Rav Avigdor Miller on Crooked Courts



Can an Orthodox Jew practice criminal law as defense counselor or a prosecutor or judge?


An orthodox Jew surely can practice criminal law as a prosecutor or judge.  No question about that because he is administering the laws of the land.  Dinah d’malchusa dinah; and therefore, what he’s doing is according to the law of the Torah.  We have to fulfill the laws of the land.

Can he practice as defense counsel?  That’s a big question.  Because, ki ha’shoichad ye’aver einei chachamim.  Bribery blinds people.  And the biggest bribery is your fee.  Besides, you want to succeed.  And therefore, a lawyer who spends years and years allowing his mind to be crippled by his fees just to defend his clients is the very worst one to appoint as a judge.  When he becomes a judge, he is a ruined man.  His conscience doesn’t exist.

That’s why judges are all criminals.  I’m not exaggerating.  The judges are all criminals.  If you want a real judge, you should go out on the street, and look for an Italian construction gang.  It can be a Polish construction gang too. I happen to like Italians – the Polish are anti-Semites.

Take an Italian construction fellow and put him up there with a black robe and believe me he’ll administer justice. If he doesn’t know the law, get an expert in law to advise him on the law  – someone who never practiced it; there should be a certain career, ‘expert advisors,’ to advise the Italian judges on what the law says. But the man to judge, it has to be someone with a conscience; it should be a plain goy, a working man; a blue-collar goy.

He’ll be a better judge because the lawyers are all criminals.  You can’t help being a criminal.  You pay to defend criminals and therefore when you finally become a judge, your mind is crooked and warped and that’s why the defense lawyers who become judges, they are reshaim gemurim, all of them.  This can’t be helped. כי השוחד יעור – bribery blinds you.

TAPE # 561 (August 1985)