Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 41

TAKING THE STAND

those involved in the Watergate affair, he felt
compelled to stand up for core principles of
fairness and due process that transcended the
particular circumstances of the Watergate case.
I think about Joseph Rauh all the time, particularly when I observe the lack of principles demonstrated by politicians of both parties and
by media commentators of both stripes who
profess to be objective or "fair and balanced."
While it is common for these individuals selfrighteously to cite bedrock principles like
fairness, due process, and the rule of law,
they do so only to support their preexisting
personal or political agendas. While liberal politicians and journalists will defend to the death
due process rights and the need for fairness
when someone with whom they sympathize
finds himself or herself in the crosshairs, I have
very rarely heard them emphasize the importance of according those with whom they
disagree the presumption of innocence or due
process. Similarly, conservative politicians and
journalists are guilty of the same double
standard.

We live in echo
chambers where the
source of news and
analysis for most
citizens is their favorite
network or newspaper,
which reflects their
own point of view.

the body politic also is not exposed to a real
and substantial exchange of views. We live
in echo chambers where the source of news
and analysis for most citizens is their favorite
network or newspaper, which reflects their
own point of view. These developments, it
seems to me, help to create and to reinforce
a society in which both ethics and principles
are situational. If we continue to fail to address
these issues, and if we continue to allow core
principles to be merely a matter of convenience rather than consensus, then the divisions from which we are currently suffering
will only grow worse.
N. Richard Janis, principal of Janis Law PLLC,
represents companies and individuals in whitecollar criminal cases as well as in major civil
litigation.

JEST IS FOR ALL

With few exceptions, all of these people sanctimoniously cite principles of fairness and due
process when it suits them, but look the other
way when someone whom they dislike or with
whom they disagree is having their ox gored.
For these people, their principles are simply
situational. And as I learned from Joseph Rauh,
when your principles are situational, they are
not really principles at all.
I am disappointed, but not surprised, by this
state of affairs. In many respects it is the natural
consequence of other trends in our current
culture. We live in a time when the free and
objective exchange of ideas, which is necessary
to establish and maintain respect for core
principles, seems to have gone the way of the
dodo bird. Our college campuses are no longer
bastions of free speech; on the contrary, many
require "trigger warnings" or have implemented "safe spaces" where speech that the
listener finds unpleasant is barred. The disinvitation or shouting down of speakers in acquiescence to the cancel culture or the heckler's
veto have made our campuses places where
freedom of speech has been replaced by
freedom from speech.
The proliferation of cable news networks that
pander to specific points of view means that

NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2020

*

WASHINGTON LAWYER

41



Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020

Digital Extras
Your Voice
From Our President
Practice Management
Calendar of Events
Family Law Assistance Network feature
An Avalanche of Evictions feature
Pro Bono Partnerships Forged in Crisis feature
Help for Pro Se Litigants Feature
Qualified Immunity feature
Taking Legal Support to the Streets feature
Taking the Stand Turning off the White Noise of Systemic Racism
Taking the Stand Situational Principles Aren't Really Principles
On Further Review
The Learning Curve
Member Spotlight - A. Benjamin Spencer
Member Spotlight - Amber Harding
Worth Reading
Attorney Briefs
Speaking of Ethics
Disciplinary Summaries
Pro Bono Effect
A Slice of Wry
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Cover1
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Cover2
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 1
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 2
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 3
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Digital Extras
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Your Voice
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - From Our President
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 7
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Practice Management
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Calendar of Events
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Family Law Assistance Network feature
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 11
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 12
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 13
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - An Avalanche of Evictions feature
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 15
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 16
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 17
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Pro Bono Partnerships Forged in Crisis feature
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 19
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 20
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 21
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 22
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 23
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 24
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 25
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Help for Pro Se Litigants Feature
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 27
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 28
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 29
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Qualified Immunity feature
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 31
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 32
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 33
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Taking Legal Support to the Streets feature
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 35
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 36
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 37
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Taking the Stand Turning off the White Noise of Systemic Racism
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 39
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Taking the Stand Situational Principles Aren't Really Principles
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 41
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - On Further Review
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - The Learning Curve
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Member Spotlight - A. Benjamin Spencer
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Member Spotlight - Amber Harding
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 46
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 47
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Worth Reading
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 49
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 50
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Attorney Briefs
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Speaking of Ethics
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 53
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 54
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Disciplinary Summaries
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Pro Bono Effect
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 57
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 58
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 59
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 60
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 61
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 62
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 63
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 64
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 65
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 66
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - 67
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - A Slice of Wry
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Cover3
Washington Lawyer - November/December 2020 - Cover4
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