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Professional Ethics

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This question has often been raiRed and discussed among members of the bar in this country, but not formally in court so as to evoke a judicial opinión. Wa have been hoping to learn the result of a recent case in England, where an objection is alleged to have been made to proceeding with the trial of a cause, on the ground that the preaiding judge was a near kinsman of the attorney on the other side of the cae. The objection was overruled and the trial went on to a verdict, when a rule to show cause wu taken ; but we have not yet learned the reault. We are not aware of any statute having been enacted, either prohibiting or adniitting sueh practica. If the spirit of the rules of the common law, which apply to a party in a cause, were extended to the attorney of such party, so judge would, in such case, consent to hear a cause in which bis soa was an attorney of one of the parties, sooner than he would if his son was such party himself. The theory of challenge, at oommon law, to the favor of a juror, allowed to a party in a cause, rests on the ground of a supposed infirmity of his nature, which can not overeóme the bias of his feelings, caused by his great intimacy with, or interest in, the other party ; an interest which may be only that of a strong personal friendship. It is out of regard to this weakness of human nature which allows an unconscious partiality for the case made by the friendly party, and an unconscious prejudice against the opposite side, with whom there is no corresponding sympathy, that this right of challenge is so wisely and universally recognized in legal proceedings. It is because an attorney or counsel in a Buii, ib, m ineory, presumeu M) nare no personal interest in the event of tkat suit aud that his fee is not contingent upon the result, that he is regarded as disinterested and unchallengeable, though he inay be of near kin to the judge presiding at the trial. And thus there is no recognized positive law whioh is held to exclude an attorney or counsel from appearing on the trial of a cause in his father's court. The objection to his appearing in such relation, if any, can only rest on that natural bias of feeling and sympathy which a judge is supposed to entertain toward bis own son or brother, or other near kinsman, who inay have charge of a cause iu his court - an interest which he is not supposed to have towards the opposiie counsel who is not so related to him. To illustrate the principie involved : Take the case of a youug, struggling lawyer, who ia retained in a suit involving, if he succeeds, a million of dollars to nis cliënt, and to himself an enormous fee, besides a reputation which is equivalent to a fortune. Brilliant success in a celebrated case has often lifted a lawyer from obscurity to eminence in his profession. Now place this young man with such a suit in a court in which his near kiasman - his father, for example - is the judge, and assume such judge to be a man of rare purity and honor in life - a model man. Yet he is not a model man if he is destitute of natural affection, or sympathy stronger than a mere bias for the suocess and upbuilding of the reputation and fortune of his son. Is it not easy to see that in the trial of the cause, and in the charge to the jury, especially in arraying and commenting upon the testimony, the judge would likely be warped, quite unconsciously, and, it may be, with great subtility, giving his official iufluenee to secure a verdict favorable to the side which his son has espoused ? In questions of pure law there is not so much danger from the partiality of the judge, because his rulings can be reviewed before a hiijher tribunal, wlien his reputation will be involved. But in qnestions of fact, at nm priu, there is scope for a strong partiality without any correctivo influence. This disqualifying kinship is not confined to the relation of father and son. It is applicable to son-in-law, and to brother and brother-in-law, though perhap in a lesa degree. A judge placed in such ciroumstances may be strong enough to disobey the feelings and affections of his nature, and may oonduct the trial of the cause with absolute blindness to the parties and their counsel, and with indifiference as to the result of the case; but if the eiforts of his kinsman in court should be succesaful there would naturally be clamor and scandal raised by the losing Tinrt.v HTlil Tlia HVmnnflnaAra nrrnÏTinf fliA integrity and impartiality of the court, wbioh would affect public opinión and inipair public confldence in the judiciary. It is to avoid even a suspicion of partiality that some judges üf great delicacy of honor have been unwilling that their sous, or other near kinamen, should practico in their courts. Judge Koosevelt, of New York, twenty-five years ago, was an example in point, and no memoer of the New York bar or bench was more respected for his fine sense of professional honor than he. Another illustrious example ainong the members of the New York bar, was iound in James T. Brady, who was recognized as the soul of honor. When his brother, John R. Brady, became judge of the Oommon Pleas, in the city of New York, James (solely because of hia relationship to the judge) abstained from that time from all practica in his brother's court, though he was offered large fees to niake motions in that court. At a meeting of the New York bar, to show respect to the memory of Mr. Jas. T. Brady, Luther R. Marsh, in the Oourt of Comnion Pleas, said: " Tbis particular court, as suoh, will not feel his loss as much as others; for moe the aocession of his brother to this beuch, now some thirteen years ago, the roice of Mr. Brady, though often and earnestly implored, has never been heard at this tribunal. He, from that moment withdrew entirely from practico in this forum, directly or indirectly, that the appearance uiight correspond with the reality; and no fee or tempting cause of popular interest could tempt him to gwerve from the line of duty his delicate sense of honor prescribed - an ever conspicious trait in his professional life." At the Philadelphia bar we had an illustrioua example in the United States District Court, over which Judge Cadwallder presided for many years. His son, John Cadwallder, was an honorable member of that bar, but he never practioed in his father's court, although his business there would have been very remunerative, on account of bankruptcy proceedings therein. The judge suggested to his son the propriety of eonfining his practice to other courts; and during the entire judicial life of the judge, both he and his son adhered with scrupulous fidelity to this principie of professional delicacy and judicial ethics. And their conduct in tUis respect elicited the warmest commendations of the bar. There are doubtless many other similar instances, in the various States, which are not very generally known. And there are also, perhaps, many more cases of the other class, in which no regard is paid to the relationship of the aitorney to the judge ; or rather, such relationship is often the ground on which multiplied retainers are given to an attorney in the court of his father or near kinsman. These retainers are generally understood to be given, not because of his abihty or experience, but simply beoause of his kindred relations to the court. His business increases ; his briefs multiply ; large eorporations select him for nnilTlHAl f.Vinnnrli fViöv ulradv Víqttq iildtir and superior men retained and depended upon. It may be urged that judges are, and should be, above the suspicion of partiality or bias under all circumgtances, without regard to personal friendship or natural affection, so far as the membera of the bar are connerned. Whether this is so or not, the lawyers do not assume it to be so, even in cases where the judge is of the most eialted character for honor and integrity. And if it were known how severely the practice is condemned by the bar and the public, and what scandal attaches to it in many cases, no judge who respecta his office and his honor would subject them to such aspersions. A this question has no statu te or judicial case to determine it, and the practice in some courts is favored and in otherg disfavored, it seems to be left (in the absence of legislation) to the pleasure of the judges themselves, or to the nice sense of honor of the bar. The bar would admire the judge for closing his ear in his own court against his own son or near kinsman, and the publio would coincide with the bar. It is better that any practice, of doubtful propriety, should be waived than adhered to. The Cimbria disaster has already borne fruit, and the öerman government propose to enforce every precaution to prevent a similar disaster. In the Reichstag, Herr Sonnermann aked whether, in consequance of the disaster to the Cimbria, the government proposed to make any international arrangements to Drevtínt colhsions at kpr. TTa ntivinai.oA the introduction of the electric light for that purpose. Herr Scholz, replying in his capacity as federal commissioner, aid the goverument feit the same sympathy as the nation with the sufferers by the recent disaster, and had also a sense of its responsibility. The government could not immediately answer the interpellation, but would keep the subject in riew. Aa official inquiry had been ingtituted, and until a result íb reached the (joverument must reserve a decisión. The Loochoo ditticulty between Chin and Japan can hardly fuil to precipítate war between the two countries. The standing army of the former is composed of 600,000 men, while the latter boasts of 1,200,000; but it is said that in the e vent of war Japanese forces will be the most effective because of superior armament and discipline, and it is a well known fact that Chinese soldiers will not fight without the aid of forts or breastworks. A war in the Oriënt would prove interesting to the outside world, and some tall running might be expected. - 11 ■ 4M- Weather Prophet Wiooins' storm did not materialize last Friday, and he is said to have retired from the weather business, taking with him his prediction of a great atorm on March 11. It would not be a bad idea for Hazen, Vennor i Wiggins fc Co. to retire togetker to the j darkest recesaos of the Gave of the Winds. i i m i m Lone Jack, Mo., Sept. 14, 1879.- I have been using Hop Bitters, and have received great benefit from them for liver complaints and raalarial fever. They are superior to all other medicines. P. M. Barnes. Worthless weeds aae not hurt by the frost. "It is easier to eonvinee a man against his senses than against his will." When a sick man has given Kidney-Wort a fair trial, both will and senses join in unqualified approval of its ourative quahties in all diueases of the liver, kidneys and bowels. O youth, howe'er the maiden's eyo may at your "taify" gleam, if you would see tliam lrirrhfr crtxxr flñvñ Vlftr ft fftílíl of "oream." "My hands were oovered with little dry scabs. They have disappeared, and I am better than I have been for twenty years, from using Dr. Benson's 8kin Cure." A. M. Noble, Selma, N. Q, July 3, 1882. How changeful in the mind of man, not satisfied two days together ; he cursen when too cold to fan, and when 'tis warm still d - s the weather. Mr. J. F. Barrowg, Lawrenoe, Mich., says: "I have sold Brown's Iron Bitters for the past year with good reaults." He who buya needs a hundred eyes; he who sella need have but one. Messrs. Bartholomew Bros., Blissfield, Mich., say: "We sell more of Brown's Iron Bitters than anything we handle." Sneeze on Friday, it is to your sorrow; sneeze on Saturday - sweetheart to-morrow; sneeze on Sunday, safety seek, or Oíd Niok will chase you all the week. The most obstinate cases of oatarrh and hay fever are oured by the use of Ely's Cream Balm, the only agreeable remedy. Price 50 cents. Apply into nostrils with little finger. Good frnit never comes from a bad tree. ïwenty-four beautiful colore of the Diamond Dyeu for silk, wool, cotton, etc. ten conts. A child can use with perfect success. It is the late cat that catchea the early boot jack. Ely's Cream Balm cured me of catarrh of many year's standing - restored my sense of smell. For eolds ïu the beau ït workg like magie. E. H. Sherwood, National State Bank, Elizabeth, N. J. We recommend Ely's Oream Balín in every case where a cure for catarrh is called for, and in no ingtance have we heard of disappointment. We considei that we are doing the public a service by making its virtues known to those afflioted with this loathsome disease, for which it is, in most instances, a positiva cure. Pkok Bbob., Druggists, Grand Bapids, Mich. In griddle-cakes, as in a game of base ball, a great deal dependa upon the botter. Word of wisdom- First thoughts and flrut mortgages are always best.


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Ann Arbor Democrat