Paul F. Campos is a law professor, author and blogger on the faculty of the University of Colorado Boulder in Boulder. Campos received his A.B. (1982) and M.A. in English (1983) from the University of Michigan and in 1989 his J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School. Campos worked at the law firm Latham & Watkins in Chicago from 1989-1990 and became an Associate Professor at the University of Colorado in 1990, where he teaches classes on property, punishment theory, jurisprudence, and legal interpretation.
Outside the legal community, Campos is perhaps best known for his 2004 book The Obesity Myth (later published as The Diet Myth) which reviews medical research on the association between higher body mass and health.
In the years since the publication of The Obesity Myth, Campos has become recognized in the academic world as a leading figure among obesity skeptics. For example, in his 2011 book The End of the Obesity Epidemic, Australian academic Michael Gard identified Campos as one of three scholars (along with University of Chicago political scientist Eric Oliver and Arizona State University exercise physiologist Glenn Gaesser) who have led the way in constructing what Gard classifies as the "empirical" counter-narrative to the claims of those who argue higher body weight represents a major public health crisis:
"Together, these [three authors] have helped popularize obesity skepticism as a legitimate intellectual position . . . Most crucial of all, they have each contributed to building the case against seeing obesity per se as a disease, demonstrating that the health risks of fatness are, at the very least, highly debatable . . . More recently, Campos has been a tireless, acerbic, and superbly articulate warrior in his extensive print and electronic media work."
His writing appears regularly on the blog Lawyers, Guns and Money.
In August 2011, Campos began a blog, Inside the Law School Scam. in which he was harshly critical of the value proposition of a law school education. The blog attracted criticism from some legal scholars, but also support from others, including Deborah Jones Merritt of The Ohio State University law school, who joined him as a co-blogger on "Inside the Law School Scam", as well as from Walter Olson at the libertarian Cato Institute. Merritt accused law professors of being "greedy", threatened litigation against those who challenged her and Campos's views and suggested that law school deans should be disbarred. Olson has criticized law schools for being sources of influential liberal ideas and training grounds for future liberal political leaders. Another Campos supporter, Brian Tamanaha at Washington University, has also accused law professors, especially liberal law professors, of hypocrisy and greed.
In the spring of 2013, Campos helped draft a letter, and to collect signatories to it, that asked an ABA Task Force on the future of legal education to take into account the increasingly problematic relationship between the cost of legal education, and the employment outcomes new law graduates were securing, or failing to secure. The letter was signed by dozens of prominent legal academics, including several past presidents of the American Association of Law Schools.
- "Paul F. Campos". University of Colorado Law School. Retrieved September 2, 2011.
- Paul Campos CV
- Smith, Dinitia. Demonizing the Fat in the War on Weight, May 1, 2004. New York Times.
- Lawyers, Guns, and Money