Archive for Thursday, August 11, 2005

Attorney in evolution case not licensed in Kansas

August 11, 2005


— The battle over public school science standards has gone from evolution to law.

Attorney Pedro Irigonegaray, who represented mainstream, pro-evolution scientists during hearings in May on science standards, accused attorney John Calvert, who represented the anti-evolution scientists, of misstating his official job position.

Irigonegaray said of Calvert, "He has never been licensed to practice law in the state of Kansas and all the time in those hearings he was acting as a Kansas lawyer.

"It's an outrage. It is both illegal and unethical to do so. There are criminal statutes that sanction against false impersonation and that includes acting as though one was something that one isn't."

Calvert on Wednesday conceded he is not licensed to practice law in Kansas. He said he is licensed in Missouri.

But Calvert says he did nothing wrong. Calvert said the four days of hearings, in which anti-evolutionists testified to a three-member committee of the Kansas State Board of Education, was not a court proceeding.

If it had been, Calvert said, he would have had to have been licensed to practice law in Kansas, or at least been with a lawyer who was.

"The proceeding we were engaged in was not a legal proceeding. We were simply presenting witnesses that were testifying about a scientific issue," Calvert said.

He said Irigonegaray's comments at a news conference were "silly" and designed to deflect attention from the issue, which he says is that the theory of evolution is in trouble in the scientific community.

On a transcript of the hearing, Calvert also is identified as a lawyer from Lathrop & Gage. But Calvert said that was an error made by the court reporter.

Calvert said he retired from Lathrop & Gage in 2001 but still has an office at the firm's headquarters in Kansas City, Mo.

Frank Diehl, a deputy disciplinary administrator at the Kansas Disciplinary Administrator's office - which handles complaints about lawyers - said representing oneself falsely as a licensed professional is a crime punishable by up to six months in jail.

Diehl's comments were unrelated to the allegations made by Irigonegaray. He said he didn't know the facts of that situation.


John1945 12 years, 9 months ago

Everytime I see something written about Pedro the phrase "ambulance chaser" just seems to pop into my head.

He and his pals were the height of unethical conduct during the hearings running around like cowards in the hallways, but afraid to come in and actually present their ideas where they could be publicly examined, and now he's whining and sniveling about someone else? I don't think so.

Pedro is the type of individual that gives the legal profession a black eye.

John1945 12 years, 9 months ago

I don't know if my church is dying, but your side lost WWII because they thought they were the master race. And, quite frankly, of all the folks I've seen in these forums, you have to have one of the most inferior intellects I've seen.

Can't you make a solid argument without using an ad hominem?

Can't you engage in debate without letting your bigotry slop all over the page?

I think you need to change your screen name from the Joker to the Straw Man. Wasn't that the one that needed a brain?

Liberty 12 years, 9 months ago

Since the Kansas statutes are written so complicated and in such legalese and scattered from one clause to another that the people can't possibly understand them, even after they have read them and studied them; this is why the people usually opt to have an attorney. The people are being held to a standard that no person can understand (even most lawyers). So you just have to take the state's word about what the law says. Of course, it will be presented in a way that only favors the state and doesn't give you a clear understanding of your better or hidden options buried in the law that give you freedom.

Apparently this person was a good enough lawyer that none of those accusing him could tell the difference until now. What does that say about their qualifications? What does that say about being licensed? It means this person didn't pay the state for the proper fee for a license. Not that he was not as qualified as the rest of them that accuse him of no license.

It is a real stretch to say that they need a Kansas license to be an attorney for the purpose of representing a side in creation or evolution discussion.

Liberty 12 years, 9 months ago

Wendt, we know why no science professors show up from the State of Kansas to criticize evolution.

They would loose their position and money.

They dare not speak out or appear politically incorrect or say the truth. Since the State schools teach evolution as if it were a fact, people begin to think it is true and replace God and creation with this false religion.

Parts of evolution have an element of truth in them such as slight change over time. But as an explanation of where we came from; it has no basis of fact and great falsehood throughout. I admire your faith though, it takes a lot more faith to believe evolution than creation, because the mathematical probability is so extreme to believe that evolution could be true, it requires a great amount of faith.

kskris 12 years, 9 months ago

Evolution and faith are NOT mutually exclusive. Being a devout Christian myself, and possessing a university education, I believe in an initial intelligent designer, with His hand guiding the scientific theory (backed up with scientific fact) of evolution.

However, this has NOTHING to do with the question of if intelligent design should be taught in our schools. There is no scientific support, as of yet, to point to when trying to teach intelligent design. What are biology teachers to use to reference intelligent design? The Bible? The Koran? I think not, as it would be a violation of church and state. Evolution on the other hand can point to geology, anthropology, biology, and other areas of science to support it.

It's not the job of biology teachers to teach intelligent design. It is the responsibility of the parents and the church. Are our churches falling down on the job here? Or are they trying to shirk their duties by passing the buck so to speak? I don't think so. What I do think is that the church is trying to do is to widen their area of influence into our public school system, which is patently wrong.

I was deeply troubled to see the bashing of Mr. Irigonegaray in one posters message. I have close ties, professionally and personally to this man's coleges and have spoken with him myself. Let me assure you this man is not an "ambulance chaser". He is well known and highly respected throughout the state.

It is extremely important that we have attorneys who are licenced to practice in Kansas participating in this important debate. Laws and procedure vary from state to state, and allowing this man to decieve others by leading them to think he was licenced to pratice in Kansas is a danger to our legal system here. I think it also shows a low standard of ethics and morality on his part that could taint his position, right or wrong.

HELP, my religion has been hyjacked by extremists!

princess 12 years, 9 months ago

Oh this is rich!

Could it be that they couldn't find an actual lawyer to argue for them because in fact no lawyer would put their career on the line for such a thing?

Every time Kansas takes a baby step forward, the extreme religious right rears it's ugly head and forces everyone three steps back.

Laughing stock of the country... again. Thank you so very much. Jerks.

Densmore 12 years, 9 months ago

Forget about the fact that the guy was not licensed to practice law in Kansas. The real scandal is that we allowed someone from Missouri, of all places, to slither out from under their rock and come westward into civilization to help us understand how it all began.

John1945 12 years, 9 months ago

To Wendt, Nazism isn't in ones name, it's in one's behavior and views. There isn't an ounce of difference between the religious bigotry expressed by "Joker" and the anti-semitism expressed by the Nazis.

You, of course, probably wouldn't notice it as much since what we only laughbly call liberalism these days is virtually the same as Nazism in the early 30's.

That aside, Pedro's argument is simply the kind of specious nonsense he's become famous for.

First of all, we see the argument that scientists need not show up to the hearings. Yet they did show up. What they didn't do was expose their ideas to the rigors of debate. Instead they hid out in the hallways like a bunch of cowardly old women gossiping over a fence.

The argument that Calvert isn't a real lawyer is sillier yet. Calvert was an attorney with one of the most prestigious law firms in Kansas City. Pedro is little more than an ambulance chaser. Do a google for the latest looney tunes lawsuit he's filed.

More importantly is that there was nothing involved in this process that required a law degree. For all Pedro did, you could have substituted "Joker" and his crypto-Nazi babbling for the drivel Pedro uttered and not known the difference.

This is simply the behavior of a pack of sore losers who don't have the courage to pull their propaganda out from under the rock they found it and instead focus on these ludicrous ad hominems.

John1945 12 years, 9 months ago

Dear Mrs Smitty:

I agree. There is no gender bias to unethical behavior. And I also agree with you that it is embarrassing that we have a "scientific" community that either will not, or can not, defend its own dogma and instead hides outside of view whispering ad hominem arguments into the ears of a press corps that's as ignorant as the "scientists" are cowardly. A disgrace indeed.

John1945 12 years, 9 months ago

Posted by Joker on August 11 at 6:20 p.m "Hey john1945. What is your point? I can only see that you want to impose your religion on others. You are weak! Those who want to push evolution out of the light and replace it with some christian LIE are the problem with the USA. Pal, I support freedom. Freedom from jerks like you who are so old you will die anyday now"

Yeah, too bad you don't have the ovens set up yet to handle my kind so you can impose your "freedom" on those of us who don't die fast enough for you.

Thanks for all you do to demonstrate the mentality behind liberalism and its crypto-Nazi foundations.

John1945 12 years, 9 months ago

Wendt, do you ever actually come up with arguments, or are ad hominem attacks all you're capable of?

Among the many things liberalism has brought us are totalitarian speech patterns where using the wrong pronoun, or some other lunacy brings out the wrath of the ultra-authoritarian Mrs. Smittys and Wendts of the world.

Wendt is right about one thing though, we do have her there and it's unfortunate that she can't formulate a real response so that we could have an intelligent dialog over the other totalitarian aspects of modern liberalism, including its penchant for religious bigotry.

Wilbur_Nether 12 years, 9 months ago

The difficulty I see in the intelligent design-creationism-evolution debate is that the participants are arguing over values systems. The underlying positions are "my values system is better than yours." Since there is no objective way to define which is the "best" way to believe, the conversation degenerates into stalemates, ad hominem attacks.

The solution: find a way to acknowledge disagreements and tolerate differences. Calling intelligent designer-creationists naive, ignorant, foolish, or worse only reinforces the conflict. The same happens when evolutionists are called cowardly, thuggish, Nazi-esque, immoral, etc. Until a truce is called and we all acknowledge that the other person has a right to be wrong--from our point of view--and we needn't save that person from exercising that right, this dog will continue chasing its own tail.

John1945 12 years, 9 months ago

Yet more ad hominem attacks and yet not one reasoned argument. I was right, you are incapable of logical thinking. Since you like freshman courses at KU try one on logic so you at least know what you're talking about.

Then do some research on totalitarian speech patterns and some of the social histories of the Third Reich.

And with that, thus ends my attempts at discourse with those incapable of rational thought for this day.

This blog is a wonderful demonstration of just how poorly we've been rewarded for our investment in "higher" education in Kansas.

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