2019: The Year in Lawsplaining
2019 often seemed like a never-ending hellscape, particularly when it came to legal news. And, in a lot of ways, it was.
But Yr Wonkette can't let you go into 2020 all depressed, now can we?! So here are a few of our favorite things in law from the last year.
Letitia James is the New York Attorney General
And isn't she just lovely? From day one on the job, she has been a thorn in Donald Trump's side. James has filed a whole bunch of lawsuits against Trump and his cronies and just generally kicked ass and taken names since she was sworn in last January. And really, what more could we want from one person?
AG James's 2019 highlight reel includes:
- Investigating the FUCK out of the NRA;
- Joining the fight against Trump's racist and xenophobic Census ratfucking (more on that below);
- Fighting Trump's attempts to murder all of our environmental laws;
- Putting a stop, at least temporarily, to Trump's plans to deny citizenship to immigrants who have received public assistance;
- Working to keep ICE out of New York courtrooms;
- Suing to stop Trump's gutting of ACA protections;
- Suing the drug companies responsible for the opioid crisis;
- Defending New York's new mandatory vaccination law; and
- Investigating all manner of bullshit from Donald Trump and his fake charity.
And if all that isn't enough for you greedy mofos, James is also the first woman AND the first black person to be elected as the NYAG. Put that on your plate!
Jeffrey Epstein was finally prosecuted
It seems like this one was years ago, but would you believe Jeffrey Epstein's indictment, imprisonment, and death all happened in July and August of this year? Following incredible investigative reporting by the Miami Herald, federal prosecutors finally charged pedophile and prolific child rapist Jeffrey Epstein with sex trafficking.
The criminal proceedings brought new attention to all of Epstein's horrible acts -- and he wasn't the only one taken down. Alan Dershowitz, who had already made a fool of himself defending Trump, truly became a national laughingstock. Socialite and Epstein enabler Ghislaine Maxwell has been ostracized and is afraid to show her face at the fancy New York parties her life used to center around. Trump Labor Secretary Alex Acosta was forced to resign over his role in Epstein's initial, botched prosecution.
And remember Prince Andrew? Yeah, neither does Queen Elizabeth.
As for Epstein, well ... as we wrote at the time, Jeffrey Epstein Was Trash And Now He's Dead.
SCOTUS put a stop to Trump's ratfucking of the 2020 Census
In what was largely a shit session, at least one major Supreme Court case actually went the right way last year!
In an attempt to scare immigrants and people of color, as well as to generally rig the 2020 Census to create more favorable congressional districts for white Republicans, Trump and his goons decided to try to add a question about whether respondents are US citizens to the decennial count.
It's entirely possible that this case was originally going to go Trump's way. But then Stephanie Hoefeller stepped in. Stephanie's father, Thomas, was a GOP asshole who figured out how to use numbers for evil. Daddy Hoefeller was the mastermind behind some of the worst, most undemocratic gerrymandering in the country. But that's not all! He also helped get the idea of a citizenship Census question on Trump's radar -- and, in the process, wrote a memo describing how a citizenship question "would be advantageous to Republicans and Non-Hispanic Whites,"
Enter Stephanie. After her father's death, she found a bunch of flash drives that had been in his possession and began going through them. She had been working with Common Cause, one of the challengers of the citizenship question, on other matters, and turned the incriminating documents over to them.
And that, as they say, was that. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts, who tries to make sure that the Court at least has a veneer of respectability, joined the Court's four typically liberal members to put a stop to Trump's Census horse manure. And although Trump tried tor a few weeks to figure out ways to ignore the Court, he eventually had to give in, give up, and stop this particular ratfucking. So hopefully -- and cross your fingers hard on this one! -- 2020 will see a fair and accurate headcount to help us divvy up congressional seats in the decade to come.
Diamond and Silk Sent Your Very Own Wonkette a cease and desist letter
And it was glorious.
Angry at all of our very mean besmirches and slanderizing, the legal masterminds in Calcite and Burlap's in-basement counsel, "robert," sent Wonkette what has to be one of the great legal documents of our time.
Gravel and Polyester told us that we must keep their totally real and legally binding letter secret, so of course, dear readers, we shared it with you.
In fact, why don't we take another look at this legal genius now?
OH NOES, NOT THE BESMIRCH STATEMENTS! This is still just as good now as it was back in August.
Sadly for Coal and Silkworm, you can't sue people for making fun of you, Bob.
Listen. 2019 was rough. But there were still some pretty big wins for justice and the rule of law! 2020 is going to be a big year no matter what -- and we have a lot on the line. So rather than dwell on the shittiness, let's focus on the good. There are some amazing people fighting their asses off to do good and hold the shitty people in power accountable for their fuckery.
In 2020, let's keep fighting the good fight, in the courts and everywhere else, and do everything we can to make sure Trump is a one-term President.
And never forget what Margaret Mead (and President Bartlet) taught us:
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has.
Happy 2020, Wonkers!
Come back every hour on the hour to see what we got to tell you!