Torah Portion: Mishpatim
Do not curse the judges (Shemos 22:27).
It is a negative commandment to not curse judges, as it is written, Do not curse the judges [Elohim] (Shemos 22:27). In this context, the term Elohim means “judges.”
Among the roots of the commandment is the aim of freeing judges from fearing any of the plaintiffs or their curses, and in this way the judges will rule truthfully. There is an additional benefit from this mitzvah, which is that cursing judges leads to many negative things; since the masses, in their foolishness, hate judges, if they would have no deterrent against cursing a judge, they would indeed do so. This, in turn, would agitate them further to actually attack him. Of course, this would be a terrible thing, for He “establishes the land through justice” (cf. Mishlei 29:4).
This mitzvah applies in all places and at all times, to both men and women. One who transgresses this and cursed a judge, using the Divine Name or its substitute, is administered lashes twice; one set of lashes because the judge is a Jew like any Jew whom one may not curse, and another set because of this additional prohibition specifically against cursing a judge.