Jewish World Review March 24, 2011 /181 Adar II, 5771
Readers reach verdict on lawyer column
By Barry Koltnow
http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | One of the many reasons I didn't go to law school was that I didn't want to be part of a universally despised profession.
Instead, I studied journalism.
The irony is not lost on me.
Neither profession is more admired, envied or respected than the other. But we are not alike. The differences are obvious — lawyers make more money than journalists, lawyers are better punch lines for jokes than journalists and lawyers can only watch helplessly when journalists make fun of them in columns.
I heard from quite a few attorneys after last week's column on lawyer movies. I may have told a few lawyer jokes along the way. Who could resist the opportunity? My only regret is that I only had space for 800 words. Entire books could be written on the subject of lawyer jokes.
—A terrorist hijacks a plane-load of lawyers, and threatens to release one every hour until his demands are met.
—Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, an honest lawyer and a wino are walking down the street when they spot a
—What's the difference between a lawyer and a pit bull? A Rolex.
Anyway, I digress. The point of the column was that, despite widely held disregard for members of the legal profession, movie audiences seem to enjoy a good lawyer movie.
Last week, I compiled a list of my favorite lawyer movies, which was headed by one of the great movies of all time — "To Kill a Mockingbird" with
The list drew a harsh response from movie lovers who were flabbergasted that I not only had included "Legally Blonde" on the list, but had ranked it higher than "Inherit the Wind."
OK, if you read me regularly, you know that I am not afraid to admit when I am wrong. Normally, I don't like to point accusatory fingers but it was HIS FAULT (you can't see me but I'm pointing my finger at a headline writer).
He is one of top headline writers in the business, but he made an assumption in the print version of my column that I was doing one of my usual "best of" lists. In this case, I intentionally used the word "favorite."
I confined the list to my favorites so that I could include a few comedies. If I were to make a list of the best lawyer movies ever made, the list would have been different.
No big deal, but I feel an obligation to explain the confusion.
Many readers agreed with many of my selections, including my top choice. But a number of readers were adamant that I missed the best single lawyer movie ever made — "Witness for the Prosecution" and "Judgment at
I named two movies because an equal number of readers named one or the other as the best movie. In fact, one reader said those two should be listed at numbers 1 and 2, and "To Kill a Mockingbird" should be third.
Other number ones suggested by readers included "Paths of Glory," "
Most of the readers who identified themselves as attorneys were good-natured about the jokes, but at least one
He said he had never read my column before but assumed I was an idiot (astute gentleman), and he was particularly incensed that I had included
I throw myself on the mercy of the court. However, he can't tell me that Shakespeare's line has not become the rallying cry for everyone who hates lawyers.
Which reminds me of a joke …
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