The Volokh Conspiracy

Mostly law professors | Sometimes contrarian | Often libertarian | Always independent

"Strangers on the Internet" Podcast Ep. 41: Aliza Shatzman on the Joshua Wright Allegations and Law School Culture

The founder of the Legal Accountability Project explores how we got here and how we get out


The 41st episode (Apple Podcasts link here and Spotify link here) of "Strangers on the Internet" features attorney and activist Aliza Shatzman.

In the third part of my coverage of the sexual misconduct allegations against ex-George Mason University law professor and former FTC Commissioner Joshua Wright (part 1 with Prof. Christa Laser is here and part 2 with Prof. Brandy Wagstaff is here), I speak with a victim of judicial harassment and retaliation who founded the Legal Accountability Project.

After graduating from the Washington University School of Law in 2019, Aliza began clerking for a judge in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. After subjecting her to harassment and sex discrimination, the judge fired her and then went on to derail her legal career by providing false statements during her final reference check for a prestigious position as a federal prosecutor in such a manner that she lost the position.

Aliza and I discuss how little has changed in the twenty years between when I started law school–a time of shady "open secrets" at my own alma mater and in the judiciary–and today. We talk about the roots of the culture of silence and its reinforcement via tools such as defamation lawsuits, like potentially the one currently faced by two of Josh Wright's alleged victims, and what true change and principled allyship look like.

Note: According to a statement printed in the media by Lindsay McKasson, counsel to Joshua Wright at Binall Law Group "all allegations of sexual misconduct are false," "These false allegations are being made public after unsuccessfully demanding millions of dollars behind closed doors," and "We look forward to total vindication in court." According to a tweet by Prof. Christa Laser, "I don't appreciate that his attorney falsely suggests we are all lying (1/2 was in writing!) & want $ (this is a lie–I only want him gone)."

Aliza Shatzman
(Aliza Shatzman)