Calling a female judge “attractive” can land you in hot water with the Court of Appeal? #finally

Brand new and hot off the presses:  The California Appellate Court just chastised a lawyer who was apparently thought he was being clever or cutesy.  Well, that was not the greatest idea and finally concepts of equality in our courtrooms might be getting some traction:

“Calling a woman judge — now an Associate Justice of this court — “attractive,” as Chow does twice at the outset of his reply brief, is inappropriate because it is both
irrelevant and sexist. This is true whether intended as a compliment or not. Such comments would not likely have been made about a male judge. (Ibid.)

As Presiding Justice Edmon and Supervising Judge Jessner observed in their article, gender discrimination is a subcategory of the larger scourge of incivility afflicting law practice. (Ibid.) Objectifying or demeaning a member of the profession, especially when based on gender, race, sexual preference, gender identity, or other such characteristics, is uncivil and unacceptable. Moreover, the comments in the brief demean the serious business of this court. We review judgments and judicial rulings, not physical or other supposed personal characteristics of superior court judges. (Justice Edmon’s article)

The actual opinion delves into the growing area of anti-SLAPP confusion.  I’ll let the reader figure the rest of the case on their own with a nice tall latte on a lazy Sunday morning).

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