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Location: Montgomery Area, Alabama, United States

Former BUFF driver; self-styled military historian; paid (a lot) to write about beating plowshares into swords; NOT Foamy the Squirrel, contrary to all appearances. Wesleyan Jihadi Name: Sibling Railgun of Reasoned Discourse

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Perspective on Judicial Nominees

National Review has an excellent little article that sheds some light on the types of judicial nominees the Democrats prefer to the "right-wing extremists" who they threaten to filibuster. This little story also tells us something about the honor and respect for law exhibited by the two parties, since the Republicans did not filibuster this candidate's nomination, although they had ample justification for doing so.

The person in question is Judge Rosemary Barkett, a former nun of the liberation theology stripe who left her vocation to become a trial lawyer (her true vocation, appropriately enough). She became a circuit court judge and was appointed by then-governor Bob Graham (ADA 75 as a US Senator) to the Supreme Court, where liberal Miamians and Gay West types voted her back to office twice more. She eventually became Chief Justice, on the power of sterling opinions like this:

Dougan versus State is a 1992 Florida Supreme Court case. Dougan was the leader of a group that called itself the Black Liberation Army and that, according to the trial judge, had as its `apparent sole purpose to indiscriminately kill white people and thus start a revolution and a race war.' One evening in 1974, he and four other members of his group, armed with a pistol and a knife, went in search of victims. They picked up a white hitchhiker, Steven Orlando, drove him to an isolated trash dump, stabbed him repeatedly, and threw him to the ground. As Orlando writhed in pain and begged for his life, Dougan put his foot on Orlando's head and shot him twice — once in the chest and once in the ear — killing him instantly. Subsequent to the murder, Dougan made several tape recordings bragging about the murder, and mailed them to the victim's mother as well as to the media. The following excerpt from one of the tapes aptly illustrates the content: “He was stabbed in the back, in the chest and the stomach, ah, it was beautiful. You should have seen it. Ah, I enjoyed every minute of it. I loved watching the blood gush from his eyes.”

The Florida Supreme Court upheld the death penalty for Dougan. Justice Barkett and another Justice joined a remarkable and very disturbing dissent by Justice McDonald in which she voted to reduce the death penalty to life imprisonment, with eligibility for parole in 25 years[:] “This case is not simply a homicide case, it is also a social awareness case. Wrongly, but rightly in the eyes of Dougan, this killing was effectuated to focus attention on a chronic and pervasive illness of racial discrimination and of hurt, sorrow, and rejection. Throughout Dougan's life his resentment to bias and prejudice festered. His impatience for change, for understanding, for reconciliation matured to taking the illogical and drastic action of murder. His frustrations, his anger, and his obsession of injustice overcame reason. The victim was a symbolic representation of the class causing the perceived injustices.

“To some extent, [Dougan's] emotions were parallel to that of a spouse disenchanted with marriage, full of discord and disharmony which, because of frustration or rejection, culminate in homicide. We seldom uphold a death penalty involving husbands and wives or lovers, yet the emotion of that hate-love circumstance are somewhat akin to those which existed in this case.

“Such a sentence reduction should aid in an understanding and at least a partial reconciliation of the wounds arising from discordant racial relations that have permeated our society. To a large extent, it was this disease of racial bias and discrimination that infect an otherwise honorable person and contributed to the perpetration of the most horrible of crimes. An approval of the death penalty would exacerbate rather than heal those wounds still affecting a large segment of our society.”

Note the words in italics. Not hers, but she explicitly endorsed them.

"A Social Awareness case." Not much of a Catholic, perhaps, but she'd make a hell of a muslim--justifying political murder for an overarching "cause" is right down their alley. But then, it also accords well with her own religion of leftist relativism, since the murder was justified in her mind by "racial injustice. " Oh, and murdering husbands is kinda sorta not all that bad either (never mind that the death penalty is not imposed in most of those because they're "crimes of passion" and not premeditated, as the Dougan case definitely was).

So....this is the kind of justice the Democrats rate as "outstanding" when condemning the likes of Priscilla Owen. The latter may (or may not) have delivered some specious decisions over the years, but she didn't implicitly endorse politically-motivated murder and the murder of husbands by wives as a sitting state Supreme Court justice.

Here is some additional background from Thomas on Judge Barkett's nomination hearings when, in 1994, Hillary blackma...excuse me, President Clinton nominated her to the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals (which recently refused to overturn Terri Schiavo's death sentence), in order to liberal it up a bit.

Bottom line, the would-be filibusterers have no moral or ethical leg to stand on when complaining of "judicial activism." Oh...and the Republicans' past decency in deal with nominations like Judge Barkett's justify any actions on Senate rules they may take in the next few days. It's time for the nonsense to end. Nuke 'em 'til they glow!


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