A lawyer was held in contempt of court and may face five days of jail-time for refusing to remove a ‘Black Lives Matter’ pin.
Lawyer Andrea Burton wore the pin in the courtroom in Youngstown, Ohio, where the Municipal court judge, Robert Milich commanded her to remove it. According to WKBN-TV, upon her refusal to do so, the attorney was dismissed from the court.
Burton’s refusal to remove the pin led to her being held in contempt of court, as a result of which she has been sentenced to five days in jail, pending appeal.
Judge Milich requested the removal of the pin in order to prevent potential biasedness during court hearing. Milch said:
“A judge doesn’t support either side. A judge is objective and tries to make sure everyone has an opportunity to have a fair hearing, and it was a situation where it was just in violation of the law.”
Although judges are free to decide whether political statements in their courtrooms are allowed, this decision on part of judge Milich may not sit well with community activists. Kim Akins, one such activist, on this occasion says:
“No one wearing an American flag button, no one wearing a crucifix or a Star of David would be removed, so why this particular statement bothered him so much is bothersome.”
The uncompromising judge, firmly responding to this, said,
“There’s a difference between a flag, a pin from your church or the Eagles and having a pin that’s on a political issue.”
Regardless, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) will probe into the matter, to determine if Ms. Burton’s constitutional rights have been violated with this ruling- although it is unlikely.
Racial discrimination is a sensitive topic all over the world, including the United States. But displaying political statements in delicate settings, such as courtrooms, certainly should be avoided in order to prevent clouded judgment.
What is the BLM trying to prove? No one is above the law.
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