Sunday, December 31, 2006

Liberalism Under Attack By Judge

St. Louis judge's outspoken book causing controversy

A liberal-bashing book by a veteran St. Louis judge is to become available publicly this week, but it is already causing a stir in political and legal circles — and prompting some to say it could cost him his job...

In a recent interview, however, Dierker defended the book's themes, welcomed the criticism and said his own lawyers say the book doesn't break any rules.

The first chapter was heavily discussed at the recent holiday party for the Women Lawyers' Association of Greater St. Louis. One judge who attended noted, "Everyone's just pretty much shocked." Association President Lynn Ricci said, "I have read it. I find it disturbing." She also said, "I frankly think that it is a shame that this very smart man has lowered himself to name-calling."...

He may face repercussions in the courtroom. Lawyers could cite the book as evidence that Dierker is unable to be impartial on issues involving women, or liberals, or the American Civil Liberties Union, for example, forcing his removal from cases.

Dierker responds that he is always fair in the courtroom, and paraphrases the book: "Conservative judges are much more likely to know where their biases are and how to draw the line."...

Dierker said that he had to be "polemical" in the book to get attention, and said "controversy is inevitable." But, he said, the controversy may draw
attention to an issue that is permeating the law and the judiciary. "If I wrote
a law review article, who would read it?" he asked.

"I think unquestionably, the more controversy, the more interest it generates from the mundane to the philosophical," he said.

Dierker said criticism of the book may be unpleasant. But, he adds, "If you dish it out, you have to be able to take it."

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