To Defend (Thanks Indiana PD)
Some writings are more focused on a smaller audience; I'm sure there are some of Peggy Noonan's Reagan speeches that work for some people, but not for me.
Similarly, stuff that works for PDs may not work for DAs.
I've been able to write a couple that still work for me, but I haven't read or heard one better than this for PDs:
Indiana PD had a blog for a while, then disappeared. There was some stuff left on Google cache, but that's gone now.
One of her posts was entitled "To defend"
In all formal relationships with society, the most intimate and most valuable is the giving of counsel. Those of us who do this stand against the passions of the mob, wherever it rages. We stand against legal barbarism. Some of us do it and are well paid; some of us do it and are not. But no matter who we are, we insure fairness from the Judge and the Court.
Fairness is enforced, not by law or wisdom, but by the vigorous advocacy of public defenders. We teach the loneliest lesson of all - that even guilt deserves a fair hearing, both in order to determine its measurement and to decide a fitting punishment.
The greatest trial lawyers in the world are not the ones watched, covered, and adorned by the media. The greatest trial lawyers in the world are the public defenders, who do their work in empty courtrooms, without the press, without an audience and, sad to say, most of the time without the family of the person on trial. Each day, the public defenders in that grim and dismal setting open their mouths for the dumb; for the rights of all who are racked desolate by time, by circumstances, by class, by race, by hatred.
Each day, it is the public defenders who guard against the human person. Each day in courtrooms, it is the criminal defense attorney who draws from juries their own central goodness, to raise them up to restrain bad laws. This calling insures that humankind's insatiable thirst for cruelty will not be gratified. This sacred responsibility assures that the lowest and most humble beings are exalted by their presence before the bar of justice.
posted by Indiana Public Defender at Saturday, June 18,