"If the judges interpret the laws themselves, and suffer none else to interpret, they may easily make, of the laws, [a shredded] shipman's hose!" - King James I of England, around 1616.

“No class of the community ought to be allowed freer scope in the expression or publication of opinions as to the capacity, impartiality or integrity of judges than members of the bar. They have the best opportunities of observing and forming a correct judgment. They are in constant attendance on the courts. Hundreds of those who are called on to vote never enter a court-house, or if they do, it is only at intervals as jurors, witnesses or parties. To say that an attorney can only act or speak on this subject under liability to be called to account and to be deprived of his profession and livelihood by the very judge or judges whom he may consider it his duty to attack and expose, is a position too monstrous to be entertained for a moment under our present system,” Justice Sharwood in Ex Parte Steinman and Hensel, 95 Pa 220, 238-39 (1880).

“This case illustrates to me the serious consequences to the Bar itself of not affording the full protections of the First Amendment to its applicants for admission. For this record shows that [the rejected attorney candidate] has many of the qualities that are needed in the American Bar. It shows not only that [the rejected attorney candidate] has followed a high moral, ethical and patriotic course in all of the activities of his life, but also that he combines these more common virtues with the uncommon virtue of courage to stand by his principles at any cost.

It is such men as these who have most greatly honored the profession of the law. The legal profession will lose much of its nobility and its glory if it is not constantly replenished with lawyers like these. To force the Bar to become a group of thoroughly orthodox, time-serving, government-fearing individuals is to humiliate and degrade it.” In Re Anastaplo, 18 Ill. 2d 182, 163 N.E.2d 429 (1959), cert. granted, 362 U.S. 968 (1960), affirmed over strong dissent, 366 U.S. 82 (1961), Justice Black, Chief Justice Douglas and Justice Brennan, dissenting.

" I do not believe that the practice of law is a "privilege" which empowers Government to deny lawyers their constitutional rights. The mere fact that a lawyer has important responsibilities in society does not require or even permit the State to deprive him of those protections of freedom set out in the Bill of Rights for the precise purpose of insuring the independence of the individual against the Government and those acting for the Government”. Lathrop v Donohue, 367 US 820 (1961), Justice Black, dissenting.

"The legal profession must take great care not to emulate the many occupational groups that have managed to convert licensure from a sharp weapon of public defense into blunt instrument of self-enrichment". Walter Gellhorn, "The Abuse of Occupational Licensing", University of Chicago Law Review, Volume 44 Issue 1, September of 1976.

“Because the law requires that judges no matter how corrupt, who do not act in the clear absence of jurisdiction while performing a judicial act, are immune from suit, former Judge Ciavarella will escape liability for the vast majority of his conduct in this action. This is, to be sure, against the popular will, but it is the very oath which he is alleged to have so indecently, cavalierly, baselessly and willfully violated for personal gain that requires this Court to find him immune from suit”, District Judge A. Richard Caputo in H.T., et al, v. Ciavarella, Jr, et al, Case No. 3:09-cv-00286-ARC in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, Document 336, page 18, November 20, 2009. This is about judges who were sentencing kids to juvenile detention for kickbacks.

Monday, February 8, 2016

New York Attorney General discriminates against his employee, a female appellate attorney

Telecommuting jobs are on the rise in this country.

A female appellate attorney who worked for the New York State Attorney General wanted to telecommute due to her disability.

I have done appellate work for years, I can speak from experience, and I can state as an expert that appellate attorneys work with PUBLIC records - court decisions and records of court proceedings below.

There is no secrecy involved in their jobs requiring their presence on the job, and if certain sealed records are (rarely) part of the record on appeal, that particular part of the record can be reviewed by coming to the office - otherwise an appellate attorney can work from home 100%, without any problems.

Especially if she is dealing with appeals in federal courts where filings are electronic, and can be done instantly from any place on the planet with an Internet connection.  

Attorney Fischer, due to her disability, wanted just that, to work from home.

That was certainly a type of reasonable accommodation that Americans With Disabilities Act.

Her male boss, Attorney Schneiderman, an elected public official who is sworn to protect federal Constitution and federal laws - including rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act, gave her whopping 3 days a month to work from home - and then fired her when she was on an unpaid disability leave.

Once again, Schneiderman was under the mandate of the Americans with Disabilities Act to accommodate attorney Fischer's disability, and providing a 100% telecommuting job was certainly a reasonable accommodation.

Instead, Schneiderman fired her while she was on an unpaid disability leave (that she was, likely, forced to take because she could not 100% telecommute) and fought her tooth and claw when she sued him for discrimination.

Well, Schneiderman's intermediary appeal failed, and the case is back in the district court, awaiting court-ordered "mediation".

Maybe, Schneiderman will see the light now?

Maybe, Schneiderman will see that it was easier, fairer and certainly cheaper for New York taxpayers to have Ms. Fischer work 100% from home, as her type of job certainly allows her to do.

Is it reasonable to expect fairness and fiscal frugality from New York State Attorney General?

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