Posted: 23 December 2010 at 4:58pm | IP Logged
Originally posted by xobile
I think certain professions are considered 'noble' because society wouldn't function without them. They are absolutely necessary. Of course, all successful businesses are contributing to the economy, but not all could be said to be necessary for a well functioning society. For example, some might say the po*n industry is certainly not necessary and its not very noble because of its negative external costs. Same with the cigarette and drugs industries.
In that context lawyers would be extremely noble, because society would not be able to function without them. It is through lawyers that the legal machine of a democratic society is upheld.
I don't think lawyers are liars, because lying is perjury. But they may withhold the truth, not tell the whole truth or embellish the truth. They may behave in a manner that his highly unethical but still legal. Sometimes a lawyer has to defend rapists, murderers, and all sorts of scoundrels. To me the beauty of the legal system is that they have to. Some do it for the money and defend big profile criminals.
Public lawyers are stuck defending/prosecuting someone they don't want to, because it is either against their ethics or not conducive to their pocket books. The common man has a right to a fair trial though. Not all accused are guilty. Not all accused deserve severe punishment. No all plaintiffs are innocent. Not all plaintiffs deserve justice. Law despite being reason free of passion, has many many gray areas. That is why the legal code requires lawyers to serve a client 100%, irrespective of guilt. Its an insurance for lay citizens that if we are victims of crime or accused of crime our lawyer whether paid or public is obliged to serve us 100% or excuse themselves of the case. Sometimes this means they serve a wrong person, but each side is expected to get full and fair representation.
True some lawyers are really in it for the money, either defending criminals and the rich, or needlessly suing people and businesses in torts.
Anyway, law is not always glamorous as we perceive it. Many lawyers are just ordinary contract or property lawyers who usually are stuck with drafting verbose contracts or understanding them. Some just do research and documentation. Many civil lawyers settle very modest civil suits and try to do it in a fair ethical manner. Many family court or divorce lawyers also try to be ethical and display fairness rather than mint money.
Many lawyers do take up constitutional law to try and influence the interpretation and implementation of constitution through government and agencies. Many lawyers work exclusively for grass roots organizations, civil rights organizations, representing minorities, representing non profits or environmental policy and such things because they do want to feel good about what they do and make a difference.
So not all lawyers are terrible people or liars.
Of course Jack McCoy is my hero.