Here’s a statement you won’t see often on the internet or in most parts of American society: Thank you lawyers. Fuck yes! Today, you guys are heroes for helping to argue for a stay of deportations and blocking part of that executive order (otherwise known as the Muslim Ban. I call it the ban of the Muslims who haven’t seen fit to construct a Trump Hotel on their soil. It’s less catchy but more accurate).
People shit on lawyers. The general public gives U.S. attorneys about as much respect as Rodney Dangerfield believed he got (read: no respect). I grew up with a Lawyer Dad – often working in his office – and I’ve been there when people tell the jokes and have heard the pissed off calls (and answered many) and read the fuck-you notes and seen the general disdain you guys get from all walks of life (other lawyers mostly). And look, some of you deserve it.. but MOST of you don’t! And this weekend, you fucking proved it.
Listen, man: You motherfuckers stepped it up today. We saw you in airports, some of you on the floor working, others rushing through terminals trying to file a writ of habeas corpus and/or help a refugee stay in the U.S. (or, in some cases, a card-carrying citizen stay in the U.S.). The ACLU have pissed everyone off at one point, and today they probably pissed off the most easily pissed off guy in the nation in President Donald Trump. Thank you for that, ACLU. If nothing else, that’s fucking funny.
What’s not funny is that we’ve been losing the right to freely travel, not to mention due process, for years thanks to secretive courts and no fly lists (Thanks Obama. Thanks Bush). This weekend, in my opinion, was an extreme conclusion of that slipping-away of rights. I consider this weekend to be a small victory in the battle against our government playing ruler. They work for us, not the other way around, and I hope this serves as a reminder of that.
Back to the attorneys. Just think, the young go-hard attorneys in New York and Los Angeles and Chicago took a valuable kiss-the-bosses-ass day and spent it doing pro bono work; Jeremy, that fucking guy that voted for Trump, was in today; you already know it. The young ones took a hit there, but in my opinion that’s a hit for Uncle Sam, the cool uncle who isn’t afraid to have kids from other countries sleep over and might even feed them some beer, show them some porn, and tell them religion is bullshit and that they should question their parents’ beliefs.
The old heads lost a valuable golfing or drinking or watching TV or getting blasted and watching golf on TV. The young independent lawyers, god love ’em, finally got a full day of work in. The older independent attorneys lost a day of work.
Growing up, I never once got the impression that my dad became a lawyer to do anything but help people. He works as a Social Security disability attorney and now in elderly and veteran law as well. I’m sure he regrets that decision on certain days, not going into some more well-paid field. I’m sure many of the attorneys who showed up at international airports across the country yesterday have regretted their decisions on certain days, as well. But I’m glad they’re all here, working for what they believe in.
Thank you for being an important part of civilized society, lawyers, even if you weren’t at the airports yesterday. You guys – the ones who realize the importance of upholding the spirit of our laws – may be one of our last lines of defense.