Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. -Martin Luther King, Jr.
I have been asked these types of questions for years. While asked in different forms, each question is the same. Each question begs for an answer to how can I do what I do? Inherent in such a question is the implication that either I do not realize what my job entails or to specifically call to attention the asker’s lack of understanding for the importance of my job. I would like to say that as the years have passed upon being questioned in this fashion that I no longer attempt to respond. But candidly, each time asked, I respond the same: with pride and with a heart for this job and my clients regardless of the specific type of criminal allegation(s). Simply, I sleep easy, I represent proudly, and I do not care if they tell me they are guilty or not. Because in the end, I fight the same, zealously, relentlessly, and tirelessly.
I think the most confusing aspect of my answer revolves around the pride and unwavering support I provide. Regardless of how the question is posed, regardless of the hypothetical factual pattern people give (but, what if he/she is accused of murder, or rape, or child molestation), my answer never lacks the severity of my pride or passion in representing these cases.
What I have learned is that people tend to view those accused of crimes as just a sole representation of that allegation. They are no longer seen as people, as a son or daughter, as a husband or wife, a friend, a coworker or as a human being. People redirect their focus to the allegations and the alleged facts of the case at the expense of my client. In doing so, a human being, an actual person, is left alone symbolically in a dark void with no voice and no advocate while at the same time, the vast and virtually unlimited resources of the Government is levied towards prosecuting that one person.
The Founding Fathers to the United States Constitution understood the gravity of this precarious position. Consequently, the only lawyer specifically guaranteed within the very fabric of our nation’s foundation, is me, a criminal defense attorney. The Sixth Amendment reads, in part,” [i]n all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right . . . to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defense.” The duty and call of a criminal defense attorney is something that was contemplated and implemented in the nation’s constitution. It is an honor to provide this service to the people that need my assistance and expertise.
I am proud to be the voice standing, fighting for someone others easily dismiss or deem unworthy. But I do not.
I see each client for what they are: a human being needing help. This is where my drive, my passion comes in. I offer the only protection I can, I Stand in The Gap.