My Precious World Chapter 21 Summary
Sotomayor starts working as an ADA at the New York DA’s workplace in 1979, the year the city experiences an enormous crime wave. The city’s fiscal troubles trigger budget cuts that prevent the authorities department and DA’s Workplace from adding personnel to handle the crisis. Intensifying the existing problem are “rising tensions” that increase “police brutality problems” (215 ). New ADAs, called “ducklings,” do not choose where they are assigned (215 ). They handle misdemeanors, are later promoted to felonies, and after that to specialized criminal offenses (215 ). First, they should discover to navigate “the procedural labyrinth” (216 ).
They go on patrols to understand authorities work, and every sixth day, they spend a nine-hour shift in the “complaint room,” where they speak with “detaining officers and witnesses” to draw up each case’s preliminary charges. Sotomayor compares it to “a medical facility ER on a rough night” (216 ). She takes pleasure in the arranged chaos along with “the pressure to improvise, the comfort of clear guidelines, and the motivation of a greater great” (216 ). To meet New york city’s “remarkable challenges,” Morgenthau, called “in charge,” had actually created “a model of effectiveness and integrity for jurisdictions across the country” (216 ).
Still, the city’s cash-strapped state can not be compensated for, shown in poor working conditions– dim lighting, torn electrical cables, dripping plumping, and unreliable temperature level control. Sotomayor and Kevin move back to Princeton for him to start a biochemistry graduate program. Her daily commute is 2 hours each method, leaving at dawn and seldom returning house prior to nine in the evening. She is too preoccupied to notice whether her long hours are straining her marital relationship, though she mores than happy to see Kevin doing work he takes pleasure in and “earning recognition for it” (217 ).
Part of her training is practice hearings, in which she is cast as defense lawyer. Thinking on her feet comes naturally to her, which she says is lucky since among her cases goes to trial within weeks of her beginning the job. This is uncommon, as the majority of ADAs cover pretrial motions for weeks before seeing a courtroom. The defense attorney “mop [s] the flooring with” Sotomayor (220 ). Her one delighted memory of the day is introducing herself to the jury, “a moment of grace” that would “ground” her throughout “every subsequent trial” she prosecutes (220 ).
Her next trial is a domestic-abuse case in which the victim refuses to testify. Sotomayor wins anyhow, but when the judge recommends a year in jail throughout the sentencing, the defense attorney, Dawn Cardi, items intensely on the grounds it will develop challenge for his household. Sotomayor concurs, with the support of her bureau chief, John Fried. His support builds her confidence and helps her “become the job quicker” (222 ). She and Dawn develop a relationship. Sotomayor does not see defense lawyer and district attorneys as “natural opponents” (223 ). Each plays a different function in the pursuit of justice.
As Sotomayor begins to rack up convictions, her discussions with Dawn, about what triggers criminal activity, remind her of “the human expenses of [her] success” (25 ). Sotomayor is “increasingly competitive” and addicted to the “verbal sparring” and spontaneity of trial. She describes building up convictions as the “adult equivalent of collecting gold stars in 5th grade” (224 ). Nevertheless, she is not ready to prosecute cases she does not think in, specifically if she feels “justice would not be served” if she wins (225 ). Sotomayor is one of the very first “ducklings” to move up to “more severe crimes” (226 ).
After losing 2 cases back to back against the exact same offender, she discusses her case with her bureau chief and understands she has been utilizing reasoning however not sob story, which is needed for jurors to send out somebody to jail. Welcoming emotion as a valid part of the “art of persuasion” represents a development for her, and she never ever loses a case once again (230 ). In every situation, “listening” is the essential to building arguments the jury can follow and being able to improvise when essential (230 ). Bucking traditional wisdom, Sotomayor does not strive to get rid of “black and
Hispanic juror prospects” (231 ). Most district attorneys, she says, think minority prospects would be “biased in favor of defendants” (231 ). Having matured in the South Bronx, Sotomayor thinks obedient residents would not want to jeopardize their community’s safety in the name of “racial or ethnic solidarity” (232 ). Her subsequent successes in the courtroom reinforce her belief that “cold abstractions” are “incomplete without and understanding of how they” affect people’ lives (232 ). It also reveals her that her individual background is not “a disadvantage to get rid of” (232 ).