Whether rich or poor, a corporation or an individual, Republican or Democrat, Plaintiff or Defendant, the prosecution or the accused, a judge must show favoritism to no one. Simply stated, partiality from a judge is wrong. The basis of this principle is rooted in James 2:1-13.
My view of the role of a judge is similar to that of Robert Bork, one of President Reagan’s nominees to the U.S. Supreme Court. In his book, "The Tempting of America," he notes that either the law controls judges (as it should), or the law is nothing more than a pliable text that judges may rewrite so that certain political causes may "win." As further noted by Bork, those who politicize the law offer the public, and the judiciary, the temptation of results without regard to legal and democratic legitimacy. The integrity of the law depends on judges who are committed to applying the law as written and to resisting the urge to legislate from the bench for the purpose of serving a political end.
This concept is fundamental to the role of the judicial branch of government. It applies in the context of both criminal and civil cases. Those who violate the law and cause harm must be held responsible for their actions in an equitable and reasonable fashion. On every occasion when the legal system fails or refuses to impose a "just" consequence for the violation of the law, the foundation of the legal system erodes, the potential for lawlessness increases and needless injury to innocent people occurs.
Judges serve the electorate - not the other way around - even though this fact is far too often forgotten by judges and other elected officials. Respect for community members who serve on a jury panel, litigants, attorneys and staff is imperative to preserve the sanctity and dignity of the legal system. If given the privilege to serve as your judge of the Van Zandt County Court-at-Law, my pledge to you is to exhibit the humility and honor that ought to be demonstrated by all public servants.