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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Clarence Darrow Had a Bunny

In the television show "The Paper Chase," John Houseman played Professor Charles Kingsfield, an old-school (not to say just "old") academic tyrant who terrorized his students with merciless interrogatory classes. In one episode, Kingsfield figuratively "shrouded" a student, effectively declaring the young man dead to him for his effrontery in not being prepared to answer a question. Prof. Kingsfield had no sympathy for weakness.

We can only imagine what Prof. Kingsfield would make of Yale University Law School's new program, wherein the library has made available a "therapy dog" for stressed-out students. Students can "borrow" the dog for 30-minutes of heavy petting when the rigors of case-law become too much to bear.

Details are disturbingly scarce. We know the dog's name is Monty, but Yale has released few additional details. We don't know what kind of dog Monty is, how old he is, where he did his undergraduate studies, or how many other dogs he had to beat out for the position. More importantly, we wonder if Monty will be up to the demands posed by Yale. The university admits about 200 students per year. Factoring in attrition, we could assume roughly 400 students pursuing a three-year degree at any given time. Let's say half those students require therapeutic canine intervention. This means that Monty would have to work 'round the clock for more than four days straight to see them all.

Maybe Yale should get Monty a therapy cat.

"For Law Students with Everything, Dog Therapy for Stress"
Yale Law School

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