The Bill of Rights, illustrated and elucidated in a new book by Bob McWhirter and published by the American Bar Association.

The Bill of Rights, illustrated and elucidated in a new book by Bob McWhirter and published by the American Bar Association.

This Friday evening, you have the opportunity to meet a real, live historian!

Not grabby enough?

How about: Friday night is when you can chat up Bob McWhirter, author of many great Arizona Attorney Magazine articles and (most important) a new book from the ABA titled Bills, Quills, and Stills: An Annotated, Illustrated, and Illuminated History of the Bill of Rights.

As is evident, this guy knows his way around an adjective.

Bob also will offer a presentation that evening titled “Just What’s So Exceptional About America? Rights, ‘the People,’ and the Bill of Rights.”

He is a great writer. But his presentations are a creative tour de force (no pressure, Bob).

A full-service evening? You bet. And the icing on the cake? Bob will happily sign one of his books and sell it to you.

Arizona Attorney Magazine Feb. 2011 cover with Bob McWhirterAll of these things occur:

Where: Changing Hands Bookstore Phoenix, 300 W. Camelback Road, Phoenix 85013 (near the intersection of Camelback and 3rd Ave.)

When: Friday, Sept. 18, 2015 (the day after Constitution Day!) at 7:00 p.m.

You can read more about Bob and his book here.

I also get a kick out of how the Changing Hands website features that terrific picture we shot of Bob for the magazine Q&A I did with him. As the topic was his legal work in El Salvador, we decided where better to hold our taped conversation that a Salvadoran restaurant? Legal learning has never been tastier. Here’s the story (and yes, I got him to explain his fondness for hats).

And if you’ve never been to this branch of Changing Hands, I urge you to head over Friday night. The venue includes the First Draft Book Bar, which is just what it sounds like.

Changing Hands First Draft Book Bar-logo

NOTE: I just got news that Bob will also be speaking tomorrow, Thursday, Sept. 17, at the Arizona Capitol Museum located in the Capitol building at 11 am. To commemorate the 228th anniversary of the signing of the U.S. Constitution, he will speak on the Ninth Amendment—regarding rights retained by people not listed in the First through Eighth Amendments.

At that event, Chief Justice Scott Bales will also present. His topic will be the Arizona Constitution.

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A new book by Arizona lawyers explains divorce in the Grand Canyon State.

A new book by Arizona lawyers explains divorce in the Grand Canyon State.

It’s January, and if statistics are true, you may be considering divorce.

Too abrupt? Sorry. How about this:

According to experts (OK, Findlaw, but still), the number of Americans filing for divorce increases in January each year and typically peaks in March.

A head-scratcher, that. But Dickinson Wright family law attorney Marlene Pontrelli says, “A major factor is people not wanting to file for divorce during the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. Waiting until after the holidays seems to be easier for couples, especially those with children.”

So it may not be you. But someone in your circle may be about to pop the big D question.

Why do I raise this macabre topic? Because Pontrelli and a fellow Dickinson lawyer Robert Schwartz will be signing copies of their book Divorce in Arizona: The Legal Process, Your Rights, and What to Expect at the Tempe branch of Changing Hands Bookstore this coming Saturday, January 10. They’ll be there from noon until 2:00 p.m.

Organizers describe the book as “a roadmap for couples obtaining a legal separation or divorce in Arizona. It answers the key questions that may arise during the process as well as questions people may not have thought to ask.”

Read more about the book here.

The bookstore is located at 6428 South McClintock Drive, Tempe. Phone: (480) 730-0205.

Corporations and other people are invited to hear author Jeff Clements this Friday, January 9, in an Arizona Advocacy Network event at Changing Hands Bookstore.

Corporations and other people are invited to hear author Jeff Clements this Friday, January 9, in an Arizona Advocacy Network event at Changing Hands Bookstore.

WordPress can tell me exactly how many followers there are of my blog (more on that tomorrow). Oddly enough, though, when I scan the list, not one of those followers appears to be a corporation.

Why does that surprise me? Well, given that we have been taught that corporations are people, I figured they may like blogs in roughly the same ratio as do regular old-fashioned people. But no.

That thought leaps to mind as I consider an event at the Phoenix branch of Changing Hands Bookstore this Friday evening. That’s when we can meet Jeff Clements, attorney and author of Corporations Are Not People: Reclaiming Democracy From Big Money & Global Corporations. (What appears to be his own corporation-free blog is here.)

The event is hosted by the Arizona Advocacy Network, whose smart gatherings I have mentioned before. (Here is one regarding the negative qualities of judicial campaign dollars.)

Jeff Clements, looking a little corporate.

Jeff Clements, looking a little corporate.

More detail about Friday’s event—plus a free-but-necessary RSVP—is here. (Another event partner is the Justice and Social Inquiry unit within ASU’s School of Social Transformation.)

And for some particularly pointed insight into how this book and its author are the ideal interlocutors to speak to a lawyer audience, read here. As this opinion piece by Eleanor Goldfield opens:

“The title says it all: Corporations Are Not People. And Jeff Clements is in a position to know. During his tenure at the Massachusetts Attorney General’s office, Clements was involved in a number of cases that saw corporations eager to gain all the rights of a person without holding the responsibility of a person. … This is the cornerstone of Clements’s book: common sense blended with first-hand experience and pointed research. It’s a simple comment on what has become a complex issue.”

Not sufficiently persuaded? How about this: The book has a foreword by Bill Moyers.

Changing Hands First Draft Book Bar-logoStill nothing? How about this: This is the Phoenix location of Changing Hands Bookstore, the one in a building that formerly housed generations of lawyers who lunched at Beefeaters, the one with the bar and the ready access to Southern Rail Restaurant across the breezeway.

There you go. I figured those may be some corporations you can support. I hope to see you there; I’ll save a stool for you.