I'm an assistant D.A., a lawyer in other words, and people don't think too highly of us. But let me tell you something: the rest of society doesn't seem, from a lawyer's point of view, to necessarily have its act together either. Maybe it takes a lawyer to get an honest picture of things, without any prettyfication. I mean, we encounter all types from the worst angle. We're presented with every conceivable, or at least every conceived, perversion. Let me just give you an example, and you tell me what you think. A man by the name of Salvatore comes down to the office to talk to us about our case prosecuting Rudey Baker, the young upstanding citizen who sliced that cheerleader to pieces over in Madison last year. Turns out Mr. Salvatore is the girl's father. He wants to know if we can allow him to make a request regarding the sentence we're going to ask for. I tell him we'll be glad to follow his wishes. Those were my exact words, and I wouldn't have said them if I hadn't thought I understood. And I probably shouldn't have said them anyway. But the next thing I know Mr. Salvatore is requesting that we not ask for the death penalty, not ask for the maximum prison time, and recommend for future consideration the reintegration program (which is that newly instituted system wherein criminals, even sometimes violent ones, are given assistance finding employment, but are closely supervised). Now, Mr. Salvatore was dressed like a wealthy man, but you never can tell. It might have been he'd seen a new suit as a reasonable investment. I asked him whether there was anything we could do to assist his family in their time of grief - did they have any financial difficulties, for instance? "No, thank you, but no," he said. And he didn't seem the type to forego justice for an unnecessary little gain. I mean, if he was motivated by the restitution payments Rudey Baker would make once employed, there had to be some sort of crisis he was hiding. If so, he hid it well. "Did you ever meet Baker?" I asked him. He said he hadn't, and asked what I knew about the man.