Saturday, August 18, 2012

What Will They Write On T-shirts Next? (Or, how to disrupt a pleasant breakfast at the diner.)

   Went out for breakfast this morning, being as it was the weekend, and saw a “saying” on the back of a t-shirt that I’m not totally convinced I understand. I was just taking my first few sips of coffee to shake out the cob-webs, and here comes a middle-aged couple and their son. They plunk themselves down in the next both, and, as they were plunking, I noticed the hubby had this saying on the back of his shirt: “When Lawyers Lead Society To Justice, Peace is its reward”. Well, that stopped me dead in my tracks on a number of levels. I knew I had to write down this “saying”, and did so with the aide of a pen from my wife, who had also eyed the aforementioned shirt.

   I must admit that I had a little trouble getting words to paper, as my mind was in some sort of serious lock-down. I couldn’t, for the life of me, make any logical, grammatical, or syntactical sense out of what my eyes had just seen. After a minute of utter disbelief, I was able to scribe the “saying” on the back of one of my business cards. As, I was engaged in writing this down, my Wife was looking at me with about half a grin on her face. Our eyes met, and she said ”This one really got to you, didn’t it?” I was speechless! I couldn’t find the words to describe what I was just feeling, let alone thinking. (You know what they say, “Don’t ask people what they’re thinking; they don’t do it very often.”) Now, I know, there is some truth to that caveat.

   My first cogent thought was that I should have worn my “OCCUPY” t-shirt. At the very least, that shirt “saying” makes sense. We did manage to finish our breakfast, but not before this gentleman stood up to go to the cash register and pay his cheque. (Sorry, that’s the French in me talking.) And, wouldn’t you know it, there was a small crest and some initials on the left chest of this shirt. I could not make out the crest too clearly, but the initials I recognized immediately. “NYSBA” was noticeable in white letters: “ New York State Bar Association”. No, we’re not talking your local gin mill, we’re talking the State lawyers association.

   Please correct me if I’m wrong, but I used to consider that lawyers had a reasonable command of the English language. And, God Damn It, this “saying” doesn’t make a pimple’s amount of sense. I’ve been reading it backwards, forwards, inside-out, and upside-down, and I cannot find anything in this short statement that even approaches validity. I really need some help with this conundrum. If anyone could shed some light on the subject, please let me know.

·         When lawyers lead society to justice, peace is its reward?

·         When society rewards lawyers with the practice of justice, peace occurs?

·         Peace is the reward society gets by having justice and lawyers?

Since when did lawyers ever lead society to justice? Since when have lawyers had anything to do with the creation and maintenance of peace? When was the last time either society, or you, were rewarded by a lawyer? Are not justice and peace two entirely separate entities?

I thought so!

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