Monday, February 10, 2014

Even Smart People say Stupid Things

Even very accomplished and smart people can say stupid things.  In this case, it comes in the form of incredulity.  The person behind it is Suzanne Hildebrand, who is definitely no slouch.  From her bio and the Express-News:
Suzanne is the founder of MADD in Texas, was appointed to serve on the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Officer Standards & Education (TCLEOSE) by Governor Bill Clements, and currently serves on the Texas Council on Cardiovascular Disease and Stroke appointed by Governor Rick Perry. She also served on the Bexar County Jail Population Committee. While Suzanne’s main passion is stroke care and issues, her blog also addresses patient care, grief, political issues and items of general interest.
Hildebrand's incredulity comes about because of her shock that the Express-News endorsed Therese Huntzinger in the Democratic Primary for DA.

It's hard to take Hildebrand seriously in this case.  Why?  Her post starts out like this: I am an Independent, although I am philosophically more Republican than Democrat. Over the years, I have campaigned for candidates of both parties.

That's fine.  But taken together with how she describes the other Democratic DA candidate you start to get a different picture: Correctly, the Express-News found Nico LaHood, a drug dealing, gun toting felon to be unqualified. Don’t you honestly wonder how he ever became a lawyer?

On a personal note, I'm going to guess that LaHood, like many other people, managed to pick up the pieces of their life/lives and make something of themselves.  From the way Hildebrand describes LaHood he sounds like Tony Montana from Scarface.  I will admit to some incredulity at this moment.  Does Hildebrand believe that no one can learn from their past mistakes?  To me this is exactly what is wrong with the criminal justice system today.  We spout these feel good lines about rehabilitation, but never really believe that anyone arrested of certain crimes are capable of bettering their lives.  And thereby, these people are forever branded by some with scarlet letters for the rest of their lives.  But I digress...

It's what Hildebrand says about Huntzinger that causes some pause:
Even minor research, or Google search, reveals the truth about Huntzinger’s pursuit of “a witness-tampering indictment against a well-known criminal defense lawyer”. It was little more than a  political witch hunt launched by Huntzinger and her ally, an ultra-partisan politician and former San Antonio city councilman, who then served as foreman of the Grand Jury.

When asked about the sufficiency of the evidence in the case, Huntzinger said she had enough evidence to INDICT but that she would NEED TO OBTAIN MORE EVIDENCE TO CONVICT.

If Huntzinger’s attitude in that case doesn’t scare even a brave man or woman, it should. In fact, it sends cold shivers up and down my spine. Because of Huntzinger’s actions in that case, the Court appointed a Special Prosecutor to handle it. The Special Prosecutor promptly DISMISSED the case because of a TOTAL LACK OF EVIDENCE. This case should never have been brought and it proves Huntzinger to be uniquely UNQUALIFIED  to serve as District Attorney.

Huntzinger is a clear and present danger to every law-abiding citizen in Bexar County.

The Express-News should not have endorsed either of these unqualified candidates.
Why do I say pause, because after reading another account of the incident (cause I wasn't around for it), I have to wonder if Hildebrand has lied or if the truth is somewhere in between.  In addition, there are instances where a prosecutor does have enough evidence to indict someone, but to get the jury to that final conviction proves tough, if not impossible, without additional evidence.  From the sound of it, Ms. Hildebrand seems to argue that anyone indicted is automatically guilty.

But what really goes over the top is labeling Huntzinger a "clear and present danger."  Really?  Huntzinger is going to incite imminent lawless action in violation of the First Amendment?

Hildebrand titled her post Unbelievable Political Endorsement.  Obviously Ms. Hildebrand isn't supporting either of the Democratic DA candidates.  And going on that, plus that she has admitted to being more aligned with the Republican Party I have to assume she is supporting Susan Reed.  If the rumors about Reed are true, what I find unbelievable is a founder and former President of MADD supporting her reelection.

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