Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Senate should reject anti-sex toy activist for parole board

The nomination of Shanda Perkins to the parole board - the anti-sex-toy activist chosen by Governor Rick Perry to make decisions about releasing prisoners - comes up tomorrow afternoon in the Senate Nominations Committee. See prior Grits posts for more background:
Perkins' push for harsh enforcement of petty vice laws against her neighbors in Johnson County ultimately resulted in Texas' law banning sex toys being overturned by federal courts. As I wrote when her nomination was announced, "She's so tough on crime, in other words, she's tough on crimes the federal courts say cannot exist because they're acts protected by the First Amendment."

Perkins appears to have no other criminal-justice related background besides her effort to have vibrator sales prosecuted. But there's another reason the Governor might believe (according to his press office) that she's the "most qualified candidate": She's lately been out distributing anonymous attack literature against Kay Bailey Hutchison at Republican Party events.

This nominee should be rejected; Perkins simply doesn't have a background to inspire confidence she'll make wise and judicious decisions on the parole board, and the board is already slanted in its membership and failing to meet its own release guidelines. Adding Perkins to the mix would only exacerbate that problem.

22 comments:

Anonymous said...

I so agree. Ms. Shanda on the board would likely costs the state millions, and probably result in numerous federal lawsuits with huge amounts of civil liability.

That's not even considering the human cost, which would be huge.

Thomas said...

Certainly seems like an ill advised decision. I hate to be a nit picker but I believe that case was decided on 14 Amendment/Lawrence v. Texas grounds. The opinion was written by Judge Tom Reavley, by the way. A fine Texas jurist. Love the blog too.

Anonymous said...

Ahh, The Perry Angle today!.. Perkins needs to be sent packing, but if you could, send her to Oklahoma.. I live in Johnson County, and we don't want her back..

Anonymous said...

Your right grits but this is typical Texas. She'll be confirmed and praised during the process. JOKE!

Anonymous said...

Maybe she should personally try and use a vibrator, and she wouldn't be so opposed to prosecuting it's use!!Yes, she definitely is not a balanced and rational choice for serving on the parole board.

JTP said...

Our Governor must have a very interesting compelling interest in her nominatation. I wonder what it is, given her lack of obvious qualifications??

The Local Crank said...

Just as with the Tarrant County DA, you can rest assured that Perry will find the least qualified, most ideological extremist candidate.

Anonymous said...

I wonder how much she donated to Governor Perry? I'd like that nomination.

Anonymous said...

So what do we know about any of the appointee's? There are supposed to be 12 members across the state, but currently only 7 if you check TDCJ's web site with 2 or 3 expiring in 2009. Not good odds for any prisoner coming up for parole in the next year with an over worked board and now a very inexperienced board coming up! I see more problems than just this christian zealot Shanda Perkins that Perry is appointming. This is a travesty for anyone with one of those horrendously long sentences say for ... a rape without penetration..., Or a false accusation but you had poor representation...any kind of sex crime the individual must have a 2/3 favorable vote of ALL 12 board members. To face this inexperienced board with the "set off" laws created to keep people in prison, I say this is frightening indeed. Sandra

Anonymous said...

I was wrong, it looks like Rissie Owens is up for re-appointment. Sandra

Charlie O said...

She's a religious nutball. Ironically, it's these "christians" who have no capacity for forgiveness or believe in redemption or second chances.

I'm a former resident of Tarrant County (now PA) and lived there when the "dildo" story broke. What a ridiculous waste of taxpayer money and government agent resources.

Anonymous said...

Indeed a sad choice for parole Board member ! To correct one previous post, there are 7 Boardmembers who are appointed by the Governor ( really a bad law!)and 11 Commissioners who are hired by the Chairman of the Board. As for the 2/3 voting law, they are the votes of the 7 member Board not the Commissioners.
Hope to see this nomination defeated !

Kill This Nomination! said...

This must be stopped!! Call the Senate Nominations Committee and tell them Shanda Perkins is unqualified and unfit to serve:

Mike Jackson (chair) 463-0111
Kevin Eltife 463-0101
Glenn Hegar 463-0118
Jane Nelson 463-0112
Robert Nichols 463-0103
Elliott Shapleigh 463-0129
Kirk Watson 463-0114

Especially be sure to call if one of them is YOUR senator.

sunray's wench said...

Sandra I agree with you.

This is just one small piece of a very corrupt and broken puzzle though. I was told a while ago that the office that prints the parole certificates (for those who dont know, without the certificate, nothing is official) print on average 60 every day. Now if there are only 7 - 12 people doing the voting, how can anyone ever hope to get a fair hearing? It's no wonder that so many are rubber-stamped "denied" with a stock reason, and that the average time spent on each parole case is around 45 SECONDS. It should be 45 minutes, at least.

When you have the lives of so many in the hands of so few, is it any wonder those few wont to keep a very tight grip on what they have?

Anonymous said...

SUnray, you are wrong about number of certificates issued a day. Parole issues around 3000 certificates a month and issue up to six months out. The parole Division is not the problem. On the other hand, the Parole Board refuses to vote more than 200 cases a week.

Andy said...

KINKY FRIEDMAN FOR GOVERNOR...Anyone but Rick Perry!

Anonymous said...

RICK PERRY will be a gonner this time around and Ms Shanda might as well not waste her time. Get a real job girl. Vote no to Perry!

good_vibrations said...

Texas has Perry...Alaska has Palin. Both fools are secessionists at heart. Wouldn't miss Palin much. She's too busy with her national face anywhere she can get it--except Alaska, of course. Just doesn't seem right-and neither do Perry or Palin. My condolences!

Anonymous said...

If she gets appointed and Perry loses his next race, the new Governor can't get rid of any appointments made by Perry. She will be there 6 years.

Vibrator said...

It would cost the goverment money.

Amanda Crowe said...

Anyway, the county spent a good bit of money pursuing this nonsense, because state law hadn't kept up with reality, until a federal court ended the silliness.

Sterling said...

I wish the county would focus on things that matter. I feel that we focus on small things that would take pressure off the big things that matter. sex toys dont really have an affect on this country.