Adult smokers should be held accountable

By Freedom Newspapers The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday threw out a $79.5 million punitive damage award against tobacco giant Philip Morris to the widow of a longtime smoker. Mayola Williams, whose husband died of lung cancer in 1997 after smoking cigarettes for more than 40 years, still will receive $821,000 in compensatory damages, but […]

Charges don’t rectify chief’s alleged lies

By Freedom Newspapers We don’t have much use for I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby as an influence on policy, given that as chief of staff to Vice President Dick Cheney he was instrumental in maneuvering the United States into an unnecessary and unwise war in Iraq. Still, we wonder whether it serves justice at all to […]

Hussein’s death gives people reason for hope

Editorial E ach faction within Iraq will determine what Friday night’s hanging death of Saddam Hussein means largely by filtering the judgment, sentence and execution of this brutal despot through its own particular subjective lens. For the deposed Sunnis and Baathists, whom for decades were Saddam’s ruling clique, it likely will mean calls for vengeance […]

ALS more than a change of duty location

Janet Taylor-Birkey The goal of Airman Leadership School, the first portion of professional military education, is simple: to teach Airmen how to be effective supervisors on their way to the noncommissioned officer ranks. “We want to teach these [Airmen] what it is they are really supposed to be doing and to say, ‘These are all […]

Karr case proves justice system can get it right

By Freedom Newspapers Boulder, Colo., District Attorney Mary Lacy felt the need to explain herself amid questions about whether she should have spent the time and money pursuing a lead that didn’t pan out. The explanation should not have been necessary. Lacy spent an hour and a half last week discussing the arrest of John […]

Victim’s sister feels justice served

By Sharna Johnson: CNJ staff writer Homicide defendant Jimmy Bentley sat unflinching Thursday as the judge announced the guilty verdict. Behind the defense table, Bentley’s wife dropped her head in her hands, her shoulders wracked with sobs. Across the courtroom aisle, the sister of shooting victim Joseph Phillips gently rubbed her mother’s back, her face […]

Lied to death: Criminals end up victims

By Leonard Pitts Jr.: Syndicated columnist So I read in the paper where another man is about to be lied to death. The first such story I am aware of was published last year in the Houston Chronicle. It concerned a street punk named Ruben Cantu, who was executed in 1993 for shooting two men, […]

Individual liberty does not come for free

By Tibor Machan: Syndicated Columnist Among those of us who prize the protection of individual liberty as the primary public good, never to be sacrificed, the issue of eminent domain is troublesome. The reason is the same as with subpoenas. They both seem, at first sight, to be violations of our unalienable rights — to […]

Supreme Court swing vote tends toward confusion

Freedom Newspapers The case that will be remembered from the most recent term of the U.S. Supreme Court is Hamdan v. Rumsfeld, in which the court told President Bush that he couldn’t simply create military commissions — especially commissions authorized to deliberate and render decisions with the defendant not even present — without authorization from […]

Voting Rights Act in need of revision

By Mona Charen: Syndicated columnist A devil’s brew of cynicism on one side and demagoguery on the other seemed to guarantee renewal of the “temporary” features of the Voting Rights Act first passed in 1965. The demagogues are straightforward. The Rev. Bob Edgar, general secretary of the National Council of Churches USA, declared, “Voting rights […]

Congress subject to same laws as rest of us

By Steve Chapman: Syndicated columnist The Bush administration has a habit of misreading the Constitution, pushing its powers as far as possible and expecting Congress to meekly go along. But now the House of Representatives has decided to fight back — not by asserting its rightful prerogatives, but by misreading the Constitution, pushing its powers […]

Celebrating Law Day

Courtesy Cannon Legal Office Congress has declared Monday as “Law Day,” a day for all Americans to celebrate the practice of law and justice. In 1958 President Dwight Eisenhower proclaimed Law Day to strengthen the heritage of liberty, justice and equality under the law. In 1961 a joint resolution of Congress designated the first day […]

Guilt, innocence only real factors in Duke case

Freedom Newspapers Just what America needs, yet another highly charged nationally publicized court case that deals with race, class and sex. Of course, the indictments against two Duke University lacrosse team members, for allegedly assaulting and raping an exotic dancer at a recent party, are the stuff that 24-hour cable news shows thrive upon. As […]

Supreme Court heading toward divisive territory

Freedom Newspapers The U.S. Supreme Court is moving from a period when it has been handling some of the easier cases on its docket, resulting in a surprising number of unanimous decisions, to handling more controversial decisions that will almost surely split the high court. One case decided last week led newly installed Chief Justice […]

Cannon Airman charged

27th Fighter Wing Public Affairs Criminal charges were preferred against Airman First Class Edward M. Novak for the October 2004 death of his wife, Kimberly S. Novak, in their home on Cannon Air Force Base. Airman Novak, 27th Aircraft Maintenance Squadron, was charged with murder and child abuse. The next stage of the military justice […]

Federal agencies should back off land regulation

Freedom Newspapers Samuel Alito, the newest justice, sat in for the first time last week as the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in two important cases that could do much to define the regulatory reach of the federal government and the priority given to private property rights. The cases could tell us a great […]

Google right to resist Internet search subpoena

Freedom Newspapers The Internet search-engine company Google was correct to resist a Department of Justice subpoena requesting a broad range of material from its databases, specifically 1 million random Web addresses and the records of all Google searches during a one-week period. The Justice Department originally asked for all of Google’s Web addresses and a […]

Officials seek alternatives to juvenile incarceration

By Andy Jackson: CNJ staff writer Officials say Clovis needs a juvenile justice facility for runaways and first-time petty offenders, equipped with classrooms and counselors instead of jail cells and guards. Curry County Commissioner Tim Ashley heads a 15-member juvenile justice committee formed about a month ago, based on a county committee formed five years […]

Nominee could provide healthy political discussion

Freedom Newspapers Well, you certainly can’t say that Judge Samuel Alito, with 15 years experience on the federal appellate bench and stints as a U.S. attorney and an assistant solicitor general, is not qualified to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court. If he seems to be reasonable and likable during Senate hearings — and by […]

Social justice advocates reunite in Portales

By Tony Parra: Freedom Newspapers PORTALES — They fought for social justice. Decades later, they told their stories so Portales won’t forget. More than 100 people remembered Portales’ history and spoke out Sunday against how minority Portales residents were treated during the late 1960s and early 1970s. Portales resident Dolores Penrod, a member of the Democratic […]