Judge: “I’m a Fool!”

I read a news story this morning about a Texas judge who ruled in a decision two weeks ago that the state of Texas should exempt the sale of oil and gas extraction equipment from the state sales tax and is now reconsidering his decision.

The article says, “On Thursday, the ever-colorful Dietz recalled that he had been reading The Wall Street Journal over a breakfast of oat gruel when he saw that some Texas judge had recently overturned 50 years of tax law and crippled the state budget.

“‘What fool did that?’ Dietz said he wondered as he read the story. ‘I’ll be damned; it’s me. I worry about being in error.’ ”

This highlights the reason that Texas home schoolers and those who believe in parental rights should be aggressively involved in the election of our judges in Texas. Judges are not infallible, and sometimes, maybe often, they make wrong decisions. The interesting thing is that judges can change their minds when they are confronted with public reaction to their decisions.

Judge Dietz is reconsidering his decision because there is a public uproar about his decision and the fact that it would cost the state billions of dollars.

In a similar way, I talked recently to a county court-at-law judge, running for reelection, about his responses to the THSC PAC Judicial Candidate Questionnaire. He said that if he were a legislator, he would vote against a measure to end abortion and against the Texas Parental Rights Restoration Act, which is designed to end the lawsuit abuse of fit parents through the use of the Grandparent Access Statute. When I asked him about both, he explained that the question about abortion was too broad, and on the parental rights issue, he believed that grandparents have a right to have access to their grandchildren.

This, of course, gave me an opportunity to explain how the law is being abused by non-parents who disagree with parenting decisions of fit parents. He was unmoved. His opponent did not have a problem understanding the issues, and he, therefore, received my endorsement and that of the THSC PAC as well. We plan to work hard to make sure the challenger wins.

Sometimes judges only “understand” an issue when they realize that the public strongly disagrees with them and that it may cause them problems in their reelection. Too often parents and their fundamental, constitutional right to direct the care, control, and education of their children are an insignificant issue to judicial authorities, and that must change. I hope you will talk to the judicial candidates in your county about these issues as well.

Comments

  1. anonymous says

    I would like to know the other side of the argument. While I wholeheartedly support parents rights, I also know of children who are being kept from their grandparents because of differing religious beliefs. In these cases, the children are not allowed to be exposed to the grandparents because of their Christian values. So, my question is how common are these grandparent abuses really? If it’s only an isolated case here and there, doesn’t it make sense to cast the law on the side of the child who may be being dragged into a cult or something by a parent? I guess it’s hard to determine which violations are happening more often.

    • says

      The reality is that these cases are VERY numerous and the reason The Family Law Foundation, which is the lobbying arm of the Family Law Attorneys in Texas, is very opposed to changes in the law – because there is a great deal of money involved in such cases. As Christians we would lament a child being withheld from the grandparents because of their Christian beliefs however, the fundamental question is does a fit parent have the right to make parenting decisions for their children? Obviously we believe that to be true and in fact, it is the foundation of our right to choose to teach our children at home.

      When we give judges the right to decide what they think is “in the best interest of the children” in such cases we open the door to violation of families and children simply because a non-parent disagrees with parenting decisions of a fit parent. We might turn your question around and ask if we should allow grandparents who are NOT Christians an opportunity to use these cases to take children from a fit parents who want to raise their children as Christians.

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