Picture of a judge's wigThe Judge RAVES!Picture of a judge's wig

Date: 01/11/11

Sometimes, Just Sometimes, There Is Some Justice

I feel a bit iffy about posting this in the Raves section, but sometimes small victories need to be rejoiced in. Is that grammatical?

Anyway, having said all manner of nasty things about the judiciary here over the last twelve months (and before to some extent), I think it only right to remark upon a case where a judge has got it more-or-less right.

Unfortunately for us here in the Untied Condom of Great Austeria, the judge is in the US. In the state of Oregon, to be precise.

Firstly, I would like you to read this news story.

Yep, it's another case of loony fundamentalists putting their own self-righteousness and superstition before the well-being (or even the life) of their own child.

There have been so many cases like this, especially in the boondocks, where the loopies seem to be able to hide out in the same way that one would - if one were a tree - hide in a forest.

All too often, these perverted killers-through-neglect have managed to get minuscule sentences - and sometimes no punishment at all - because they have been able to play The God Card™ to intimidate juries and judges. This was just such a case in point from a couple of years ago.

Unlike Judge Howard of Wisconsin, however, Dale and Shannon Hickman had the misfortune (for them) of coming up against a jury which took a remarkably short time to convict them, and of standing before a judge who wasn't buying any of their bullshit.

Waving away the customary protestations of the defence (sorry, defense) that these morally-vacuous noodles were being persecuted for their 'faith', Judge Robert Herndon sentenced them to six and a quarter years in prison, followed by three years of probation.

It is something of a pity that these two child-killers will still be able to breed again after they are released - indeed, they have produced another little mind and body for them to corrupt and subvert in the time between their crime and their trial - and even more of a pity that the so-called Followers Of Christ enjoy the usual tax-exempt status and other privileges accorded to churches; it is also a pity that Judge Herndon confined himself to the absolute minimum penalty that the state of Oregon sanctions for such a wanton act.

But nonetheless, it is a small victory for justice and against the cowardly and self-regarding cultists who claim that their 'faith' gives them - literally - the power of life and death over children. Their own children especially.

(Tip of the wig - once more - to Hemant Mehta, the Friendly Atheist)