This Guy Is Kidding, Right?

Perhaps I should have titled this “Why People Hate Lawyers: Part 17326”.

This is part of an article I just read about the sentencing of Min Chen, the man responsible for the killing of Cecilia Zhang.

Chen’s lawyer, prominent Toronto defence attorney John Rosen, said he was dismayed that [judge] Durno rejected his argument that his client deserved leniency because Zhang’s death was never supposed to happen.

“What I was disappointed with was that it was clearly a spontaneous act in the sense that it wasn’t planned, wasn’t considered, wasn’t foreseen,” Rosen said outside the courthouse.

“The judge rejected that submission, and I’m disappointed with that.”

Let that rattle around in your head for a minute.

Ok, you should probably be wanting to kick prominent Toronto defence attorney John Rosen square in the nutsack right about…now!

An accident? An oversight? A spontaneous act that requires leniency? Is this guy fucking serious? Min Chen kidnapped this family’s little girl in an attempt to extort money from them, and in the process, ended up killing her. And this, somehow, some way, in the world of John Rosen, qualifies as an unfortunate and unplanned circumstance that should cause a Superior Court Justice to view things with a “wow, that’s some shitty luck there my friend” attitude during sentencing? Give me a break! Maybe I’m wrong, but I was always under the impression that in order for something to be accidental, it had to be, oh I dunno, maybe an accident.

Let’s say that in the process of fighting off an attacker, you throw him to the ground in an attempt to subdue him, but he ends up hitting his head and eventually dying. That would be an accident. Breaking into somebody’s home with every intention of walking off with their child and then smuthering her to death when, wonder of wonders, she decides she’s not really down with that most certainly doesn’t qualify as making an oopsy, and I can’t come up with a single word strong enough to describe anyone who thinks it does.

If any lawyers happen to be reading this, I have just one thing to say to you. I know you’re not all bad. I understand that some of you do in fact have souls and consciences and that you absolutely do have people’s best interests at heart every time you walk into a courtroom. But if ever you find yourself wondering why your profession has the kind of reputation it does or why people make those nasty jokes about you, I hope you come back here and read this again, and see the words of one of your own. And when you see those words, I hope that 2 things go through your mind. Firstly that there is a big difference between providing good defence and spouting outright stupidity for the sake of making a buck. But even more than that, I hope that when you see those words, you can honestly say to yourself that while John Rosen may be one of your own by trade, he most definitely doesn’t speak for you, and if you can help it, anyone on whom you may ever have influence. That’s the only way that things are ever going to positively change for you and yours.

When it comes down to it, I think there’s a good lesson in this for all of us. None of us, no matter what it is we do to pay the bills, should ever forget that sometimes there are more important things in the world than money. All of the money in the universe can only get you so far. What truly matters is the kind of person you are, that’s what will ultimately end up paving your road in life more than cash ever will.

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