Courtroom As Classroom


[F]ollowing the Perry v. Schwarzenegger trial over the past three weeks has been a reminder that a courtroom can also be a great and theatrical classroom, where the values of thoroughness, precision in speech, and the obligation to reply have a way of laying bare the fundamentals of certain rhetorical positions. David Boies, who is one of the two lead lawyers for the plaintiffs, told me before the trial... [that] “Papers never meet each otherit’s like people talking past each other. The crucible of cross examination forces the witness to confront the other side; they can’t fall back on bumper sticker slogans like ‘marriage is between a man and a woman.’ ” And the same goes for the plaintiffs’ arguments.