An Attorney’s View of Being Thankful

Patrick testifying at the State Capitol in Harrisburg. Hearing on SB 3, Medical Marijuana, February 25, 2015.

Patrick testifying at the State Capitol in Harrisburg. Hearing on SB 3, Medical Marijuana, February 25, 2015.

Horrible images, human suffering, anger, fear, out right insanity… I see it almost every day. And that’s just Facebook.

Being in the business of criminal defense will most certainly color one’s world view, and it definitely alters our perspective when it comes to things to be thankful for.

People are right to think seeing so much of the worst side of humanity on a daily basis hardens our hearts, as it were, and that we are unfeeling. Although I’m sure that does happen to varying degrees, it’s not that way for the vast majority of the people I’ve had the good fortune of working with. On both sides.

Most are moved to a deeper appreciation for the people in our lives, and the blessings we have, despite the suffering we see every day when we wake up, embrace our family, and go to work.

The average person is probably not facing the possibility they might die on the job, yet it’s something police officers face every single day.

It’s unlikely most people will ever know the feeling of having to tell someone, ‘You’re going to prison’, or maybe they’re on death row, and their final appeal failed. Yes, they may be a criminal, even a fiend, but we are not. We are still human beings, and that’s a human moment that is as real as it gets.

Even Judges and Prosecutors have moments where their hands are tied, for example, by mandatory minimum sentencing guidelines, in cases where even they agree the punishment doesn’t fit the circumstances of the crime in a way that is just. But, they have no choice, and I’m guessing on those days, they leave work ready for a drink or two and some serious reflecting.

All of this makes me look around at my wonderful family, my beautiful wife, the home we’re making together… Despite the sadness and grief I see almost daily, how could I not be truly thankful?

So let’s all take a moment to look around us, and just be thankful for the things we do have. Right now. Believe me, more often than not, it could be worse.

Everyone have a safe and warmth filled Thanksgiving.



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