Friday, May 27, 2011

Illuminatus! Excerpt: Hagbard Celine acts as lawyer for the Native Americans VS the US government

Federal Court for the 17th District of New York State. Plaintiffs: John Feather, Samuel Arrows, et al. Defendants: Bureau of Indian Affairs, Department of the Interior, and President of the United States. For plaintiffs: Hagbard Celine. For the defendants: George Kharis, John Alucard, Thomas Moriarity, James Moran. Presiding: Justice Quasimodo Immhotep.

MR. FEATHER (concluding): And it will be because men do not speak words but speak shit!

MR. KHARIS: Your honor, I move that the last speech be stricken from the record as irrelevant and immaterial. We are dealing here with a practical question, the need of the people of New York for this dam, and Mr. Feather's superstitions are totally beside the point.

MR. CELINE: Your honor, the people of New York have survived a long time without a dam in that particular place. They can survive longer without it. Can anything survive, anything worth having, if our words become, as Mr. Feather says, excrement? Can anything we can reasonably call American Justice survive, if the words of our first President, if the sacred honor of George Washington is destroyed, if his promise that the Mohawk could keep these lands "as long as the mountain stands and the grass is green," if all that becomes nothing but excrement?

MR. KHARIS: Counsel is not arguing. Counsel is making speeches.

MR. CELINE: I am speaking from the heart. Are you— or are you speaking excrement that you are ordered to speak by your superiors?

MR. ALUCARD: More speeches.

MR. CELINE: More excrement.

JUSTICE IMMHOTEP: Control yourself, Mr. Celine.

MR. CELINE: I am controlling myself. Otherwise, I would speak as frankly as
my client and say that most of the speeches here are plain old shit. Why do I say "excrement" at all, if it isn't, tike you people, to disguise a little what we are all doing? It's shit. Plain shit.

JUSTICE IMMHOTEP: Mr. Celine, you are coming very close to contempt of court. I warn you.

MR. CELINE: Your honor, we speak the tongue of Shakespeare, of Milton, of Melville. Must we go on murdering it? Must we tear it away from its last umbilical connection with reality? What is going on in this room, actually? Defendants, the U.S. government and its agents, want to steal some land from my clients. How long do we have to argue that they have no justice, no right, no honor, in their cause? Why can't we say highway robbery is highway robbery, instead of calling it eminent domain? Why can't we say shit is shit, instead of calling it excrement? Why do we never use language to convey meaning? Why must we always use it conceal meaning? Why do we never speak from the heart? Why do we always speak words programmed into us, like robots?

JUSTICE IMMHOTEP: Mr. Celine, I warn you again.

MR. FEATHER: And I warn you. The world will die. The stars will go out. If men and women cannot trust the words spoken, the earth will crack, like a rotten pumpkin.

MR. KHARIS: I call for a recess. Plaintiff and their counsel are both in no emotional state to continue at this time.

MR. CELINE: You even have guns. You have men with guns and clubs, who are called marshals, and they will beat me if I don't shut up. How do you differ from any other gang of bandits, then, except in using language that conceals what you are doing? The only difference is that the bandits are more honest. That's the only difference. The only difference.

JUSTICE IMMHOTEP : Mr. Marshal, restrain the counsel.

MR. CELINE: You're stealing what isn't yours. Why can't you talk turkey for just one moment? Why—

JUSTICE IMMHOTEP: Just hold him, Marshal. Don't use unnecessary force. Mr. Celine, I am tempted to forgive you, considering that you are obviously much involved with your clients, emotionally. However, such mercy on my part would encourage other lawyers to believe they could follow your example. I have no choice. I find you guilty of contempt of court. Sentencing will take place when court reconvenes after a fifteen-minute recess. You may speak at that time, but only on any mitigating grounds that should lighten the degree of your sentence. I will not hear the United States government called bandits again. That is all.

MR. CELINE: You steal land, and you will not hear yourselves called bandits. You order men with guns and clubs to hold us down, and you will not hear yourselves called thugs. You don't act from the heart; where the hell do you act from? What in God's name does motivate you?

JUSTICE IMMHOTEP: Restrain him, Marshal.

MR. CELINE: (Indistinguishable.)

JUSTICE IMMHOTEP: Fifteen-minute recess.

BAILIFF: All rise.

1 comment:

Crom Elani said...

“Let lawmakers, judges and lawyers think less of the law, and more of justice; less of legal ritual, more of human rights. To our bishops and superiors, we say: Learn something about the gospel and something about illegitimate power. When you do, you will liquidate your investments, take a house in the slums, or even join us in jail.” P. Berrigan