Not Guilty!


 by Karen Topakian


Lately everyone’s been talking about Perry MasonSonia Sotomayor, Al Franken, Arlen Spector….

Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor started it all by saying she found inspiration in the character of Hamilton Burger, the prosecutor, who lost every case except for one against Mason.

How ironic that she would find inspiration in the loser, who repeatedly charged the wrong, often beautiful, woman with a crime she didn’t commit? Ms. Sotomayor said she admired Mr. Burger’s commitment to justice. 

I bet CBS execs would be shocked to learn that it wasn’t Mr. Mason’s zealous defense of his clients that inspired her.

And I bet Perry Mason’s creator, Erle Stanley Gardner, would have been surprised as well by Ms. Sotomayor’s response.

Mr. Gardner not only practiced trial law and wrote more than 80 novels but also devoted much of his life to “The Court of Last Resort.” A project committed to reversing the miscarriages of justice against those who were convicted due to poor representation and fabricated evidence. 

I hope she bears that in mind when she adjudicates from the highest court in the land.

(Happy Birthday Mr. Gardner who was born 120 years ago today)

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