is expulsion from the exam and a second kick. Don’t even think about saying “Excuse me” or “Hello” or “Gesundheit.”

Okay, that should be it for the changes in the ground rules to the exam. It is important that you understand that you are about to become part of a profession. Once you are in the profession, we’ll expect you to conduct yourself appropriately, without much oversight. Unless you steal client funds, we’ll barely notice! But for right now, we don’t trust you at all. You might even be the head of a state bar and make racist statements! And we might not care at all!  Once you pass the exam.

Some of you might think our rules above run contrary to the whole notions of “fairness, integrity, and best practices in admission to the legal profession for the benefit and protection of the public” that one might find on the NCBEX website. You might think some of these requirements are sexist and contrary to a “competent, ethical, and diverse legal profession.” See, that’s the NCBEX vision, which is not necessarily our vision as we serve on state boards! Our vision is that we MUST have a bar exam free of cheating.  And no matter how absurd and crazy the world gets, the test of competence is the bar exam.

Should you pass the draconian hurdles we set up before you for no other reason than our lack of innovation and cruel spirit, remember: Once you enter the bar, we will become VERY concerned about your mental health. Just not now.

Good luck.  And stop thinking about cheating.

Your friendly neighborhood bar examiners.

LawProfBlawg is an anonymous professor at a top 100 law school. He hates the Bar Exam. His thoughts are his and his alone. You can see more of his musings here. He is way funnier on social media, he claims. Please follow him on Twitter (@lawprofblawg) or Facebook. Email him at [email protected]

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