Barrister Wigs May Make a Trans-Atlantic Voyage

Written by Gail Farrelly

Tuesday, 9 May 2006

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Wash., D. C. -- As English barristers debate whether to continue the centuries-old tradition of wearing horsehair wigs in court, their American counterparts are considering the adoption of this tradition in the United States. There was reaction on both sides of the Atlantic to the idea of American lawyers putting on the wigs that British barristers are taking off.

Queen Elizabeth had no public comment, but insiders report that she is not pleased with the breaking news. "Americans are copycats," she sniffed. "It's bad enough they stole our whole legal system. Now they want the wigs too!"

But noted New York Mafia attorney, Tony Winacase, could barely control his excitement at the thought of donning a barrister wig. He claimed that it wasn't just that his bald head would be gloriously covered. "It's dignity personified," he said, adding "we lawyers have to lead the charge back to civility." Winacase then terminated the interview, having to return to the trial of his client, accused of stabbing a man, chopping up his body, and sticking the body parts in a drainage ditch."

Rev. Jesse Jackson, Founder/President of the RainbowPUSH Coalition, applauded the proposal but appealed to the makers of horsehair wigs to provide them in different colors. "White is not for everyone," he cautioned. Real estate developer Donald Trump agreed, saying that he hoped to order a barrister wig in red for his infant son, since Barron William Trump may decide to be an attorney one day.

Even non-attorneys are climbing on the barrister wig bandwagon. Meredith Vieira, newly named co-anchor of the "TODAY" Show, has opted for the brunette version, confiding that the horsehair component of the wig appeals to her. "It will be a bit prickly," she said. "But that's okay. It should help to keep me wide awake for my early-morning gig." Country star Dolly Parton has confirmed that she will be ordering a blond one. "I always wanted to BE a lawyer," Ms. Parton confided. "Now at least I can LOOK like one."

Although domestic diva Martha Stewart has had her own share of legal controversy in the past few years, she did not hesitate to weigh in on the subject of barrister wigs for American attorneys. "It's a good thing," she announced. However, Martha does have some concerns about the sanitary aspects of the wigs, having read in some British publications that barristers tend to keep wigs for a lifetime, even passing them down from one generation to the next. "With no washing, no cleaning of any kind," she shuddered. "This is NOT a good thing. Many of those wigs are in need of a good scrub." Should barrister wigs become an American custom, Martha will be devoting an hour-long show to their care and upkeep.

Meanwhile, convicted terrorist Zaccharias Moussauoi was said to be delighted with the prospect of American lawyers being required to wear wigs in the courtroom. He commented, "I distinctly remember asking for court-appointed lawyers who wore barrister wigs, but I was assigned wigless attorneys. My rights were violated." Mr. Moussauoi feels that he now has additional grounds to appeal his life-without-parole conviction. Stay tuned.

The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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