In a Facebook post, Tamah Jada Clark, the author of the now-legendary pleading entitled “To F— This Court And Everything That It Stands For,” expresses puzzlement as to why that pleading “has now, apparently, become a ‘big deal.'” She also suggests that “there is a lot of ambiguity and confusion as to what exactly has taken place heretofore to provoke what may appear to some to be a ‘rant’ of sorts.”
That may appear to some to be an understatement of sorts.
Clark suggests in the post that she “will take time to address the matter” in the near future, and I’m certainly looking forward to that, but she does offer a couple of justifications. First, she argues that the incident is being exaggerated, saying that the “Notice [To F— This Court And Everything That It Stands For] is one of MANY documents I filed with the court and it only represents less than 1% of what has taken place.” I know what you mean. You do everything right and then just ONCE you snap and file a nine-page profanity-filled diatribe telling a federal judge that he “sucks nuts” and should “die,” and then they never let you live it down.
Second, she claims that the judge has treated her unfairly all along and, oddly, that the judge has not allowed her to express herself. “This case consists of literally HUNDREDS of pages, that I, myself wrote. But the court will not allow me to say anything on record.” Not sure what that means—she has said lots of things on record in other filings, too, and of course she was permitted to file the Notice To F— This Court And Everything That It Stands For. That is on the record.
The record also seems to show that the court was right (or will be) to toss her case anyway. What happened, according to the magistrate’s recommendation, was that Clark filed a petition seeking a writ of habeas corpus on behalf of her husband, who is currently in Smith State Prison in Georgia. But she is not a lawyer and so can’t represent another person in court. The court pointed this out to her, advised Mr. Clark that he could file a petition on his own behalf, and sent him the form to do so.
The court got back a notice saying that Mr. Clark “[does] not seek a writ … from this Court” and “[does] not wish to be made party to this or any other habeas corpus action at this time,” a notice that was signed by Mrs. Clark and with Mr. Clark’s name “By Power of Attorney.” It is not clear, the court said “if Mr. Clark personally signed the notice or if [Mrs. Clark] signed his name.” This is puzzling, because I’d think most prisoners would be in favor of getting out of prison if possible, and if she did this without his knowledge, why would she torpedo her own petition?
Anyway, Mr. Clark never did file a petition of his own, Mrs. Clark has no basis for habeas relief because she isn’t locked up, and she can’t represent him because she isn’t a lawyer. Case dismissed (without prejudice). Why that warrants what may appear to some to be a “rant” of sorts is hard to explain, but might have something to do with the judge having previously dismissed her $10 billion claim against state officials for wrongfully incarcerating her husband. (She let the statute of limitations expire, among other reasons.) That can make you mad too.
NBC News reports today that rather than calling Mrs. Clark in to explain what “contempt of court” actually means, Judge Hunt has recused himself from the matter “in light of Plaintiff’s decidedly vitriolic pleading.” But I have no doubt that the judge who has replaced him will adopt the recommendation to dismiss, and that there is another court date in Mrs. Clark’s future.