May 30, 2009

A few months ago, I told you how excited I was that Rhode Island’s Governor Carcieri might select a well-qualified (and female) judge for the new Chief Justice of our state’s top court. But he didn’t. Yet again, Governor Carcieri selected a white man. Sure, the appointee is qualified. But what about including different life experiences – like life as a woman or a person of color or or or …

Does Governor Carcieri just not get it? Or does he just not care? How about all the others, like those fighting Sotomayor’s nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court?

How hard can it be to understand that people experience life differently – and that those life experiences are important to add to the body politic, to the decision-makers, to the systems in any and all communities and countries?

Let me ask you: If you had a choice between two qualified individuals (and one was from a marginalized, disenfranchised group) – which individual would you pick? I would not pick the white man. My life partner – a white man – would not pick a white man. Quit picking the dominant group. Quit defining the “norm” as the dominant group.

Read “Rogues, Robes and Racists” by Charles M. Blow, an op-ed piece in this morning’s New York Times. I love his statement: “…all I see is men throwing skeleton bones from class closets.”

P.S. I think Governor Carcieri (and so many others) do get it. But they just don’t care. They love their class closets.

Filed under: Social Commentary

About Simone Joyaux

A consultant specializing in fund development, strategic planning, and board development, Simone P. Joyaux works with all types and sizes of nonprofits, speaks at conferences worldwide, and teaches in the graduate program for philanthropy at Saint Mary’s University, MN. Her books, Keep Your Donors and Strategic Fund Development, are standards in the field.

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