Is it just Phillipe & Jorge (as is often the case), but something seemed patently wrong, if not offensive, when the Urinal ran a headline on the top of its February 20 Vo Dilun section that read: “Black lawyer named to judicial panel.”
Perhaps this made sense, given some of the past controversy about Governor Carcieri’s predominately pale-skinned judicial appointments. Well, OK. It is an improvement from years ago, when your superior correspondents would note headers emanating from Fountain Street like, “Two blacks rob liquor store.” Still, there must be a better way to note the governor’s appointment of our longtime friend, Dennis Coleman, to the state Judicial Nominating Committee.
Dennis, a Brown graduate, quarterbacked Bruno Uno’s football team in the early 1970s, and, according to the Other Paper, took part in the major game when Brown played Penn and its black QB, Marty Vaughn, in 1973. Coleman has since become a mega-agent for the likes of Indy Colts Super Bowl-winning coach Tony Dungy and Boston College basketball coach Al Skinner (formerly at URI), among other sports luminaries. He serves as president of the Brown Sports Hall of Fame, has been a legal champion of black professional athlete associations, and is an incorporator of Kent Memorial Hospital.
Considering Coleman’s track record at the prestigious Boston-based Ropes & Gray law firm, a more apt headline celebrating his designation might have been: “Nationally renowned lawyer named to judicial panel.”
Sleep tight, Fritz Pollard.
A United Nations official is reported to have said in the late 1990s, “The wars of the 21st century will be over water.” While he likely referred to more immediate concerns in Africa and the Middle East, it is also high time that we Rhode Islanders begin looking at our own finite water supplies.
To that end, a statewide water conference, “Water for Rhode Island — Today and Tomorrow,” will be held Thursday, March 1 from 5-9 pm at the Save the Bay Center, 100 Save the Bay Drive, Providence. Legislators, town planners, zoning boards, town council members, and interested people are urged to attend. The event is sponsored by a variety of state agencies and organizations dealing with water supply issues in the state.
The keynote address, “Securing Our Water Future: A Call to Action,” will be presented by Amy Vickers, an internationally known engineer, author, and consultant. Panel discussions will include “The Easy Years Are Over,” and “Meeting the Challenge,” with a host of local water management experts.
Registration is $20 and includes a boxed supper. Register by calling 401.621.8048, or by downloading a registration form, under News and Information. As always, be there or be thirsty. (Full disclosure: Phillipe works with, and in some cases, is employed by members of the sponsoring partnership. That alone should be a recommendation.)