Monday, January 21, 2008

Why I Write

After reading a lot of angry postings on this blog over the past couple of days, it's been very tempting to just shut down the entirety of this blog and let the media keep bashing the D.A.'s office day in and day out without anyone responding to it.

I've gotten responses on this blog from people stating that the State of Texas isn't entitled to a fair a jury trial, and I guess some people feel that the D.A.'s office isn't entitled to defend itself when its being called racist, sexist, and everything else under the sun.

I've been an ADA. Some folks think that I still am one. I'm not going to answer that question. I'm not trying to "dodge responsibility" as one blogger wrote. I just don't feel like having my name out there and dealing with the scrutiny into my private life as other people have over the past couple of weeks.

My time at the Harris County District Attorney's Office is a time that I am proud of. I feel like I helped people that I had never met before on a daily basis. I did so on a completely race-neutral basis, and I have/will have finished it with a mind more open (and yet, saddened) to what life is like for people who have lived life much differently (and much less priviledged) than I have.

The ADAs who continue to work there are good people, and they all enter into that job with a youthful desire to "save the world" one case at a time. If the media and others are going to call them all racist and tell them that they all need to be fired, well, somebody needs to point out that this just isn't the case.

The defense bar of Harris County does an equally good job. They defend their clients rights, and I've never seen a defense attorney who believed in his client's innocence give up without a fight. I started this blog to defend both the prosecutors and the defense attorneys who go to work every day for much less money than they could ever make in the civil world. Trust me, I know what criminal defense attorneys make! And in Harris County, Texas, the term "court appointed attorney" should never be considered a dirty word.

I didn't really expect this blog to be of much interest to anybody other than those of us who practice at the CJC. And because of some of the outside attention, I may just take the blog down completely. That's still up for debate.

For those of you who've read and posted, just know that I started this as a sincere "thank you" to all of you for the jobs you do -- day in and day out.

In my opinion (to borrow from James Bond), nobody does it better.


Anonymous said...

Mr. Blogger Host -
Are you kidding me? I have enjoyed reading the tete-a- tete. The very one and the same tete-a- tete that you proclaim to like and seek and the purpose of your blogging efforts. Before you go into exile, I'd like to have my one minute of fame in blogger heaven. If you are what you say and you believe what you claim, then this defeatus attitude stands to contradict your modus operandi? You ride in with a red flag in one hand and you are contemplating riding out with a white flag in the other hand? For those of you not schooled or familiar with medieval combat, the red flag signified battle, warning, beware, defending. The white flag signified truce, defeat, surrender. Isn't the purpose of a blog to welcome a warring of opinions? A tipping of the scales? I personally want the scales to tip one way and then the other and throughout the process, force my brain to find a solution to balance them. The imbalance forces the brain into the resolve mode and in the interim we are enriched, enlightened, ensconced, educated, developed and no longer picketing or reporting on the sidewalk in front of the court house or CJC but inside presenting our case with conviction and passion on either side no matter which side.Take a stand not the stand. The scales are one side conviction opposition, the other, conviction defense. With the same dynamic the electrons in our brain are scurrying from left brain to right brain exciting response. I welcome questioning. It is the silence that imparts no learning, no growth. ( Questions about topics and identity mean someone is reading. Someone is being awakened. Someone is feeling threatened. Someone is willing to want to know even more) The complexities in life are what makes life interesting. Mr. Blogger host,Who cares if toes are stepped on here? Who cares if eleven voices vs one voice? As a former ADA and presumably present criminal defense attorney, you should welcome those "eleven" voices for they only serve to bring more attention to your "one" voice. You should also know that as long as there is that ONE voice remaining that nothing is decided 100%. You know that one voice with the right training and or passion can out sing the other eleven. Hell, I witness that in Church on Sunday and I have witnessed it in courtrooms, boardrooms and bedrooms. Who cares there is eleven to one? As long as there is one, there can't be none! Do you follow me? Please do not make me go through historical accounts pulling out the most noted martyrs and "bravehearts" that stood face to face, toe to toe with their opposers and never flinched or conceded to beliefs of which they did not ascribe. The media are sensationlistic junkies. You know it, I know it. Most of breathing America knows it. And most of us have heard the old saying that "one bad apple doesn't spoil the whole bunch." Only someone with a narrow and or gullible mind or hidden agenda, would draw to concur that all are quilty by mere employment association, geographical circumstance or otherwise. I concur with you that there are decent ADA's and that includes some that are running for judicial seats. Racism, sexism, criminal impropriety, etc., are found in all walks of life and in more than one singled out building in downtown Houston. If not, your fight or my fight, statistics alone could prove it so. If a few of employees from XYZ Corporation got together and secretly held séances in the lobby, does that mean that the other 1000 employees were believers of the para normal or the owner of XWY Corporation was a wiccan? Just because the media implies it so, does not make it so. All the so called "action" groups grandstanding and calling for resignations love the media lime light. Come on. This is their 10 mins of fame. I mean, before any solid evidence was presented, several of these groups were already on TV with their horse and pony show for the media, by the media. I could comfortably argue that "some" of those same people are guilty of the same behavior, morality dysfunction and bad judgment at some point in their lives. I still laugh when I think of a certain local ABC reporter that showed a photo of young woman wearing tight running shorts and tight cropped top and flashing the photo with a fire and brimstone tone claiming that it was the first display of pornography found. Really Ted? Pornography? Then half the women at Randalls on Saturnday morning should be arrested as well. Perhaps even myself. Not concluding that there was not more lude incriminating photos but that jogger photo makes my intended point. A defender of person or purpose? Are they not really one and the same? Let me surmise and close in saying that the " flag" has not touched the ground and I hope that you will reconsider before riding off into an exodus defeatus sunset. ~JAGJO~

Anonymous said...

I agree with you, AHCL, and absolutely do not think that you should take down this blog. The ADAs should not be painted with the broad "racist" brush that the idiots love to wield about and that causes good people to quiver. Man, to hear and read what's being said and posted at the Houston Chronicle is mind-boggling. What is happening is truly sad to all of the earnest, hard-working ADAs (with, no question, a few "bad apples" mixed in...just as in any other profession). It's politics gone amuck. I hope that you continue to blog about what is really going on. By the way, I am just a humble civilian, but I care.

Murray Newman said...

Anon 1 & 2,
I can't tell you how much I appreciate the kind words, and I dare say you have both inspired me to at least keep this puppy up and running for a little bit longer. I'm glad you all are enjoying the blog, and I think you are both correct. I think people do need to know what's going on at the courthouse.
I'll explain in my next post my concerns about posting.
But please know that I truly appreciate both of you for taking the time to write what you did.

Jason said...

Keep the blog up (if you can). People need to know what goes on beyond their four walls and the TV screen.

Episode Seven: The Voters Awaken - A One Act -Sci-Fi Play

SCENE:  The Death Star orbits over Downtown Houston. [INTERIOR] The Imperial Council Chambers. EMPRESS OGG sits at the head of a long table ...