When we started this blog a little less than five months ago, I was reminded of the classic philosophical question: "If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound?"
With news reports telling us that thousands of blogs are started every day, I wasn't sure if Legal Schnauzer would make any sound at all. I certainly never dreamed that it might play a role in a Congressional investigation.
But it appears that our work is playing a role in the U.S. House Judiciary Committee's investigation into possible selective prosecution by the Bush Justice Department.
The Legal Schnauzer, it seems, has made a sound after all. And hopefully those sounds will continue so that we can do our part in fixing a justice system that has gone horribly off the tracks.
Today's subcommittee hearing has focused primarily on the prosecution of former Alabama Governor Don Siegelman, a subject we have followed closely here at Legal Schnauzer. But the committee also has information regarding the Paul Minor case in Mississippi, another case we have followed closely on the blog.
The House Judiciary Committee's Web site includes links to a number of documents it is reviewing in its probe of the Bush Justice Department. Among those documents is a letter from Paul Minor that makes numerous citations to our reporting here at Legal Schnauzer.
The Minor letter provides an excellent overview of the case that involved him, Mississippi Supreme Court Justice Oliver Diaz and former state judges Wes Teel and John Whitfield. It's a fascinating first-person account of what it is like to be pursued by a justice department run amok.
Legal Schnauzer started primarily as a blog about my own experience with corrupt state judges in Alabama. And indeed we have written about that case, so far in fairly general terms. But it became apparent early on that the problems in our courts are both state and federal in scope--and they also go well beyond my little neck of the woods, to Mississippi, other Southern states, and beyond.
In time, we will get into heavy detail about my case, what we've come to call the Legal Schnauzer case. But for now, the nation is focused on an entire Justice Department that has lost its way. I'm pleased that we are able to play a small part in a process that I hope will expose those who have corrupted our courts and eventually lead to justice for those who have been wronged.
There is much more to write about the Paul Minor case, and we will continue to weigh in on the Siegelman proceedings. And eventually, we will shine a spotlight on my case, and hopefully others, that involve just regular folks.
The House Judiciary hearings might seem far away for many folks. The cases being investigated generally involved people of substantial means and power. But a corrupted justice system can hit very close to home--sometimes when you least expect it.
I'm hearing from numerous Alabamians who have a sense that they have somehow been wronged in state courts. Many of my correspondents have been involved in family-law courts, with issues of a highly personal and emotional nature--child custody, child well-being etc.
I have a feeling that many of the people I've heard from are correct in their feelings that justice was not served in Alabama courts. My hope is that their voices, and the voices of others who are victims of injustice, will eventually be heard.