I’ve represented several kids who were sent away for little stuff. You know, for a few months in jail.
I feel bad for them. After all, what they did might be annoying, but not evil. I feel bad because they lose a part of their life to confinement at a time when they are young and healthy. It’s sad, especially for someone like me who views human life as a painfully discrete event in time.
At one trial, my client confessed to me that, the night before, he had a three-way-around-the-world with a couple of strippers. I was impressed because most clients sit depressed in their room, obsessing about the next day. Not him.
He shook my hand before shuffling away in leg irons. He smiled. The trial went reasonably well, and he received a mercifully light sentence. I felt bad as he jingled out of the room, but not as bad as I feel about others.
As misguided as he might have been, he was determined to live, and live as well as possible by his own standards.
I found some comfort in that.
Then, I washed my hand.