Arizona Bar Admonishes Oath Keepers Founder Stewart Rhodes
Read the whole thing here.
It turns out Stewart Rhodes, the Yale-educated lawyer who founded the Oath Keepers to encourage police and military personnel to disobey orders they deem unconstitutional, has a hard time following the rules of conduct for lawyers.
Hatewatch has learned that the State Bar of Arizona has admonished Rhodes for practicing without a license. Rhodes wrote “notices of claim” on behalf of two people who were removed from a Quartzsite, Ariz., Town Council meeting last year. The notices, which generally precede a lawsuit, accused town officials of violating the rights of Michael Roth and Jennifer Jade Jones, a local blogger, by removing the pair from a raucous council meeting that sparked national interest and widespread theorizing from the antigovernment “Patriot” movement.
It’s that conspiracy-mindedness that first drove Rhodes and the Oath Keepers into the Quartzsite drama – a complicated tale of alleged small-town corruption that pitted Police Chief Jeff Gilbert and the Town Council against then-Mayor Ed Foster, several police officers and a handful of citizens. The battle was byzantine enough that it’s hard to say exactly what happened. But the story became national news after an online video of Jones’ arrest during the council meeting went viral and prompted widespread condemnation of town officials.
And what fueled that condemnation? Extremists worried that the martial law they fear had finally come to a tiny town in the desert.
I posted a Page on the brouhaha in Quartzsite, before the Oathkeepers got involved. Since then, I’ve been to Quartzsite. There were more motor homes than regular homes. Huge snowbird community (I was there in February. It’s probably abandoned now, it’s supposed to hit 113 degrees F today.) We now call those huge, bus-sized motor homes “Quartzsite Condos”, and the little ones are “Quartzsite Cabins”. It’s an odd enough place that one might be tempted to just laugh at their controversy.
I’m glad to see the Arizona State Bar take some action against Stewart Rhodes. It’s a good reminder that, as crazy as Arizona seems, it’s still one of our 50 states and there are still regular, sane people there. I wish them well.