Courts throughout the country are stepping up complaints about flat and “overproduced” legal briefs and memoranda, citing specific examples of highly precise writing and chastising counsel instead to “let your mojo through.”
In an unusual aside from one U.S. Supreme Court justice recently, Associate Justice Elena Kagan commented during oral argument that the appellant’s brief was “like Linkin Park’s Minutes to Midnight, full of some great sound but way too many notes and layers. Let’s see some life, a mistake here and there, something for us to believe that you are human.”
Legal instructors at most American law schools are now scrambling to adapt their legal writing programs in the face of mounting criticism. Some programs are reintroducing formerly forbidden words like “irregardless” and “vomitorium” in order to breath new life into briefs and to assure that new lawyers don’t sound hyper-professional in their legal writing.