Monday, June 14, 2004
New page by 10 a.m. Monday-Friday
contractors' convoy bombed in Baghdad
reported prison abuse
Beginning in November, a small unit of interrogators at Abu Ghraib
prison began reporting allegations of prisoner abuse, including
the beatings of five blindfolded Iraqi generals..
Ten-Foot Poll on Election RESULT
920am-11pm Mon 6/14/2004
The way it's looking now, who's likely to win the election?
Doubts linger as Kerry campaigns Many Democratic voters,
officials and even members of the Massachusetts senator's staff
express an ambivalence -- or angst -- about their presidential candidate.
Terry Nichols' 2nd trial, both sides frustrated
brigade' fails to hit rebels
A new Iraqi-run brigade set up to enforce peace in Fallujah has
yet to begin any missions against bands of insurgents who still
roam the frontier town, U.S. officials say.
Saturday afternoon 6/13/2004 ... click
Ten-Foot Poll on Proper Dress---RESULT
9:10am Fri 6/11 - 10am Sun 6/13/2004
Is wearing flipflops or halter tops acceptable for viewing the
casket of Ronald Reagan?
trials to offer rare public glimpse of military justice
Pfc. Lynndie England is scheduled later this month for a weeklong
pretrial hearing on charges that she abused prisoners at the Abu
Ghraib prison in Iraq last year. In the fall, Sgt. Hasan Akbar will
be court-martialed on charges that he threw grenades into tents
of sleeping soldiers and shot them as they emerged in Kuwait last
a tutti-frutti tree Chilean agronomic engineer Luis Carrasco,
in a display of fatherly dedication and encouragement, has achieved
a scientific first growing a tree that yields five different
Joe says no American singer Country Joe McDonald, whose satirical
"Fixin' to Die" anthem condemned the U.S. war in Vietnam,
said he will not go to Hanoi to receive a World Peace Music Award
Court won't allow atheist father to sue over pledge "..at
least temporarily preserved the phrase "one nation, under God,"
in the Pledge of Allegiance today.."
write the darnedest things to presidents
boat launches disappearing from Austin area
cauliflower finally hits market "..has about 25 times more
vitamin A than its pale cousin.."
seeks authority to spy inside America
running secret worldwide prison system "The United
States government, in conjunction with key allies, is running an 'invisible'
network of prisons and detention centers into which thousands of suspects
have disappeared without trace since the 'war on terror' began..."
WRTV-TV 6 Indianapolis
surprisingly unconcerned with baggage tampering
controversy claims Florida elections chief "Touchscreen
voting machines in 11 counties have a software flaw that could make
manual recounts impossible in November's presidential election.."
known Peter Sakai for years. Although I try to avoid
family law cases, I have handled quite a few on a pro bono basis
and have been in Judge Sakai's court on several occasions. I
have always been struck by his careful review of the facts of
each case, by his objectivity and, mostly, by his compassion.
His job, in my opinion, is the toughest in the courthouse. I
believe he handles more cses involving Child Protective Services
than any other judge in Bexar County.
Sakai is an associate judge. Along with Jim Rausch and Richard
Garcia, Judge Sakai assists the elected district court judges
with family law cases. All three of these judges have to deal
with tough, emotional and hotly contested cases every day. They
really don't get enough recognition for the wonderful, difficult
work they do, day in and day out.
Sakai deals with tragedy every day. He has to make decisions
on whether kids and parents are reunited or whether parents
who beg to have their children returned are to be denied. These
decisions are never easy. As a general rule, the law favors
the rights of parents to raise their own children. For kids
to be taken away from parents, strong evidence must be present.
And the law doesn't require parents to be perfect; if it did,
few of us would be allowed to raise our own children. There
must be evidence that the child's safety is at risk for a child
to be put in the CPS system. And once that happens, the parents
are generally given a plan to follow to allow for family reunificatin
if certain steps are taken. If the plan is followed, the parent
is brought back into court and the judge rules on whether reunifiction
is to tke place. Unless CPS presents some evidence that the
parent failed to meet the stated goals, the child is usually
given back to the parent.
is not perfect. The fact that a parent can follow a plan (go
to meetings, take classes, get counseling, stay drug free, keep
a job, e.g.) does not necessarily mean that the parent will
do well once the child is back home. Sometimes the system breaks
down and a tragedy occurs.
sake of the system and for the sake of Peter Sakai, I hope he
can get past the emotional trauma that this situation has caused
him. I hope he can use his experience, his wisdom and his compassion
to continue to try to help children at risk and to try to make
families in Bexar County stronger.
kids need to be taken from their parents; sometimes CPS oversteps
its bounds and takes kids away inappropriately. Sometimes parents
who place their kids at risk learn from their mistakes and become
better parents; sometimes they don't. Only God could accurately
sort the possibilities and make the right decision every time.
no right to demand perfection from our judges. Peter Sakai comes
as close as one could hope. For my part, I hope that this tragedy,
as horrific as it was, does not get compounded by the loss of
one of our more valuable public servants.