It is difficult to convincingly label Judge Philpot as either misogynist or anti-male through his public actions because there are more subtle layers of bias underlying his decisions in individual cases. His dichotomous attitude towards women has already been explored from the Madonna/Whore complex perspective in this blog: (http://judgephilpot.blogspot.com/2017/01/dichotomy-in-judge-philpots-attitude.html).
Judge Philpot’s conscious and subconscious attitudes are not doubt shaped by his own conflicted upbringing, which he freely discusses in nearly every public speech.
His latest book (Judge Z) provides glaring and inescapable truths about his attitude to other men, particularly in the context of their ethnicity and his perception of their material success or achievement. Almost every male character who is not firmly on the judge’s team ideologically speaking, is portrayed negatively and only one achieves any kind of redemption. The males who are not White, Anglo-Saxon Protestants are especially demonized. Disparaging characterization is particularly blatant when the author describes a male who is more materially successful than he is. These characters are depicted as moral defectives who have acquired their success through lying, cheating or blind luck. In addition to a host of personal flaws, each of these male characters is shown to have a broken relationship with his children. Judge Philpot appears to be channeling the angst of his own childhood, and however valid that may be as therapy or an art form, the fact that he is so oblivious of the problems as to document them in print, raises serious doubts about his objectiveness and impartiality as a judge in family court.
Listed below is a synopsis of the barely disguised male characters excoriated by Judge Philpot:
Mr. Dawid is a Kuwaiti Muslim divorcing his wife in the judge’s court. Both he and his wife are portrayed as lying and deceitful especially in relation to financial disclosure. The judge suspects that Mr. Dawid and his brother are using their family owned convenience store to hide income and avoid paying support to Mrs. Dawid. To avoid the tedious process of evaluating the evidence, the judge threatens Mr. Dawid with jail to induce him to come up with the required funds. Mr. Dawid is certainly portrayed as a wife-mistreating villain.
Curiously, even though the judge is certain that the wife pretends not to understand English to obstruct the judge’s attempt to divide marital property, he ends up awarding her “almost everything except love and respect”. Another oddity is that in case of this Islamic marriage, the judge does not see fit to order an “Irretrievably Broken Hearing,” taking Mrs. Dawid at her apparently perjuring word.
Professor Zhiu is seeking an uncontested divorce from his wife “Duck Chow” Yang after moving out to live with one of his female, Chinese students. Their story in the book reveals interesting aspects of Judge Philpot’s attitude towards those he sees as foreign males, especially in the use of punitive financial coercion to correct what he perceives as immoral behavior towards women. Excerpts from the book:
“ The judge asked, “Sir, you are the petitioner so I will ask you some questions first. Your name is?”
His answer was impossible to understand, but the judge kept moving. In China, being impertinent to a government official could land him in solitary confinement for twenty years.
The wife nodded, with one eye on her husband, following his cues. The husband gave her a sharp look and she dropped her head to stare at the table. He would answer the judge’s questions.
With no lawyers present except Florence, the judge felt free to ask some nosy questions that most lawyers would find objectionable.
“Sir, who is this girl you live with?” he asked. “When do you see your daughter?” “What is your status to be in the United States?” “Do you plan to return to China?” “Do you have children in China?” “Exactly how much money do you make?” “What are you researching at UK?” “Do you plan to remarry?” “Was this marriage some sort of arranged affair to legalize everyone’s immigration status?” “What’s going on here anyway?” “
He was getting no good answers. Mr. Zhiu was more nervous with every question, fearful that the man in the black robe would send him back to China or to prison to be re-educated.
“I’m going to find that this marriage is irretrievably broken with no reasonable prospect of reconciliation,” Judge Z said, winding up the brief hearing. He did not feel good about this, but he eased his conscience by ordering the husband to pay an outrageous sum of child support and maintenance. If Mr. Zhiu had a lawyer along, the lawyer would scream bloody murder, but it seemed fair to the judge.
Mr. and Mrs. Cranford, both Fayette county police officers, are parents of a baby boy and are now divorcing each other after having left their former spouses to continue their adulterous affair. The story only discusses Mr. Cranford who is Seeking relief from a Domestic Violence Order that threatens his job with the Lexington police. The judge responds: ““Sir, you are actually one of the scariest men I have ever met. I don’t feel bad at all about you losing your job. Have a nice day,” which meant the hearing was over. Judge Z could smell the creeps, even when they wore suits and ties.”
“Dr. T” is a Zambian man whose full name the judge had difficulty pronouncing. He is denounced in court by his first wife Veronique who “told everyone he had beaten her, cussed her and been unfaithful to her. “In Africa, she would have been thrown out with the trash…She got her child-support increased by proving that Dr. T. had not been forthcoming about all of his income. His ex-wife was empowered by the Judge to assert her rights “But what Veronique really wanted was an opportunity to stand up in front of fifty people and tell everyone what a lousy father and husband he was. Again.” The hapless doctor receives little sympathy from the judge and suffers the customary financial drubbing.