April, 2008, San Diego, California: There is an open judicial seat on the San Diego Superior Court. Two of the candidates for that seat brought one another to court over what each wrote in his official candidate statement. They are Robert Faigin, the chief lawyer for the San Diego County Sheriff ,and Evan Kirvin, a San Diego deputy district attorney.
Read it and wretch — the judge they appeared before, Jay Bloom, ruled that:
- Kirvin’s claim that he had been endorsed by "over 60,000 law enforcement officers" was false (he was endorsed by a police officers association in California that has over 60,000 members from around the state)
- Kirvin’s claim that he was an elementary school "instructor" and a police academy "instructor" were both false (he spoke at an elementary school and he had assisted in instruction on an occasion in 2004 but he did not meet the requirements to be called an instructor)
- Faigin’s claim that one of his occupations was "judge pro tem" was false (he had served only once, the night before the judgship nominating period closed)
Before you start thinking that these are small forms of lack of integrity, keep in mind that these two men are candidates to become a judge. Judges are supposed to uphold integrity. Judges require that those under oath speak "the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth." They aren’t supposed to bring each other into court to ask another judge to expose their opponent’s lack of integrity.
But, these two candidates for judge brazenly decided to see what they could get away with. What does this have to do with you? Well, when their opponent said, "oh, no you don’t," guess who paid the bill for their lack of integrity? Taxpayers, that’s who! I have no doubt that Judge Jay Bloom had plenty of cases on his docket that served taxpayers far more than having to slap the wrists of two candidates for judge for their respective lacks of integrity!
I ask you: Do you really want people to become judges when their own integrity has to be policed by other judges? Or do you want judges who model integrity before they get to enforce it in their courtrooms?
For having made official statements that lacked integrity, for having spent taxpayer money to have to be called on the carpet for this, and because all of this happened in a race to become a judge, both Evan Kirvin and Robert Faigin get to share this Integrity Disgrace Award. Dishonorable Mention for this particular award goes to the San Diego media for scarcely reporting this disgustingly important story about how lack of integrity has poisoned even those who aspire to become judges.
Regardless of whether they refused to distinguish fact from fiction, or were unable to do so, neither of these candidates have sufficient integrity to deserve to serve as a judge.