Law Gone Wild

28 Nov

Goodbye world, Goodbye television, Goodbye Facebook.

That time has come, that dreaded moment that comes twice every year. Yes, finals have arrived.  As each day passes, more and more students seem to drop off the face of the earth.  Social media collapses, Gas stations and 24-hour food marts see swells in sales, and stress level shoot through the roof.  Life is now simply a move from notes to outlines to Powerpoints to practice tests.  This is a particularly dreaded time for law students.  There is so little to find humorous when studying the law that our sense of humor is highly twisted by graduation, but hey! we can still be funny!  So in the spirit of loosening up before exams begin, I thought I’d share one of my favorite poems for law students.  So without further adieu, I present G. K. Chesterton’s “The Horrible History of Jones.”  This is why we study law–to keep it from becoming like this. Sadly we seem to have failed in regards to the abbreviations; they are just this bad. I counted 21 in one of my courses!

Jones had a dog; it had a chain;
Not often worn, not causing pain;
But, as the I. K. L. had passed
Their ‘Unleashed Cousins Act’ at last,
Inspectors took the chain away;
Whereat the canine barked ‘Hooray!’
At which, of course, the S. P. U.
(Whose Nervous Motorists’ Bill was through)
Were forced to give the dog in charge
For being Audibly at Large.
None, you will say, were now annoyed,
Save, haply, Jones – the yard was void.
But something being in the lease
About ‘alarms to aid the police,’
The U. S. U. annexed the yard
For having no sufficient guard.
Now if there’s one condition
The C. C. P. are strong upon
It is that every house one buys
Must have a yard for exercise;
So Jones, as tenant, was unfit,
His state of health was proof of it.
Two doctors of the T. T. U.’s
Told him his legs, from long disuse,
Were atrophied; and saying ‘So
From step to higher step we go
Till everything is New and True.’
They cut his legs off and withdrew.
You know the E. T. S. T.’s views
Are stronger than the T. T. U.’s:
And soon (as one may say) took wing
The Arms, though not the Man, I sing.
To see him sitting limbless there
Was more than the K. K. could bear.
‘In mercy silence with all speed
That mouth there are no hands to feed;
What cruel sentimentalist,
O Jones, would doom thee to exist –
Clinging to selfish Selfhood yet?
Weak one! Such reasoning might upset
The Pump Act, and the accumulation
Of all constructive legislation;
Let us construct you up a bit ­­- ‘
The head fell off when it was hit:
Then words did rise and honest doubt,
And four Commissioners sat about
Whether the slash that left him dead
Cut off his body or his head.

A land of old and just renown
Where Freedom slowly broadened down
From Precedent to Precedent….
And this, I think, was what he meant.

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