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Posts Tagged ‘judge’

        Honor killings are used as a way to control behaviors typically in male dominated societies, often in the middle east.  Usually, we hear about a daughter, a neice, a sister, mother, or a wife who has been murdered for violating a traditional role in their interaction with other males outside of their family.  Unfortunately, this week honor killings are making news headlines because of a New York television owner’s death.  It is being alleged that Aasiya Hassan was killed by her husband Muzzammil under the heading of an honor killing because of her desire for a divorce after some domestic violence issues, allegedly between husband and wife.

         The Hassan’s started their television station in 2004; they did so because they wanted to combat any form of anti -Islamic sentiments that have been building since 911.  They called their station Bridges TV. (more…)

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     Ok…this is seriously outrageous.  Little Caylee Anthony, who was murdered in Florida, is the focus of an important court motion.  It is shameful that not only was the 2 year old murdered and thrown away, like an animal left on the side of the road after being hit.  However, it gets even worse because, there are “people” who are trying to get access to the pictures of the photographs of Caylee’s remains.  Matter of a fact, Caylee’s killer showed less respect for her life, than most people do when they hit an animal, accidently, while driving down the road.

       Prosecutors in the legal case are  allegedly asking the judge to put restrictions on the photographs of Caylee’s remains.  There are photographs on disk that are allegedly being given to the lawyer representing Caylee’s mother for the case.  However, reports say that big time media have paid money to get licensing rights to photographs and videos of little Caylee when she was alive.  Any kind of pictures would be of interest to those who wish to bring viewers a new picture before it gets in the hands of a competitor.  Prosecutors want to pre-empt any possible attempt of  improper use of the photographs that will be used as evidence in the case; that is just common sense.   They need to safeguard the process of the legal system, so that justice can be served without jepardizing the outcome of the case by the misuse of the evidence. 

     This should just be a matter of common sense…however, there are those who will push the envelope of decency.  Just earlier this past week…a gentleman who was skiing had an unfortunate incident on a ski lift and was suspended upside down, his pants and underclothing yanked off of his body, and pulled down to his ankles.  Here he was, hanging upside down…naked from the waist down to his feet…and, people actually took pictures and posted them on the internet.  It appears that people truly do not care about decency or respect of another person’s misery.  In Caylee’s situation, she is not alive to be humiliated or saddened; however, she had family, friends and neighbors who are horrified by the idea of having pictures of Caylee’s remains published and put on display;  for money, or for ratings.

        It is outrageous that these types of legal measures even have to be considered.  Caylee was a victim of murder.  She was tossed away and hidden.  She was not buried in any semblence of respect or caring.  She was offered no dignity in death.  She was a little girl who deserved to live; but, because someone stole her life from her, she was not protected from this further indignity.

        I hope that the courts impose very strict guidelines regarding how these sad photographs can be used.  I think that anyone who makes money off of photographs or video’s of the young child should be ashamed of themselves.  Even the pictures of a happy, living, breathing Caylee only seem to underscore the horror of the knowledge that she died too young and in a horrible way.  Programs that would use the videos and pictures to build stories around, are to me, another assault on the memory of Caylee. 

        People all around the nation have gazed upon the pictures that are already out there of her.  We know in our hearts and minds that an innocent 2 year old child should be remembered as just that, an innocent 2 year old child.  She should not be remembered as she was left in the woods.  Her short life should not be marketed for a news program or an entertainment program.  She doesn’t have to be humanized for the masses…because we all know and love other children her age; it isn’t hard to imagine what she was like. 

       I don’t think we have heard the last of things in this case that will offend us, outrage us, sadden us, or just plain disappoint us in the condition of our culture’s humanity levels; do you?

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      Now that the historic 2008 election for the President of the United States is over and Barack Obama has won…there will be great expectations.  Obama really ran on the platform of “change”.  As the agent of change…he will be watched and judged in a way like no other before him.  Everyone is expecting miracles; and miracles, is what this nation needs.  Families are looking for stability in their lives.

       As we have demonstrated to the world over the last few months…we have to get our finances as a country and as a world under control.  We must heal the breakdown of credit and the housing industry…the buying, selling and foreclosure of homes.  We must address the nations dependency on oil from foreign countries.  We must investigate and explore alternative forms of energy.  We must address the dwindling funding that forms the foundation of education in both lower and higher education.  We must find a way to insure those who have no medical insurance.  We need to apply some solutions to the social security flux which will drain the funds because of the aging population.  We must repair relationships with countries around the world that have been badly damaged over the last 8 years.  We must continue to protect ourselves and others who are under siege from terrorists around the world.  We must insure that our children have opportunities before them that children from other countries have. 

        I say we meaning, African Americans and all Americans, Democrats and Republics, conservatives and liberals, men and women…it doesn’t matter who you are…we are in this thing called life together…and that is how we have to approach solutions to the problems that we face as a country.

        With an unprecedented stacked deck of Democrats in the House & Senate, as well as a Democratic President, we will have great expectations from Barack Obama as leader of the United States. Republicans have taken the heat for the condition of the United States for quite some time…now it is time for Democrats to prove their worth as they lead our citizens.  

         Is President elect Obama up to the task?  He had better be…because it is unacceptable to think about the alternative; and, the impact it will have on this country if he fails at any one of the aforemented issues; as well as many, many more issues which are in need of major renovation to become healthy once again.

         Hopefully, we will not, in our zeal to affect change in this country, continue to attack the basic values of conservative America.  We are seeing escalating legal attacks on the defination of traditional views of marriage and family.  We have people who are determined to stretch the defination to include gay marriages as a legally recognized state of marriage.  There are those who seek to further liberal ideas such as legalizing marijuana and prostitution; or expanding the limits of abortion.  It seems that traditional values in this country are being turning upside down…what has been considered to be right is now viewed as wrong and is prone to challenge.

        There is some real resistance against such change, from those who consider themselves conservative; to fight and stand up to those challenges; by those who not only believe in a liberal view of rights and responsibilities but, those who seek to change how we govern ourselves regarding those issues.  So is Barack Obama up to the task of effective leadership of such diverse approaches to life?  Time will be the judge! In the meantime, citizens of the United States have a right to great expectations.

       

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      Spending twenty three hours a day with yourself, in jail…would lead most people to do some real introspective deep thinking about the reasons you find yourself sitting behind bars.  Especially for a person who had been living the high life as Mayor of Detroit; it is a big lifestyle adjustment.  Kwame Kilpatrick will have just such an opportunity to do some of that self examination.  Yesterday, Mr. Kilpatrick began to serve a 120 day sentence for a variety of offenses.  He lied to the court about a sexual relationship with his Chief of Staff, Christine Beatty, he lied about text messages to the court which confirmed the affair and he also got into a scuffle with officers trying to serve a subpoena.  There were several offenses that the mayor had been accused of.

       At least two of those offenses ended with him pleading guilty to obstruction of jutice & no contest to felonious assault.  He lied to the court…effectively tying the hands of the legal system, for most of the summer, by using his legal team to fight his removal from office.  Michigan’s Governor Granholm had to hold a hearing to forcibly remove him.  After that hearing he was heard to say, “You done set me up for a comeback”.  This arrogance and defiance moved the judge to sentence him to the full 120 day sentence; typically, a person who exhibits good behavior can shave approximately 20 days off of their sentence, not in Kilpatrick’s case.  The judge was clearly put out by the demeanor of the former mayor throughout this whole process.

        The thing is…if someone has been publically shamed by their private and professional behavior; and then, goes on to be legally chastized and still continues to mock and make light of the situation…you have to wonder if they have learned anything at all about how to conduct themselves appropriately.  Will spending this punnitive time in jail help Mr. Kilpatrick to re-evaluate the direction of his life? 

        The things that he has sacrificed by conducting his affair(s) and lying to the authorities and the court, thereby, possibly harming his relationship with his wife and children, having to give up his law license, as well as his freedom; should be counted as natural consequences for living outside the bounds of legal and moral responsibilities to those to whom he was supposed to be accountable to.  And yet, from reading accounts of yesterdays events…it sounds as though Mr. Kilpatrick mocked the prosecutors by saying things like, “I love you man” and asking them “How you doing?  Can’t even smile”?  This doesn’t bode well for learning from his mistakes. 

          Some people would say that his demeanor is encouraged by his supporters; such as those who observed the former mayor being led from the court room, who shouted encouragement to him such as “Be Strong, We got your back, We love you mayor”.  Will he have a political future when he is free to pursue such goals  Where is the accountability?

          After serving the 120 day sentence, Mr. Kilpatrick will also be on probation for 5 years, give up his law license, and repay the city of Detroit $1 million dollars.

         So I say, if you are going to spend 23 hours a day with someone…it might as well be someone you like alot.  Only 119 days to go, Mr. Kilpatrick.  The people that i truly feel sorry for is his wife and children.  I am sure they are suffering more than he is.  They have had to move out of their home, they have lost a large part of their financial support, and, they have to endure the publicity for their husband and father’s actions for a long time to come.  Should he be allowed to run for public office ever again with this legal black mark on his record?

        

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       It appears that since this season of Dancing With The Stars has begun that dancing pro Cheryl Burke has been getting criticized for gaining some weight.  Today on several television programs Cheryl voiced her shock and discomfort with viewers who felt that they had a right to criticize her appearance.  Some of the questions she faced even went so far as to ask if she was several months pregnant.  Other comments were just plain rude and were meant to make her feel bad about her appearance. Her skills were not being questioned…just her appearance.

        Cheryl took off the summer to work on getting her dance studio opened.  While she was off from her normal schedule…she says that she gained about 5 pounds.  Some of the comments that Cheryl heard were very hurtful to her.  She said that the comments online and in tabloids were very in her face and she could not avoid hearing about them.  She said it caused her heartache and made her cry.  When she is on DWTS she is dancing approximately 7 hours a day.  Going without that regular schedule is what caused her to gain the extra pounds.

        Even though Cheryl said that she is comfortable in her own skin and has always been curvy since she hit puberty…those hurtful comments definately affected her.   She said, even with the weight gain..she is still able to fit into her size 4 costumes for the show. 

        I think it is unfortunate that people would feel it necessary to write in to her or about her weight gain.  I think as a society we are becoming conditioned by constant exposure to multi-media venues viewing celebrities and models who are setting a poor example of what is a healthy weight for their bone structure or frame.

         Americans are on a national trend heading towards obesity and that needs to be curbed.  However, we need to educate people not attack them.  Cheryl, as a size 4, is by no means hugely overweight.  As she stated on the television interviews…now that she is back regularily training in her dance routines…she is loosing the weight gain naturally.  She has no intention of going on some radical, unhealthy diet that will appease her critics.  I applaude her for that.  She has a healthy self-esteem and it comes across.

         Shorter stature women, who have the physical characteristic of being short- waisted, tend to show any amount of weight gain quite quickly.  I think, that combined with the television cameras ability to add 10 lbs to a person’s appearance and skimpy costumes that expose many of a womans trouble spots to the camera lense has put an unfair spotlight on Cheryl.  She is a beautiful woman who is talented and active. 

        Those who are quick to judge her, by the weight gain, should take care how they voice their opinion.  None of us would be too willing to trade places with her and be the person who is being judged.  There are few of us who would wish someone we care about to be judged by this same harsh standard.  What kind of an impact does it have on our young people to pick at someone’s appearance because they have gained a minimal amount of weight?  We have far too many people who struggle around the world with their body image; and because of that, they often develop eating disorders such as bulimia/anorexia.  This is a very serious blackmark on our culture.  Do you think it is fair for people to publically chastize Cheryl for her weight gain?  Has someone else’s opinion of you negatively impacted your self-esteem?

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        Well, Wednesday, September 03, 2008 is the day of wreckoning (reckoning) for Detroit mayor Kwame Kilpatrick.  He has tried several legal manuevers to avoid going before Govenor Jennifer Granholm, in the hearing, to decide whether he should be removed as mayor of Detroit; due to the request of the Detroit City council.  It was claimed that the Govenor didn’t have the power to remove him as the laws were ambiguous. 

         On Tuesday, September 02, a circuit judge for Wayne County declared that Govenor Granholm could indeed be impartial in the hearing.   Mr. Kilpatrick had tried to say that she was was not able to remain impartial in a removal hearing.   The court of appeals have also now rejected a request to stop the Govenor from holding the removal hearing on Wednesday.

           It could be a while before we hear the outcome of the hearing…however, the people of Michigan will see some sort of resolution soon.

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       Breaking news on the mayor of Detroit; he disregarded instructions by the court to get prior authorization before leaving the state of Michigan (not to mention the country) when he recently traveled to Windsor, Canada.  The mayor, Kwame Kilpatrick, said that he was traveling to Windsor to try to make a deal to save approximately 1,000 jobs in Detroit.  He was under court order to get prior permission for traveling…either for personal or professional reasons.  He chose to travel without that authorization.  He apologized to the judge, Ronald Giles, saying that no one respected the legal process, that he was in, more than him.  The mayor has admitted that he did in fact travel to Windsor and therefore violated the court order.  The judge ordered him jailed for violating his court order of getting prior authorization.  It is serious business when the mayor of a large metropolitan city chooses to operate outside of legal boundaries…as this case illustrates…a price has to be paid.  This case has had a large impact on it’s community’s ability to function with any degree of efficiency.  There is so much legal wrangling going on…how does any of the city’s business get addressed with any appropriate focus?  (more…)

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