In March, we ran a story about how the justices on the Wisconsin Supreme Court had basically devolved into caricatures of themselves worthy of MTV reality show fame.
Apparently, in the midst of a heated debate, Justice David Prosser fell into the role of the hothead. He called a female justice a
“bitch” “total bitch,” and threatened to “destroy” her. I guess this is what happens when members of the judiciary stop being polite, and start getting real –- The Real Prize World.
Anyway, you know what usually happens on the next episode of the show. We find out that the hothead isn’t just abusive with his words, but also with his fists. And that is exactly what allegedly happened earlier this month behind closed doors.
Did Prosser need to choke a bitch?
According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, that’s actually what happened in a confrontation between Prosser and Justice Ann Walsh Bradley after hours on June 13, 2011, the day before the court decided to make state union workers cry:
Six of the court’s seven justices — Justice N. Patrick Crooks was not present — had gathered in Bradley’s chambers. Some were informally discussing the decision.
The conversation grew heated, and Bradley asked Prosser to leave. Bradley was bothered by disparaging remarks Prosser had made about Chief Justice Shirley Abrahamson, a source said.
Bradley felt Prosser “was attacking the chief justice,” the source said.
Before leaving, Prosser “put his hands around her neck in what (Bradley) described as a chokehold,” the source said.
“He did not exert any pressure, but his hands were around her neck,” the source said.
The source said the act “was in no way playful.”
Another source, however, said that Bradley tried to defend Abrahamson’s honor, and approached Prosser with her fists up, as if she were ready to rumble.
Now, I would normally praise a woman’s brazen, and perhaps misguided, attempt to stick up for a friend, but not when she’s trying punch out a man. That’s just silly, and it probably would’ve turned into a slap fight.
When I was in kindergarten, I learned a lesson that might’ve been useful for these Wisconsin justices. I was a big fan of hitting people when I didn’t get my way. My teacher imparted some wisdom upon me: “Use your words, not your hands.” Thanks for turning me into a gossiping mean girl, teach.
But really, in this case, even name calling would’ve been better than trying to choke out a fellow justice. Maybe Prosser just needs to take some anger management classes. And maybe Bradley needs to take some self defense classes so next time she can turn it around on Prosser.
Unlike his last public shaming, when Prosser did use his words and confirmed that he called Abrahamson a “total bitch,” Prosser isn’t speaking up on his alleged choke-out attempt:
“Once there’s a proper review of the matter and the facts surrounding it are made clear, the anonymous claim made to the media will be proven false. Until then I will refrain from further public comment.”
If this were like an episode of The Real World, Prosser would get thrown out, but this is real life, so that isn’t very likely to happen. At the end of the day, I have absolutely no idea what is wrong with these people. It makes me wonder: what the hell are they putting in the cheese up in Wisconsin?
Justices’ feud gets physical [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel]
Wis. Justice Says Her Colleague Grabbed Her Neck During In-Chambers Dispute [ABA Journal]