We know who the government is, right? If you work for a city, county, state or the federal system, you are a part of the government. Seems simple enough. And while there are different levels of government, e.g., state or federal, they are most assuredly the government. Only the government can prosecute citizens for crimes and seek their conviction and incarceration. So, it’s pretty obvious to who is who …
Yet recently, a prosecutor took exception to our characterizing the entity prosecuting our client as “the State” or “the government.” The prosecutor literally typed that they didn’t like being called “the State” or “the government.”
Don’t believe me, read it yourself:
Talk about self-loathing. If you prosecute people, you are the State or the government. Period.
Instead, the prosecutor wanted to cling to a “we are we people” fiction. Sorry, when cases end up in the federal system or in the US Supreme Court, they are characterized by the “State versus….” and the positions taken by the prosecutors are characterized as “the State argues…”.
The reason is simple: The People don’t put other in jail but rather the government or State does. I’ve seen many head turning phrases in pleadings but not one like this.