A man in Colorado brought a stuffed owl to court with him as his lawyer. According to news reports, the owl’s name is Solomon, and it was “just sitting in” until a public defender was assigned to the man’s case. Although the owl claimed to have law degrees from Yale, Harvard, and Stanford, it is unclear just how effective Solomon was in the courtroom. Still, this highly credentialed advocate probably charged a much lower hourly rate than your average lawyer. If you are considering hiring a lawyer and are wondering whether an inanimate object may better serve your needs, consider these alternatives.
1. Taxidermied Animal
Pros: Animals have certain imbued qualities we all know. For example, owls are wise, foxes are sly, and elephants never forget. All are good qualities in a lawyer. Most taxidermied animals also have the distinct advantage of being quite portable, and they can also make a nice presentation to the judge or jury by themselves or if paired with a law book or gavel.
Cons: Some judges or jurors are against taxidermy on ethical grounds, which could unfairly prejudice them against your lawyer or your case. Also consider the propriety of courtroom attire for your taxidermied animal lawyer. It may be necessary, in some jurisdictions, to outfit your animal with a smart-looking shirt, tie, and jacket (for most animals pants are optional). Finally, please be aware that your animal must be able to fit through the courthouse door, making some of the larger options impracticable.
Image: “Bean goose portrait taxidermy” from Shutterstock.
2. Scales of Justice
Pros: Great for demonstrating the concept of justice, which, as we all know means weighing random objects against each other. A brass set can be polished to a high shine, which not only looks nice but can be used to reflect light into the opposing lawyer’s eyes to temporarily blind him or her.
Cons: There may be another set inside the courtroom already, which could confuse your judge or jury. Metal ones may set off the metal detector at the courthouse entrance, and could be mistaken for a weapon.
Image: “Scales of justice.” from Shutterstock.
3. Ruth Bader Ginsburg Bobblehead
Pros: No one crosses the Notorious RBG. As a sitting Supreme Court Justice, her bobblehead should be able to overrule any objections from the opposing lawyer. If your judge rules against you, you can instantly file your appeal with your Ginsburg Bobblehead and get a ruling, no need to wait.
Cons: At a loss here, really.
4. Judge Dredd Cardboard Cutout
Pros: Standing behind your Judge Dredd Cutout and yelling “I AM THE LAW!” is an excellent way to win most arguments in court. Plus, you can either do it in an imitation Stallone or Karl Urban voice, whichever one you can do better.
Cons: Being able to say only one thing can have downsides, especially when your lawyer is trying to cross-examine a witness. Also, once you are held in contempt, keep in mind that Judge Dredd’s police jurisdiction is only good in Mega-City One, and so he cannot spring you out of jail.
5. Your Step-Brother Stanley
Pros: Your dad already thinks Stanley will not amount to anything, so get Stanley out from behind that computer and prove him wrong! Stanley also wears the suit he wore to your grandmother’s funeral, so there’s no need to buy him one.
Cons: Stanley is only good at looking up certain types of things on the internet, so he may not be able to find good case law for you when needed. Many Stanleys have food allergies, so be sure to bring an epi-pen if you plan on feeding him at the courthouse cafeteria.
Image credit: Rolling Stone
Featured image: “Owl Judge holding gavel and scales” from Shutterstock.