We opened our bar poll the other day, and read the instructions and the Rules of Ethics that were attached, and were given pause to ponder. Perhaps our dear readers who actually open a rule book and read case law (we proudly admit we don't do such foolish things) can answer this legal conundrum.
Here is the rule in question:
RULES OF PROFESSIONAL CONDUCT4-8 MAINTAINING THE INTEGRITY OF THE PROFESSION
RULE 4-8.2 JUDICIAL AND LEGAL OFFICIALS
(a) Impugning Qualifications and Integrity of Judges or Other Officers.
A lawyer shall not make a statement that the lawyer knows to be false or with reckless disregard as to its truth or falsity concerning the qualifications or integrity of a judge, mediator, arbitrator, adjudicatory officer, public legal officer, juror or member of the venire, or candidate for election or appointment to judicial or legal office.
Assessments by lawyers are relied on in evaluating the professional or personal fitness of persons being considered for election or appointment to judicial office and to public legal offices, such as attorney general, prosecuting attorney, and public defender. Expressing honest and candid opinions on such matters contributes to improving the administration of justice.
Conversely, false statements by a lawyer can unfairly undermine public confidence in the administration of justice.
To maintain the fair and independent administration of justice, lawyers are encouraged to continue traditional efforts to defend judges and courts unjustly criticized.
Here is our question:
Can we write and publish a parody that makes fun of Judge Ivan Hernandez and his inability to recognize his wife who is also his campaign treasurer?
The last line of the comment encourages lawyers to defend judges who are unjustly criticized.
Careful readers know we leap to the defense of judges as often as President Bush reads a book. But that is because we usually believe the criticism to be valid.
We think we are on safe ground posting our little parody. However, since we admit to actually reading case law as often as the president cracks a novel, we will take all the advice our learned and dear readers care to offer.
See You In Court NOT reading the FLW’S.