Black Robes, White Injustice

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(The people's attorney, Alton Maddox, Jr.)

[Column: I Write What I Like] In the field of comparative analysis, I find it difficult to equate the behavior of state comptroller-elect  with the behavior of governor-elect in New York. One is facing impeachment and the other is receiving immunity. This is abnormal psychology.

State Comptroller Alan Hevesi allowed a state worker to chauffeur his wife on state time. Governor-elect Eliot Spitzer refuses to disclose the Tawana Brawley files eighteen years later in order to protect his compadre, former state Attorney General Robert Abrams, who had railroaded me and defamed Tawana.

Nearly 20 years later, this case has more twists and turns than the Indianapolis 500. The facts fail to fit New York’s conclusion of a “hoax.� In other words, New York’s slip continues to drop below its hemline. Dropped slips cause more twists and turns than a dress code permits.

This has been New York’s behavior since Tawana was found on November 28, 1987 with “nigger� and “KKK� written on her body, which was smeared with feces. She was unconscious. Four days earlier, she had been abducted. Abrams failed to document her whereabouts during this period. Yet, he, and not the grand jury, found a “hoax.�

Soon after the Civil War, Congress determined that states could not be trusted to protect Blacks under the Reconstruction Amendments. Thus, Congress expanded the jurisdiction of federal courts to adjudicate claims of deprivations of civil rights under the Civil Rights Removal Act.

Federal courts are supposed to be sanctuaries for Blacks who are harassed in state special proceedings. Under these laws, Blacks were supposed to enjoy special preferences under the U.S. Constitution—move over affirmative action.
Justice Joseph P. Bradley of the U.S. Supreme Court announced the breach of the social contract after the Tilden-Hayes Compromise. For liability since 1877, see theory of quantum meruit. Reparations is a separate issue and has a different legal basis.

After a reign of legal terror by New York and after I had exhausted all probable state remedies, I sought refuge in the Brooklyn Federal Court in 2004. The civil rights action seeks a declaratory judgment and injunctive relief for due process and equal protection violations.

New York not only intended to permanently deny to me the right to earn a living but it also gave former Assistant District Attorney Steven Pagones, who was involved in Tawana’s kidnapping and rape, the legal weapons to seize her possessions and livelihood under color of law after the state destroyed her reputation.

After her mother, Glenda Brawley, was hounded out of the state and had to seek refuge elsewhere and since my fate has become intertwined with Tawana’s given my refusal to sell her out, I have had to assume the role, constructively, of parens patriae.

If the case reaches the discovery phase of the civil rights lawsuit, the files will have to be released and exposed, for the first time, to sunshine. New York dreads this possibility. This case provides for the anatomy of a state-sponsored cover-up. What is New York hiding?

Given this context, it is not surprising that New York would seek to exert great pressure on the White House and Congress through its senior and junior senators, Charles Schumer and Hillary Clinton, respectively. President-select George W. Bush is a willing participant since he is bent on an “original intent� construction of the U.S. Constitution.

Schumer is the ranking member of the Senate subcommittee for the selection of federal judges. Schumer and Clinton can also recommend persons for federal judgeships in New York. They are working with Bush to put “law and order� and “strict constructionist� federal judges in this state.

United States District Court Judge Nina Gershon was randomly selected to hear this lawsuit. She enjoys a liberal reputation. The lawsuit does not challenge prior, state proceedings. Instead, it asserts that attorneys, in New York, enjoy fewer post-disciplinary remedies than convicted felons enjoy in post-conviction proceedings.

Attorneys are sworn to maintain the status quo. They must be collared with short leashes since attorneys enjoy the exercise of subpoena powers. Many state and local commissions lack subpoena powers. Information is power. Thus, attorneys must be treated like parolees.

Since a law license is like an ATM machine, attorneys are willing to forfeit constitutional rights for an opportunity to hit the jackpot. A law license is better than a Lotto ticket. Thus, courts construe a law license as a privilege rather than a right.

A Black woman has no right to claim self-defense when a white man engages in sexual intercourse with her. The Missouri Supreme Court announced this rule on December 14, 1855 in Celia, A Slave. This rule will free the lacrosse players in the Duke rape case. Thus, no white man will ever go to prison for raping a Black woman.

President Thomas Jefferson repeatedly raped Sally Hennings in the White House while writing in “Notes on the State of Virginia� that Blacks “secrete less by the kidnies, and more by the glands of the skin, which gives them a strong and disagreeable odour.� What a hypocrite! If Judge Gershon had the courage to decide Maddox v. Prudenti et al, Civ Action No. 5444 (U.S.D.C., E.D.N.Y. 2004) without fear of incurring judicial wrath, she would readily decide it on the law and the facts. This would be a green light for me to take custody of the Brawley files. Judges, however, would look at her with daggers in their eyes.

Instead, I received this correspondence from Judge Gershon’s chambers: “This letter is to advise you that Judge Nina Gershon has recused herself from this case and Judge Brian M. Cogan has been assigned in her stead.� No party had made a recusal motion.

A judge must demonstrate a personal bias or a conflict-of-interest to support recusal. I doubt if Judge Gershon is guilty of either charge. My suspicion is that she was ordered to pull the trigger. She refused. Her only recourse was to bow out of the case.

I have no doubt that Judge Cogan will pull the trigger. Until he was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on May 4, 2006, he was a law partner of Robert Abrams at Stroock & Stroock & Lavan for more than a decade. This is an odious conflict-of-interest. I do not believe in coincidences.

“Stroock & Stroock & Lavan began as an old-line Jewish firm that represented many ‘Our Crowd’ families,� as described by Erwin Cherovsky’s “The Guide to New York Law Firms.� Top law firms have awesome powers in the attorney disciplinary process. I am David fighting Goliath and hoping for community reinforcements. This is a struggle for a principle which is necessary for the advancement of Blacks.

An attorney who has been suspended in a state court is still entitled to a hearing in federal court before any suspension occurs in federal court except if you are Alton Maddox. This was the effect of a decision and order of the Brooklyn Federal Court in December 1990. The language evidenced judicial animus.

Judges Jack Weinstein and Charles P. Sifton dissented. They cited a deprivation of due process in my suspension. Chief Judge Edward Korman of Brooklyn Federal Court, seemingly acting alone, decided, on August 28, 2006, that I am not entitled to a post-disciplinary hearing to present exculpatory evidence in federal court in order to negate a flawed disciplinary decision.

My continued pro bono representation of Blacks is, obviously, more unethical than whites committing felonies and, afterwards, embarking on legal careers. White felons are leaving prisons and being admitted to the New York and New Jersey bars after satisfying grievance committees that they now enjoy good character.

A white felon was convicted of armed robbery and engaging in a police shoot-out. Another white felon was convicted of attempting to murder his girlfriend and operating an illegal drug laboratory. Another felon left prison and became a housing court judge. They were admitted to practice law in New York.

Another list includes lawyers who went to prison and are now practicing law again. These lawyers were disciplined and reinstated after 1990 and they are now respected members of the New York bar. The slave codes explain the disparity in treatment. Blacks are “heathens� and beyond rehabilitation.

You know the fix is in when no Black politicians, no leading preachers nor leading activists will support your effort for reinstatement to practice law, especially since your only crime is perennially providing free legal services to poor and unpopular defendants in addition to representing the Black community on critical issues.

New York is warning any Black persons who seek to follow in my footsteps that Black support is shaky. The original intent of the Constitution is to deny to Blacks legal or political representation. There is a difference between a Black face and a Black voice.

Due process means elevating the right to be heard over the privilege to be seen. Brawley means that no Black adults with daughters or granddaughters can defend them once they become rape victims and the perpetrators are white men. If we embrace “original intent,� we must advise our children that they are still chattel and not persons.

Rev. Calvin Butts endorsed Eliot Spitzer for governor and Butts is now concerned about an unwarranted, personal assault on his feelings by the NYPD while Black legal warriors, like Chokwe Lumumba and myself, must scramble for our grits daily while perennially fighting white supremacy.

Long ago, the political establishment tagged me as the architect of the human rights struggle in New York. See also, Lucy Laney, Jo Ann Robinson, Robert Morris, Sr., Frederick L. McGhee, Belford Lawson and Charles Hamilton Houston. Black architects are never studied nor popularized. No building nor movement can get off the ground without an architect.

UAM’s weekly forum will host Steve Cokely of Los Angeles on Wednesday, November 15, 2006 at the Elks Plaza, 1068 Fulton Street (nr. Classon Ave.) in Brooklyn. Take the “C� train to Franklin Avenue.

An organized effort is afoot to punish me for my pro bono writings. I have been summoned to appear in the Grievance Committee for the Second & Eleventh Judicial Districts, Renaissance Plaza, 335 Adams Street, Suite 2400, Brooklyn, NY on Tuesday, November 21, 2006 at 2:00 p.m. for a disbarment “hearing.�

PWV Acquisition v. Maddox will appear on the calendar of Part A of the Manhattan Housing Court, 111 Centre Street in Manhattan in Room 523 on November 29, 2006 at 9:30 a.m. This is an eviction proceeding.


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