Louisville Magazine

MAR 2012

Louisville Magazine is Louisville's city magazine, covering Louisville people, lifestyles, politics, sports, restaurants, entertainment and homes. Includes a monthly calendar of events.

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B [60] LOUISVILLE MAGAZINE 3.12 ench Approaching the Te pathway to becoming a judge, purists say, should be untainted by politics, whether it's the secretive politics of appointment or election politics. But proponents on both sides of the issue can agree on one thing: What do purists know, anyway? Here's the dirty truth. Law- yers are smarter than you and I. Tey and they alone are uniquely qualified to deal with the archaic and arcane particu- lars that comprise the Ameri- can legal system. As such, when it comes to choosing judges, a reasonable society cannot leave those weighty decisions to the rabble marking ballots in a voting booth. Letting uninformed voters pick our legislative and executive branch is one thing, but we simply cannot let know-nothings dictate who sits on the bench. Tose deci- sions are best left to lawyers — whether they be commission- ers or governors — who are properly informed and thereby best qualified to say. So says one side in the now revitalized elected-vs.-appoint- ed judiciary debate. J ane, you ignorant elitist sl*t. What's really true is this: A rattlesnake is a rattlesnake. If you think appointing judges will remove politics from the equation, you should lay off the Lortab. Deep in the heart of our profound American political experiment lies the individual's right to access said political system. Only an elitist would exempt the judiciary because it's "over the people's heads." Public ignorance of the judicial system and its practitioners notwithstanding, conducting the selection process in the open is preferable to turning it over to insiders and sycophants. As Lord Acton said: "Every- thing secret degenerates, even the administration of justice; nothing is safe that does not show how it can bear discus- sion and publicity."

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