For the avoidance of doubt, there is no sarcasm in this blog post. Feminists don’t have a sense of humour.
The legal profession has been in a proper tizz this week (it’s all been a bit dicey, fnar). Foolishly, we thought that Parliamentary sovereignty meant that it was up to our elected representatives in Parliament to make big decisions, but what do we know? It seems it means that the government should do whatever the loudest and most vile newspaper says the people want it to do. Because we all know that tabloid headlines are a simple reflection of the will of the people, right? So it’s practically democracy in its purest form to do what the headlines scream or insinuate we should (get rid of the judges, especially the gay ones, grab our pitchforks and run out into the street on bonfire night looking for something to blow up).
But I’m not daft enough to go down that particular rabbit hole in this blog post. After all, we have the noble office of the Lord Chancellor to fulfill the important role of defending Her Madge’s Judges and my efforts would be wholly superfluous… #tumbleweed
Anyway, enough of that. I thought, since this is a family law blog and all, I would deal with the Daily Mail’s pre-match pull out setting out the form of the 11 Judges of the Supreme Court in advance of the Brexit appeal in December, since there are (surprisingly, you may thing) some bits of family law bits in it (As a side note, I’m thinking I might patent Match Attax or Top Trumps for judges. They could have points for lifespan, number of times appealed, level of court and special powers).
Here is the article in question :
It comes as no suprise that they direct most of their bile towards the only female judge of the lot, Baroness Hale. After all, she is an evil feminazi, which practically disqualifies her from being human, let alone from holding office. It will, I am sure, inevitably be almost ALL Baroness Hale’s fault if the Supreme Court make the “wrong” decision on the Brexit case, nevermind her being outnumbered 10 to 1 and often in the dissenting minority. It will all be a part of her secret evil masterplan for world domination by fembots.
So, let us begin :
A feminist, Baroness Hale is a long-standing critic of marriage although she has been married to her second husband for nearly 25 years.
I can only think that her marriage of some 25 years is part of her masterplan, perhaps she is attempting to subvert marriage from the inside? Poor old, long suffering Mr Hale. If only he knew a good divorce lawyer (I expect Mr Pink Tape would sympathise, but I don’t let him read the internet as he might get ideas or get distracted from his chores).
Lady Hale first came to widespread notice in the 1980s when she was appointed to the Law Commission. She drew up a law making it possible for a woman to get a court order throwing a man out of his own home if she accused him of violence. In 2014, a High Court judge condemned the way the law had been used to evict a father of six from his home after 20 years of marriage.
Gosh, she really does sound evil doesn’t she? Let’s unpick this. The Law Commission, that’s the body that makes recommendations to Government and to Parliament about law reform. Recommendations that only become law if the Government thinks they are a good idea, and if Parliament agrees the law is a good idea. Damn that Parliamentary sovereignty. This is all supposed to be Hale’s fault (incidentally, she must have an evil supervillain name – Hale-fire peut etre?).
The law that is being referred to, by the way, is the Family Law Act 1996, specifically Part IV. This is the law about non-molestation and occupation orders. I guess Parliament can’t have thought the law was all that bad, since they haven’t got around to repealing it, and it’s used in courts up and down the country every day. In fact it is the law that women and men use to protect themselves against violent and abusive partners (sneakily giving you the impression that it is entirely gender neutral). It may not surprise you to know that the law is a bit more nuanced than saying you can chuck your ex out if you allege domestic violence (although non-molestation injunctions are made more readily, occupation orders are rarely made until the accusation has been tested, and are never made unless there is some evidence of violence).
The 2014 case that is referred to is probably R v R  EWFC 48, decided in December of that year, in which a judge dealt with an appeal in respect of a non-molestation and occupation order. The criticism in that judgment is of the application of Hale-fire’s law, and various procedural failings. What the case doesn’t say (and wouldn’t, because the job of a judge is to apply the law not to say what it ought to be) is that there is anything wrong with the Family Law Act, just that it wasn’t used properly in this case. The Daily Mail probably aren’t referring to this other case from 2014, because that is an example of the act being misapplied so as to cause injustice to a woman : JM v CZ  EWHC 1125 (Fam) and that might make it look almost as if there is no evil feminazi plot at all, and as if it is simply as case of “sometimes the courts don’t apply the law quite right, but usually the other judges put it right on appeal”.
Such is her supervillainous legal genius though, that she has also somehow manipulated Parliament into passing yet another secretly evil benign sounding law, presumably through some sort of feminazi hypnotism (I think that falls under the Inherent Jurisdiction).
Lady Hale was also heavily involved in the preparation of the 1989 Children Act, held by opponents to have deprived parents of much of their say over their children’s lives.
One imagines that the Baroness has a large pond in the manicured garden of her mansion, in which the fricking koi carp have fricking lasers on their heads. And poor old sad faced Mr Hale is tasked with mowing up and down and up and down every day to keep it just so.
The 1989 Children Act indeed is held by opponents to have deprived parents of much say over their children’s lives. Those would generally be the opponents who the Judge has decided really shouldn’t have much say over their children’s lives, because they are so toxic. Because the Children Act 1989 tells the judges to make orders that are in the best interests of the child, rather than (say) in the interests of their dangerous parents. It’s quite hard to see how this fits in with Baroness Greenback’s (sorry, Hale – wrong supervillain) plan but no doubt she’s playing a long game. So far its 27 years and Parliament still hasn’t worked out it’s accidentally passed an evil law, and taken steps to repeal it. Useless stupid Parliamentary sovereignty!
Her dissenting judgment in Re B  UKSC 33 (see pa 143 onwards), in which she was set out why she thought the other four judges (who thought the parents should have been deprived of a say over their child’s life) were wrong – was clearly a cunning double bluff to put us off the scent [h/t to James Turner QC who suggested the addition of the point set out in the preceding sentence shortly after publication]. And…
She has been a prominent critic of the male domination of the judiciary and the wearing of wigs in court. She has joined other Supreme Court judges in suggesting a special court should be set up to decide whether individuals should be given help to commit suicide.
Yep. Sounds evil to me. And what’s with the trivia about wigs and, you know, male domination of the judiciary? I don’t know what she’s complaining about. I mean, they’ve got a woman now, so problem solved.
Lord Mance is also a little bit evil, for disagreeing with the press including the people’s representative – The Daily Mail. He’s also done some Europe-ey stuff. However his hobbies include “tennis, languages and music” so perhaps he’s alright after all (no sinister sounding fencing).
Apart from trivial omission of the fact that Baroness Hale is Deputy President of the Supreme Court, which I am sure was entirely unintentional, the Daily Mail have gone to a lot of effort on their description of Baroness Hale. I wonder why they gave the only woman in the Supreme Court such very special treatment compared to her ten male colleagues? Perhaps they are piquing the interests of the masses ready for their Christmas expose of her evil masterplan. I expect the Lord Chancellor* is in on it too – probably explains #wheresliztruss.
*she’s female you know