David Bernthal

David Bernthal

Off the Bench | Tough decisions often left up to the judge

Picture yourself participating in the following drama, which, although fictional, is representative of proceedings taking place daily in courtrooms throughout the U.S. You can choose any role. You can even imagine yourself in more than one. I suggest you choose several and finish with the participant who delivers the final line, the judge.

Off the Bench | Law Day 2019: 'Free Speech, Free Press, Free Society'

Most secular holidays and observances are tied to a birthday or anniversary of an important event. Lincoln's birthday and Independence Day are two prominent examples.

At least one upcoming holiday celebrates an important part of our way of life that is not tied to a specific event.

Off the Bench | Curious case of child suing parents for giving birth to him

While I am not a YouTube regular, I did have occasion to check it out for the purpose of learning more about Raphael Samuel, a man in India who has announced that he is suing his parents.

Off the Bench | Criticism, debate part of judicial process

Last month, I wrote about criticism of judicial decisions by politicians, cartoonists, editorial writers and others.

Such commentary is an acceptable part of our democracy. However, there is a danger in attacking the judge or our entire system of justice merely because one does not like the result and seeks to score points with constituents, listeners and readers.

Off the Bench | Tough decisions often left to judges

Ready or not, we have entered a new year. As is usually the case, many people are talking about their New Year's resolutions.

The minister in a recent church service even made them the centerpiece of his sermon. He observed that most of these resolutions are the same and will be abandoned by Easter.

Off the Bench| First Amendment is a common element

We are in the middle of a very special time of year. Three significant events have happened or will soon take place. At first glance they may not seem related, but I suggest there is a common element. First, since I last wrote, the elections have been completed.

Off the Bench | Rarely an easy resolution in civil cases

One of the questions regularly asked by people involved in civil litigation is "why does it take so long?"

Recognize that the court has a mission of processing its cases while allowing the litigants adequate time to prepare.

Off the Bench | Constitution still has everyday impact

How did you spend Monday, Sept. 17, 2018? That may seem an odd question. That day was the 231st anniversary of the United States Constitution. The day is now referred to as Constitution Day and Citizenship Day. While I think the parades and celebrations were few, judges were encouraged to note the importance of the day in remarks from the bench and otherwise.

Off the Bench | Restoring civility in our society

Despite growing up in an era in which one read a newspaper that was delivered to the residence, I am still a little surprised when someone outside the delivery area sends me a comment on a column.

Off the Bench | Reinforcing a culture of civility

In a recent conversation, a friend commented on the deterioration of civility in our society. He was referring to civilized conduct in which people are polite and show courtesy to others. I had to agree. While our technological and scientific advancements have proceeded with astonishing pace, our behavior toward one another has become more hostile and rude.