Naively, for my high-school English-speech contest, I submitted “I want to grow up becoming a lawyer”.
My residual statement at the time was “I want to give voice to those who are voiceless…”. In short, becoming an advocate.
A lot of waters under the bridge since . Even when God doesn’t smile on my speech theme, I have managed to carry out some of that: helping others to speak up (in refugee transit camps), to learn a second language or how to sell something.
This past week, I noticed how other people practice law:
– Congress is suing the President
– The final verdict was in for the Kim Pham case in Santa Ana.
We have the rule of law written all over our faces, representatives’ or refugees’.
Actually, Kim Pham was a second generation Vietnamese American, born of a refugee family.
She got kicked in the head and died. Her two assailants each gets multi-year Orange County jail sentence.
Lawyers on both sides did give “voices to the voiceless”, or to be more correct, “voice to the dead”.
Since it was a high-profile case, everyone tried hard to stir clear of the race-class mine fields.
As if it had been possible to just have a women-inhuman-to-woman case.
Meanwhile, we have a higher profile case in which the President himself is being sued.
Yes I can.
It is to show that no one is above the law (and as former Harvard Law Review Editor, President Obama would be the first to know this).
The Three Branches of the Government , constitutionally speaking, in checks and balances.
Bring it on! Politics and Constitutional Law, Pennsylvania Avenue and K Street.
We go through life, oblivious to law and its enforcement (except for the airport security lines).
Until everything all of a sudden looks as if covered with law (not chocolate), from constitutional to civic, court room to board room. We exploit corporate tax loop holes, putting our HQs somewhere else outside of the country, outsourcing work somewhere else outside of the country,yet calling ourselves a Made-in-the- USA company.
It’s August. And Congress will take its summer vacation. Lawyers and paper pushers will be shoring up somewhere in the Hampton or Long Island beaches.
And a lot of “off the cuff” remarks on the summer days, will perhaps be “let’s stick it up to him” instead of “we had joy, we had fun, we had seasons in the sun”.
A grown-up version of law, justice and equality for all, turns out so different, with shades of grey. than my high-school one. “Goodbye to you my trusted friends”.
This summer, the worst part for me, is to have already grown up. “When I as a child, I thought like a child…” e.g. “I want to give voice to the voiceless”. Yes, I still can. But …not as a lawyer.