Can't hurt 

On learning that the Arkansas Supreme Court will begin exacting a promise from lawyers to act right, a layman's first thought is "too little, too late." But the longest journey begins with a single step, it's said, and that step deserves commendation. The Court has added a pledge of civility to the Attorney Oath of Admission: "I will maintain the respect and courtesy due to courts of justice, judicial officers, and those who assist them. To opposing parties and their counsel, I pledge fairness, integrity and civility, not only in court, but also in all written and oral communications." (The oath already includes promises to support the U.S. and Arkansas constitutions, to advance the cause of justice, to refrain from robbing clients, etc.) The Court is, in effect, asking lawyers to be more like journalists. It's a high standard, and yet we've seen a few lawyers who were unfailingly nice, even when facing the most uncivil opposition. Barack Obama, for one. Bill Clinton, for another. Their greatest success came in the political arena, though. Their civility might have been more severely tested in the rough-and-tumble of the courtroom.


Sign up for the Daily Update email

Speaking of Arkansas Supreme Court


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Latest in Editorials

  • The end of an era

    We're sad to report that Doug Smith has decided to retire. Though he's been listed as an associate editor on our masthead for the last 22 years, he has in fact been the conscience of the Arkansas Times. He has written all but a handful of our unsigned editorials since we introduced an opinion page in 1992.
    • May 8, 2014
  • A stand for equality

    Last week, Attorney General Dustin McDaniel became the first elected statewide official to express support for same-sex marriage. His announcement came days before Circuit Judge Chris Piazza is expected to rule on a challenge to the state's constitutional ban on same-sex marriage. Soon after, a federal challenge of the law is expected to move forward. McDaniel has pledged to "zealously" defend the Arkansas Constitution but said he wanted the public to know where he stood.
    • May 8, 2014
  • Same old, same old

    Remarking as we were on the dreariness of this year's election campaigns, we failed to pay sufficient tribute to the NRA, one of the most unsavory and, in its predictability, dullest of the biennial participants in the passing political parade.
    • May 1, 2014
  • More »

Most Recent Comments

  • Re: Week That Was

    • The other worrisome one is the one with the email of 'zyklonwolf', which any historically…

    • on April 23, 2018
  • Re: Week That Was

    • Steven, Thank you for your kind invite, however, I have relocated to the other Arkansas,…

    • on April 22, 2018
  • Re: Week That Was

    • Nice hyperbole and exaggeration, Oaf, but we all know how blown out the parody of…

    • on April 22, 2018

© 2018 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation