Nov 20, 2007 Praised be Marc Randazza
Image from Library of Congress’s website.
One of my favorite people is someone I have not yet met in person. He is Marc Randazza, a First Amendment lawyer in Florida who blogs expletives more often than I, because, like I, he often gets fed up with all the times that other people urinate on others’ rights. To not use an expletive at that time is often to be doing gymnastics with a Thesaurus.
I do not say these nice things about Marc as a response to his saying nice things about me, or else I would have done so long ago. Marc’s writing is often insightful and riveting, and often hilarious. Moreover, when he and I speak by phone or by email, we tend to be very much in sync. Marc and I both are First Amendment Lawyers Association members, and I look forward to seeing him when I finally go to another FALA conference (which takes more planning now that I have a twenty-month old boy) or get to his Florida neck of the woods.
Because I tend not to spend more than fifteen to thirty minutes perusing the news and blogosphere daily, I rely on people like Marc to confront me with essential stories that might not make the front page. On the gag factor front, Marc emailed me with his recent blog entry about the Texas man who was executed sooner rather than later (if at all if it had come to that) only because Texas Court of Criminal Appeals presiding judge Sharon Keller refused a lawyer’s urging to wait for his twenty to thirty-minute late filing caused by a computer that went on the fritz.
Michael Richards was executed as a result of being denied filing his pleading twenty to thirty minutes late, even though it appears some other judges would have opened the courthouse doors for the filing had they been informed of the request in the first place, but they were not so informed. Fortunately, now the court has procedures for electronically filing pleadings, and several judges spoke out publicly against this travesty of justice. However, Michael Richards was executed when he was, because Judge Keller would not open the door. Thanks, Marc Randazza for giving a damn to stand on the mountaintop to express your rage against such travesties of justice, and to insist that they stop. I’m happy to be there with you. Jon Katz.