WSBA challenges me to be civil - but can It be? part 3 (the end)

READ part 1 and part 2 first.

From: Sims Weymuller   March 10, 2011 1:35 PM

Dear Karen,

It doesn’t matter to me what a lawyer is wearing, I just think we ought to show more respect to one another.

I did answer your question, just not as you phrased it because: (1) as phrased it didn’t make sense to me; and (2) it posed a false choice.  Is your point that, on the rarest of occasions—indeed one I have never seen—where the lawyer is faced with a choice between pursuing the client’s best interest on the one hand, and acting civilly on the other, the lawyer should act uncivilly?  If so, I suppose I would agree.  I just don’t think that happens very often, if ever.  I do, however, think that lawyers use that claim as an excuse for uncivilized conduct all the time; I just don’t buy it.

Can you provide examples where your duty to your client was inextricably opposed to your duty to act professionally or civilly?



From:  Karen Koehler  Mar 10, 2011, at 2:56 PM,

Dear Sims:

It has been so long since I’ve heard from you that I’ve completely lost track of our discussion.  It was highly enjoyable while it lasted.  But unless you have a pretty excuse (like the flu that I had), I consider the delay to be disrespectful.  Therefore, I decline to continue.

My best regards to you in your quest for civility.


From:  Sims Weymuller   March 10, 2011 3:05 PM


From:  Karen Koehler Mar 10, 2011, at 3:06 PM

Dear Sims:

My civility comes with teeth.


From:  Sims Weymuller  March 10, 2011 3:17 PM

Too bad, I was curious if you had an example.  Oh well, whatever peels your potatoes, I suppose.

From:  Karen Koehler Mar 10, 2011, at 3:22 PM,

Dear Sims:  The article had to come to an end eventually.  This is a nice punchy way to end it.


From: Sims Weymuller March 10, 2011 3:31 PM


I don't really think what we have is article worthy. I thought we would eventually get into a real discussion about the objective merits of or faults with civility (versus the personal approach). I don't think our readers would learn very much from what we have so far.


 From:  Karen Koehler  Mar 10, 2011, at 3:35 PM

Dear Sims – I can understand your feelings.  Which is why I continue to completely disagree with what WSBA is doing regarding its civility mission.


From: Sims Weymuller March 10, 2011 6:10 PM

Ha!  Touché.