(Permanent Musical Accompaniment To This Post)
Being our semi-regular weekly survey of what’s goin’ down in the several states where, as we know, the real work of governmentin’ gets done, and where way out in the wilderness a cold coyote calls.
We have to begin in Indiana. There was no way to avoid it. From the South Bend Tribune:
In an opinion issued Tuesday, the court said judges Bradley Jacobs, Andrew Adams and Sabrina Bell “engaged in judicial misconduct by appearing in public in an intoxicated state and behaving in an injudicious manner and by becoming involved in a verbal altercation.” Adams’ blood-alcohol level was approximately 0.157 upon admission to the hospital, and Jacobs’ was approximately 0.13, according to the opinion. Bell’s blood alcohol level was not tested, “but she was intoxicated enough that she lacks any memory of the incident,” per the opinion. In addition, Adams and Jacobs “engaged in judicial misconduct by becoming involved in a physical altercation for which Judge Adams was criminally charged and convicted,” the court said in its opinion.
So, stop me if you’ve heard this one. Three judges walk into a bar...
The judges traveled to Indianapolis on April 30 to attend a judicial conference the next day. Around 3 a.m. May 1, the judges, along with a magistrate who was not involved in the fight, tried to enter the Red Garter Gentleman’s Club in Downtown, but it was closed. They went to the nearby White Castle at 55 W. South St. instead. Adams, Jacobs and Bell were standing outside the restaurant when Alfredo Vazquez and Brandon Kaiser drove past the trio in a blue SUV. According to charging documents from the Indiana Commission on Judicial Qualifications, either Kaiser or Vazquez yelled something out the window, which prompted Bell to give the middle finger to the men.
Neither Adams nor Jacobs “discouraged the provocation or removed themselves from the situation,” the court’s opinion says. “Instead, all three Respondents joined in a profane verbal altercation that quickly turned into physical violence and ended in gunfire, and in doing so, gravely undermined public trust in the dignity and decency of Indiana’s judiciary.”
Is there more? Of course, there is.
Adams and Vazquez both hit and kicked each other, according to court documents, while Jacobs and Kaiser mostly wrestled on the ground. “At one point, Judge Jacobs was on top of Kaiser and had him contained on the ground,” the charging documents said. Vazquez then tried to get Jacobs off of Kaiser, the commission said. As Jacobs began to get up, Vazquez started fighting him, court documents said. After Kaiser began to sit up, Adams kicked him in the back, the commission said. Kaiser then pulled out a gun and shot Adams in the stomach, according to court documents. The commission says Kaiser then “went over to Judge Jacobs and Vazquez and fired two more shots at Judge Jacobs in the chest.” Kaiser and Vazquez then allegedly fled the scene.
If I’m their attorney, I’m moving for a change of venue to Mars. But, as for the esteemed jurists, seriously, if it’s 3 a.m., and you’re a judge, and you’re sockless drunk, and the strip club you want to go to is closed, stay out of the White Castle. Nothing good comes from being drunk at a White Castle at 3 a.m.
We move along to Ohio, where the state legislature is considering one of those bills that Republicans love to try to pass because they sense their power is at risk and they want to embed as much of their signature crazy in the law before the roof caves in. From WKRC in Cincinnati:
The Ohio House on Wednesday passed the "Student Religious Liberties Act." Under the law, students can't be penalized if their work is scientifically wrong as long as the reasoning is because of their religious beliefs. Instead, students are graded on substance and relevance.
How can a student in biology class be graded on “substance and relevance” if their answer is "scientifically wrong”? It’s like saying an English student must be graded on substance and relevance if the student claims that Jesus told him that Shakespeare was written in Tagalog.
Every Republican in the House supported the bill. It now moves to the Republican-controlled Senate.
That explains it.
And we conclude, as is our custom, in the great state of Oklahoma, whence Blog Official Fencepost Repair Guru Friedman of the Plains brings us the tale of a "Second Amendment Auditor” who did not audit his behavior sufficiently to conform to the opinions of local law enforcement. From our friends at News4 in Tulsa:
Timothy Harper has posted videos of himself openly carrying firearms into private businesses and on public property. In the clips, Harper claims to be conducting ‘First and Second Amendment audits.’ In April, Edmond police officers were called to Hafer Park when witnesses became concerned about a man carrying a gun. “Are you video recording this to see what type of rise you get out of people when they call?” an Edmond police officer is heard asking on body camera footage. “Yes, this is an audit,” said Harper. “We are going to see if you guys respect the Second Amendment and how you respond to someone carrying a pistol.” ... Last week, the Oklahoma Second Amendment Association spoke out against Harper's actions. "His actions to draw attention to himself while escalating tensions for profit of a social media platform is uncalled for, unwise, and does not hold to the values of the Board of Directors of OK2A or the majority of Oklahomans. His claim to any such authority with OK2A is FALSE," a statement from the association read in part.
Mr. Harper is done kowtowing to the Gun Fondling Establishment, dammit.
This is your democracy, America. Cherish it.
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