Welcome to my blog and the reference point in my fight against an archaic, unjust family court system in Marshall County, Alabama. I plan on posting my thoughts, items of interest, and resources I find helpful in hopes that it can be helpful to someone else. Now take a deep breath. Here I go...

Please visit http://www.alfra.org for the only organization in Alabama that promotes the concept that children need each of their fit parents.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

the Birdman responds...and the cat is out of the bag!

Today I received a letter from the Marshall County Circuit Court clerk and our favorite judge, "the Birdman" Howard Hawk.  I knew it would be in reference to my petition to the Court asking it to enforce my constitutionally protected right to exempt my wages from garnishment (see previous post - Art. X Sec. 204 Alabama Constitution).  I might point out that this provision was written and adopted in 1868.  Put it in perspective... just how much was $1,000 worth of property back in 1868?  What was the INTENT of the provision?  I think it would be safe to say that when the citizens of this State ratified the Constitution, they intended for what amounted to $1,000 worth of property in 1868 to be protected.  They knew a little of inflation and speculation of currencies back then, but saw it, correctly, as an evil and an enemy of democracy.  I have seen it HERE that an 1868 dollar is worth $16.293 of today's dollars.  If we use that as a guide then we are talking about  $16,293.00.  

So the paltry assets and wages I provided the Court as part of my Declaration doesn't come that close to $1,000 much less $16,293!  So I opened the envelope, and knew part of my plan had been foiled.  I have a civil relationship with ex #2, and had hoped convincing her of the necessity of this exemption would help speed it along by preventing a contest of the exemption.  She agreed and took delivery of her court documents with her assurance she would not turn it over to her attorney who would hopefully not hear of my claim until after the allowed time to respond had expired.  So that my wages would automatically be protected.  I was confident that in the event of a contest the judge would have to rule in my favor due to the demonstrated lack of financial resources.  I can show that exactly what I take home is exactly what I need to survive.  The Court let the cat out of the bag because if they sent this to me, they sent it to her attorney as well.  That's not the bad part though...

What I received was a copy of the case action summary which has the clerk's and the judge's hand written notes in reference to the case.  It shows on 12/2/2010 the IWO was enforced against me which was for child support.  It also has a stamp on it which show that the process of garnishment was issued on 6/1/2011 and that I filed my declaration and claim of exemption for wages on 6/7/2011.  On 6/8/2011, the Birdman wrote the following:

"6-8-11 (Declaration and Claim of Exemption for Wages) Noted; however this case was closed 8-5-2010.  (The Defendent) is encouraged to seek advice from an Attorney. H"

Which probably means a few things...the judge is refusing to protect my ability to support myself, even though it is guaranteed by the Alabama State Constitution.  Therefore, this is an unconstitutional garnishment handed down by the hands of a State judge who's job it is to uphold and protect the Constitution.
It also means that the Birdman is continuing what I have found to be a pattern in Marshall County judges...they do not like a man that represents himself in their court.  The judge will not talk to you, he will refuse most all of your petitions while he's telling you that you need to get an attorney, and just in general try to make things as difficult as possible.  I might take this opportunity to remind the Birdman (just in case he knows about this blog) that according to the Alabama Canons of Judicial Ethics, he is bound by duty to abide by the following:

CANON 3.

A JUDGE SHOULD PERFORM THE DUTIES OF HIS OFFICE IMPARTIALLY AND DILIGENTLY.
 
The judicial activities of a judge take precedence over his other activities. His judicial duties include all the duties of his office prescribed by law. In the performance of these duties, the following standards apply:

A. ADJUDICATIVE RESPONSIBILITIES:

(1) A judge should be faithful to the law and maintain professional
competence in it. He should be unswayed by partisan interests, public
clamor, or fear of criticism.

(2) A judge should maintain order and decorum in proceedings
before him.

(3) A judge should be patient, dignified, and courteous to litigants,
jurors, witnesses, lawyers, and others with whom he deals in his official
capacity, and should require similar conduct of lawyers, and of his staff,
court officials, and others subject, to his direction and control.

(4) A judge should accord to every person who is legally interested in a proceeding, or his lawyer, full right to be heard according to law, and, except as authorized by law, neither initiate nor consider ex parte communications concerning a pending or impending proceeding. A judge, however, may obtain the advice of a disinterested and impartial expert on the law applicable to a proceeding before him; provided however, a judge should use discretion in such cases and, if the judge considers that justice would require it, and should give notice to the parties of the person consulted and the substance of the advice, and afford the parties reasonable opportunity to respond.

(as published on the website of the Alabama Judicial Inquiry Commission)

I, as a citizen of this State, have the right to represent myself in all legal proceedings.  I have this right because not everyone can afford an attorney to represent their interests.  Some of us are poor, when you are poor you do not have an extra $500 or $1,000 laying around for an attorney.  I have provided evidence to the judge that my financial resources, or lack thereof due to this court's actions, do not permit me the luxury of any disposable income to spend on an attorney or even the ability to save any money for one.  I AM BROKE! 
It also means that sleep isn't going to come any easier.  Surely, in spite of the garnishment, they will follow federal law in its application and I will only be reduced to $217.50 weekly, but I will probably have to scrape and fight to have that enforced as well.  Even if that is as low as they will go, I am still $100 or so short on my monthly bills. 

It's a good thing I refuse to lay down without a fight!

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