In the occasional wacky world of our legal system, sometimes judges make decisions that leave you scratching your head. A judge decided to settle a dispute between lawyers concerning where to hold depositions by requiring both legal teams to engage in a game of Rock Paper Scissors. The winner got to pick the place to hold the depositions.
Another judge made a ruling that defied both law and logic when he stripped a landlord of his legal rights to unpaid rent and property damage by a tenant. The judge told the landlord, “You know when you purchase a building it is called ‘Buyer Beware’. You knew there could be problems with tenants … but you went ahead and bought it anyway. I award you zero dollars for the damage they caused and I award you zero dollars for the rent owed because, again, ‘Buyer Beware’.”
Fortunately, residents of St. Clair County have not had to deal with such nonsense. We have a history of electing competent and qualified judges. People like the late James Corden, who set the standard for appropriate conduct in the court room. He was always well prepared, always a good listener, and always ruled in a fair and evenhanded manner.
Our current group of St. Clair county judges seems to fit that same pattern. While they all have different styles and temperaments, they all conduct themselves and their courtrooms in an honorable and dignified manner. This year one of those fine judges, James Adair, is retiring after 18 years on the bench. Judge Adair has served the public well and now leaves office for a much deserved retirement.
Two men are vying for Judge Adair’s seat on the bench. Mike West and John Adair. Most know that John Adair is James Adair’s son. John is not the only son to follow in his father’s footsteps in our local judiciary,John Monaghan being the most recent example. Most agree that John Monaghan is doing a great job as his father did before him.
Those of you who know me, may already know that I’m a strong supporter of John Adair. He is a young man who has accomplished more before age 40 than many others will do in a lifetime. His longstanding commitment to community service is impressive and his diverse professional work as a lawyer is exemplary. But more than that, the John Adair I know and have worked side by side with for many years, is the kind of man I trust to be firm, but fair.
Our system of justice puts faith and trust in our judges to make immeasurable decisions every day that affect not only the lives of the parties in the courtroom, but also the lives of all of us in the community. Because of John’s solid background and impeccable character, I trust John to conduct his courtroom in a way that honors our St. Clair County tradition of electing judges who make us proud and serve us well.