How Appealing

Sunday, April 3, 2005

On this date in “How Appealing” history: On April 3, 2003, as I noted here, Stephen Henderson of Knight Ridder Newspapers had an article in which he noted that “Outside of Clarence Thomas, the court’s sole black justice, and one African American reporter assigned to cover the court full time, the high court’s regal, marble-adorned courtroom is usually pretty devoid of black faces.” Also on that date, I noted here a development which showed “that it’s not the end of the world to be a D.C. Circuit nominee whom the U.S. Senate never gets around to confirming.”

And one year ago today, I noted here a New York Times article that begins, “Associate Justice Antonin Scalia of the Supreme Court inadvertently raised a hot-button travel issue last month in explaining why he was not recusing himself from a case involving Vice President Dick Cheney.” Also on that date, I noted here an article published that day in The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette under the headline “Judge Melvin drops legal battle to unmask ‘Grant Street 99.’

Posted at 10:44 PM by Howard Bashman

“Schiavo was calm eye of the perfect storm”: CBS News legal analyst Andrew Cohen has an op-ed today in The Denver Post in which he writes:

The madness was so elemental that we heard judges called murderers just because they were applying the law. Even by the low political and ethical standards of the day, this surely was the cheapest shot of them all, uttered by opportunistic politicians and religious leaders who know an easy target when they saw one.

Terri Schiavo was not murdered by judges or anyone else. She was not the victim of “judicial homicide,” as one particularly odious religious leader suggested last week. She was allowed to die pursuant to valid state and federal law, interpreted fairly and consistently by state and federal judges. If this was “murder,” then every execution in this country is murder; every life sentence without parole is murder; every judicial decision approving a request for the denial of medical treatment theoretically would be murder; every homeless person who dies as a result of a lack of welfare would be “murdered.”

The charge is a blood libel against judges. And the politicians and spiritual leaders who leveled it, in unglued moments of passion and cynicism, or even those who merely have allowed it to stand unchallenged, ought to be ashamed. Louis Brandeis, the great Supreme Court Justice, once wrote: “Our government is the potent, the omnipresent teacher. For good or for ill, it teaches the whole people by its example….”

You can access the complete op-ed at this link.

Posted at 10:34 PM by Howard Bashman

“Inmates selling art in spite of state’s ‘murderabilia’ law; Vague part of the statute may mean criminals are using notoriety for profit”: The Houston Chronicle contains this article today.

Posted at 10:28 PM by Howard Bashman

“Ross’ threats not heeded; Legal system was unfazed by repeated ‘warnings’ of Lefkow killer”: This article appears today in The Chicago Tribune.

Posted at 10:14 PM by Howard Bashman

“Shame on Tom DeLay”: The Fort Worth Star-Telegram today contains an editorial that begins, “Some day, Tom DeLay will be called to account by the American people. Sooner would be better than later for the sake of the Constitution.”

The Houston Chronicle reports today that “DeLay is losing support, poll finds; Schiavo case and ethics battles are cited in the slide.” And Clay Robinson, chief of The Chronicle’s Austin bureau, has an essay entitled “DeLay, others haven’t locked courthouse doors — yet.”

The Los Angeles Times reports that “DeLay Fires Up GOP Troops for Counterattack; The House majority leader, faced with new ethics criticism, sees the assaults as an attempt to derail the party’s agenda and control of Congress.”

And in The Dallas Morning News, Todd J. Gillman has an essay entitled “DeLay blunt on Schiavo case.”

Posted at 10:00 PM by Howard Bashman

“A New Idea for Democrats: Democracy; In focusing too much on the legal process, the party is in danger of losing the people.” Joe Klein has this essay online today at Time magazine’s web site.

Posted at 9:54 PM by Howard Bashman

“Majority Rule: In picking a new Pope, the ‘nuclear option’ could prove pivotal.” Law Professor Richard L. Hasen has this essay online at The New Republic.

Posted at 9:05 PM by Howard Bashman

“Judicial aftershocks from the Schiavo case: Perceptions of how the courts handled the case could have ramifications for Bush’s judicial nominees.” Warren Richey will have this article Monday in The Christian Science Monitor.

Posted at 8:50 PM by Howard Bashman

“President’s Proposed Remedy to Curb Medical Malpractice Lawsuits Stalls; Senate Deadlocks; Democrats Plan To Use Filibuster”: This article appears today in The Washington Post.

Posted at 9:54 AM by Howard Bashman