04/02/2005: "Rule of Law" MUST be respected...
"The following statement was released by New York State Bar Association President Kenneth G. Standard of Chappaqua (Epstein, Becker, & Green, PC):
"While emotions are still raw and fresh for people on all sides of the Terry Schiavo matter, threats against judges, elected officials, the lawyers or members of the two families that have been devastated by this tragedy are not appropriate, are not to be tolerated, and must stop immediately!
The judges in the Terri Schiavo case fulfilled their Constitutional and judicial duty to make decisions on difficult issues that were in dispute. No matter what your personal feelings may be, respect for the rule of law requires that we abide by those decisions. Judges must not fall victim to popular sentiment or base their rulings on emotion.
If a majority of Americans believe that laws should be amended or new ones enacted, then they have every right to take their views to Congress or their state legislatures and work for change. And then, again, it will be up to our courts to determine whether any new laws pass Constitutional muster. As we learned in our social studies classes, it is the synergy of these three co- equal branches of government that is fundamental to the effectiveness of our democracy.
We do not favor any measure that would shut down the voices of those who criticize judicial decisions or laws, or endanger free speech. But our criticisms should not seek to incite hatred or violence against our judges, legislators or members of our state and federal executive branches. In the serious national dialogue on a myriad of public and social issues that have been exposed by this tragedy, respect for the rule of law, reasonable people and reasoned voices must prevail if our democracy is to continue to thrive."
NYSBA is the nation's largest voluntary state bar association."
Courtesy of US NEWS Wire
Karen on 04.02.05 @ 04:32 AM CST