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Racist Election Signs Appearing Around Houston


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These signs stating WE WANT JUDGES THAT LOOK LIKE US and picturing all black judges are now appearing all over the city.  Why isn't anybody saying anything about this openly racist campaign?  If all these judges pictured were white this city would have folks out protesting and blocking freeways...


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Harris County has 59 state district courts.  Of the judges, 48 are white (70%), 6 are Hispanic (10%), 4 are black (7%), and 1 is Asian.  There are 23 county courts (4 civil, 15 criminal, and 4 probate).  Their demographics are similar.  It's only when one gets to the JP level that things start to look more like the community as a whole.  (2014 estimate, per Wikipedia:  41.8% Hispanic, 31.4% white, 19.5%, black, 7% Asian).


Granted, that two things have a heavy thumb on the scale here:  As a rule judges tend to be older and more experienced, but it's only been within the last 25 - 30 years that law school classes even began looking less like a white sausage party.  Also, many if not most of our district court judges first assumed their benches by appointment, which has been an R monopoly for a long time... and the Rs don't exactly present a broad demographic.


My personal belief is that one's ancestry or melanin level inherently hasn't got a danged thing to do with intelligence.  They shouldn't have a danged thing to do with educational or career opportunities, either, much less be a source of privilege - but until they don't, it's going to continue to be a factor, like it or not.  Taking that a step further, as long as we have nativist yahoos screaming like the mobs in 1955 Little Rock and 1965 Birmingham, then there will be pushback, and it's going to take a number of forms, some uglier than others.  "Put people who look like us into office" works both ways.


For the record, I'm a 60 year old white guy, raised here and in South Louisiana, and still remember the Long Hot Summers and desegregation battles of the late 60s / early 70s.  I have a professional degree, but my grandfather was an immigrant coal miner.  If it weren't for my dad getting into ROTC and the whole family having the favored skin color, I don't know that I'd be where I am.  I'm both very grateful for that, and very aware that it's also at least in part the result of having membership in what a late friend of mine referred to as "the Lucky Sperm Club." 



Edited by mollusk
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