Though I made the decision not to intervene in the situation I reported, and I told mother of my decision, she wrote me this wonderful e-mail. I hope that I deserve her kind words, and that I do make a difference for people - even when I do not personally represent them. I believe in what my colleagues and I do in defending people. It is not just the way I make a living, but it is the way I try to live my life. Helping. Here is a portion of her e-mail:
"Thank you for your kindness in answering me. Though not the answer I prayed for, I appreciate your attention and perspective . . . I was hoping so much from your initial response (I realize now the misunderstanding) that there was a break in the exhaustion and frustration in trying to defend [son] . . .
So I will soldier on in my fight for his representation, but a bit wiser from your words and my belief in humanity lifted being reminded that there are still people who care about right or wrong even when it doesn't pertain exclusively to them. I so respect the warrior in you and your keeping your eye and having the courage to call BS when you have come to the conclusion something must be done. I wish a lawyer not doing anything at all equalled a lawyer doing something wrong.
. . . Should I be successful [in getting another lawyer appointed], I would ask for you to be appointed. . . . Should I win the lottery or break down and take a loan against my home, I will contact you.
Whatever this challenge brings, I want you to know that people like you are rare and that you do make a positive difference. Thank you for championing me when you thought it right and for having honor. . . ." [signed mother]
This note made my year.