The count down to justice continues… In the Fourth District Circuit Court of Appeals in south Florida, the judges publish their rulings only once a week, on Wednesday mornings. It has now been 5 weeks since the three member “Merit” panel met and made it’s decision on my case, but I will not know what that decision was until they publish their written decision. And so, it is yet another Tuesday night that I will go to sleep wondering whether the morning will bring news that the legal monkey is finally off my back. Try as I might not to dwell on the negative, the continued burden of this case weighs heavily in my mind and heart. It is a sad situation that never had to be, yet at the same time, it was inevitable. Math was never my strong suit, and perhaps that is at least one reason why I had not been able to see the simple equation that set this nightmare into motion:
|PARTY “A” =||PARTY “B” =|
|+ bitterness||+ trusting, forgiving nature|
|+ sense of entitlement||+ believes no one is “entitled” to anything that they haven’t earned or at the expense of other’s rights|
|+ law degree, member of Florida Bar: 20 years experience dealing with Florida legal system, connections in clerk’s office, knows system’s weaknesses and how to use them.||+ no legal education nor relevant experience.|
|+ forced into early retirement from civil service job||+ self-made entrepreneur with long history of intellectually satisfying and financially rewarding business.|
|+ opportunity to obtain assets, status, power and revenge through appointment as fiduciary.||+ believes revenge is foolish & morally wrong|
|+ believes fiduciary duty, rules of attorney ethics, and “inconvenient” laws apply only to others.||+ strong sense of ethics, personal responsibility and that one’s good name & honor must be earned & is only “possession” of true value.|
|+ lacks willingness to recognize own wrongs or the unfair, harmful effect of those wrongs on others.||+ Self-Esteem not tied to superficial facades and holds no interest in having power over others’ lives.|
|+ lives in south Florida, where case is being heard, in relatively good physical health (able to walk, drive, travel, lead a “normal” active life.||+ lives in Ohio (1500 miles away) and can’t travel due to being confined to bed for last 7 years.|
|+ lack of ability to feel true empathy.||+ in a particularly vulnerable position where person “A” had sole possession and control over critical medical information that could be used either to help or hinder “B’s” chance of survival.|
Now give judicial oversight of PERSON “A” and determination of what to do when “A” breaches fiduciary duty and willfully engages in a number of serious incidents of misconduct that caused serious harm to PERSON “B” (and “B’s” family) in the hands of the trial court which has for years held position as one of the top five “Judicial Hellholes” in America, and in particular put this case in the hands of one judge who has been fodder for late night talk show hosts as the “Weeping” Judge and for the last two years since he resigned as a judge, has been battling a law suit against him for his own (alleged) breaches of fiduciary duty and fraud in regards to an 82 year old neighbor, and our second judge who was subsequently forced to step down as “Chief Judge” due to political pressure over a number of (alleged) legal and ethical violations (yet still presides over this case at the trial level), and where more than a dozen other judges and prosecutors have been either forced to resign after being found guilty of various legal and ethical misconduct or in an effort to avoid facing trial for such charges or whom are still currently under active investigation for either ethical or even criminal misconduct.
Yet, despite all this, I still believe in our system of justice and I believe that Florida’s Fourth District Court of Appeals in particular takes their job and their duty to the honest citizens who rely on them to ensure that they’re legal rights are protected, that the “bad guys” are held accountable, and that “justice” is done as well as humanly possible. I pray that THIS time, my faith is well placed.
On a much more positive and fun note, I give you tonight’s freebies: Part 3 of my multi-part series, “Neue Melamine”. Enjoy!
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