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Lawyer Jeralyn Merritt following up Boston convention blog coverage with New York

While many lawyers may find they are working on the mundane this week, one lawyer is going to be taking it to the streets in New York – via a blog no less. She’s Jeralyn Merritt, a top flight Denver criminal defense attorney and a legal analyst, who for the last two years has published one of the better blogs on the net called “TalkLeft: The Politics of Crime.”

Because of the quality of her blog, Jeralyn was one of the bloggers receiving press credentials to cover the Democratic National Convention last month from the FleetCenter in Boston, side by side with 15,000 mainstream journalists. Jeralyn now reports in her Denver Post column she is headed to New York to cover the Republican convention.

Understandably, lawyers are unlikely to take their blog to the heights of Jeralyn’s. But enjoying Jeralyn’s spirit and passion as much as I do, I thought you may find her story of interest.

An acknowledged Kerry-Edwards supporter Jeralyn wanted her readers to feel like they were in the hall in Boston and to encourage voters, particularly younger ones who read blogs, to become engaged in the process.

Did she attain her goals? Jeralyn reports one blogger who was not in Boston made a Top 10 list and put TalkLeft at the top, writing, “Jeralyn Merritt hits it right out of the park. Her writing is outstanding, vivid in imagery yet succinct in detail. When I read her posts, I feel like I am there. These are going to be invaluable ‘snapshots’ of this historic convention.” As Jeralyn writes that’s “heady stuff for an amateur journalist whose writing experience is normally confined to drafting legal briefs.”

Jeralyn had not intended to go to New York but changed her mind when she found out that there were as many as 250,000 protesters expected. She believes that even though many bloggers will have press credentials to appear on the floor, the action in New York will be in the streets. She says “The only way to cover that action, and to keep the mainstream media honest in its reporting of events, is to be there in person, with my laptop, digital camera and a voice recorder, and to jump into the fray.”

Whether you agree with Jeralyn’s politics or not, you have to love the passion and spirit she brings to our profession. No matter your point of view, we can use more lawyers like her inspiring young people to become involved in our political process.

Go for it this week Jeralyn. If history is indicative, there will be a lot of people following your ‘near live’ reporting at TalkLeft.

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