Federal Judge Uses Penn Law Lecture to be Really Racist
It’s not been too long since U.S. Appellate Judge Edith Jones was seen as a short-list candidate for Republican nominees to the Supreme Court. After her Feb. 20 talk at Penn’s law school, that’s no longer the case. A misconduct complaint has been brought against her based on those comments—which weren’t recorded, but which five students and one attorney who attended have signed affidavits saying they witnessed.
Jones is accused of saying that certain “racial groups like African-Americans and Hispanics are predisposed to crime,” and are “prone to commit acts of violence” and be involved in more violent and “heinous” crimes than people of other ethnicities.
The judge also allegedly said Mexicans would prefer to be on death row in the United States than serving prison terms in their native country, and that it’s an insult for the U.S. to look to the laws of other countries such as Mexico.
The complaint also states that Jones said defendants’ claims of racism, innocence, arbitrariness, and violations of international law and treaties are just “red herrings” used by opponents of the death penalty, and that claims of “mental retardation” by capital defendants disgust her. The fact that those defendants were convicted of a capital crime is sufficient to prove they are not “mentally retarded,” the complaint alleges Jones to have said.
Students, AP reports, were very offended by the judge’s comments. Hey, it’s not like she holds the power of life or death over criminal defendants! (Pause) Uh-oh.