Published 12:00 am Sunday, November 24, 2002
There’s a not-too-old saying that when there are three middle-aged white men standing around talking, you know there’s a bad idea brewing.
That’s not meant to be racist, only that ours is a diverse society, particularly in Suffolk. We are about evenly split between black and white, male and female.
Our public institutions, particularly the judiciary which is arguably the most powerful, should reflect the diversity in our community. In addition, it’s blacks who appear before the bench far more than any other group.
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The statement that began this editorial means simply that we all have our biases and generally, people who share similar backgrounds, education, age, etc., share the same biases.
As such, Gov. Mark Warner should have chosen one of the qualified black candidates to fill the vacancy on the Circuit Court bench.
Instead, he selected Carl Edward Eason Jr., a middle-aged white man, to join the other two middle-aged white men who sit on the circuit bench.
This is to take nothing away from Eason, whose credentials are impeccable and speak for themselves. He will take his post seriously and likely do a fantastic job.
Nonetheless it’s ridiculous that out of three positions, one is not held by a black jurist. The governor’s decision was a poor one and will unnecessarily cause dissension in our community.