The soft imperialism of low expectations

10 Nov 2017

Avoiding criticizing China because the country is deemed exceptional is another form of Western superiority. 

What turns people into terrorists?

02 Nov 2017

The tragic events in New York this week remind me of the bombing attack on the World Trade Center in 1993 when I was appointed to defend the lead suspect. 

The Enablers of Harvey Weinstein and Xi Jinping

13 Oct 2017

Earlier this week in New York I heard a panel of experts discuss President Xi Jinping's vicious attack on China's human rights lawyers. I was struck with the parallel to Harvey Weinstein's sexual abuse of women in Hollywood. In both cases, powerful executives abused vulnerable victims and were aided by a culture of enablers: people who facilitated the abuses and those who knew but kept silent.

Pro Bono Case, Part 2: The Farewell

01 Sep 2017

This was the scene yesterday when I went to the jail to visit my client Paul O to review his asylum application.  We were seated in a glass enclosed cubicle next to another enclosed cubicle. In that cubicle there was a woman dressed in pale blue prison garb. She sat at one end of a table. At the other end, a well dressed woman sat, and three young children, I would say age 2-6, crowded around the table, sometimes pressing their faces against the window that separated the two cubicles. The woman, in her early thirties, hugged and joked with the children.

Diary of a Pro Bono Case -- Part 1

18 Aug 2017

A gay Nigerian faces his reckoning in a New Jersey jail. 

Never too late to reinvent yourself

30 Jul 2017

“When you die, you lose all your status and honors. But the single phrase ‘Thank you’ can save the souls of those who are left. It is the greatest legacy.”




The Fate of Liu Xiaobo and the Failure of Western NGOs

17 Jul 2017

The state-controlled death of Liu Xiaobo spotlights the failure of Western NGOs and the urgent need to develop new strategies. 

What does "making a difference" mean?

21 Jun 2017

 For me, making a difference means reducing suffering, and there are many ways lawyers can do that.

Senior Lawyers Pursue Social Justice

20 Jun 2017

From the New York Law Journal: 


Older Lawyers Pursue Social Justice Through Emeritus Program

Jeff Storey, New York Law Journal

May 26, 2017

Former Broome County Corporation Counsel William Gibson, 80, spends two to three days a week in Housing Court listening to "very sad" stories and fighting for tenants' access to a "basic human need."

Emeritus Attorney Rules

20 Jun 2017

Emeritus pro bono practice rules encourage retired and inactive attorneys to make a difference.