digplanet beta 1: Athena
Share digplanet:

Agriculture

Applied sciences

Arts

Belief

Business

Chronology

Culture

Education

Environment

Geography

Health

History

Humanities

Language

Law

Life

Mathematics

Nature

People

Politics

Science

Society

Technology

Rose Bird
Rose Elizabeth Bird.jpg
25th Chief Justice of California
In office
March 26, 1977 – January 5, 1987
Appointed by Jerry Brown
Preceded by Donald Wright
Succeeded by Malcolm M. Lucas
Personal details
Born (1936-11-02)November 2, 1936
near Tucson, Arizona
Died December 4, 1999(1999-12-04) (aged 63)
Stanford, California

Rose Elizabeth Bird (November 2, 1936 – December 4, 1999) served for 10 years as the 25th Chief Justice of California. She was the first female Justice, and first female Chief Justice, on that court, appointed by then Governor Jerry Brown. In the November 1986 state election she also became the only Chief Justice in California history to be removed from office by the voters.

Early life and experience[edit]

Bird was born near Tucson, Arizona. Her father, after having deserted the family, died when she was five, so her mother Anne moved with Rose and her two older brothers to New York City, where Bird and her brothers grew up in poverty. Bird earned her bachelor's degree magna cum laude from Long Island University and went on to graduate from the UC Berkeley School of Law (also known as Boalt Hall) in 1965.

Her career was marked by several firsts: she was the first female law clerk in the Supreme Court of Nevada, the first female deputy public defender in Santa Clara County, the first woman to hold a cabinet-level job in California (as Secretary of Agriculture), the first female Chief Justice of California, and the first Chief Justice to be removed from the Supreme Court of California.

In 1966, Bird joined the Santa Clara County Public Defender's Office where, between 1966 and 1974, she held the positions of deputy public defender, senior trial deputy, and chief of the appellate division. In addition to arguing cases before the state's highest court, the Courts of Appeal, and in federal court, Bird also taught at Stanford Law School from 1972 through 1974.

Her tenure on the Supreme Court was controversial. She was vigorously publicly attacked by her critics as an ideologue who substituted her personal views over the law and the state constitution. Her widely perceived personal opposition to the death penalty was a particular sore point for her critics. She was first up for an retention election in 1978. There was a campaign waged against her, which she did not respond to. However, on election day, it was charged that the court decided to withhold the publication of a controversial ruling until after the 1978 vote.[1] The ensuing controversy generated considerable press coverage but, by then, Bird had been retained by a 52% to 48% margin.

Bird was also controversial among the Associate Justices on her own court. In a 1998 oral history interview, Stanley Mosk explained that Bird was a bright and intelligent judge but a terrible administrator (one of the Chief Justice's major responsibilities); she did bizarre things like forcing all the Associate Justices to make appointments just to talk to her for any reason.[2]

Reconfirmation loss[edit]

Bird was the first and remains the only Chief Justice to be removed from that office by a majority of the state's voters. California justices are selected by the Governor but must be regularly reconfirmed by the electorate; prior to Bird, no California appellate judge had ever failed such a vote.[3]

She was removed in the November 4, 1986 election by a margin of 67 to 33 percent after a high-profile campaign that cited her categorical opposition to the death penalty.[4] She reviewed a total of 64 capital cases appealed to the court. In each instance she issued a decision overturning the death penalty that had been imposed at trial. She was joined in her decision to overturn by at least three other members of the court in 61 of those cases.[5] This led Bird's critics to claim that she was substituting her own opinions and ideas for the laws and precedents upon which judicial decisions are supposed to be made. In addition, the Bird court struck down California's "use a gun, go to jail" law that made a prison term mandatory for any crime in which the use of a gun was involved. The anti-Bird campaign ran television commercials featuring the relatives of the victims of the murderers whose sentences Bird and her fellow justices Cruz Reynoso and Joseph Grodin had voted to reverse.[6] In addition to Bird, Reynoso and Grodin were also voted off the seven-justice California state supreme court bench. Justice Stanley Mosk, who often joined Bird, Reynoso, and Grodin, was not challenged nor were the other three justices.

Twelve years later, Mosk explained why he was able to stay and Bird was not:

Rose Bird was pilloried because she generally voted to find some defect in death penalty convictions and to reverse them. I probably don't like the death penalty any more than she does. As a matter of fact, I think the death penalty is wrong, that a person has no right to kill, and the state has no right to kill. But the difference is that I took an oath to support the law as it is and not as I might prefer it to be, and therefore, I've written my share of opinions upholding capital judgments.[7]

As a result of the 1986 election, newly reelected Governor George Deukmejian was able to elevate Justice Malcolm Lucas to Chief Justice and appoint three new associate justices that more closely matched his generally conservative political convictions, and in turn, the Lucas court moved toward a more business-friendly and pro-law enforcement judicial philosophy.[8]

Career after the Supreme Court[edit]

Bird appeared as a family court judge in an episode of the 1984–85 TV series Pryor's Place starring Richard Pryor. In 1987, Bird appeared as a judge on a television program called Superior Court (a show somewhat similar to The People's Court, though with scripted trials usually focusing on topical issues).

Death and tributes[edit]

Bird died on December 4, 1999, at Stanford University Medical Center from complications of breast cancer (which she had fought on and off since 1976) at the age of 63.[5] The California Public Defender's Association established an award in her honor, as did the California Women Lawyers. New York Law School annually awards one graduating student the Chief Justice Rose E. Bird Award for Motivation in Pursuing Public Interest Law.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Brown, Patrick. "The Rise and Fall of Rose Bird, A Career Killed by the Death Penalty" (pdf). California Supreme Court Historical Society. 
  2. ^ Hon. Stanley Mosk, Oral History Interview (Berkeley: California State Archives Regional Oral History Office, 1998), 54–55.
  3. ^ Chen, Edwin. "California court fight; Bird runs for her life." The Nation, 18 Jan 1986, p. 43-46.
  4. ^ Lindsey, Robert. "Deukmejian and Cranston Win As 3 Judges Are Ousted." New York Times, 6 November 1986, sec. A, p. 30.
  5. ^ a b Purdum, Todd S. (December 6, 1999). "Rose Bird, Once California's Chief Justice, Is Dead at 63". The New York Times. sec. B, p. 18. Retrieved July 18, 2010. 
  6. ^ Joseph R. Grodin, In Pursuit of Justice: Reflections of a State Supreme Court Justice (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1991), 178–179.
  7. ^ Mosk Oral History Interview, 57.
  8. ^ Culver, John H. "The transformation of the California Supreme Court: 1977-1997." Albany Law Review 61, no. 5 (Mid-Summer 1998): 1461-1490.

External links[edit]

Legal offices
Preceded by
Donald R. Wright
Chief Justice of California
March 26, 1977 – January 5, 1987
Succeeded by
Malcolm M. Lucas

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rose_Bird — Please support Wikipedia.
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia. A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia.
1000000 videos foundNext > 

Rose Bird Calif Chief Justice Election Statement 1986 KPIX

Rose Bird was the first woman on the Calif Supreme Court. She was confirmed once as Chief Justice, but lost a reconfirmation bid in 1986.

California Chief Justice Rose Bird Loses Election

Appointees to the California State Supreme Court must periodically stand for confirmation by the voters. Rose Bird was first appointed Chief Justice by Gover...

Rule of Rose - ps2 - Ch. 04 - The Bird of Happiness [1/2]

Rule of Rose - ps2 - Ch. 04 July, 1930 - The Bird of Happiness [1/2] Note: B.J. played during this chapter! Please visit: http://www.bonersgames.com for comp...

2012 Rose Bird Reception

California Women Lawyers' 12th Annual Northern California Judicial Reception and presentation of the Rose Bird Memorial Award to The Honorable Diana Becton, ...

Jalen Rose talks Larry Bird, NBA Finals and Boston Sports on Mike & Mike 5/15/09

http://www.jalenrose.com/ http://twitter.com/jalenrose Jalen Rose - guest host on Mike and Mike in the Morning - talks about Boston sports, playing for Larry...

Rose Bird - AgeLESS - AIM Daily Essentials

Rose Bird, chartered herbalist & AIM Canada general manager discusses "aging less" with the AIM Daily Essentials.

Chinese Brush Painting Lesson 24 Trailer: Daylily, Rose, Bird of Paradise, Japanese Bridge

To join Henry Li's online Chinese brush painting class, please go to http://ChineseBrushPainting.ning.com Chang Dai-chien Ox-ear Hair Brush is available at h...

CWL Rose Bird Memorial Award Event

cockatoo rose bird dancing with moein's song - رقص پرنده با اهنگ معین

رقص رزا خانم با محبوب ورضا cockatoo rose bird dancing with (moein - ham pialeh) song - رقص پرنده با اهنگ معین.

Origami - Rosa Base do Pássaro - Bird Base Rose - James Minoru Sakoda

Mais informações: http://oqueemeuenosso.blogspot.com/2012/02/origami-rosa-base-do-passaro-bird-base.html Diagrama do livro Origami Flowers - James Minoru Sak...

1000000 videos foundNext > 

52 news items

San Jose Mercury News

San Jose Mercury News
Sun, 12 Oct 2014 06:59:49 -0700

The state's top judicial figures, up for retention to new 12-year terms, face the voters with an absence of any drama over their fate, unlike the historic election nearly three decades ago when California voters knocked Chief Justice Rose Bird and two ...

The Glen Rose Reporter

The Glen Rose Reporter
Sun, 05 Oct 2014 12:06:02 -0700

Brandi Black and Abid Corrujedo were named Optimist Club Youth of the Month for Junior High School during a recent meeting. Black's academic accolades include UIL Oral Reading; Ready Writing with first place in fifth and sixth grade; second and fourth ...
 
Record Bee
Mon, 13 Oct 2014 03:52:30 -0700

Rosen scoffs at the notion that Proposition 47 would swing the pendulum too far to the soft-on-crime approach reminiscent of the Rose Bird era, arguing that "it's not going to be like the 1970s, when rapists got probation." But opponents say letting ...
 
Sacramento Bee
Thu, 16 Oct 2014 05:38:34 -0700

As a news reporter, he covered the California Supreme Court when Rose Bird was chief justice, the Legislature when Willie Brown was speaker and the Governor's Office during Gray Davis' tenure. He spent 27 years at the Los Angeles Times, where his final ...

San Jose Mercury News

San Jose Mercury News
Sun, 12 Oct 2014 18:07:30 -0700

Rosen scoffs at the notion that Proposition 47 would swing the pendulum too far to the soft-on-crime approach reminiscent of the Rose Bird era, arguing that "it's not going to be like the 1970s, when rapists got probation." But opponents say letting ...
 
OCRegister
Mon, 13 Oct 2014 00:09:35 -0700

The legislation was authored by a Democrat, enacted by a Democratic legislature, signed into law by a Democratic governor and upheld by the Rose Bird Supreme Court. Over 400 organizations oppose Prop. 46, including labor unions, the ACLU, NAACP ...
 
City Watch
Thu, 02 Oct 2014 20:33:45 -0700

I must share with you a wonderful poem written by former California Supreme Court Chief Justice Rose Bird (one of my heroes) in honor of the Japanese-American World War II experience. She poignantly put into words what so many internees felt then and ...
 
Indie Wire (blog)
Tue, 07 Oct 2014 15:22:31 -0700

While Josh sets up his coffee cart, Rose and Hannah craft felt birds (Rose's bird is atrocious, to say the least). Stuart interrupts their activities to let Rose know that he is being discharged. Rose tries her best to put on a smile, while Hannah is ...
Loading

Oops, we seem to be having trouble contacting Twitter

Support Wikipedia

A portion of the proceeds from advertising on Digplanet goes to supporting Wikipedia. Please add your support for Wikipedia!