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Lawyers or justice?

What's wrong with America's legal system? Plenty, says Court TV's Catherine Crier (above). In The Case Against Lawyers, due out this October from Broadway Books, the lawyer-turned-anchorwoman argues that the legal system is inherently unfair and unnecessarily complex. "Our great cornerstone of democracy, the rule of law, has become a source of power and influence, not liberty and justice," she writes. "I resent the insidious manipulation by those entrusted with such authority, but even more I despise our deliberate ignorance and passive acceptance of these shackles on the American spirit." Dedicated to Crier's childhood hero, Atticus Finch, the book is her first.

Holy Michelangelo

To promote its "Uncensored" month of programming, arts network Trio hired four modestly attired Davids to hand out copies of the First Amendment at Times Square. Ironically, the arts networks says, the billboard company insisted on a strategically placed black strip over part of the image of the real David on the Trio billboard in the background.

Juvie-crime busting

Having conquered Philadelphia radio with his lone FM, broadcaster Jerry Lee (above) spends most of his time these days trying to conquer inner-city crime. And his principal means is the Jerry Lee Center, the criminology school at the University of Pennsylvania, to which he has pledged the bulk of his estate and to which the Jerry Lee Foundation is contributing $5 million. Ask Lee what the center is up to, and you'll get a long list of projects. Just last week, he says, the state of Pennsylvania granted the center $1 million to figure out how to keep juveniles out of trouble. Lee's mission is to evaluate anti-crime programs and to spread the news about the ones that work. For help in the latter effort, he says, he will be calling on other broadcasters. "We are making a difference; we really are."

Media Biz Quiz

1. Asked in 1999 to comment on concerns about Adelphia's related-party transactions, then Chairman and CEO John Rigas said:

A) "Hey, the company has got to buy its hockey tickets somewhere."

B) "The way to stay out of trouble is to be as candid as you can. Light is the best disinfectant."

C) "When we went public ... I wasn't comfortable with the exposure to the public."

D) "Trust me."

2. Ex-Playboy model Anna Nicole Smith, whom E! will feature in an
Osbournes
-like show, told Larry King she doesn't date much because:

A) she's stuck at home and nobody knows her.

B) she's afraid she'll fall for some guy who is really after her money.

C) the camera crew might get jealous.

D) like the typical adolescent late-night E! viewer, she would rather watch.

3. Tom Brokaw took an extended vacation last summer from the
NBC Nightly News
so he could:

A) figure out how to extend his tenure as anchor of the evening newscast to about the time NBC decides to drop it.

B) work on making his next vacation permanent.

C) calculate the maximum time he could keep his job without Brian Williams's getting really annoyed.

D) reflect on how Manhattan beats South Dakota in just about every way you can think of.

Answers: 1) C; 2) A; 3) B

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