132 TREASON AND BLACK-OUT CRIMES the street? He finds himself up against a wall, and he must think there is no justice. Such a conception of the law can have been born only in atrophied brains. In my own law-suits I've experienced incidents that would make one's hair stand on end. The advocate's profession is essentially unclean, for the advocate is entitled to lie to the Court. The degree of disrepute this profession has achieved is shown by the fact that they've re-baptised it. There are only two professions that have changed their names: teachers and advocates. The former wish to be known in future under the name of Volksbildner (people's educators), and the latter under the name of Rechtswahrer (guardians of the law). Let advocates remain advocates, but let the profession be purified ! Let it be employed in the service of the public interest. Just as there is a public prosecutor, let there be a public defender, and may he be bound by the oath to act in accordance with the interests of truth. We need a renovated magistrature : few judges, but let them have great responsibilities and a high sense of their responsibilities. To-day there's no middle course. Either exaggeratedly severe sentences (when they feel they are supported by public opinion), or else a misplaced leniency. When somebody speaks to me about a traitor, it doesn't interest me to know just how he betrayed, or whether his treachery was successful, or what it concerned. For me, the only question is: "Did he act for or against Germany?" As regards certain offences committed with the aggravating circumstance of perversity, that's just the same. To catch an offender, shut him up, let him go again, watch over him, catch him again, what's the sense in all that? Really, the jurists look after the underworld with as much love as owners of shoots taking care of their game during the close season. When I think of the sentences passed on persons guilty of assault during the black-out ! There will always be one of those jurists who will juggle with the facts until the moment comes when he finds an extenuating circumstance. A swine will always be a swine. I reserve my pity for the brave man amongst my compatriots. It's my duty to protect them against the underworld.
PREROGATIVE OF MERCY 133 This imaginary world of juridical notions is a world into which we may not enter. A court is asking me to show clemency to a man who, having made a girl pregnant, drowned her in the Wannsee. The motive: he acted in fear of the illegitimate child. I noticed on this occasion that all those who had committed an analogous crime had been pardoned. Hundreds of cases. And yet isn't it the filthiest of crimes? I said to Gürtner: "Criminals ofthat sort, I shall never pardon a single one of them. There's no use in suggesting it to me." One day Meissner proposed to me that I should pardon a young girl who had made herself guilty of treason. Why should she be pardoned? Because she had studied philosophy! I said to Meissner: "Are you mad?" When a young man makes a mistake, and I can persuade myself that he's simply an imbecile—then, all right ! But not in a case like this. With such a system of law, our Reich would be in full decadence, if I hadn't decided that to-day society is in a state of legitimate defence, and hadn't therefore provided the laws, as they are applied, with the necessary correctives. The officer and the judge should be the defenders of our conception of society. But the condition of this discretionary power which is granted to the judge is that the magistrature should be racially so homogeneous that the smallest sign should be sufficient to make it understand us. Franco's brother-in-law is becoming Minister for Foreign Affairs. It's not usual for one family to monopolise all the talent. Nepotism has never been a happy formula; and this is how a work cemented by the blood of a people can be systematically destroyed. 71 19th November 1941 Stupidity of the bourgeois parties—The struggle for power and the international struggle—Misplaced pity for the bourgeoisie—Providence and the selection of the ablest— No room for the lukewarm in the Party. Above all, it was essential that the Party should not allow itself to be overrun by the bourgeois. I took care, by applying