Now that I am retired having been many years a magistrate with a long awareness of the declining freedoms enjoyed by the ordinary citizen and a corresponding fear of the big brother state`s ever increasing encroachment on civil liberties I hope that my personal observations within these general parameters will be of interest to those with an open mind. Having been blogging with this title for many years against the rules of the Ministry of Justice my new found freedom should allow me to be less inhibited in these observations.

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Friday, 6 December 2013


Yesterday I commented on senior judicial figures who are reticent about making public their thoughts on some matters judicial until their pensions are finding their ways into their bank accounts  the case for silence being that such figures must not be seen to be anything but non political.  That is a laudable objective but often more practised in the thought than the deed.  Quite simply any prejudice held by the judicial office holder must firstly be recognised by same and then set aside.  It really is not that difficult a concept; 20,000+ J.P.s do it at least 26 times a year.  In my spare time I might be a practising warlock or have sympathy with the thoughts of Chairman Mau but provided when in court I act according to the judicial oath which empowered me as a Justice of the Peace   “I, _________ , do swear by Almighty God that I will well and truly serve our Sovereign Lady Queen Elizabeth the Second in the office of ________ , and I will do right to all manner of people after the laws and usages of this realm, without fear or favour, affection or ill will"  my conscience will be clear.  Of course J.P.s and all judicial office holders must recognise that their private lives will, to some extent come under scrutiny, and that is why there are well known boundaries to our extra judicial actions the crossing of which can lead to being sacked from the position.  And that is also why I have some sympathy for High Court Judge Sir Paul Coleridge who has announced his impending resignation from the Bench. 

I am not a person of faith.  I believe neither in a heaven nor a hell.  I became a Darwinian at the age of eight.  However my experience and knowledge of unimpeachable statistics on the subject leads me to consider that a married couple of man and woman provides the most stable environment for the upbringing of children.  HH Sir Paul`s action in setting up the Marriage Foundation has provoked the ire of the JudicialComplaints Investigations Office (JCIO).  Unfortunately he pitted himself against perhaps the most powerful lobby combination in this country; single parents and the gay “community”. 

There are religious pressures on our civil society now that were unthought of a generation ago.  An influx of Polish Catholics and three million Moslems in our population has seen a boost for their respective churches and mosques and the beliefs expounded therein.  Undoubtedly fear of being seen to be influenced  by religious precepts has influenced the position of the higher judiciary which apparently has been unwilling to support its fellow judge: this in an age when bishops have rights to sit in the Upper House; rights denied to other religions. 

This country is still unable to decide if it should be a secular society when a future king ties himself in intellectual knots  in trying to appease the minority religious aspirations of those other than Christians.  Sir Paul`s action is perhaps a signpost for profound changes as yet uncharted.

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