"If the judges interpret the laws themselves, and suffer none else to interpret, they may easily make, of the laws, [a shredded] shipman's hose!" - King James I of England, around 1616.

“No class of the community ought to be allowed freer scope in the expression or publication of opinions as to the capacity, impartiality or integrity of judges than members of the bar. They have the best opportunities of observing and forming a correct judgment. They are in constant attendance on the courts. Hundreds of those who are called on to vote never enter a court-house, or if they do, it is only at intervals as jurors, witnesses or parties. To say that an attorney can only act or speak on this subject under liability to be called to account and to be deprived of his profession and livelihood by the very judge or judges whom he may consider it his duty to attack and expose, is a position too monstrous to be entertained for a moment under our present system,” Justice Sharwood in Ex Parte Steinman and Hensel, 95 Pa 220, 238-39 (1880).

“This case illustrates to me the serious consequences to the Bar itself of not affording the full protections of the First Amendment to its applicants for admission. For this record shows that [the rejected attorney candidate] has many of the qualities that are needed in the American Bar. It shows not only that [the rejected attorney candidate] has followed a high moral, ethical and patriotic course in all of the activities of his life, but also that he combines these more common virtues with the uncommon virtue of courage to stand by his principles at any cost.

It is such men as these who have most greatly honored the profession of the law. The legal profession will lose much of its nobility and its glory if it is not constantly replenished with lawyers like these. To force the Bar to become a group of thoroughly orthodox, time-serving, government-fearing individuals is to humiliate and degrade it.” In Re Anastaplo, 18 Ill. 2d 182, 163 N.E.2d 429 (1959), cert. granted, 362 U.S. 968 (1960), affirmed over strong dissent, 366 U.S. 82 (1961), Justice Black, Chief Justice Douglas and Justice Brennan, dissenting.

" I do not believe that the practice of law is a "privilege" which empowers Government to deny lawyers their constitutional rights. The mere fact that a lawyer has important responsibilities in society does not require or even permit the State to deprive him of those protections of freedom set out in the Bill of Rights for the precise purpose of insuring the independence of the individual against the Government and those acting for the Government”. Lathrop v Donohue, 367 US 820 (1961), Justice Black, dissenting.

"The legal profession must take great care not to emulate the many occupational groups that have managed to convert licensure from a sharp weapon of public defense into blunt instrument of self-enrichment". Walter Gellhorn, "The Abuse of Occupational Licensing", University of Chicago Law Review, Volume 44 Issue 1, September of 1976.

“Because the law requires that judges no matter how corrupt, who do not act in the clear absence of jurisdiction while performing a judicial act, are immune from suit, former Judge Ciavarella will escape liability for the vast majority of his conduct in this action. This is, to be sure, against the popular will, but it is the very oath which he is alleged to have so indecently, cavalierly, baselessly and willfully violated for personal gain that requires this Court to find him immune from suit”, District Judge A. Richard Caputo in H.T., et al, v. Ciavarella, Jr, et al, Case No. 3:09-cv-00286-ARC in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, Document 336, page 18, November 20, 2009. This is about judges who were sentencing kids to juvenile detention for kickbacks.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

The epidemic of mental illness, alcoholism and substance abuse in lawyers, the Dorian Grays of our times

So, lawyers are more predisposed to mental illness, alcoholism and substance abuse than other professions in the U.S.

It is the statistics, see here, too.

And why should anybody be surprised?

Imagine that you poured time, effort, thousands of dollars in savings (yours or your parents'), incurred nearly or over a hundred thousand dollars in debt - and voila - you got your law license.

And that to keep your law license intact and keep it producing income for you and your family, you need not to speak up when you see judges, prosecutors, influential attorneys, friends-family-colleagues of judges, prosecutors, influential attorneys and other government officials commit misconduct in front of your very eyes.

Because if you do, you will lose our law license, investment into it, reputation, possibility to work in any decently paid profession, and with that you may lose your savings, home, car, you will divorce, be ordered to pay child support, put in jail for non-payment of child support and what not else.

So - you know that your conscience (if you have any such intangible substance left) tells you to do one thing.

But your sense of self-preservation tells you to just shut up and suck up.

But - your conscience, the stubborn sucker, continues to eat at you.

What is the ultimate solution?

Booze and drugs, of course.  The imaginary escape from the dreadful reality.

It can get to you though.

Suicide rates among lawyers is also among the highest in American professions...

The Dorian Gray's Picture is calling to American lawyers, who are increasingly becoming the "honorable" drunk and high nuts...

That is the price the profession pays for dishonesty as the basis of its operation.

No comments:

Post a Comment