Monday, June 25, 2007

The Rest Of Us: A Meditation

The Denver Post has an article today which was thought provoking. It seems that Larry Manzanares, one time judge and former City Attorney, was charged with felony theft of a laptop computer from the judiciary. He shot himself Friday.

It seems that after he'd signed on as City Attorney in January of this year, the computer disappeared. It had tracking software installed that alerts a remote site if the computer is used to log onto the internet. That remote site in turn alerts the rightful owner of the computer if it's been reported stolen, and that was the case here.

The computer was returned along with a story about how he'd acquired it which would have left a group of three year old toddlers shaking their heads in dismay. It was chock full of porno.

Larry Manzanares left a wife and two kids. For them it's going to be a tough slog dealing with the fallout, but suicides never think about how many others they are going to damage with their egoism.

Here's where it gets thought provoking.

There are those who graduate from Harvard Law as Larry did, and they are The Chosen Ones Beloved Of Olympus Who Never Have To Worry About What Shall We Eat Or What Shall We Drink Or Wherewithal Shall We Be Clothed and there are The Rest Of Us Who Labor In The Vineyards For Our Keep Who Wear The Stigma Of Other Than Harvard Law Degrees like old Cain himself. We're treated as damaged goods while the ink is still wet on our diplomas, good enough for the criminal courts but not front office material.

On the one side one can expect choice clerkships and offers a plenty from silk stocking law firms, straight shots into the number two or three slot in states' Attorney General's Offices, State Department slots, 100 large a year for being a warm body in an Armani suit, or a nice double helping of noblesse oblige if so inclined before wiping the mud of the streets off their boots on that trip to a nice law prof sinecure somewhere.

For The Rest Of Us we screw around with slip and fall lawsuits, repeat drunk drivers, abused kids, arguments in burglary cases, addiction, destruction and drama enough to cause Captain Ahab to get a little nervous, and The Rest Of Us fight for every plate of food that comes our way.

For The Rest Of Us there are no Fancy Offices With Gilding And Mahogany Paneling And Hot And Cold Running Secretaries. The Rest Of Us go into battle packing only what we can lug along with us, and the conviction that somehow or other we're doing the right thing as G-d in her wisdom gave us the light to see it.

The Rest Of Us will stumble, fail and fall honorably on the field or otherwise, and the world will little note or long remember us or remark upon our passing.

Does any of it matter and will anything change? Probably not although I'd like it to be so.

But I can tell you one thing.

The Rest Of Us know that a Harvard Law degree is the nearest thing to a bottled in bond, cast iron, galvanized and silver plated meal ticket and license to live large the world has ever known.
Would The Rest Of Us have squandered such a thing over a lousy damned laptop computer laden with dirty movies?

I doubt it.


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