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Lawyers' charitable and for-profit work valuable

Published: July 28, 2012

Jesse Pond (Your Views, July 22) claims lawyers “produce little of value.” As a 35-year member of the Oklahoma Bar Association, I'd like to respond. According to Pond, the lawyers who protect each of us by putting predators in jail “produce little of value.” The lawyers employed by organizations such as Catholic Charities, providing free legal help to immigrants, “produce little of value.” The same must be true for the National Guard/Reserve lawyers providing free legal assistance to mobilizing and returning soldiers and the full-time military lawyers providing free legal services to active-duty military families.

Also, the lawyers working pro bono in free legal clinics providing wills and other legal documents to those who otherwise couldn't afford them, the lawyers who donate thousands of hours yearly by free representation of people who otherwise couldn't afford a lawyer, and lawyers who work relentlessly for no pay to free the wrongfully convicted. Or the lawyers who donate thousands of hours annually at free legal clinics helping people navigate the maze of government red tape.

I assure you, none of these lawyers is counting the “profits” from this charitable work. I hope Pond will participate in one of the many charitable opportunities through which lawyers “produce value” for society.

John M. Gunter, Oklahoma City


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