(Originally posted July 20, 2008)
So apparently the leaders of San Fransisco have decided to rename a sewage plant after the president. Once local voters ratify the measure in the November election, the sewage facility will be renamed the “George W. Bush Sewage Plant.” The liberals consider this an insult against the president. Personally, I wish someone would name a sewage plant after me: The Drew Justice Sewage Plant — Cleaning up the world’s mess one day at a time.
Thank you for joining us this week on the DREW BLOG, where I provide analysis you won’t find anywhere else. Since I know all my readers are dying to know what I have been up to, I will go ahead and tell. My last post came from Alabama, where I spent the Independence Day weekend. We did some interesting activities down there and saw some good fireworks. The weekend prior, I visited some friends in Knoxville. So far, I have seen a number of good movies. I still await the amazing X-Files movie, however, which should come out soon.
Fortunately, I have managed to obtain two new law school roommates for next year, so that is one less thing to worry about. Also, I have obtained my handgun permit, purchased a .45 caliber weapon, and practiced firing it a fair amount already. Watch out, Fort Sanders. There is a new law in town, and your time has come.
My summer league Frisbee team (olive green) is somewhat less amazing than the team I was on last year, but what can you do. If only my superb amazingness could rub off on everyone else, we would probably be undefeated right now, but what can you do. We are doing alright, at least. Go Olive Garden! Free breadsticks for everyone!
Anyway, life at the Public Defender’s Office continues fairly well. About a week ago, I went to Dunkin Donuts to see Steve Gill broadcast his show live. I met him, and he is a pretty cool guy. While I was there, one conservative lady asked me how the people at the Public Defender’s office could stand to defend criminals. I told her that a significant portion of our clients are genuinely innocent, and that an even larger portion of them may be guilty of something, but have nonetheless been severely overcharged by an overzealous government. Of course, even if someone is guilty, a public trial often benefits society by demonstrating justice in action.
Realistically, though who is truly innocent in the eyes of the law? The paternalistic, nanny-state authoritarians have criminalized nearly everything. If you look through the Tenneseee Code Annotated (Title 39) for yourself, you will see what I mean. Have you ever driven seventy-one miles per hour on the interstate? If so, you have committed a “Class-C Misdemeanor.” Technically, such crimes are punishable by up to thirty days in jail.
Did you know it is illegal to carry a sword? JESUS HIMSELF told his followers to carry swords, but now the Tennessee legislature prohibits the practice! (See Tenn. Code Ann. 39-17-1307.) The idiots in our government would actually criminalize Duncan MacLeod! How far we have fallen!
Ultimately, the authoritarians have established the all-encompassing legal system because it gives them the final authority over who walks free and who perishes. After all, the police can break a good number of laws with impunity. The people who anger the police are the ones who wind up in trouble.
The Public Defender and all other defense lawyers are basically an Anti-Government Prosecutors. Whereas the District Attorney punishes you for breaking the government’s rules, the Public Defender punishes the government for breaking laws.
If the District Attorney’s Office incompetantly charges you with a crime that you have not broken, the defense lawyers will make the prosecutors look like fools. If the police stop your car for no reason (perhaps after installing a tracking device on your car without a search warrant, which they routinely do), and then violate the Constitution to search your car for drugs, a defense lawyer will free you even if you are guilty. He does so not because he likes criminals. Rather, he frees you in order to punish the government for breaking the law — and because you have paid him money.
Ultimately, if you are the type of mean-spirited jerk who likes to break the spirits of individual citizens, you become a government prosecutor. If you hate the government — like me — then you become a defense lawyer. So I think criminal defense is my goal.