Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Two Men Walk into a Court...

   This week, Gov. Chris Christie announced two nominations for the New Jersey State Supreme Court.   Here is how the local CBS affiliate chose to open the story on their website:  "New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie moved to diversify the state’s all-white Supreme Court on Monday by proposing two firsts: the nominations of an openly gay black man and a Korean-born law enforcer to fill two vacancies."  Even though the subject concerns the appointment of justices to the highest court in the State of New Jersey, the words "law enforcer" seem oddly out of place in this journalistic celebration of diversity.  And things don't get much better.  In the entire piece, the only information that even hints at Harris's qualifications for the position appears in the 22nd paragraph.  The article's sparse detailing of Kwon's legal background seems protracted by comparison.   The New York Times approached the story in a similar way with the headline "Christie Names a Gay Man and an Asian for the Top Court," although more details of the qualifications of each made it into their reporting.  Even the governor's own website posts a video segment of the press conference that puts the emphasis in the wrong place.  One can only hope that the governor did his homework and these men are truly qualified to hold these extraordinarily important positions.  But to paraphrase Martin Luther King with apologies, it appears the time has come where a man is not only judged by the color of his skin, but by the content of his demographics.

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