Of Defense Attorneys And Dinosaurs
Dennis L. Blewitt, JD
There was a time when defense attorneys were considered an integral part of the criminal justice system. They were viewed as a resource for the Courts, Distract Attorneys, and people. We were essential to a fair system of justice and protection of the poor, downtrodden, disabled, feeble, infirmed and stupid. Now, defense attorneys are viewed as an impediment to the orderly administration of “justice,” or the assembly line processing of cases through the system.
We were never asked inane questions like “how in good conscious can you represent a guilty person?” or “how can you live with yourself?” We became the butt of lawyer jokes and were equated with the segment of the public which we represent. Nothing was mentioned of the corrupt business executive that looted their companies, stockholders and public, robbed pension plans, and destroyed little old ladies. The Watergate characters were lawyers, as was Nixon. Therefore, all lawyers must be bad. Today, this has carried over and is combined with the military training of police. Defense attorneys challenge the assertions of police that a murder by a police officer is justified by self-defense. In one case, a man reported his pickup as stolen when his son took it to buy cigarettes. No more problems. The 18 year old is dead. Similarly, knife wielding man shot 60 times by police was called into question by lawyers.
District Attorneys whitewash the military response of the police to youthfulness, mental illness and misbehavior as justifiable because the officer was in fear of his life or was following protocols or training. DA’s don’t question the necessity of death, defense attorneys do. So it is better to rid the Courts of defense attorneys than to de-militarize the police. Since we generally oppose this form of martial law, we have to be silenced. That is much easier to do than a decade or two ago. We no longer are view as one problem solving resource. We are viewed as obstructionist, impeding police action, and not affording the police the proper amount of respect.
There used to be three separate and equal branches of government which acted as checks and balances of power. That no longer is the case. It used to be that legislators and attorneys were exempt from service of process while in court or in transit. No longer. We are now third wheels. Judges, prosecutors, police and public defenders, all state paid, are not searched and humiliated by armed guards and metal detectors while going to work. Scumbag defense attorneys are. The courts were once our place of employment, where we could talk to clerks, court recorders an judges regarding court business. Now the presence of an attorney in the court chambers is arrested for obstructing the business of the court and trespass like a common criminal. Of course, this adds to the poor image of lawyers perceived by the public, when they see lawyers treated as criminals by the court personnel. We no longer meet with prosecutors regarding cases to discuss a case. Instead, people are herded into a hallway, see a deputy district attorney in a broom closet sized room, where we are given an ultimatum by an under 30 prosecutor who has determined a fair resolution based upon the written reports of the officer. In such a case a defense attorney is superfluous. Having to perform a charade of fairness takes time which could be more effectively used to fill the corporate programs with the mass of defendants in the building.
In England, the lawyers went on strike because of injustices in the system. In the U.S., lawyers go along and do not make waves in their scramble to make money. I guess that’s justice.
- Posted in: 2d Amendment