Was A Texas Judge Wrongfully Punished For Expressing Her Opinion?

The comments were made to an assistant district attorney who happens to be Jewish, from New York, and the proud wearer of a full beard. To the district attorney’s secretary, Schildknecht referred to him as a “New York Jew”, a comment she later claimed referred to where he was from and his religion, not his physical appearance. According to the judge, she feels it justified as the district attorney seems to have a completely different perception of the legal process in comparison to what is considered the norm in Texas.

So should she have been publicly admonished for that statement?

Before you make a decision, understand that the commission was also concerned about a marathon court session, where the judge refused to allow any of the participants a formal break to eat, drink or use the restroom. This lasted from 1 pm until 4 am the following day. According to the judge, it was necessary in order to cut down on jail over-crowding. Then there was the time when she refused admission of the same district attorney into her courtroom, telling the bailiff that she did not want to see his face. According to her, it was because he was there after court had adjourned for the day.

If that wasn’t enough, there was also an incident where she told an assistant district attorney that his beard made him look like a Muslim. She then proceeded to tell him that she would not hire him that way. In her defense, this was said during downtime.

According to the commission, this comment along with the other shows a religious or cultural bias, not befitting a Texas judge. Or maybe she just doesn’t like beards? If that’s the case then it is she who is out of place, as beards in Texas are very common. Practically everywhere you turn you are going to find a southern gentleman who has mastered the art of using his beard trimmer and beard balm like Liberty.

For punishment, Schildknecht was publicly admonished for her behavior, and she must spend four hours with a mentor in order to receive lessons on how to conduct herself in court, and not express any bias. Considering that are state is often seen as being openly prejudicial to outside cultures, having a judge behave in this way only hurts the reputation of our judicial system.

Thankfully, this did not occur in Plano but as fellow Texans, we have a vested interest in what law officials and court employees are doing across the state. Had that happened here, the punishment likely would have been more severe.

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Presidential Hopefuls From Texas

Even though the 2016 Presidential Election is over a year away, that hasn’t stopped people from throwing their names into the ring of potential candidates. There are already over a dozen Republican candidates, and about half that number for the Democrats. There is also expected to be several more people announcing their candidacy over the next few weeks, raising that number even higher. Among the candidates are two officials from the state of Texas – Ted Cruz and Rick Perry. Who are these men, and do they stand a chance at being the next President of the United States?

Ted Cruz – Cruz is a Senator from Texas, and a member of the Republican Party. He was elected back in 2012 after gaining support from the member of the Tea Party. Cruz fights for “limited government, economic growth and the Constitution.” At the time of his election he was considered a long shot, but was able to gather support through large grassroots programs. Now, after serving in the Senate for 3 years, Cruz is looking to take on the Presidency. Cruz has gained national attention on several issues, namely for his unwillingness to compromise. He has strong support from those on the far-right of the political spectrum, and from various religious groups. While many experts see Cruz as a long shot to win the Presidency, he is hoping that another strong grassroots effort can propel him to win the Republican Primary, followed by the general election.

Rick Perry – Perry has been serving as the Governor of Texas since 2000. Perry has lived most of his life in Texas, having been born there in 1950, and attending Texas A&M. He is now the longest serving governor of the state, breaking the previous record. Back in 2012, Perry ran for the U.S Presidency, but was unsuccessful. Most experts point to one moment when Perry lost most of his support. It was during a Republican debate, when Perry said that as President, he would eliminate 3 government agencies. When asked which agencies these would be, he was only able to name two of them, and ended by saying “I can’t remember the third one. Oops.” This quote followed him around and became widespread, and ultimately Perry bowed out of the race several weeks later. Now, Perry is hoping to put that run behind him and try again this year. However experts don’t seem to like his chances. His polling numbers are not all that favorable, and the embarrassing moments from 3 years ago are still in people’s minds. He is also not offering much of a difference between other candidates, so he is having a hard time distancing himself from them. Still, Perry has strong support among the far-right, and he is hoping this is enough support to get him at least the Republican Primary win.

While the odds may be long for either of these two men to win the Presidency, that hasn’t stopped Texas from supporting them. Both have strong support in their home state, and they hope that Texas can convince the other states to give them a chance. It remains to be seen if this will happen.

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