Brickbat: Judge Not


The Pennsylvania Court of Judicial Discipline has found Philadelphia Common Pleas Court Judge Lyris Younge guilty of "repeated, clearly improper conduct" and found her misconduct while presiding over Family Court was "blatant and inexcusable." The court found Younge illegally jailed parents, had parents improperly handcuffed in her courtroom, and belittled people who appeared before her. The court suspended Younge for six months and placed her on probation for the rest of her term, which runs through 2026. She may no longer preside over Family Court and must write letters of apologies to those she wronged.

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  1. Sounds like this judge should be spending some time behind bars since she apparently broke the law.

    1. The maximum punishment prescribed for breaking the law while employed by the government is to continue to be employed by the government in the same capacity that facilitated the lawbreaking in the first place.

      1. Not true. The worst punishment is paid vacation.

        One reason government is so efficient and does its job so well and so competently is because government workers are too dedicated to ever take time off. Obviously, forcing a paid vacation is the worst possible punishment to our dedicated civil servants.

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  2. From the linked story:

    “Two judges on the panel signed onto a dissenting opinion saying Younge’s penalty wasn’t stern enough. They said she should have been permanently removed for causing “one disaster after another” during her time on the bench. In one incident, she had a grandmother jailed because her adult daughter wouldn’t turn her baby over to the Department of Human Services — even though neither the daughter nor the infant was party to the matter before Younge.”


  3. Where were her peers when all this went on, for years? Why hasn’t her clerk and bailiff been punished for not refusing her unlawful orders? Why hasn’t the prosecutor’s office arrested this judge? Why hasn’t she been disbarred?

    1. The cynical side of me leads me to guess the answer to all those questions is that she’s an important part of the “diversity and inclusion” element of the state judiciary. Had she been a old white guy, she’d be fired, fined, banned from working in the field in the future, and probably facing a jail sentence—-as any judge who acted like this ought to be.

        1. Black AND female! These 2 items alone qualify her for being an Artemis astronaut for the next American moon landing!

          1. You’re saying she should be ejected into space? A bit unorthodox, but ok!

        2. Judge in Reason’s picture – would
          Judge in Philly Trib – No.

    2. This. Is. Filthadelphia!

      [kicks m4019597 into bottomless pit]

      1. Wheeeeeeeeeeee……..!!!!

    3. Why hasn’t the prosecutor’s office arrested this judge?

      Larry Krasner has no interest in prosecuting crimes.

  4. Absolute Immunity for the win!


  5. That’s preposterous. Now get out! You’re banned from this Historical Society. You, and your children, and your children’s children!… for 3 months.

    1. That’s a perfectly cromulent punishment.

      1. Does this mean Conan The Barbarian’s god gives his blessing for the punishment?

  6. “A Democrat, Younge was elected to the bench in 2015 after serving as a deputy city solicitor and executive in the city’s Department of Human Services. She served several years as a Family Court judge but was reassigned to handle civil proceedings after the complaints against her were raised in 2018. She is currently assigned to the nonjury arbitration appeals program in civil court.”

    Repeat offender, going back to 2018.

    1. Ongoing repeat offender. Is there no part of the court system where we could at least put a jury between her bad decisions and the public/policy?

  7. I looked her up; so, my question is, why are we substituting a white middle aged woman in the picture, instead of the judge herself who is a younger black female; also, no mention of her party affiliation [D, of course].

    1. Wild guess but I believe Reason is not willing to pay or negotiate for usage rights to pictures. They’ve got one library of stock photos that is either free or already paid for, and they pick from that.

      The Brickbat pictures are never of the actual perpetrators or victims. Same in general for articles in the print magazine, except for the rare cases where Reason is doing on the ground original reporting.

      1. Well, that sounds plausible. Unlikely, but plausible.

    2. On stripping out the partisan affiliation…it’s a deliberate decision to not have the appearance of doing partisan gotcha articles. There are plenty other websites where they would make her party affiliation a main point, no need for Reason to duplicate those.

      I think it’s a reasonable decision.

      1. You must be new here. Reason has a habit of reinforcing the narrative through selective omission and similar duplicity. They’ll run multiple articles covering the fact that when Trump says “We should try HCQ to fight the Chicom virus. It’s widely used, safe, and may be effective.” he’s a scientifically-illiterate moron and then fail to cover the fact that it is safe, more proven than the mRNA vaccines, that China almost certainly did engineer the virus, and even run multiple articles by Ron Bailey (*the* *science* reporter) saying “Epidemics anywhere threaten vaccination efforts everywhere.” and “COVID may be the last human pandemic.”

        1. CDC: “Use virus passports.”
          Businesses: “Deny access to or impose undue burden on people based on vaccination passports. Got it.”
          Texas, Florida: “No. We won’t do business with companies and will fine ships in/out of our ports that require them.”
          Reason: “Texas, Ron Desantis violating private property rights!”

          No mention of Republicans or Democrats but still a very clear bias, to the point of rather openly misrepresenting Texas and Desantis, in favor of leftist statism.

          1. Mad, Greg Abbott himself posted that:

            “I’m signing a law today that prohibits any business operating in Texas from requiring vaccine passports or any vaccine information.”

            I’m fully in agreement with the *sentiment* motivating Abbott, but it is in fact an intrusion into private property rights that a libertarian should oppose on principle.

            And if there’s any confusion about whether he really means all businesses or just state contractors, it starts with Abbott’s tweet, not Reason.

            1. By the way, the text of the law does in fact apply to all businesses, but the enforcement is not a fine or imprisonment. It’s (a) being excluded from state contracts, and (b) any agency that does licensing or permitting may deny the business the license or permit.

              I’m OK with part (a) but I’m not OK with part (b), given that even a simple fruit and vegetable stand requires a “sales tax permit”, “building occupancy permit”, etc.

              1. I’m OK with part (a) but I’m not OK with part (b), given that even a simple fruit and vegetable stand requires a “sales tax permit”, “building occupancy permit”, etc.

                And that’s because of Reason’s poor framing of the subject. Part b effectively says that if the business has, as policy, “We refuse to do business with anyone who doesn’t present a negative HIV test result.” the state should still issue them a permit. Moreover, the libertarian argument is that there shouldn’t be sales tax permits and building occupancy permits. Not that the CDC guidance, as long as it’s “voluntarily” accepted, overrides Gregg’s authority to contract and license on behalf of the state that elected him.

                Again, you seem to be new here so maybe you weren’t around for the cries from commenters to oppose mask mandates and lockdowns that didn’t just fall on deaf ears, but were rebutted with “We need more testing so we can follow the science.” Maybe you weren’t around for the “My vote doesn’t count, but if it did, I’d vote for Joe Biden.” And I’m pretty sure you weren’t around for the endorsement of the Russian spying investigation, the endorsement of ‘superficially credible accusations’ against Brett Kavanaugh, the libertarian case for Bernie Sanders, “I fail to see a substantial difference between Chris Kyle and Adam Lanza”, “If Trump supporters are so neglected, why don’t they just move to the city?”, Shikha Dalmia, ENB doxxing someone on Twitter for making a sandwich joke, Bailey’s endorsement of mandatory vaccinations to prevent a Zika (or ebola?) epidemic, etc., etc. Hell, even now in the “California Backs Off Plan To Force Workers To Keep Masking Up” article, they still efface the notion that “As long as The Science says to kill the Jews, gov’t and businesses are right to follow it.” absurdity.

                Even then, not having been around for any of it; 41,000 references hardly represents a dearth of partisan references and 60/40 hardly represents an even-handed divide. Lies by omission are still lies, “twice is coincidence, three times is enemy action”, and guilt by association are a fair and free (and pretty objective) judgements to make. If Reason ever had the ability to play the ‘both sides’ card with any credibility, they lost it some time during the Obama Administration.

                1. I’m in Texas and have read the text of the law. I’m pretty clear on what it says and will go with my own interpretation on (b).

                  On the rest: been a Reason subscriber and reader for 15+ years but you’re right that I only started commenting much recently. On some of that long list of sins you mention, some of them are indeed straight up inexcusable, but some of them (in my opinion of course) are cases of Reason acknowledging an opposing argument rather than endorsing it, or playing devils’ advocate. And some of them are cases of different Reason writers disagreeing.

                  On the last paragraph, I suspect part of our difference is that you believe the Republican party to be somehow better for liberty than the Democrats. I don’t view one as better than the other, not even a little, and would prefer that brickbats call out overbearing authority on its own demerits rather calling out the party of the particular offender.

                  1. Half the commenters are Republicans and Democrats. The rest aren’t either party.

                    It would be a silly mistake to try guessing party affiliation or non-affiliation from comments.

                  2. I’m pretty clear on what it says and will go with my own interpretation on (b).

                    And what interpretation is that? That HIV carriers are owed jobs/contracts but COVID carriers aren’t? Do HIV or COVID have party affiliations or are you projecting them on what I said?

                    41,000 is not a policy of refraining from mentioning party affiliation. 60/40 is not an non-partisan distribution. I believe the Republican Party to be better for libertarianism. Ron Paul, Rand Paul, Thomas Massie, Gary Johnson, Bob Barr, etc., etc., etc. prove it. It’s dead simple to refute me; name one federal-level libertarian affiliated with the Democratic Party. Go on, carry the water. Refute me.

      2. At best I’d say Reason has narrow policy against explicitly listing party affiliation (e.g. in brickbat stories only) and poorly enforces it against writers with a clear bias.

      3. Not necessarily for anything but:
        Showing 25 of 25751 results found for: republican
        Showing 25 of 15877 results found for: democrat

    3. She’s a Philly judge. If you don’t know her party affiliation…

    4. I think she is as black as dolezal. She doesnt look east african or even biracial. She looks like a white lady with a bad tan.

  8. I would like to hear more specifics of what Younge did — because not all of it sounds wrong. “Belittling people who appear before her”? Judge Judy does that, and she is righteous.

    1. Try reading the other words around “belittling people who appear before her”.

    2. I don’t watch a lot of Judge Judy. Do people ever get removed from her courtroom in cuffs?

    3. I’d like to see some detailed stories too in order to have an opinion on just how bad it was. However, given the amount of deference judges give each other, it’s a safe bet that any judge slapped down by a panel of other judges did something so bad they feel embarrassed for the profession as a whole.

  9. I hope this poor woman is still being paid.

    She could easily get bad writers cramp from writing all the appolgy letters, will she get compensation for that?

    Shirley she has been punished enough

  10. She’s black, by the way, which for some reason Reason misleads on and the original article goes out of its way to hide.

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