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Old 03-08-2013, 08:31 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
33,952 posts, read 32,411,026 times
Reputation: 49907

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"If students want to pass John Banzhaf’s law class, they’ll have to fight for increased government regulation in the food and beverages industry. Banzhaf, a law professor at George Washington University, will require his students to lobby state and local governments to ban sugary beverages, according to a press release. The release was put out by Banzhaf himself, who summarized the objective as “Undergrads Required to Lobby for Obama Policy.”

Prof forces students to lobby government to ban soda | The Daily Caller

You can read the article to see what are his acceptable assignment substitutions.

What would you do?
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Old 03-08-2013, 08:36 AM
 
9,360 posts, read 15,824,172 times
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I'd start by complaining to the dean of the law school. I don't have a problem with having the students lobby for something but as noted in the article, the only alternatives he offers are varying degrees of support for his agenda.
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Old 03-08-2013, 09:30 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
33,952 posts, read 32,411,026 times
Reputation: 49907
Quote:
Originally Posted by joe from dayton View Post
I'd start by complaining to the dean of the law school. I don't have a problem with having the students lobby for something but as noted in the article, the only alternatives he offers are varying degrees of support for his agenda.
That's what I thought.
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Old 03-08-2013, 10:49 AM
 
Location: Space Coast
1,989 posts, read 4,472,416 times
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I would definitely report him to the dean. Most universities have a very strict policy against professors using their faculty status for political gain.
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Old 03-08-2013, 11:00 AM
 
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan
24,736 posts, read 59,671,842 times
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If I did not want to do that lobbying, I would not take the class.
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Old 03-08-2013, 11:11 AM
 
3,515 posts, read 4,364,962 times
Reputation: 4591
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coldjensens View Post
If I did not want to do that lobbying, I would not take the class.
What if it is a graduation requirement and he is the only person that teaches it?
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Old 03-09-2013, 03:10 PM
 
Location: St Louis, MO
4,677 posts, read 4,597,633 times
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This is pretty common actually. Nothing says the student has to lobby effectively. But if you are going to be a political lawyer or a lobbyist you better learn real fast how to represent political stances that you do not agree with, or your career is going to be pretty limited. He is taking it slightly, and only slightly, more extreme than other classes by requiring actual lobbying, but pretty much every political law class is going to require you to represent a specific set of viewpoints that you may disagree with.
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Old 03-09-2013, 04:02 PM
 
5,532 posts, read 5,721,468 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LauraC View Post
"If students want to pass John Banzhaf’s law class, they’ll have to fight for increased government regulation in the food and beverages industry. Banzhaf, a law professor at George Washington University, will require his students to lobby state and local governments to ban sugary beverages, according to a press release. The release was put out by Banzhaf himself, who summarized the objective as “Undergrads Required to Lobby for Obama Policy.”

Prof forces students to lobby government to ban soda | The Daily Caller

You can read the article to see what are his acceptable assignment substitutions.

What would you do?
Complain to the university authorities.
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Old 03-09-2013, 04:06 PM
 
11,615 posts, read 19,735,299 times
Reputation: 12051
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coldjensens View Post
If I did not want to do that lobbying, I would not take the class.
In this type of class I would think that a student would be able to choose his own position on an issue. It is appropriate for a professor to include experiential learning but it is not appropriate to tell a student what position he he has to take in the class.
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Old 03-10-2013, 12:33 PM
 
3,515 posts, read 4,364,962 times
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Of course, you could do all the work that made it appear that you lobbied, pass the class, become a lawyer, and then lobby against this type of bullying by professors.
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