By Amy Silverman
By Olivia LaVecchia
By Monica Alonzo and Stephen Lemons
By Chris Parker
By Michael Lacey
By Weston Phippen
How Come a Judge?
I just finished reading your article on Bonnie Scherer ("Sitting Petty," Matthew Doig, April 22). Here is a woman who has clearly worked very hard to better herself and get out of the system (as she put it). Then you get some arrogant judge who is clearly a pig-headed prick who probably bitches about everything wrong with the welfare system. He then forces a pregnant woman into a very degrading jail cell because he got embarrassed by a comment made in "his courtroom" by a woman. It makes me sick that a guy like this is even in a position of authority. It reminds me of little Cartman of South Park whacking people in the shin with his baton saying, "Respect my authority!" Anyhow, you can put me on that list of pissed-off-at-the-judge people.
Terry G. Vincent
If it does, the text should read, "Judge Kramer, you are the architect of your own misfortune."
Broad judicial discretion given to judges can easily translate into broad judicial abuse--not uncommon in the civil arena of law. Criminal law has tighter constraints to control the conduct of "ALL" parties in an action.
I understand that Kramer is a pro tem currently, and God save the public if he moves into a full judgeship and is not made to understand the principles of and carry out the code of conduct as outlined under Canon 3, Arizona Code of Judicial Conduct.
If I were to appear before Kramer's court, and he told me to "shut up" in the same manner as Bonnie Scherer, I, too, would be spending the next 24 hours at Madison Street Jail. We cannot tolerate a judge who must wield his or her abusive authority to restrain those before them in such a minor case. There is no "honorable" status for a judge who cannot control himself or herself in his or her own court. I would speak my mind and be heard out of frustration, too!
As we used to say in the military when under the command of idiot officers, "Sir, I salute the uniform and the respect it deserves, not necessarily the person in it!"
In this case, I will respect the symbol and meaning of the robe, but not the man in it! After three years on pro tem status, Judge Kramer is obviously still not ready to be a full judge.
I was quite interested in the article "Sitting Petty." It was well-written, and I am glad you took the time to put Bonnie Scherer's story into print. When there are judges who are supposed to serve the people who turn around and behave in such a disgraceful manner, it is important that the people know about it.
I especially like the part in the article where you mention the judge lamenting the loss of "the respect and the decorum of the court." I don't suppose that he stopped to think that his words and actions were the real cause of the loss of the decorum and the dignity of the court.
Shaun L. Williams
It's obvious Mr. Kramer would have been more comfortable on the bench someplace in the Deep South, maybe in 1949. That way he could toss people in jail, throw away the key and have a few laughs about it down at the local gas station, while he and his pals are watching the new lift go up and down. This guy is an insult to the legal profession. I hope he pulls that kind of stunt on the wrong person someday--and then learns a little something about humility.
I liked the article on Judge Chris Kramer, but I didn't care for his short temper. I don't know if the woman was abusive before he let her have it, but if she wasn't, then he deserves to spend a night in jail, too. He lost his temper too quickly and then really lost it when he told her to shut up. The final straw was sentencing her to a night in jail. That was a bad move both politically and humanely.
He should spend a night in the county lockup, and then maybe he'll have a better idea of what happens when he goes off the deep end.
I dislike just about everything about your magazine, but I have to give credit where credit is due. Paul Rubin's article "A Season on the Rink" (April 22) was one of the best articles I've ever read. It was honest, concise, informative and unbiased. I am a Sports Illustrated subscriber, and this article ranks up there with some of the best.
I've come to expect very little from Howard Seftel's snoozy restaurant reviews over the years. He consistently displays a profound lack of knowledge of food preparation, resorts to banal ethnic cliches and recycles his slim repertoire of adjectives to the point of torturing his readers--even made-up ones, such as the aforementioned "snoozy."