Protecting Sight #91: How to win an argument at the Supreme Court. The long arc of justice, perfect phaco incisions, pituitary adenomas, and Leaves of Grass.

Welcome to my daily learning journal. My daily goal is to watch one Ted Talk and one cataract surgery. I also plan to read one journal article and read/listen to a book chapter, short story or significant work.

Here’s today’s list:

1. Ted Talk – Neal Katyal – How to win an argument (at the US Supreme Court, or anywhere). “The secret to winning an argument isn’t grand rhetoric or elegant style, says US Supreme Court litigator Neal Katyal — it takes more than that. With stories of some of the most impactful cases he’s argued before the Court, Katyal shows why the key to crafting a persuasive and successful argument lies in human connection, empathy and faith in the power of your ideas. “The question is not how to win every argument,” he says. “It’s how to get back up when you do lose.” (

Excellent talk and I love his final comment, “And I’ve come to realize that the hand I was holding was the hand of justice.”

I am again reminded of Senator Robert F. Kennedy’s speech on the Day of Affirmation in South Africa, which was memorialized by his brother Senator Edward Kennedy at RFK’s funeral. “Few will have the greatness to bend history; but each of us can work to change a small portion of the events, and in the total of all these acts will be written the history of this generation.” (See “Day of Affirmation Address” via the JFK Library site here).

With thanks to Neal Katyal for helping to bend the arc of justice.

(And Neal, you may be interested in a Yale-Dartmouth treasure which I donated to the Yale Library here. This was an agreement between Eleazer Wheelock (Yale 1733), President of Dartmouth, and Mr. John Smith as Dartmouth’s first professor, 1777. Ravi D. Goel Collection on Yale (RU 1081). Manuscripts and Archives, Yale University Library.)

2. Cataract Surgery – Uday Devgan MD Compilation video: Corneal Phaco Incisions. 14 minutes of high yield pearls.

3. Journal – Vu DM, Swaminathan SS. Progressive Vision Loss in a 62-Year-Old WomanJAMA Ophthalmol. Published online September 10, 2020. doi:10.1001/jamaophthalmol.2020.1746

Walt Whitman, steel engraving, July 1854.jpg

4. Book Chapter – Walt Whitman – Leaves of GrassSparknotesWikipedia, and Gutenberg. Book 7.

Leave a Reply