"No, Mr. Wayne. That's The Law"
This started out as a comment on Caitlin's blog, but I figured I might as well make it a post. She was talking about an uncle of her's who is a judge, yet said that "his job (a judge) is about human motivations and the ideas of the greater good. He says that law doesn't seem to enter into that, and he's not particularly interested in the law." Law is one of those careers that I've always been somewhat drawn to. The fact that it's still a viable option (as Caitlin's uncle, who has a PhD in English, an attest to) is also a factor. However, whenever I think about it enough, I realize that there would be certain parts of Law that would really bug me.
This realization came to me early in life when reading a Batman graphic novel that I loved when I was younger, entitled The Untold Legend of the Batman. Essentially this is an early-80s mini-series that attempts to spin all the stories of Batman's origin into one storyline. Anyway, there is one sequence with a young Bruce Wayne that is an attempt to show why Bruce ends up going the vigilante route instead of working within the law. Bruce is at law school, and in the class his instructor is giving the students a case study (note: the following is from memory as best as I can remember it).
Professsor: Two young men steal a car and proceed to go on
a joyride. In the process the second young man decides he no longer wants to be
involved and asks to be left out of the car. Before his friend can comply they
accidently strike and kill a woman crossing the street. The question is, who is
guilty of what?
Bruce Wayne: Well I would find them both guilty of
grand theft auto, but only the first young man would be guilty of manslaughter
as the second young man had asked to be left out.
Professor: I'm afraid you're wrong, Mr. Wayne. Both boys
would be guilty of manslaughter, since they were both party to the stolen
Bruce Wayne: But sir, is that justice?
Professor: No, Mr. Wayne. That's the Law.
From that point on Bruce realized that if he were to work within the law he would always be restrained. Always handicapped.
That sort of encapsulated my feelings of the law. While I believe that laws and such are neccessary (I'm not really an anarchist), I feel that sometimes in the name of justice, the law might need to be ignored. Maybe that's just the effect of reading too many comic books about vigilante heroes, but it's still something I believe strongly.