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Lisa Bloom
Lisa Bloom, author of SUSPICION NATION: The Inside Story of the Trayvon Martin Injustice and Why We Continue to Repeat It, Think: Straight Talk for Women to Stay Smart in a Dumbed Down World, and Swagger: 10 Urgent Rules for Raising Boys in an Era of Failing Schools, Mass Joblessness and Thug Culture, is an award-winning journalist, legal analyst, trial attorney, and the daughter of renowned women's rights attorney, Gloria Allred. A daily fixture on American television for the last decade, Bloom is currently a legal analyst for the Today Show and Bloom appears regularly on CNN and HLN prime time shows such as Dr. Drew, Jane Velez-Mitchell. She has been featured on Oprah, Nightline, Today, Good Morning America, Rachael Ray, and many more, and she was a nightly panelist on The Insider throughout 2010. From 2001-2009, Bloom hosted her own daily, live, national show on Court TV, and she has guest--hosted Larry King Live, The Early Show, Showbiz Tonight and Dr. Drew.

Bloom has written numerous popular and scholarly articles for the Los Angeles Times, Family Circle, the National Law Journal,, the Daily Beast, and many more. She has also been profiled, featured, and quoted in hundreds of publications, including the New York Times, the Washington Post, Elle, Ladies' Home Journal, and Variety.

Bloom graduated early and Phi Beta Kappa from UCLA, where she was national college debate champion, and then from the Yale Law School, where she won the moot court competition. She currently lives in Los Angeles where she runs her law firm, The Bloom Firm. recently named Bloom one of the top five celebrity attorneys in Los Angeles.

For more information please visit and follow the author on Facebook and Twitter

Entries by Lisa Bloom

Why the Hobby Lobby Decision Is a Stunning Setback for Women's Rights

(61) Comments | Posted July 7, 2014 | 6:15 PM

Fundamentalist employers can opt out of paying for health insurance for contraceptive coverage to their workers, the U.S. Supreme Court said last week in the Hobby Lobby decision. Defensively, the five Catholic male Supreme Court justices in the majority took some time to insist that their ruling is narrow. Don't...

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Yes, It Is About Race

(346) Comments | Posted March 13, 2014 | 3:27 PM

We're in the midst of a series of high-profile trials of white Americans who fatally shot unarmed African Americans, which we are constantly told are not about race. Not only is this a losing strategy for the prosecution, but it's dishonest.

Michael Dunn, a 47-year-old software developer, shot and...

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4 Reasons Why Stand Your Ground Made a Difference in the Michael Dunn Trial

(345) Comments | Posted February 21, 2014 | 9:07 AM

I'm shocked that some commentators are claiming that Florida's Stand Your Ground law was not relevant to the recent outcome of the Michael Dunn "loud music" murder trial (which I prefer to call "another suspicious white man shooting an unarmed black kid" trial). Stand Your Ground was very much a...

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Report From Istanbul: The Sarai Sierra Murder and American Safety Abroad

(18) Comments | Posted April 12, 2013 | 9:35 AM

"Sierra," the locals say, shaking their heads and looking down, "sad, sad. But this city -- safe."

"Sierra," they say, "she came alone? No husband? Why did she come?"

"Sierra," another told me, "that's where her body was found."


Sarai Sierra, the New York...

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Revolutionary Idea: Real Lawyers for Real People

(3) Comments | Posted March 15, 2013 | 2:18 PM

How did a country that prides itself on fairness and transparency wind up with a legal system that is out of reach for the vast majority of Americans? Easy access to legal advice is mainly the province of the rich. Answers to questions about the justice system are routinely answered...

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The Most Honest Commencement Speech You'll Never Hear

(183) Comments | Posted May 23, 2012 | 3:07 PM

Graduation season is upon us, and with it all the speeches about shooting for the moon, going for the gold, nothing is impossible, yada yada. I myself have delivered three such college commencement addresses in recent years.

But as I've spent the last year crunching the numbers and talking...

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How To Talk To Little Boys

(1434) Comments | Posted May 3, 2012 | 11:06 AM

My friend Oliver is 12 years old. I give his single mom a break every now and then, and he comes over to hang out. He's a whiz on a skateboard, has some killer dance moves, and radiates angelic sweetness. "You're a good person," he said to me once, apropos...

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How to Take a Compliment

(16) Comments | Posted December 1, 2011 | 2:08 PM

I'm in the makeup room at CNN, getting mascaraed and blow dried by two hip young makeup artists. And I do mean artists: women who can paint on perfect Cleopatra eyeliner faster than you can say Wolf Blitzer; who can morph my frizzy hair into ready-for-my-closeup sleekness while simultaneously de-shining...

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A Life Of Hiking, With And Without My Father

(1) Comments | Posted November 9, 2011 | 8:00 AM

My lifelong love of the freedom of mountains, crisp piney air and cold creeks bouncing over rocks came mainly from summer after summer of YMCA camp in the 1970s, a place so rule-less that if a kid was missing for a night, we figured she'd find her way back by...

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Law School: It Doesn't Have to Mean Anything

(11) Comments | Posted July 20, 2011 | 4:10 PM

Everyone always asks me if my mom "influenced" or "encouraged" me to go to law school. Well, not exactly.

The truth is, my mom, in her infinite wisdom, flat-out tricked me into becoming a lawyer.

My junior year of college, I got to read novels and poetry in the sunshine...

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17 Smart Books You Must Read This Summer

(16) Comments | Posted July 14, 2011 | 3:35 PM

How do you find great books to read? Go to the library, raid your friends' bookshelves, swap or buy books online in areas you are interested in. When in doubt, read Pulitzer Prize winners, book award winners, Oprah books, and books that a like-minded passionate reader friend has recommended. Kindle...

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Angelina Jolie and the Media Cult of the Absurd

(103) Comments | Posted June 27, 2011 | 2:23 PM

Excerpted from "Think: Straight Talk for Women to Stay Smart in a Dumbed Down World" by Lisa Bloom. Available from Vanguard Press, a member of the Perseus Books Group. Copyright 2011

What do you know about Angelina Jolie?

That she is movie-star beautiful? That has to come to...

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How to Talk to Little Girls

(829) Comments | Posted June 22, 2011 | 6:08 PM

I went to a dinner party at a friend's home last weekend, and met her five-year-old daughter for the first time.

Little Maya was all curly brown hair, doe-like dark eyes, and adorable in her shiny pink nightgown. I wanted to squeal, "Maya, you're so cute! Look at you! Turn...

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What Our Obsession With the Weiner Story Reveals About Us

(0) Comments | Posted June 8, 2011 | 2:54 PM

Rep. Anthony Weiner's tearful apology for sending revealing pictures of his chest and underwear-covered genitalia at his press conference was agonizing.

Painful for him, sure, but much more so for what it reveals about us, a nation easily captivated by sexual peccadillos and yuck-yuck wiener jokes, but otherwise somnolent about...

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'Think': Dumb American Syndrome

(236) Comments | Posted June 2, 2011 | 3:23 PM

Think from Lisa Bloom on Vimeo.

Excerpted from "Think: Straight Talk for Women to Stay Smart in a Dumbed Down World" by Lisa Bloom. Available from Vanguard Press, a member of the Perseus Books Group. Copyright 2011

Twenty-five percent of young American women would rather win America's Next Top Model than the Nobel Peace Prize. Twenty-three percent would rather lose their ability to read than their figures.


When I read that Oxygen Media survey -- that a quarter of us would rather win a contest for looking bootylicious in a thong than for, say, ending genocide -- I tried to go to my happy place. But I couldn't get there. Because I know we have a problem, one that I don't hear anyone else talking about. The problem is not just about that 25 percent of young women who would rather be hot than smart; rather, it's about a culture that actually makes that a rational choice: rewarding girls for looks over brains. And it's about all of us, intelligent American females, ranging from girlhood to old age, who are dazzlingly ignorant about some critically important things.

An aggravating thing happened in the last generation. As girls started seriously kicking ass at every level of education (girls now outperform boys in elementary, middle, and high schools; we graduate from college, professional, and graduate schools in greater numbers than males -- go team!), our brains became devalued.

This is part of what I call the Dumb American Syndrome. The majority of American men and women can't name a single branch of government, for crying out loud. Europeans and Asians consistently slaughter our high school boys and girls in academic competitions. But this book is about some of the fluffy-headed turns our American females in particular have made and how we can find our way again, because girls and women are my people. I was born a baby feminist and I've been a women's rights advocate, lawyer, and rabble-rouser for twenty-five years. Sure, it's a shame when men lose their way, too, and someone ought to write a book getting them back on course. But this book is a manifesto for my team about how we've lost our female minds on matters as big as neglecting our brutally oppressed third world sisters and as small as the fact that we still do way too much housework.

All of these symptoms are related. I'll explain.

Our blind spots are galling because damn, we have come so far in just my lifetime. Until the 1963 Equal Pay Act, it was perfectly legal, and common, for employers to pay women less than men for doing the same job. Now young, urban, childless women out-earn their male counterparts, mainly because they're better educated. Until the 1980 enforcement of Title IX began, schools could and did underfund girls' sports. Today no one thinks all the money should go to the boys' teams, and you'd be shamed out of the PTA for trying to keep your daughter away from soccer, which at the high school level is now 47 percent female. The U.S. Supreme Court did not recognize sexual harassment in the workplace as actionable until 1986. Virtually all employers now have written policies, trainings, and investigations to deter and monitor fair treatment of female workers.

We've achieved this historic sea change in laws and values, where nondiscrimination is now the expectation. Wonderful. Long overdue. Thanks Mom and your generation of fearless fighters for devoting your lives to bringing the norm of equality to us. So what exactly are we doing with it? I can remember when people levied serious opposition to Sandra Day O'Connor's 1981 Supreme Court nomination on the grounds that there was no ladies' room on the floor of the justices' chambers. But three more female Supreme Court justices and hundreds of thousands more women lawyers and judges later, more than two-thirds of us don't know what Roe v. Wade is.

The situation gets worse. Grown-up women giggle into TV cameras that they don't know how many sides a triangle has, nor can they venture a guess as to what country Mexico City might be in. I don't know which is worse: that we are playing dumb or that we really are that clueless.

Girls and young women earnestly analyze whether Angelina Jolie has another baby bump but know nothing about her life's work: bringing aid to millions of innocent refugees, people for whom our attention means the difference between life and death, hope or despair. Many of us spend more time looking in the mirror than looking out at our planet, and the thing is that doing so is rational because there can be a bigger payoff for being sexy than brainy. Young women have little motivation to think because the rewards for being hot are so powerful. Then, in our middle years a new wave of nonthinking sets in. Married women and working moms spin ourselves ragged in the work-kids-housework-repeat-repeat-repeat cycle. At this stage, who has time to think? And after age fifty-five we just want to rest, so we zone out in front of the TV significantly more than any other age group, relinquishing a full 25 percent of our golden years to Cialis ads and Cougar Town; as a result, seniors are the most overweight and obese age group.

Excuses, excuses. This has got to stop.

At all ages, we've become seduced by our shallow, self-absorbed celebutainment culture. You know: the one that breaks into regular network programming with Tiger Woods's apology for extramarital schtupping. The one that treats Anna Nicole Smith's or Michael Jackson's prescription drug OD with the kind of breathless coverage once reserved for the assassinations of heads of state. We watch, dazzled and dazed by the shiny, shocking stories, while a little voice stirring within us peeps that somewhere, somehow, there must be more important issues. But who can remember what they are? Who can find substance when we are fed an increasingly bloated, empty diet of reality shows, "news" segments on wrinkle fillers, and updates on drunken starlets? Network execs tell me they have to run these segments, as it's the only way to capture the female audience.

Dear Lord. Let's turn that ship around.

In our personal lives, our mental flaccidity means we outsource most of what our mothers and grandmothers did themselves. They relied upon their wits to pull themselves up out of life's challenges. We, however, have lost confidence in our ability to think for ourselves, so we give our lives over to "experts": therapists, life coaches, self-help gurus, talk radio blowhards. Whatever. Jersey Shore is on!

I want to jolt you into reclaiming your brain. You can still watch Real Housewives and read an issue of Us Weekly every once in a while, but not every day -- because I have bigger plans for you.

We've got to use our brains for more than filler in the space beneath our smooth, Botoxed foreheads. The generation before us fought like hell and won for us equality in education and employment. Let's use that for a higher purpose than sending pictures of kittens on Facebook.

Warning: If you're easily upset, this is not the book for you. These issues are urgent and important and I don't sugarcoat the facts about how self-absorbed we've become or the costs of our distraction, like women who have actually died from plastic surgery or the millions of girls enslaved in the worldwide sex trade while we go shoe shopping. I don't like it when people beat around the bush when they have something to say, so I just come right out with it here. That's my style. And you can blast me back at, where this conversation continues ardently, passionately, blazingly -- because that's how thinkers roll.

I'm not going to rant without offering very specific solutions. That would be just taking cheap shots. After I smack you upside the head with the hideous problem we've created for ourselves, how we veered off track into a culture of empty-headed narcissism, I'm going to lay out what each of us can do to reclaim our brains, to take care of business in our own lives, and to become real, true-blue contributors to the world -- so we can make our mamas and our nagging little voices proud.

Good news! This isn't even hard once you start pushing back at some of the insulting nonsense our culture is offering up to us. For one thing, you're going to find more time in your life, and you'll learn some underreported fun facts about sex.

Bottom line: your critical thinking skills are desperately needed right now for your own good as well as for the sake of your community, your country, and your planet.
That nagging little voice? It's your brain, and it's telling you that it wants back in the game.

Let's get...

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