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Don't Pee on My Leg and Tell Me It's Raining: America's Toughest Family Court Judge Speaks Out

3.82  ·  Rating Details ·  490 Ratings  ·  72 Reviews
Can we get some reality in here? asks Judy Sheindlin, former supervising judge for Manhattan Family Court. For twenty-four years she has laid down the law as she understands it.

If you want to eat, you have to work.

If you have children, you'd better support them.

If you break the law, you have to pay.

If you tap the public purse, you'd better be accountable.

Now she abandons a
Paperback, 256 pages
Published January 10th 1997 by Harper Perennial (first published February 7th 1996)
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Community Reviews

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 PuMbA's MoMmy*•.♥.•*
Judge Judy for president!! I love Judge Judy and her points of views. I have grown to respect her for her ability to make irresponsible people be held accountable for their actions. I agreed with everything she stated in her book. Some of the topics she discusses that are right on point are:

1. The fact that parents have grown to become irresponsible for their lack of parenting.
2. Welfare should be an assistance and not a way of life.
3. Dead beat mothers should pay up just like dead beat fathers
Oct 05, 2009 Andrea rated it liked it
I remember when Judge Judy came on TV back in the 90s. Between this book title and the apparent $10 scripting budget, I dismissed her as gimmicky daytime tv.
And maybe I was right. But recently I saw her show and really, how can you hate on someone who makes a living screaming at deadbeats to take some personal responsibility? How many times in a day do you wish you could do that?

I have heard Judy interviewed and she is always thoughtful and articulate, so my main beef with DPOML is that its re
Jan 18, 2015 Mary rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Great Falls S&B Bookclub
This book intrigued me since Megyn Kelly said that it was one of the best books that she had ever read, so I thought I would check it out for myself. So far this book is just like Judge Judy; straight forward, honest and oh so refreshing. "As a family court judge, I look down on a daily pageant of dysfunction that would curl your hair. Think of every social problem you can that affects America's disintegrating familes -- welfare abuse, juvenile violence, abandoned or abused children, ugly ...more
Jun 30, 2011 Kristie rated it it was amazing
Wow - who knew that I would love a book written 15 years ago by Judge Judy? She nails so many social issues right on the head. I wonder why many of these problems haven't been resolved with her suggestions after fifteen years? I think it should be required reading for all high school students.

"Teen pregnancy is not simpoly immoral, wasteful or unhealthy, it is stupid."

More than 90% of people that came before Judge Judy were receiving some kind of handout.

Charity for the needy - all others get a
Rachel (Confessions of a Book Geek)
Check out my full review here:

First of all, it's important to get something out of the way: I LOVE Judge Judy. I’ve watched her TV show for YEARS. I love how feisty she is and how she takes no crap from anybody, and 9.5 times out of 10 I agree with her position. Christmas 2015 my Dad got me a copy of each of Judge Judy’s books, and I couldn’t wait to get stuck into them.

This book focuses on the American judicial system, and serves as Judy’s rant against la
Jun 22, 2009 Bunny rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-09
I do adore me some Judge Judy. Really. It's unhealthy how much I love her. I never. EVER. want to have to before her. EVER. She scares me.

This book was written in '95, but really, she could've written it today. The complaints she makes about the justice system are still extremely alive and well today. While some of her 'tips' for fixing the problem drag on, they're written in a style that is truly Judge Judy, and I think that's what made reading it all the more interesting.

Her real life stories
Dawn Livingston
Mar 02, 2016 Dawn Livingston rated it did not like it
I agreed with her views on some of the problems in society and wanted to hear more of what she had to say. Unfortunately, her examples made me want to buy more locks for my doors to protect myself from the people in her examples that had done horrible things then gotten off without punishment or minimal punishment. And never leave my house. On top of that, all the things she details as being issues seem so major that improving them seems impossible and therefore makes things seem so bleak. Her ...more
Aug 15, 2015 Matthew rated it it was amazing
I didn't expect to enjoy this book so much. I kept turning to my wife and saying, "If Judge Judy ran for president, she'd have my vote quicker than these other candidates we're seeing!" Anyway, the book is probably targeted towards your average Judge Judy television audience member -- this is not a book of academic research, it's a book of anecdotes and Judy's informed opinions.

The book describes the horrors of the broken welfare system, and the broken foster care system, and offers potential fi
Apr 03, 2009 Simon rated it it was amazing
I have a lot of respect for Judge Judy after reading this book (before, it was just "oh, that American reality show woman"?)

After two decades as the presiding judge on one of New York's Family Courts, Judge Judy is well-placed to offer a critique of the failure of the American system with regards to her field.

And what a devastating opinion it is; extremely authoritative and peppered with stories that will break your heart.

I should say that I moved a few notches rightward after reading this book
Jan 29, 2013 Christen rated it did not like it
pretty bad - i expected interesting stories of her court cases, but she just uses court cases to reiterate her points about welfare and making people pay for their own kids. she just didn't have enough material to fill a book and it shows as the book is incredibly repetitive. i'll just watch her on tv.
Aug 22, 2011 Lisa rated it really liked it
Shelves: liberty-shelf
This book was more chilling than anything I've read recently. No wonder our society is so screwed up! Too bad we don't have more straight shooting judges Judge Judy that would stand up for what is right! Judge Judy for president!!!!!
Nov 28, 2016 Theda rated it liked it
Just as true now as it was in 1996. We have become a society of infantilized "victims" - with no personal responsibility. She has some good suggestions for change, but the book is mostly anecdotes of her cases to illustrate flaws in the sentencing, welfare, and foster care systems.
Her views and opinions resonate with me - but I don't see a solution - the liberals and apologists have been entrenched for far too long. (yep, that was a "political" statement).
I wouldn't call this an enjoyable read,
Jul 19, 2016 Gina rated it it was ok
We frequently watch Judge Judy, and while she is often funny and interesting, sometimes I am also bothered by her luck of understanding and compassion for some situations. (She also gets a lot of really terrible people in front of her, and I'm sure that has an effect.)

Based on that, I was expecting the book to be interesting, but often wrong-headed in an intolerant way. That was true, but what I wasn't expecting was how much of a product of its time the book would be.

Published in 1996, at the t
Phil Melcher
Mar 13, 2014 Phil Melcher rated it really liked it
Every day millions of Americans tune into see just what Judge Judy Sheindlin is going to say next. The phenomenal success of her syndicated television series (now in it's 18th season as of this writing) spawned many imitators and other shows but none of them have had the success that Judge Judy has had. Being a fan of the show I was interested to read her book "Don't Pee on My Leg and Tell Me It's Raining" knowing that I wasn't going to be disappointed. I was right, but it's not about the ...more
Jun 22, 2014 Brendan rated it liked it
Although I'm a big Judge Judy fan, I have to admit that this book was a little too conservative for me.

However, I think that the Judge has some great insights into what is failing in our welfare and childcare systems, and some of her solutions to these problems are right on point (e.g., more specific allocation of welfare funds (checks going directly to landlords, etc.), media campaigns to promote social responsibility, etc.). The problem I have with the Judge's argument is that I don't really
Cody Sexton
You know the thing I like about Judge Judy is that even though she leans toward the right, and I say that knowing she prefers not to be labeled in political terms, she still understands things like compassion and level-headedness and that welfare isn't always the problem. But I do think that because of those conservative leanings it sometimes causes her to be a little myopic in some of her judicial opinions. But her assessment of the liberal left is spot on. "The liberal left is very good at ...more
Jun 25, 2015 Marcy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really, I wanted to rate this about 2.5 stars. I enjoyed that it was a pretty quick read and some of the stories were interesting, but I wondered frequently as I read it how things have changed in the time since it was initially published (almost 20 years ago), and was a bit disappointed in how simplistic (and very, very short!) some of the sections were, as well as how repetitive Judge Judy got in her preaching. I definitely agree with some of her thoughts on the problems she saw in her court ...more
May 24, 2015 Kathleen rated it it was ok
Shelves: memoir-biography
I enjoy watching the show "Judge Judy" on TV, and I find it amusing. It's easy to laugh at the TV show and the various cases on the TV show are mainly harmless complaining.

However, it was tough for me to read this book since I felt as if I was alone with the judge and having the judge explain gruesome case after gruesome case. It was tough for me to stomach. It was a relief to put the book down and just move on to another lighter book. You would have to be a callous person to not feel anything w
Lyall Dawson
Jan 05, 2013 Lyall Dawson rated it really liked it
I approached this book expecting to be a little offended by Judge Judy's beneficiary bashing. I was ready to admonish her for fully converting universal affirmatives (see John Cleese's Logician sketch, from Monty Python and the Holy Grail if you require an eloquent explanation of this logical blunder) by saying "all criminal I have seen are beneficiaries therefore all beneficiaries are criminals". She falls short of this, and manages to make enough of the cases she does know, to get her point ...more
Margaret Zhang
Mar 05, 2013 Margaret Zhang rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Although Judge Judy is clearly experienced, I distrust arguments that rely mostly on experiential data. I have no initial aversion to Judge Judy's opinions, but I found them unsupported by this book. I wish she had argued with more thoughtful and supported arguments, rather than by the force of her admirable experience and larger-than-life personality.

Disclaimer: I grew frustrated the book about halfway through, so I did not read it thoroughly. Perhaps if I took the time to read it all the way t
Mar 24, 2012 Julie rated it liked it
I think Judge Judy should be president. That said, she is right about everything. However, after a while it seemed like the same old bitching. I agree that people should be more accountable for themselves. I used to be a paralegal, so I understand a lot of this. It is delivered with the same "piss and vinegar" approach she uses on her show. Very good, and I would recommend this to anyone who thinks our government is broke (both financially, and just broken).
Sep 01, 2009 TCPils rated it liked it
The justice system is failing the public because of irresponsibility, corruption and greed. Not all the public mind you. Just us suckers who work hard and pay taxes. The criminals, lawyers and bleeding hearts are working the system like a pimp in a bus station. Too bad the Judge's advice is falling on deaf ears, because anyone who has the power to do something to change the system is too afraid to do anything. Make me wanna holler. Throw up both my hands.
Feb 04, 2015 Ed-kay rated it it was ok
Love JJ, though after a few episodes you realise the cases are either drunken fighting, property damage or people refusing to pay for the house/car/holiday they agreed to. Likewise this book: lots of repetition, except it's less entertaining without seeing the defendants wilting under the lashes of JJ's tongue.

Also, while I tend to agree with her common sense approach, this book was pretty hardcore conservative in parts, which made me uncomfortable.
Glenn Banks
Sep 04, 2014 Glenn Banks rated it really liked it
I liked this book, it has some interesting points and some ideas. there is some outdated information but that was very minimal mainly because change happens so slow usually. that is also a good thing, slow change can be beneficial that way if it appears the change is making things worse then it can be changed back easier. I would recommend this book to everyone of any political view though I feel there is a view of a particular type.
Oct 13, 2009 Alex rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
Disclaimer: I absolutely love Judge Judy. I DVR her show every single day, and apparently it runs in my family, as my dad and brother do also. So, I am slightly biased. But:

I LOVED this book. She is such a tough-talking badass. I loved how she offered solutions to all the problem she faced as a family court judge (this was written in 1996) instead of just venting about them. This was a very quick read, but a lot of fun to read.

Judge Judy rocks!
Mike Shultz
Aug 15, 2012 Mike Shultz rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
Quick and fascinating read. It's easy to dismiss "Judge Judy" as an over-the-top TV personality, but her stories and perspective were very interesting. You might not agree with her politics (then again, you might), but she's seen it in the trenches. It's really crazy how many people scam the welfare system and all the ways they do it... a little depressing, actually, thinking about how hard it would be to reform the system but how much cheating and waste occurs as-is.
Apr 22, 2015 Nmarie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I like Judy. I like her show. I like the fact that she can spot BS a mile away, an holds people accountable to the law.

I DO wish she would sometimes consider people's punitive damages in more of her cases. Pain and suffering because of something someone did to you is a "thing". I know, I have been there.

That said, we need more judges like her. Ones that don't tolerate crap.
Feb 03, 2013 Tori rated it it was amazing

A fabulous book, full of years of wisdom and written in a funny and entertaining way. I couldn't put it down and highly recommend it.

For a more detailed review please visit my blog on the link below.

Oct 27, 2009 Theresa rated it really liked it
I love Judge Judy, so when I saw this book, I had to pick it up to read. The book takes you inside the court system, allowing you to see just what is right and wrong with the system. Judge Judy doesn't sugar coat a thing - telling it like it is. I did find the book a little preachy at times, but overall a good read.
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