Your RDA of Irony

Juris Imprudence

Western Civilization has just averted an immeasurable threat:  me on jury duty.  Oh, you might think that I wouldn’t be that much of a danger to your life, limb and liberty.  After all, aren’t I just another kind-hearted liberal?  Well, I might be a liberal but so were Cromwell and Robespierre. 

Here is how I would judge the following cases…

Athens, 399 B.C.  Socrates is guilty; however, I wouldn’t have convicted him of corrupting youth.  Youth is inherently corrupt, and you can only imagine how the spoiled brats of Athens were.  However, teachers are supposed to impose some constraints on their little monsters.  Socrates abysmally failed.  The parents of Plato could forget about grandchildren.  And what did Alcibiades learn?  During the Peloponnesian War, he managed to betray Athens, Sparta and Persia;  he probably cheated the Chinese and the Mayans, too.  My verdict:  Socrates would have to refund everyone’s tuition.   

Jerusalem, 29 A.D. Jesus is guilty of practicing medicine without a license.  I don’t care if he did cure lepers; he still needed malpractice insurance.  For instance, a cured leper now will keep his fingers but what if those fingers then become arthritic.  Jesus could be sued–and I’d be stuck on that jury as well.  My verdict:  ten shekels for court cost and a restraining order keeping Jesus thirty yards from the crippled, blind and dead.

Rouen, 1431.  Joan of Arc is guilty of something.  In France being a 18 year old virgin is tantamount to treason.  Furthermore, she obviously was not conversing with France’s favorite saints.  Given their heavenly omniscience, wouldn’t those saints have told Joan to forget about the English and start worrying about the Germans?  My verdict:  Joan can continue to wear men’s clothing but only if it is a straitjacket. 

Massachusetts, 1692:  Guilty, guilty, guilty.  The evidence of Satan is incontrovertible.  The afflicted speak in arcane gibberish, they mock and abuse the unpossessed, and they think themselves superior to God.  My verdict:  Harvard must be immediately closed.  (Oh, did you have a question about Salem?) 

Paris, 1894.  Captain Dreyfus is guilty of gullibility.  Did he really think that those French aristocrats wouldn’t be Anti-Semitic?  Couldn’t he take a hint:  the other officers received epaulets and he got a “Kick Me” sign.  My verdict:  Twenty Franc fine for trespassing.

Dayton, Tennessee, 1925John Scopes is guilty of tactlessness.  When a person says he hasn’t evolved, he obviously hasn’t.  That person has every right to say that he was made in God’s image (although he actually would hate to look like an old Jew).  My verdict:  condemned not to have any of the memorable lines in “Inherit the Wind.”        

Court is now adjourned. 




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