Thursday, July 23, 2009

Pro Se, in and out of the courtroom

Pro se in the legal sense, refers to someone representing themselves in court. The Latin term means "for oneself." In an episode from This American Life, Ira Glass brings us some stories from inside and outside the courtroom. We hear of a teenager that convinced the courts he was mentally ill, and now cannot get out of Broadmoor. Was he faking it, or is he a dangerous psychopath? In the second segment, we hear from a losing prosecuting attorney in NY, when a criminal defendant wins his drug case. What are the challenges from the other side of the fence when facing someone untrained in the law? But the show takes us beyond the courtroom, to situations where people addressed their problems on their own, using their own resources and creativity. Justice in these stories can be quite amusing.
Don't forget to look at our Self Represented Litigants. It may not be as entertaining, but it does have lots of information.