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Thread: Judge Says There is a "Faith War" in the US

  1. #31
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    Re: Judge Says There is a "Faith War" in the US

    So when I hear news from a source that is not known to be objective (politically), I take it with a grain of salt and do not read too much into it.
    Who decides what's "objective"? And isn't that decision subjective?
    The widow is gathering nettles for her children's dinner; a perfumed seigneur, delicately lounging in the Oeil de Boeuf, hath an alchemy whereby he will extract the third nettle and call it rent. ~ Carlyle

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  3. #32
    For a Level Playing Field RedFanAlways1966's Avatar
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    Re: Judge Says There is a "Faith War" in the US

    Quote Originally Posted by Rojo
    BTW, Brown has the lowest American Bar Association passing rating. But then again, this is about politics.

    PS: I'm sure the ABA is part of the cabal arrayed against God-and-freedom lovers everywhere.
    And what does the ABA rating have to do with this story?

    But thanks for that explanation. An easy target for The Advocate and others with the same political leanings as The Advocate.

    Are judges allowed to be religious? I am starting to think that anybody who attends church regularly should not be allowed to be a member of the government in this country. Wasn't Pres. James Earl Carter a pretty religious cat? Of course that was back in a time when religion did not seem to be a road to political destruction. And we didn't have extremists making the news (not reporting the news) all over the internet and elsewhere.

    Are judges allowed freedom of speech? I am starting to think that they are not afforded the same rights that the rest of enjoy. I see this whole thing as an argument against freedom of speech for Ms. Brown. I am still waiting for a ruling that was blatantly based on her religious convictions and is an obvious mis-interpretation of the law. Anyone? Anybody? Got ruling?
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  4. #33
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    Re: Judge Says There is a "Faith War" in the US

    Quote Originally Posted by Rojo
    My only guess is because its an easy deflection.
    Not a deflection at all. The source of the article as a factor in this was raised before my first post about it. I was just curious why publications that lean left are apparently above having an agenda while right leaning publications are not. I think that's fair enough to ask and given the subject we are talking about I hardly see it as a deflection.

    I also often wonder why those that sit on the left side of the political fence lash out so angrily and are so filled with fiery rhetoric and hatred for anybody that disagrees with them.

  5. #34
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    Re: Judge Says There is a "Faith War" in the US

    Judges are allowed to believe what they want and express those beliefs. The people, however, have the right to reject them for those beliefs. My guess is that the majority of Americans don't agree with her comments.
    The widow is gathering nettles for her children's dinner; a perfumed seigneur, delicately lounging in the Oeil de Boeuf, hath an alchemy whereby he will extract the third nettle and call it rent. ~ Carlyle

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    Re: Judge Says There is a "Faith War" in the US

    Quote Originally Posted by Rojo
    Who decides what's "objective"? And isn't that decision subjective?
    Good question, Rojo. Do you find Jerry Falwell's group objective? Fox News?

    I guess it depends on each and every individual. I cannot convince anyone that The Advocate might have political biases. But I can form my own opinion. Perhaps like your feelings about some of the afore-mentioned groups.

    I know there are some here who think Molly Ivins is middle-of-the-road. Yep, it is a subjective decision. You can lead a horse to water, but you cannot make it drink it. You can believe that The Advocate is fair in politics. I can believe that Jerry Falwell is fair in politics and other matters.

    And the ability for us to think and speak on these matters is what makes this country great. I think the 1st Amendment is what that is called. The same right that Judge Brown has in this country.
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    Re: Judge Says There is a "Faith War" in the US

    Quote Originally Posted by RedFanAlways1966
    Good question, Rojo. Do you find Jerry Falwell's group objective? Fox News?

    I guess it depends on each and every individual. I cannot convince anyone that The Advocate might have political biases. But I can form my own opinion. Perhaps like your feelings about some of the afore-mentioned groups.

    I know there are some here who think Molly Ivins is middle-of-the-road. Yep, it is a subjective decision. You can lead a horse to water, but you cannot make it drink it. You can believe that The Advocate is fair in politics. I can believe that Jerry Falwell is fair in politics and other matters.

    And the ability for us to think and speak on these matters is what makes this country great. I think the 1st Amendment is what that is called. The same right that Judge Brown has in this country.

    Great post RFA.

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    Re: Judge Says There is a "Faith War" in the US

    Quote Originally Posted by RedFanAlways1966
    I am not sure that I agree with the whole country is her audience, Rosie. She was speaking to a certain group of people when her comments were made. Granted, future appointments could depend on words that come out of her mouth now. And this is the decision of the president (appointing) and the congressional committee (vote on it). Technically we do elect the president and the members of congressional committees, so you are right to a degree.

    Honestly I do not care about the meaning of her comments. At least not as they are reported by The Advocate. There is no doubt that The Advocate has a bias (like Jerry Falwell has a bias... been in a much-much diff. way). So when I hear news from a source that is not known to be objective (politically), I take it with a grain of salt and do not read too much into it. Now if she had said something to the degree of "we must call all illegal aliens", then I might be alarmed. She seems to be a religious person and perhaps firmly believes in her religion. But unless she makes rulings (her job as a judge, not as a speaker) based on religion, then I do not care about these sort of comments. If she starts ruling on law interpretations bsed on only religion, then I will call her out as well.
    Fair enough.

    But I don't really get why her quote being reported by The Advocate is different from it being reported elsewhere. Granted the story around the quote could be different, but unless The Advocate made up the quote (which I highly doubt), I don't see why the quote itself is any less worthy of consideration.

    For what it's worth, I'm not that interested in what she means by that quote just because she's a judge. Anyone could have made that comment, and I'd still want to know what it means.

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    Re: Judge Says There is a "Faith War" in the US

    I was just curious why publications that lean left are apparently above having an agenda while right leaning publications are not.
    Nobody said that lefty publications don't have agenda. The Advocate's inclusion of the Brown story was indicative of their agenda, just like Rush Limbaugh's harping on Andrea Dworkin or Cathernine McKinnon is indicative of his agenda. But attacking the agenda of the publication is a red herring. Its her words that are being discussed. Either she said them or she didn't.

    I also often wonder why those that sit on the left side of the political fence lash out so angrily and are so filled with fiery rhetoric and hatred for anybody that disagrees with them.
    There's enough vitriol to go around these days. Its much more heated these days because liberals are starting to scream just as loudly.
    The widow is gathering nettles for her children's dinner; a perfumed seigneur, delicately lounging in the Oeil de Boeuf, hath an alchemy whereby he will extract the third nettle and call it rent. ~ Carlyle

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    The Mad Monk Jaycint's Avatar
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    Re: Judge Says There is a "Faith War" in the US

    Quote Originally Posted by Rojo

    There's enough vitriol to go around these days. Its much more heated these days because liberals are starting to scream just as loudly.
    I totally agree which is why I sometimes hesitate to even get involved in these discussions. It sometimes seems like mud slinging and slashing and burning are the preferred methods on both sides as opposed to healthy conversation.

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    Re: Judge Says There is a "Faith War" in the US

    Quote Originally Posted by Rojo
    Judges are allowed to believe what they want and express those beliefs. The people, however, have the right to reject them for those beliefs. My guess is that the majority of Americans don't agree with her comments.
    The problem arises when those religious beliefs interfere with one's ability to interpret the law. As we saw in the Schiavo case, the judge on the panel, though (apparentally) a devoutly religious man, nonetheless ruled in favor of the prior judicial opinions that the proper course of law had been followed throughout the ordeal. However, had people such as Frist and DeLay had their way, then the ruling would have been reversed, not for a reason based in law, but out of religious conviction. That's where we have the problem.

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    Re: Judge Says There is a "Faith War" in the US

    Quote Originally Posted by RedFanAlways1966
    Are judges allowed freedom of speech? I am starting to think that they are not afforded the same rights that the rest of enjoy. I see this whole thing as an argument against freedom of speech for Ms. Brown.
    No, judges do NOT enjoy the same freedom of speech entitled to members of the general populace, precisely because of the role they play in society. Lest we forget, a judge's role is to interpret laws, and make decisions based on the law ALONE. Personal convictions and opinions are not--theoretically--to be included in a judge's decision process. It's the reason why a judge cannot declare a party affiliation, or assert a position on a particular issue, as it would be viewed as an obstruction to their supposed impartiality. How, for instance, could a doctor who performs abortions expect to gain a fair trial in front of a judge who has been very outspoken that they believe abortions are wrong and illegal? They couldn't, so it is indeed true that judges are held to a higher standard as far as what they may and may not say--and they should.

    I am still waiting for a ruling that was blatantly based on her religious convictions and is an obvious mis-interpretation of the law. Anyone? Anybody? Got ruling?
    I provided a link several posts above, which apparentally you did not visit. Of course, in her rulings she is not going to assert that she arrived at her decision based on a thorough reading of the Bible, or because her religious convictions told her to do it. Such a blatant violation of ethical standards would certainly get her removed from the bench. However, an examination of her opinions while on the California Supreme Court finds her consistently flaunting state law and misinterpreting constitutional law to fit within her overtly conservative viewpoint. Her opinions on issues involving civil rights, in particular, are the most alarming. Thus, it's not so much that her religious convictions hamper her ability to make an impartial, informed judicial opinion, but rather that her unwavering conservatism does.

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    For a Level Playing Field RedFanAlways1966's Avatar
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    Re: Judge Says There is a "Faith War" in the US

    I am sure the same "opinons" that you have towards Judge Brown, registerthis, are the same as some conservatives in regard to left-leaning judges.

    However, she has not abused her job and its requirements. If she had, there is no doubt that someone with the power in CA would have had her up for impeachment. She may have in your opinion. We all have our opinions... even the judge. And she IS allowed to express her opinion when speaking outside of the court. You may not believe this. But if you visit the Nat'l Archives and read those documents, you might find your opinion to be a mis-interpretation of that document called the U.S. Constitution.

    Her words, as I stated before, could have an effect on future promotions. Fair or not, that goes w/ the territory. Perhaps that is what you mean.
    Small market fan... always hoping, but never expecting.

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    Re: Judge Says There is a "Faith War" in the US

    Quote Originally Posted by RedFanAlways1966
    I am sure the same "opinons" that you have towards Judge Brown, registerthis, are the same as some conservatives in regard to left-leaning judges.
    I am opposed to anyone who bases their judicial opinions on personal convictions rather than the law.

    However, she has not abused her job and its requirements. If she had, there is no doubt that someone with the power in CA would have had her up for impeachment. She may have in your opinion. We all have our opinions... even the judge. And she IS allowed to express her opinion when speaking outside of the court. You may not believe this. But if you visit the Nat'l Archives and read those documents, you might find your opinion to be a mis-interpretation of that document called the U.S. Constitution.
    Judges are duty-bound to follow the law, regardless of their personal views or political affiliation. Thus, a judge who makes public comments that can be held as prejudiced or partial towards or against a certain issue will be closely scrutinized. Judges who issue decisions based upon personal convictions or prejudices, in teh face of law or established precedent, may be cited for judicial misconduct and/or disbarred. It's not a clear-cut first amendment issue, for "freedom of speech" does not protect all forms of speech.

    Her words, as I stated before, could have an effect on future promotions. Fair or not, that goes w/ the territory. Perhaps that is what you mean.
    Indeed they are, which is what is happening.

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    Re: Judge Says There is a "Faith War" in the US

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    March 31, 2005

    The Bizarre Legal Philosophy of Justice Janice Rogers Brown
    First Amendment Protection for On-the-Job Racism?
    By MITCHELL ZIMMERMAN

    You've just started your new job and you're eager to fit into the workplace and make a good impression on everyone. You make a friendly comment to the person who works next to you, but she responds: "Don't bother, yid, I don't make friends with Jew Christ-killers." You're shocked, but you don't say anything to anyone. But that's only the beginning. When you return from lunch, the worker on the other side of you says, "Good afternoon, kike, did you have a nice ham sandwich?" They laugh at how uncomfortable you are - actually, your hands are shaking - and whenever they need to talk to you in connection with the job, they call you "kike," "yid" or "Jew girl."

    Soon they are making jokes about the Holocaust: When one of them comes back from the restroom, she asks the other, "Can we ask the company to order some of that soap they made out of Jews in Auschwitz?" "Nah," the other responds, "they stopped making Jew soap because they ran out of Jews."

    You complain to your boss but she says, "Nothing I can do about it. They have the right to free speech under the First Amendment."

    "But," you reply, "it's impossible for me to work here if people attack me this way because I'm Jewish."

    "Well, if you can't stand it, you can quit."

    You're a nervous wreck when you get home. But after a week you decide you're not going to quit. You don't think this is what free speech is about, and you're going to sue for employment discrimination. You are going to ask a court to order these employees not to attack you at work with racial or religious epithets that make it impossible for you to do your job.

    Will the First Amendment bar your lawsuit?

    Definitely not. Virtually every court that has considered the matter has concluded that racist speech can create a hostile, abusive and discriminatory work environment, and that when it does so, a court can stop it. No court in recent decades has held that the First Amendment gives people the right to use speech to harass fellow workers on racial or religious grounds at work.

    Just as a court can order a company to take down a "Whites Only" sign outside its employment office, even though this is "speech," so judges have consistently held that other words can constitute unlawful racial discrimination, and that when they do, the courts must step in and call a halt to such discrimination.

    That is the established view under American law, supported by years of precedent. But it is not the view of Janice Rogers Brown, President Bush's nominee to the D.C. Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals. Brown, a member of the California Supreme Court, is one of 12 judicial nominees previously rejected due to their extremist positions, whose nominations were recently exhumed by Bush. The Senate Judiciary Committee has now begun its reconsideration of these individuals.

    As a California Supreme Court justice, Brown dissented from a decision barring just the kind of speech discussed above. The plaintiffs in Aguilar v. Avis Rent A Car, 21 Cal.4th 121, were Hispanic workers who sought protection from racist epithets and abuse in the workplace. It was undisputed that the Avis manager had employed racial slurs and engaged in racist harassment so continual and severe as to create a hostile and discriminatory environment for the Hispanic workers. The only issue before the California Supreme Court was whether they were entitled to a court order that the manager could not subject them to racist invective at work in the future.

    Contrary to the majority of the California Supreme Court - and to virtually every federal court that has considered such issues since the U.S. Supreme Court's decisions upholding injunctions against harassing speech that creates a hostile work environment - Justice Brown voted to leave the workers unprotected. Issuing an injunction, in her unusual view, would amount to censoring and suppressing "disfavored ideas from the popular discourse." Never mind that nothing stopped the supervisor from making racist speeches anywhere outside the workplace. And never mind that racist diatribes are the kind of "discourse" calculated to drive ethnic or racial minorities from the workplace.

    The views of President Bush's nominee are not only contrary to common sense; they contradict a long line of U.S. Supreme Court and lower court rulings that have never supported a right to abuse workers with racist language on free speech grounds.

    Revealingly, free speech concerns received different treatment by Justice Brown in Intel v. Hamdi, 30 Cal.4th 1342, where Brown's dissent asserted that the corporation had a First Amendment "right not to listen." Hamdi was a 2003 case involving the intersection of property rights, free speech and the hoary tort of "trespass to chattel." Used in bygone eras to address such wrongs as having your cow chased by mischievous persons, trespass to chattel has been reborn in the Internet era as a possible source of relief against persons who access a Web site for unauthorized purposes.

    Hamdi was a former Intel employee; on six occasions he dispatched e-mails to thousands of Intel workers criticizing the company's employment practices. Intel objected to the contents of the messages and demanded that Hamdi cease sending e-mail to its employees at their Intel addresses. When he refused, Intel sued for trespass to chattel, arguing that it was harmed because its employees were distracted by the messages.

    The California Supreme Court denied Intel's claim. The majority held that Hamdi's use of the open Intel e-mail system for its intended use, e-mail communication, resulted in no harm to Intel's system and did not cause the kind of "damage" required for trespass to chattel. Since, moreover, Intel's real concern was the e-mails' content, the lead opinion in Hamdi warned that enjoining Hamdi's communications might impair First Amendment interests.

    Not so, however, according to Justice Brown's dissenting view. Intel's property rights in its unaffected computer system were paramount, and indeed reinforced, in Brown's view, by a First Amendment "right not to listen" - notwithstanding that the corporation was not itself the audience for Hamdi's speech, and that Hamdi removed from his e-mail list anyone who objected to his e-mails.

    Curiously, though Justice Brown was vociferous in asserting the unqualified right of the corporation not to listen to Hamdi's speech, she somehow neglected to notice this important constitutional right in the case of the Avis employees who had been subjected to racist epithets in the workplace. Intel had a far-reaching constitutional right not to listen. But Hispanic employees assailed with personal, racist invective in the workplace, invective that actually created a hostile work environment, apparently had no right not to listen. Indeed, any effort to protect those workers represented "censorship" in Justice Brown's view, and the availability of injunctive relief against such workplace harassment meant "the Legislature is now free to prohibit the expression of ideas it dislikes."

    In another dissent consistent with Brown's hostility to anti-bias plaintiffs, in 2000, Brown reached back to a Civil War era federal banking law in order to assert that California was barred from granting relief to a bank branch manager for employment discrimination - on the theory that the 1864 federal act pre-empted California's Fair Employment and Housing Act. (Peatros v. Bank of America, 22 Cal.4th 147.) The federal enactment originally gave bank directors complete discretion to fire officers, based on the ever-present risk (at that time) that banks could be destroyed by a "run on the bank," if depositors lost confidence in their bankers' integrity and raced to withdraw their savings before it was too late.

    In asserting that the 136-year-old federal banking law pre-empted the state antidiscrimination law, the anachronistic Justice Brown ignored the fact that subsequent federal antidiscrimination enactments had (as many courts had recognized) already amended the old law in a way that precluded any inconsistency with anti-discrimination law. In her final departure from reality, Justice Brown asserted that the original rationale for unfettered corporate power to fire bank employees was just as compelling in the 21st century as it had been in the 19th, notwithstanding the fact that the New Deal's deposit insurance program had essentially ended the phenomenon of the run on the bank.

    Justice Brown's refusal to notice that New Deal legislation (among other developments since the middle of the 19th century) had undermined the basis of her argument was not entirely surprising because Brown believes that the New Deal was part of what she terms "the reign of socialism" and that Americans have been living under "collectivism" since the New Deal. Indeed, in an April 2000 speech to the Federalist Society, Justice Brown paired "the Revolutions of 1917 and 1937." 1917, of course, is the date of the Russian Revolution. "The latter date," Justice Brown explained "marks the triumph of our own socialist revolution."

    What happened in 1937 that, to Justice Brown, was comparable to that the Bolshevik Revolution? After decades in which the Supreme Court invalidated social welfare measures, regulatory laws and New Deal enactments, two Supreme Court justices switched sides. Thereafter, a new majority of the high court permitted legislative majorities to address pressing social and economic problems notwithstanding possible effects on the supposed rights of property owners. It's all been downhill since then. In the degraded, collectivist society we now inhabit as a result, according to Brown, "senior citizens blithely cannibalize their grandchildren" by seeking more government benefits, "most of us no longer find slavery abhorrent" but "embrace it," and our democracy has been "transformed into a Kleptocracy - a license to steal, a warrant for oppression."

    Just what were the New Deal enactments that Justice Brown reviles as "collectivism," giving rise to these horrors? - Social Security, unemployment insurance, wage and hour and child labor laws, pure food and drug regulation, bank deposit insurance, the right to form unions, welfare benefits for the handicapped, regulation of financial institutions and stock markets, and, of course, taxation. These measures formed the foundation for a social contract that endured for generations in America, but is now under attack by the right, in which corporate supremacy was essentially unchallenged, in exchange for limited consideration of the needs of society as a whole, reasonable living standards for most Americans and minimal protections for the most desperate and needy.

    Justice Brown's bizarre view that this social contract constitutes "collectivism" is much more than a curiosity because her appointment to the important D.C. Circuit (and possibly thereafter to the U.S. Supreme Court) would give her the power to try to reverse these "socialist" triumphs.

    Brown certainly means to try. She has advised that conservative judges need not be concerned with the "activist" label and urges judges to be "audacious enough to invoke higher law," by which she means a judge-imposed vision of so-called natural law that protects property from the will of the majority.

    Brown's openly expressed nostalgia for the Lochner era, in which judges imposed their laissez-faire economic philosophy and thwarted democratic decision making, is more than idle theorizing. The largely Republican judiciary has already deployed what amounts to a new Lochnerism, imposing an aggressive and baseless theory of federalism and the takings clause to strike down national and state regulatory efforts, at the same time that they curtail individual liberties in service of the national security state.

    The Republican judges' war on democracy has only begun, but one is reminded of Iran, in which the powers of freely elected leaders and an emerging democracy have been nullified by unelected religious leaders. If the federal judiciary comes to be dominated by the likes of Janice Rogers Brown, it may turn out to matter little who wins control of the legislative and executive branches in future elections. President Bush's ultra-conservative judicial ayatollahs will be in a position to guide and chastise the unruly majorities who fail to understand the need to elevate the interests of property in the name of the higher law.

    Mitchell Zimmerman, a former SNCC organizer and co-author of Dr. Spock on Vietnam, is a partner at a high-tech firm in Mountain View, California and focuses on intellectual property. He can be reached at m@mitchellzimmerman.com.

    This article first appeared in March 18, 2005 issue of The Recorder.

  16. #45
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    Re: Judge Says There is a "Faith War" in the US

    I guess she was off by 1/2 a world.
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    Saudis arrest 40 Christians in raid on secret church





    April 29, 2005








    RIYADH, Saudi Arabia -- Forty foreign Christians, children included, were arrested for proselytizing when police raided a clandestine church in suburban Riyadh. Convictions could result in harsh prison sentences, followed by deportation.

    Lt. Col. Saad al-Rashud, who heads a wide-ranging security campaign in the capital, said the believers' meeting place, which displayed crosses, was run by a Pakistani who led prayers, heard confessions, distributed Communion and claimed to heal the sick.

    Although the Prophet Muhammad tolerated Christian churches in his realm, modern Saudi Arabia has made it illegal to promote any religion other than Islam and outlaws churches.

    Members of other religions generally are allowed to practice their beliefs within private homes but may not seek converts or hold organized religious gatherings. AP



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