It’s summertime again! That means it’s time to pass the mantle again, time for another great Rusty Duncan, and time to raise our voices in unison to proclaim the guarantees of our Declaration of Independence and Bill of Rights throughout the state. Please lend your support to our new president and join your voice along with other TCDLA members throughout the state on or around July 3 when we proudly and publicly celebrate our Declaration of Independence.
Take some time for yourself and take some time to be with the people you love—even if it’s just for a long weekend or a few hours here and there. Dockets don’t stop and emails are endless but take some time. Slow down, rest, reenergize, and reset if possible. We must remember to (and actually do) take care of ourselves so that we can take care of those who depend on us. We must take care of ourselves to stay sharp.
Let’s take some time as we sit in seminars to think about how to be more effective advocates for our clients. We can (and should) always strive to be better. We can always be more effective advocates. Let’s take time to see our clients—really see them—in order to help them. Let’s remember that often we are the very last person to stand up for them. Let’s really stand up and let’s try to find the good in each person we help—it’s there.
And as we slow down even for a minute this summer, let’s take time to build each other up. Let’s take time to help each other and have each other’s back. We are so fortunate to have the constant assistance of a tremendous Strike Force anytime we are in trouble. Remember, we are not alone. We are in this together.
Please know that this publication, like every other function of TCDLA, is designed to serve our members. Its viability and relevance depend on contributions from our members. This month, Dr. Jennings’ article addresses the very real dilemma we often find ourselves in with mentally ill clients. It’s a great follow-up to Micah Belden’s article on mental health last month. And, Louis Akin’s article on blood pattern analysis reminds us to be ever vigilant with any kind of forensic science. We must never be complacent when scientific evidence is offered. Cliff Duke’s article on preserving error is a reminder of the steps we need to take to ensure our clients’ cases receive the full attention of the law
You can expect to have a legislative update on relevant criminal law changes from our lobbyists, Shea and Allen Place, in the coming issue, so stay tuned. Thank them for the tireless work they do to help effectuate real change that we can see and feel in our practice. And, be sure to thank Craig Hattersley, longtime TCDLA communications director, for the countless hours he puts in behind the scenes to deliver a timely publication. Our regular contributors—Buck Files, Robert Pelton, Stephen Gustitis, and Michael Mowla—put in tremendous work for the benefit of all of us, too. We are all better for the knowledge they continually impart to us. Thank them.
Finally, as always, please send me any suggestions on how to continue to make this publication a reflection of the greatness of TCDLA, and keep the articles coming in!