Black History Month: Supreme Court Justice Loretta Lynch ... Maybe
February 16, 2016
Black History Month is important because it helps to point out the many contributions of African-Americans to this country. It also gives a past to build on for so many who can only trace back a few hundred years. When droves of Africans were herded onto ships for America, cultures and traditions were, for the most part, lost. Generations of families were forced into slavery, sold, and scattered around the U.S, particularly in the South. So much lost history for a people whose origins trace back centuries on the continent of Africa. This is one of the reasons why Black History Month is so important; it will help the generations move forward for centuries to come. I am very aware what I am writing might someday be read by someone researching African-Americans. What was once word-of-mouth, overlooked, buried or rumored has become documented for the free world to reference for as long as mankind lives on this earth. Every day African-Americans are among the many making history within this great country of ours.
Ironically the person I have selected to highlight this week might soon be nominated for a seat on the Supreme Court. Loretta Lynch was sworn in as U.S. Attorney General on April 27th, 2015. She received her A.B., cum laude, from Harvard College in 1981, and her J.D. from Harvard Law School in 1984.
Ms. Lynch left private practice to join the United States Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of New York in Brooklyn. Her impressive prosecutorial record led President Bill Clinton, in 1999, to appoint her to lead the office as United States Attorney. Ms. Lynch held the office for two years before leaving for private practice and a partnership at a New York firm.
While in private practice, she did pro bono work for the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. The tribunal prosecuted people for human rights violations committed during the 1994 genocide in the country.
In 2010, President Obama asked Ms. Lynch to resume her leadership of the U.S. Attorney's Office in Brooklyn. She successfully dealt with major terrorism, Mafia activity, and public corruption prosecutions.
During the vetting process for Attorney General, Congressional Republicans openly gave praise to her work and the fact she had no personal ties to President Obama. However, Lynch's confirmation was held up as Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell attempted to get concessions from Democrats on immigration and abortion. Nevertheless, she did receive confirmation. Should she be nominated for the highest court in the land, it's going to be hard for the Republican Senate opposition to explain why a person who got the nod recently is not qualified to receive it again.
Only one month into her new job as attorney general, Lynch grabbed the world's attention when she vowed to rid FIFA, soccer's global governing body, of corruption. When it was all said and done, the Justice Department indicted 16 top soccer officials from Central America and South America, charging them with wire fraud, money laundering, racketeering and other charges outlined in a 92-count indictment.
Loretta Lynch seems to be a tough-minded, but objective middle-of-the-road Attorney General. They say the apple does not fall far from the tree, I believe her parents have had a lot to do with her approach to her work. Ms. Lynch is the daughter of Lorenzo and Lorine Lynch of Durham, N.C; a retired minister and a librarian. Lorreta Lynch is married and has two children. If you want to read more about her amazing story, click here.
The Importance of Documenting Minority Achievements
History is made by people who bend and shape the present to create the future. Publicizing the daily exploits of African-Americans and other minorities increases the possibilities of breaking down the boundaries of hate and ignorance. The negatives portrayed daily by a commercialized press are minor in comparison to the history of those working hard to succeed.
I see the bombardment of fear, failure and strife as the engine for a free society's journalists to make a buck. Realistically, people are drawn to gossip and bad news which means ratings, readership, and advertising dollars. It is up to all of us to make sure the positives are documented and preserved. Attorney Lorreta Lynch is merely one of many examples of American minority resiliency.