Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

(On Campus Interviews, Summer Associate positions, Firm Reviews, Tips, ...)
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are revealing sensitive employment related information about a firm, job, etc. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned.
lavarman84

Platinum
Posts: 7697
Joined: Thu May 28, 2015 5:01 pm

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby lavarman84 » Thu Feb 23, 2017 10:59 pm

Anonymous User wrote:It totally does hurt you.

One thing that bothered me the most about my job search was the degree to which I was encouraged to search for firms with an Asia practice. When I started working, I was also put on projects that tended to involve Greater China clients/issues. At the time I didn't mind it, I was just glad to get work, but in retrospect I'm a bit horrified at how subtly racist this was. I'm Asian American and I speak perfectly fluent English. There is absolutely nothing wrong with my English and in fact it's pretty damn good... by all indications (high school, SAT, LSAT, college and law school writing seminar performances). But I kept getting put on these niche projects. Maybe I seemed like the natural fit for this valuable part of the business but it didn't stop me from feeling sidelined while my coworkers worked on the bigger, non-Asian clients.

At the end of the day, there's something very crude about the business aspects of law practice.


This comes off as awfully whiny and petulant.

FWIW, I don't doubt the study in the OP. Other similar studies have found the same sort of results. It sucks that it's the world we live in, but there are still people who are consciously or subconsciously prejudiced/biased.
Last edited by lavarman84 on Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Anonymous User
Posts: 324908
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Feb 23, 2017 10:59 pm

Hikikomorist wrote:
grixxlybear99 wrote:What exactly are any of you advocating here? Just because Canadians are 28% less likely to hire an Asian for whatever job postings the resumes were submitted to literally proves nothing.

Out of curiosity, what is your interpretation of the results of the study/what do you believe explains the seeming gap?


I think the study is meaningless. Others think the study proves all hiring is racist.

GreenEggs

Gold
Posts: 3593
Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2014 11:55 pm

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby GreenEggs » Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:03 pm

Last edited by GreenEggs on Fri Jan 26, 2018 8:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
A. Nony Mouse

Diamond
Posts: 29316
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:11 pm

lawman84 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:It totally does hurt you.

One thing that bothered me the most about my job search was the degree to which I was encouraged to search for firms with an Asia practice. When I started working, I was also put on projects that tended to involve Greater China clients/issues. At the time I didn't mind it, I was just glad to get work, but in retrospect I'm a bit horrified at how subtly racist this was. I'm Asian American and I speak perfectly fluent English. There is absolutely nothing wrong with my English and in fact it's pretty damn good... by all indications (high school, SAT, LSAT, college and law school writing seminar performances). But I kept getting put on these niche projects. Maybe I seemed like the natural fit for this valuable part of the business but it didn't stop me from feeling sidelined while my coworkers worked on the bigger, non-Asian clients.

At the end of the day, there's something very crude about the business aspects of law practice.


This comes off as awfully whiny and petulant.

No it doesn't, at all.
Anonymous User wrote:I think the study is meaningless. Others think the study proves all hiring is racist.

What do you mean, meaningless? What do you think explains it? And no one has said all hiring is racist - saying there is racism in legal hiring doesn't mean that *all* hiring is racist. This is coming across as really defensive.

Hikikomorist

Platinum
Posts: 7792
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2014 12:05 pm

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby Hikikomorist » Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:14 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
Hikikomorist wrote:
grixxlybear99 wrote:What exactly are any of you advocating here? Just because Canadians are 28% less likely to hire an Asian for whatever job postings the resumes were submitted to literally proves nothing.

Out of curiosity, what is your interpretation of the results of the study/what do you believe explains the seeming gap?


I think the study is meaningless. Others think the study proves all hiring is racist.

Could you explain why you think it's meaningless? Do you think there were methodological flaws with the study, or do you think it is impossible for studies like these to establish bias in hiring decisions?

Anonymous User
Posts: 324908
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:15 pm

lawman84 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:It totally does hurt you.

One thing that bothered me the most about my job search was the degree to which I was encouraged to search for firms with an Asia practice. When I started working, I was also put on projects that tended to involve Greater China clients/issues. At the time I didn't mind it, I was just glad to get work, but in retrospect I'm a bit horrified at how subtly racist this was. I'm Asian American and I speak perfectly fluent English. There is absolutely nothing wrong with my English and in fact it's pretty damn good... by all indications (high school, SAT, LSAT, college and law school writing seminar performances). But I kept getting put on these niche projects. Maybe I seemed like the natural fit for this valuable part of the business but it didn't stop me from feeling sidelined while my coworkers worked on the bigger, non-Asian clients.

At the end of the day, there's something very crude about the business aspects of law practice.


This comes off as awfully whiny and petulant.

FWIW, I don't doubt the study in the OP. Other similar studies have found the same sort of results. It sucks that it's the world we live in, but there are still people who are consciously or subconsciously prejudiced/biased.


Why is this whiny and petulant? What if the firm lost the Asian client(s)? Then the associate would essentially not have any work anymore. The associate is just as qualified as his/her peers who don't get "typecast" or forced into niche clients who happen to be of a certain ethnic background. This shouldn't be difficult to see.

Hikikomorist

Platinum
Posts: 7792
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2014 12:05 pm

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby Hikikomorist » Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:19 pm

I could also see international clients wanting attorneys in their matters who are of the same ethnicity. Law firms certainly don't have exclusive rights to racial preferences.

lavarman84

Platinum
Posts: 7697
Joined: Thu May 28, 2015 5:01 pm

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby lavarman84 » Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:23 pm

Anonymous User wrote:
lawman84 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:It totally does hurt you.

One thing that bothered me the most about my job search was the degree to which I was encouraged to search for firms with an Asia practice. When I started working, I was also put on projects that tended to involve Greater China clients/issues. At the time I didn't mind it, I was just glad to get work, but in retrospect I'm a bit horrified at how subtly racist this was. I'm Asian American and I speak perfectly fluent English. There is absolutely nothing wrong with my English and in fact it's pretty damn good... by all indications (high school, SAT, LSAT, college and law school writing seminar performances). But I kept getting put on these niche projects. Maybe I seemed like the natural fit for this valuable part of the business but it didn't stop me from feeling sidelined while my coworkers worked on the bigger, non-Asian clients.

At the end of the day, there's something very crude about the business aspects of law practice.


This comes off as awfully whiny and petulant.

FWIW, I don't doubt the study in the OP. Other similar studies have found the same sort of results. It sucks that it's the world we live in, but there are still people who are consciously or subconsciously prejudiced/biased.


Why is this whiny and petulant? What if the firm lost the Asian client(s)? Then the associate would essentially not have any work anymore. The associate is just as qualified as his/her peers who don't get "typecast" or forced into niche clients who happen to be of a certain ethnic background. This shouldn't be difficult to see.


Totally. The firm is going to fire the associate rather than have him (or her) do work for other clients.

It's incredibly petulant. The OP is complaining about not being given big and important enough clients and claiming racism. Maybe the firm has OP doing work for these clients for business reasons or because the firm thinks OP would do well with that sort of work.

Would it be racist for the firm to have a person born in Britain do work for British clients?

Hikikomorist wrote:I could also see international clients wanting attorneys in their matters who are of the same ethnicity. Law firms certainly don't have exclusive rights to racial preferences.


Exactly. The firm might believe its putting OP in a position to succeed, while OP cries racism and laments not getting what he wants.

Hikikomorist

Platinum
Posts: 7792
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2014 12:05 pm

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby Hikikomorist » Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:29 pm

lawman84 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
lawman84 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:It totally does hurt you.

One thing that bothered me the most about my job search was the degree to which I was encouraged to search for firms with an Asia practice. When I started working, I was also put on projects that tended to involve Greater China clients/issues. At the time I didn't mind it, I was just glad to get work, but in retrospect I'm a bit horrified at how subtly racist this was. I'm Asian American and I speak perfectly fluent English. There is absolutely nothing wrong with my English and in fact it's pretty damn good... by all indications (high school, SAT, LSAT, college and law school writing seminar performances). But I kept getting put on these niche projects. Maybe I seemed like the natural fit for this valuable part of the business but it didn't stop me from feeling sidelined while my coworkers worked on the bigger, non-Asian clients.

At the end of the day, there's something very crude about the business aspects of law practice.


This comes off as awfully whiny and petulant.

FWIW, I don't doubt the study in the OP. Other similar studies have found the same sort of results. It sucks that it's the world we live in, but there are still people who are consciously or subconsciously prejudiced/biased.


Why is this whiny and petulant? What if the firm lost the Asian client(s)? Then the associate would essentially not have any work anymore. The associate is just as qualified as his/her peers who don't get "typecast" or forced into niche clients who happen to be of a certain ethnic background. This shouldn't be difficult to see.


Totally. The firm is going to fire the associate rather than have him (or her) do work for other clients.

It's incredibly petulant. The OP is complaining about not being given big and important enough clients and claiming racism. Maybe the firm has OP doing work for these clients for business reasons or because the firm thinks OP would do well with that sort of work.

Would it be racist for the firm to have a person born in Britain do work for British clients?

Hikikomorist wrote:I could also see international clients wanting attorneys in their matters who are of the same ethnicity. Law firms certainly don't have exclusive rights to racial preferences.


Exactly. The firm might believe its putting OP in a position to succeed, while OP cries racism and laments not getting what he wants.

To be fair, though, none of the things you mentioned are mutually exclusive to racial bias by the firm concerning staffing. For example, they can think they're putting him/her in the best position to suceed for reasons tied to stereotypes. I :roll: ed at the "bit horrified" part, but I don't think it's completely unreasonable to wonder about such a trend.

User avatar
elendinel

Silver
Posts: 975
Joined: Fri Jan 03, 2014 12:29 pm

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby elendinel » Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:33 pm

lawman84 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
lawman84 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:It totally does hurt you.

One thing that bothered me the most about my job search was the degree to which I was encouraged to search for firms with an Asia practice. When I started working, I was also put on projects that tended to involve Greater China clients/issues. At the time I didn't mind it, I was just glad to get work, but in retrospect I'm a bit horrified at how subtly racist this was. I'm Asian American and I speak perfectly fluent English. There is absolutely nothing wrong with my English and in fact it's pretty damn good... by all indications (high school, SAT, LSAT, college and law school writing seminar performances). But I kept getting put on these niche projects. Maybe I seemed like the natural fit for this valuable part of the business but it didn't stop me from feeling sidelined while my coworkers worked on the bigger, non-Asian clients.

At the end of the day, there's something very crude about the business aspects of law practice.


This comes off as awfully whiny and petulant.

FWIW, I don't doubt the study in the OP. Other similar studies have found the same sort of results. It sucks that it's the world we live in, but there are still people who are consciously or subconsciously prejudiced/biased.


Why is this whiny and petulant? What if the firm lost the Asian client(s)? Then the associate would essentially not have any work anymore. The associate is just as qualified as his/her peers who don't get "typecast" or forced into niche clients who happen to be of a certain ethnic background. This shouldn't be difficult to see.


Totally. The firm is going to fire the associate rather than have him (or her) do work for other clients.

It's incredibly petulant. The OP is complaining about not being given big and important enough clients and claiming racism. Maybe the firm has OP doing work for these clients for business reasons or because the firm thinks OP would do well with that sort of work.

Would it be racist for the firm to have a person born in Britain do work for British clients?

Hikikomorist wrote:I could also see international clients wanting attorneys in their matters who are of the same ethnicity. Law firms certainly don't have exclusive rights to racial preferences.


Exactly. The firm might believe its putting OP in a position to succeed, while OP cries racism and laments not getting what he wants.


I mean, sure, but it's not whiny or petulant to think that a very possible explanation is more likely than some other very possible explanation. You make it sound like literally the only reason to assume racism is entitlement, as if there aren't studies and statistics out there that would support the theory that racism could be involved.

I think it's very possible that the poster suffered from client bias and not firm bias, but it should not be considered ridiculous to think the firm could also have made assumptions about what the poster could do/who the client would want to work with, too.

lavarman84

Platinum
Posts: 7697
Joined: Thu May 28, 2015 5:01 pm

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby lavarman84 » Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:42 pm

Hikikomorist wrote:To be fair, though, none of the things you mentioned are mutually exclusive to racial bias by the firm concerning staffing. For example, they can think they're putting him/her in the best position to suceed for reasons tied to stereotypes. I :roll: ed at the "bit horrified" part, but I don't think it's completely unreasonable to wonder about such a trend.


I can't foreclose racism being the reason why. I just think it's convenient to blame racism for not getting what you want. There are a lot of people in biglaw who don't get what they want.

elendinel wrote:I mean, sure, but it's not whiny or petulant to think that a very possible explanation is more likely than some other very possible explanation. You make it sound like literally the only reason to assume racism is entitlement, as if there aren't studies and statistics out there that would support the theory that racism could be involved.

I think it's very possible that the poster suffered from client bias and not firm bias, but it should not be considered ridiculous to think the firm could also have made assumptions about what the poster could do/who the client would want to work with, too.


I think it is whiny and petulant to complain about not being given the opportunities you (the OP) wanted and immediately jump to racism as the reason why. Plus, that same poster posted later about the firm trying to harm his (or her) career.

I'm sure that poster isn't the only person in biglaw who feels they're capable of working on bigger matters or isn't content with the matters they're working on. It just struck me as a person looking to justify his lack of satisfaction with his current role in the firm by blaming racism.

Could racism or subconscious bias be the reason why? Sure. But I think it's just also convenient for that poster to blame racism for not getting what he wants.

Anonymous User
Posts: 324908
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:46 pm

lawman84 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
lawman84 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:It totally does hurt you.

One thing that bothered me the most about my job search was the degree to which I was encouraged to search for firms with an Asia practice. When I started working, I was also put on projects that tended to involve Greater China clients/issues. At the time I didn't mind it, I was just glad to get work, but in retrospect I'm a bit horrified at how subtly racist this was. I'm Asian American and I speak perfectly fluent English. There is absolutely nothing wrong with my English and in fact it's pretty damn good... by all indications (high school, SAT, LSAT, college and law school writing seminar performances). But I kept getting put on these niche projects. Maybe I seemed like the natural fit for this valuable part of the business but it didn't stop me from feeling sidelined while my coworkers worked on the bigger, non-Asian clients.

At the end of the day, there's something very crude about the business aspects of law practice.


This comes off as awfully whiny and petulant.

FWIW, I don't doubt the study in the OP. Other similar studies have found the same sort of results. It sucks that it's the world we live in, but there are still people who are consciously or subconsciously prejudiced/biased.


Why is this whiny and petulant? What if the firm lost the Asian client(s)? Then the associate would essentially not have any work anymore. The associate is just as qualified as his/her peers who don't get "typecast" or forced into niche clients who happen to be of a certain ethnic background. This shouldn't be difficult to see.


Totally. The firm is going to fire the associate rather than have him (or her) do work for other clients.

It's incredibly petulant. The OP is complaining about not being given big and important enough clients and claiming racism. Maybe the firm has OP doing work for these clients for business reasons or because the firm thinks OP would do well with that sort of work.

Would it be racist for the firm to have a person born in Britain do work for British clients?

Hikikomorist wrote:I could also see international clients wanting attorneys in their matters who are of the same ethnicity. Law firms certainly don't have exclusive rights to racial preferences.


Exactly. The firm might believe its putting OP in a position to succeed, while OP cries racism and laments not getting what he wants.


So do you suggest the poster just shutup and be grateful for the opportunity to work after asian client after asian client, when there's nothing to disqualify them from working on a larger and potentially more interesting domestic client like his/her peers?

And sure, maybe OP HAPPENS to be good at all the work involving asian clients. Or, maybe it's actually because OP is asian just like the asian client. Why would it be unreasonable for OP to suspect its the latter after a continuous trend?

User avatar
A. Nony Mouse

Diamond
Posts: 29316
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:50 pm

lawman84 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:
lawman84 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:It totally does hurt you.

One thing that bothered me the most about my job search was the degree to which I was encouraged to search for firms with an Asia practice. When I started working, I was also put on projects that tended to involve Greater China clients/issues. At the time I didn't mind it, I was just glad to get work, but in retrospect I'm a bit horrified at how subtly racist this was. I'm Asian American and I speak perfectly fluent English. There is absolutely nothing wrong with my English and in fact it's pretty damn good... by all indications (high school, SAT, LSAT, college and law school writing seminar performances). But I kept getting put on these niche projects. Maybe I seemed like the natural fit for this valuable part of the business but it didn't stop me from feeling sidelined while my coworkers worked on the bigger, non-Asian clients.

At the end of the day, there's something very crude about the business aspects of law practice.


This comes off as awfully whiny and petulant.

FWIW, I don't doubt the study in the OP. Other similar studies have found the same sort of results. It sucks that it's the world we live in, but there are still people who are consciously or subconsciously prejudiced/biased.


Why is this whiny and petulant? What if the firm lost the Asian client(s)? Then the associate would essentially not have any work anymore. The associate is just as qualified as his/her peers who don't get "typecast" or forced into niche clients who happen to be of a certain ethnic background. This shouldn't be difficult to see.


Totally. The firm is going to fire the associate rather than have him (or her) do work for other clients.

It's incredibly petulant. The OP is complaining about not being given big and important enough clients and claiming racism. Maybe the firm has OP doing work for these clients for business reasons or because the firm thinks OP would do well with that sort of work.

Would it be racist for the firm to have a person born in Britain do work for British clients?

Dude, getting treated differently because of your race is sucky even when the person isn't in an objectively terrible situation. It's not like it's only racism when the consequences are objectively horrible. I don't understand what you're not getting about this. This anon didn't sound petulant at all and it sounds like you're projecting some defensiveness about any reference to "big" clients. The whole point is that the firm may well think this anon "would do well with that sort of work" because they're making assumptions based on his/her race, not because of their specific skills.

As for the British example - someone born in Britain doesn't look visibly British in some way that distinguishes them from other Americans, and being born in Britain doesn't magically give them insight into what the British want. It's a dumb analogy.

I also think it's kind of crappy to criticize the anon for immediately "jumping to" racism when 1) they actually specifically said it was only looking back that they identified a pattern, and 2) what if it *is* racism? Are they not allowed to blame racism or what? I mean your concern about "blaming" racism seems likely to shut down any consideration about the possibility.

lavarman84

Platinum
Posts: 7697
Joined: Thu May 28, 2015 5:01 pm

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby lavarman84 » Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:53 pm

Anonymous User wrote:So do you suggest the poster just shutup and be grateful for the opportunity to work after asian client after asian client, when there's nothing to disqualify them from working on a larger and potentially more interesting domestic client like his/her peers?

And sure, maybe OP HAPPENS to be good at all the work involving asian clients. Or, maybe it's actually because OP is asian just like the asian client. Why would it be unreasonable for OP to suspect its the latter after a continuous trend?


I suggest that the poster do great work on the matters he (or she) has and request to work on the other matters that interests him.

As for the bold, I hope you realize that doesn't necessarily make the firm racist or the firm putting him on those matters racist. There are a lot of good reasons why the firm might do that. It's also very possible that the firm thinks this is both best for the firm and for that poster's career.

Let's not immediately jump to racism because we aren't getting what we want. I don't think a firm placing a British person on matters for British clients would seem suspicious (or unfair).

Hikikomorist

Platinum
Posts: 7792
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2014 12:05 pm

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby Hikikomorist » Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:56 pm

lawman84 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:So do you suggest the poster just shutup and be grateful for the opportunity to work after asian client after asian client, when there's nothing to disqualify them from working on a larger and potentially more interesting domestic client like his/her peers?

And sure, maybe OP HAPPENS to be good at all the work involving asian clients. Or, maybe it's actually because OP is asian just like the asian client. Why would it be unreasonable for OP to suspect its the latter after a continuous trend?


I suggest that the poster do great work on the matters he (or she) has and request to work on the other matters that interests him.

As for the bold, I hope you realize that doesn't necessarily make the firm racist or the firm putting him on those matters racist. There are a lot of good reasons why the firm might do that. It's also very possible that the firm thinks this is both best for the firm and for that poster's career.

Let's not immediately jump to racism because we aren't getting what we want. I don't think a firm placing a British person on matters for British clients would seem suspicious (or unfair).

What are some of those lots of good reasons?

User avatar
A. Nony Mouse

Diamond
Posts: 29316
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:57 pm

Dude, seriously, stop, you're coming across really badly here. You're reading into the anon's comments things that aren't there and you're also assuming that the firm couldn't genuinely think this was best for the firm and anon's career AND rely on some underlying associations about race.

(@lawman, not hiko)

lavarman84

Platinum
Posts: 7697
Joined: Thu May 28, 2015 5:01 pm

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby lavarman84 » Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:58 pm

A. Nony Mouse wrote:Dude, getting treated differently because of your race is sucky even when the person isn't in an objectively terrible situation. It's not like it's only racism when the consequences are objectively horrible. I don't understand what you're not getting about this. This anon didn't sound petulant at all and it sounds like you're projecting some defensiveness about any reference to "big" clients. The whole point is that the firm may well think this anon "would do well with that sort of work" because they're making assumptions based on his/her race, not because of their specific skills.

As for the British example - someone born in Britain doesn't look visibly British in some way that distinguishes them from other Americans, and being born in Britain doesn't magically give them insight into what the British want. It's a dumb analogy.

I also think it's kind of crappy to criticize the anon for immediately "jumping to" racism when 1) they actually specifically said it was only looking back that they identified a pattern, and 2) what if it *is* racism? Are they not allowed to blame racism or what? I mean your concern about "blaming" racism seems likely to shut down any consideration about the possibility.


It's not a dumb analogy. A British person likely has a British accent, which is something that would differentiate them from an American. You wouldn't bat an eyelash at placing a British person on British matters (the fact that you called it a dumb analogy confirms that). Don't you think that's a double standard? Or does it not matter unless you can blame racism for it?

That anon sound bitter as hell that he (or she) wasn't getting what he wanted.

lavarman84

Platinum
Posts: 7697
Joined: Thu May 28, 2015 5:01 pm

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby lavarman84 » Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:00 am

Hikikomorist wrote:
lawman84 wrote:
Anonymous User wrote:So do you suggest the poster just shutup and be grateful for the opportunity to work after asian client after asian client, when there's nothing to disqualify them from working on a larger and potentially more interesting domestic client like his/her peers?

And sure, maybe OP HAPPENS to be good at all the work involving asian clients. Or, maybe it's actually because OP is asian just like the asian client. Why would it be unreasonable for OP to suspect its the latter after a continuous trend?


I suggest that the poster do great work on the matters he (or she) has and request to work on the other matters that interests him.

As for the bold, I hope you realize that doesn't necessarily make the firm racist or the firm putting him on those matters racist. There are a lot of good reasons why the firm might do that. It's also very possible that the firm thinks this is both best for the firm and for that poster's career.

Let's not immediately jump to racism because we aren't getting what we want. I don't think a firm placing a British person on matters for British clients would seem suspicious (or unfair).

What are some of those lots of good reasons?


Client preference
Cultural reasons
Personal understanding of certain issues
This niche area fitting that person's skill-set well
That person's shortcomings preventing them from taking on bigger roles
Partner preference
Misunderstanding

Anonymous User
Posts: 324908
Joined: Tue Aug 11, 2009 9:32 am

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby Anonymous User » Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:03 am

lawman84 wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:Dude, getting treated differently because of your race is sucky even when the person isn't in an objectively terrible situation. It's not like it's only racism when the consequences are objectively horrible. I don't understand what you're not getting about this. This anon didn't sound petulant at all and it sounds like you're projecting some defensiveness about any reference to "big" clients. The whole point is that the firm may well think this anon "would do well with that sort of work" because they're making assumptions based on his/her race, not because of their specific skills.

As for the British example - someone born in Britain doesn't look visibly British in some way that distinguishes them from other Americans, and being born in Britain doesn't magically give them insight into what the British want. It's a dumb analogy.

I also think it's kind of crappy to criticize the anon for immediately "jumping to" racism when 1) they actually specifically said it was only looking back that they identified a pattern, and 2) what if it *is* racism? Are they not allowed to blame racism or what? I mean your concern about "blaming" racism seems likely to shut down any consideration about the possibility.


It's not a dumb analogy. A British person likely has a British accent, which is something that would differentiate them from an American. You wouldn't bat an eyelash at placing a British person on British matters (the fact that you called it a dumb analogy confirms that). Don't you think that's a double standard? Or does it not matter unless you can blame racism for it?

That anon sound bitter as hell that he (or she) wasn't getting what he wanted.


Anon said they identified a pattern looking back on his/her time as an associate and put the pieces together: there was no reason/unifying factor for being assigned to all those Asian clients, only that he/she was Asian and so were the clients. Where did you get this part about sounding bitter as hell about not getting what they wanted, as opposed to being bitter over only ever being put on the Asian clients?

User avatar
A. Nony Mouse

Diamond
Posts: 29316
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:04 am

@lawman - Okay, you originally said "born in Britain," which doesn't in itself confer a British accent. But yes, actually, I would think it unfair to put a British person on British matters only because they're British. It just probably wouldn't be as problematic because there isn't a history of discrimination against Brits in this country, nor are there problematic stereotypes at play about their ability to succeed as lawyers. The analogy isn't the gotcha you think it is.

And really, the anon didn't sound bitter - you are weirdly reading it that way and frankly, seem to get defensive when someone says something that suggests they think they "deserve more" in some way.

Also, the reasons you've given hiko - for the third time, *can you not see how those reasons might rely on assumptions about race*??

lavarman84

Platinum
Posts: 7697
Joined: Thu May 28, 2015 5:01 pm

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby lavarman84 » Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:05 am

Anonymous User wrote:
lawman84 wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:Dude, getting treated differently because of your race is sucky even when the person isn't in an objectively terrible situation. It's not like it's only racism when the consequences are objectively horrible. I don't understand what you're not getting about this. This anon didn't sound petulant at all and it sounds like you're projecting some defensiveness about any reference to "big" clients. The whole point is that the firm may well think this anon "would do well with that sort of work" because they're making assumptions based on his/her race, not because of their specific skills.

As for the British example - someone born in Britain doesn't look visibly British in some way that distinguishes them from other Americans, and being born in Britain doesn't magically give them insight into what the British want. It's a dumb analogy.

I also think it's kind of crappy to criticize the anon for immediately "jumping to" racism when 1) they actually specifically said it was only looking back that they identified a pattern, and 2) what if it *is* racism? Are they not allowed to blame racism or what? I mean your concern about "blaming" racism seems likely to shut down any consideration about the possibility.


It's not a dumb analogy. A British person likely has a British accent, which is something that would differentiate them from an American. You wouldn't bat an eyelash at placing a British person on British matters (the fact that you called it a dumb analogy confirms that). Don't you think that's a double standard? Or does it not matter unless you can blame racism for it?

That anon sound bitter as hell that he (or she) wasn't getting what he wanted.


Anon said they identified a pattern looking back on his/her time as an associate and put the pieces together: there was no reason/unifying factor for being assigned to all those Asian clients, only that he/she was Asian and so were the clients. Where did you get this part about sounding bitter as hell about not getting what they wanted, as opposed to being bitter over only ever being put on the Asian clients?


Anonymous User wrote:Maybe I seemed like the natural fit for this valuable part of the business but it didn't stop me from feeling sidelined while my coworkers worked on the bigger, non-Asian clients.


Anonymous User wrote:No, I do not think "everyone is always racist all the time," but I do think some people in the legal profession are subconsciously prejudiced and that this has harmed my career a couple of times.

User avatar
A. Nony Mouse

Diamond
Posts: 29316
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:07 am

Dude. Fucking hell, what are you reading? Those statements aren't "bitter as hell." They simply aren't. Like, I don't get what you don't get about that.

User avatar
A. Nony Mouse

Diamond
Posts: 29316
Joined: Tue Sep 25, 2012 11:51 am

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby A. Nony Mouse » Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:12 am

Like, those are pretty moderate statements. I seriously don't understand what you're reacting to, except that you've already decided that any description of possible prejudice someone's encountered can't possibly be valid, and therefore any consideration of has to just be whining.

lavarman84

Platinum
Posts: 7697
Joined: Thu May 28, 2015 5:01 pm

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby lavarman84 » Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:14 am

A. Nony Mouse wrote:Dude. Fucking hell, what are you reading? Those statements aren't "bitter as hell." They simply aren't. Like, I don't get what you don't get about that.


That's the way they read to me. Anon is angry about being pigeon-holed into a niche despite feeling like he (or she) deserves bigger and better matters.

A. Nony Mouse wrote:@lawman - Okay, you originally said "born in Britain," which doesn't in itself confer a British accent. But yes, actually, I would think it unfair to put a British person on British matters only because they're British. It just probably wouldn't be as problematic because there isn't a history of discrimination against Brits in this country, nor are there problematic stereotypes at play about their ability to succeed as lawyers. The analogy isn't the gotcha you think it is.


Frankly, life isn't fair. But the firm could have valid reasons for doing it.

And really, the anon didn't sound bitter - you are weirdly reading it that way and frankly, seem to get defensive when someone says something that suggests they think they "deserve more" in some way.


Defensive? No. I'm big on personal accountability, though. It seems like shifting the blame to me for not getting what you want.

Also, the reasons you've given hiko - for the third time, *can you not see how those reasons might rely on assumptions about race*??


Asked and answered. :wink:

pml87

New
Posts: 46
Joined: Wed Nov 23, 2016 6:29 pm

Re: Ethnic minority last names affect your application and interview

Postby pml87 » Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:14 am

lawman84 wrote:
A. Nony Mouse wrote:Dude, getting treated differently because of your race is sucky even when the person isn't in an objectively terrible situation. It's not like it's only racism when the consequences are objectively horrible. I don't understand what you're not getting about this. This anon didn't sound petulant at all and it sounds like you're projecting some defensiveness about any reference to "big" clients. The whole point is that the firm may well think this anon "would do well with that sort of work" because they're making assumptions based on his/her race, not because of their specific skills.

As for the British example - someone born in Britain doesn't look visibly British in some way that distinguishes them from other Americans, and being born in Britain doesn't magically give them insight into what the British want. It's a dumb analogy.

I also think it's kind of crappy to criticize the anon for immediately "jumping to" racism when 1) they actually specifically said it was only looking back that they identified a pattern, and 2) what if it *is* racism? Are they not allowed to blame racism or what? I mean your concern about "blaming" racism seems likely to shut down any consideration about the possibility.


It's not a dumb analogy. A British person likely has a British accent, which is something that would differentiate them from an American. You wouldn't bat an eyelash at placing a British person on British matters (the fact that you called it a dumb analogy confirms that). Don't you think that's a double standard? Or does it not matter unless you can blame racism for it?

That anon sound bitter as hell that he (or she) wasn't getting what he wanted.


I can see where your analogy fails in important areas: A British person likely was born in Britain, speaks in British accent, probably understand the culture and thus can relate to the client.

On the other hand, An Asian-looking associate might be foreign born or Asian American. If he is the former, he is not distinguishable from the British-person analogy. But if he is the latter, he might very well prefer to talk about the NFL, Kobe Bryant or other American things that his Asian clients do not relate. Thus, if law firm thinks an Asian-looking associate is capable of handling Asian clients solely by virtue of his skin or his last name, the firm is in the wrong. If the firm learns about the fact that the Asian-looking associate was born in Asia, the firm is okay in justifying putting the associate in Asia matters. There are certain bases that are okay to use as a discriminating factors, our skin and names should not be one of them.



Return to “Legal Employment?

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.