If there were no bad people there would be no good lawyers.
CHARLES DICKENS, The Old Curiosity Shop
Lawyers are the foot soldiers of our Constitution.
RENNARD STRICKLAND & FRANK T. READ, The Lawyer Myth
It is the lawyers who run our civilization for us -- our governments, our business, our private lives. Most legislators are lawyers; they make our laws. Most presidents, governors, commissioners, along with their advisers and brain-trusters are lawyers; they administer our laws. All the judges are lawyers; they interpret and enforce our laws. There is no separation of powers where the lawyers are concerned. There is only a concentration of all government power -- in the lawyers.
FRED RODELL, Woe Unto You, Lawyers
There is a vague popular belief that lawyers are necessarily dishonest. I say vague, because when we consider to what extent confidence and honors are reposed in and conferred upon lawyers by the people, it appears improbable that their impression of dishonesty is very distinct and vivid. Yet the impression is common, almost universal. Let no young man choosing the law for a calling for a moment yield to the popular belief. Resolve to be honest at all events; and if in your own judgment you cannot be an honest lawyer, resolve to be honest without being a lawyer. Choose some other occupation, rather than one in the choosing of which you do, in advance, consent to be a knave.
ABRAHAM LINCOLN, memorandum for law lecture, 1850
Lawyers are men who will swear black is white--if they are paid for it.
EDWARD COUNSEL, Maxims
If lawyers were to undertake no causes till they were sure they were just, a man might be precluded altogether from a trial of his claim, though, were it judicially examined, it might be found a very just claim.
SAMUEL JOHNSON, Journal of a Tour of the Hebrides, Aug. 15, 1773
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Why are scientists now using lawyers in laboratory experiments instead of rats? Three reasons: (1) lawyers are more plentiful than rats, (2) there is no danger the scientists will become attached to the lawyers, and (3) there are some things rats just won't do.
GERRY SPENCE, Bloodthirsty Bitches and Pious Pimps of Power
The only secret that the lawyer really possesses about the law is that no one can ever be certain of what the law is.... The lawyer is accustomed to the ways of bending and changing rules to suit his (or his client's) purposes, to dance in the shadows of the law's ambiguities. Rules hold no particular terror for the lawyer, just as the sight of blood holds no terror for the surgeon. Because he operates a system of rules, the lawyer becomes indifferent to them in the way that a doctor becomes indifferent to the humanity of the body that is lying on the operating table.
JETHRO LIEBERMAN, Crisis at the Bar
I realized the true function of a lawyer was to unite parties riven asunder. The lesson was so indelibly burnt into me that a large part of my time during the twenty years of my practice as a lawyer was occupied in bringing about private compromises of hundreds of cases. I lost nothing thereby -- not even money, certainly not my soul.
MAHATMA GANDHI, An Autobiography
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