Why I’m Proud to Be a Lawyer and Why Lawyer Jokes Kinda Suck (even if they make you chuckle)
We’ve all heard the many popular jokes that bring a laugh at the expense of lawyers, and our profession is an easy mark for politicians who love to blame raising insurance costs of “greedy lawyers.” But hold on a minute. Take a moment to imagine our country without the services we lawyers provide. Justice doesn’t come easily. As Americans, we are proud of our Constitution, especially the Bill of Rights. We value our personal liberties and the protections the Constitution provides against tyranny–either on the part of those who govern or of the majority against a minority group. Americans believe in fairness and that everyone has the right to pursue a meaningful, productive, and happy life as long as one’s freedom doesn’t impinge upon the freedom or property of others.
If you are accused of a crime, if your health has been destroyed by someone else’s negligence, or if the life of someone you love has been stolen by someone else’s wrongdoing, who do you turn to? You want the most dedicated lawyer you can find. It’s no joking matter!
The law is complicated. Arguments can often be made for various interpretations. Language is elastic and sometimes imprecise. And nearly every law has a history. It has been ruled upon and interpreted by various courts and legal authorities over many years and in many venues.
For our legal system to work, we need specialists who understand the text and history of the law in great detail and who can analyze the facts of legal matters to determine how the pieces fit together and how the law should be applied. To do this requires years of intense study and experience. Becoming a lawyer is no easy task. The law is a demanding subject and not for everyone. Years of formal education, research, and practice go into the making of a great lawyer.
But even more important, to be a successful attorney requires a deep commitment and a heartfelt belief that justice can be best achieved through an adversarial system in which every party to a matter, whether criminal or civil, has the right to skilled counsel, focusing on the client’s needs and rights. Practicing law is labor intensive as well as intellectually and often emotionally demanding. Make no bones about it; law is among the caring professions. Are there some greedy lawyers? Sure. Every profession has members that are good, bad, and indifferent. But a good lawyer, the right lawyer for your case, is one who sincerely cares about you and your future. A good lawyer must care about the real needs of each client and the true meaning of justice for everyone. A nation without good lawyers would be no joke, and there would be no justice!
I am proud to be a member of the legal profession because JUSTICE MATTERS. PEOPLE MATTER. FREEDOM MATTERS. FAIRNESS MATTERS. Bring me your legal questions. Answers to your questions are free.
All this being said, I can’t deny that I occasionally get a chuckle out of a lawyer joke. But hey guys, let’s keep them in perspective!