Blazing through the tradition news grapevine today is a story of sexual orientation v. right of conscience. The Arizona State Bar is currently considering making a change to the attorney oath of office that would exclude considerations of sexual orientation. The new addition would read as follows:
"I will not permit considerations of gender, race, religion, age, nationality, sexual orientation, disability, or social standing to influence my duty of care."
In response to this questionable and, some say, unnecessary alteration, 31 Arizona attorneys have written letters to the State Bar President, Ed Novak. As reported at AZStarNet.com,
"Tim Casey, one of those unhappy with the proposal, said it raises all sorts of issues. At the very least, he said, the wording 'is so very vague it's scary.'"
Novak has responded to this critical speculation by assuring practicing and potential attorneys that the new addition to the oath will not require them to take on homosexual cases against their will, only to put away personal beliefs and views while attending to such cases.
Attorney Ronald Meyer countered,
"If that's the case, then the Bar's proposal is unnecessary. Meyer, one of the more senior attorneys who signed the letter, said existing ethical rules already spell out that attorneys must do their best for their clients."
[Read more at AZStarNet.]