Hummus Talk

Somewhat random, but I wanted to mention...

One thing you didn't know about me is that I love hummus. I'm a little bit of a hummus fanatic. I've been eating hummus nearly daily for about 8 years. I like to try different kinds of hummus, I like to make different kinds of hummus, I just really like hummus. I like to put hummus on all different things, not just pita. My favorite is garlicky hummus.

And I have a new favorite kind. It's Sabra's Roasted Garlic Hummus. It comes in a bigger tub than most hummus (which is good), it has a red ring around the lid (that's how you can find it), and it has real garlic right in the middle that you can scoop up. It's so much creamier than any other store-bought hummus I've tried.

I don't know how they make it so creamy, but it's delicious.

(This is not a paid advertisement. I'm just really enjoying that hummus. You should try it. Seriously. But, Sabra, contact me if you want to sponsor me. Because I've been trying to find your Caramelized Onion Hummus but I can't find it anywhere, maybe we can set something up...)

Wool Over Your Eyes

If I ruled the world, I wouldn't let kids be prosecutors right out of law school. Or, without having some kind of prior job or career or life experience.

It's not that I'm that much older than 24 (really, I'm not!), it just disturbs me to hear these 24-year-old kids, who are still living off daddy's trust funds, judge someone, as if they've ever walked a mile in any shoes.

They're just so clueless and naive.

Like this one: I was explaining to the prosecutor that my client was a really outstanding student, a fine young woman who was well respected by her classmates and professors. Something really traumatic happened to her, and she turned to drugs. She realizes now she took a wrong turn, she's been sober and she's seeking treatment to address her post-traumatic stress disorder.

I explained all of this, including the unfortunate details of the traumatic event, expecting a little bit of understanding from the prosecutor. But, instead, I got absolutely nothing. Which is funny, because, you know, if this prosecutor was prosecuting the person who victimized my client, then they would be quick to explain to a judge or a jury how no one could expect my client to not to be traumatized, how she couldn't be expected to just get on with a normal life.

But, no, nothing.

So, I continued, "Look, she's been through a lot, but she's getting her life straightened out. She's seeing a psychiatrist and a psychologist..."

At which point the prosecutor interrupted, "Wait."

Wait? Maybe she's starting to get it?

"Wait," she continued, "You expect me to believe there's a difference between a psychiatrist and a psychologist? You're just trying to pull the wool over my eyes. You're just trying to confuse me."

Really. They let these people judge people, decide their futures. How nice.

Defendants on the Web

This is an interesting read:
Web networking photos come back to bite defendants.

The issue of myspace or facebook pages, etc., comes up more often in private practice than it does as a public defender. Matter of fact, literally just this morning I got an email invite on my work address to be a facebook "friend" from one of my clients. I assume she invited her entire email list, and her criminal defense lawyer happened to be on that list.

Perhaps not coincidentally, we had dealt with the issue early in the case that this particular client had admitted to the theft of which she was accused on her myspace page.

The client denied the theft to me, and later denied the online admission to me, until the prosecutor presented me with a print-out of the myspace entry which read, basically, "Ha ha, I stole that shit from that bitch, she'll never see it again."

Both my client and "that bitch" were somewhat shady characters, neither particularly known for their truthfulness or reliability. The prosecutor told me that the office would have probably declined to prosecute the case at all had they not had that key admission.

So, let this be a lesson to the defense lawyers and defendants out there.

It's Not Perfect, But It's The Best I've Got

Let's say you were a doctor. And you had a patient. And he had AIDS. And it was totally his own fault. You know that he contracted from unprotected sex or sharing needles. Would you still treat him? But, how could you help fight AIDS when he totally did it to himself?

What about a patient who has emphysema or lung cancer but smoked his entire life? How could you help him fight the emphysema or lung cancer when you know he totally did it to himself? Does he really deserve a doctor and medicine when he did it to himself?

What about a kid who comes into the emergency room? He was doing stunts with his motorcycle and pretty much nearly killed himself - now he needs emergency surgery in your E.R. Does he really deserve it? How can you, as a doctor, help him, when he was just so reckless himself?

Even worse, what if he killed someone else with his motorcycle stunts? How could you possibly help him?

Shouldn't you just sit back and let those patients die? Shouldn't that patient just take his death sentence like a man instead of trying to find a "loophole" like medicine? Shouldn't he just kill himself immediately to save everyone else the trouble? After all, it's his own fault, shouldn't he just accept responsibility?

It's not perfect, but after five years, it's the best response I have to "How can you represent someone when you know he's guilty?"