North Carolina Newspapers

Eye Witness to History
b\ Dexter Brooks,
Senior Resident Superior Court Judge
II hen / was sworn in as Senior
Resident Superior Court Judge on
January 2, I 99', I became the first
non-European to ever hold that position.
I am humbled by the thought
that I am a part of the history of our
great county. Ironically, when I
became Senior Resident Judge, I
replaced the infamous Joe Freeman
Drill in that position. Many of
my friends have commented on the
irony of that.
Also of historical significance at
my swearing in was the fact that the
oath of office was administered to
me by the Honorable Hurley
Mitch ell, Chief Justice of the /Worth
Carolina Supreme Court. To my
knowledge, it was the first time that
the Chief Justice of that prestigious
court had administered the oath oj
office to the Senior Resident Superior
Court Judge in our District.
I was honored also on this occasion
to be introduced to the court by
possibly my best friend and former
law partner, Attorney Arnold
l.ocklear of the Pembroke Law
Firm, l.ocklear, Jacobs and Hunt.
On the same day of my swearing
in, funeral services were held for my
friend, Dr. Joy J. Johnson of
Fairmont. We had been friends for
many years and 1 was saddened by
his absence on this occasion.
Following are the remarks made
by the Chief Justice, the comments
by Rev. John Campbell, Director of
the Robeson County Human Relations
Commission who gave the invocation:
Thank you ver> much It is a real
privilege and honor to be with you
today As you've heard in the opening.
I am Chief Justice Burlcy
Mitchell, the Chief Justice of North
Carolina And it is my high privilege
and honor to be here today for this
ceremony and administer the oath of
office to my friend , Dexter Brooks,
as Senior Resident Superior Court
Judge for this district.
You all know him well. He is an
exceptional man We have a lot in
common We both graduated from
North Carolina State University
which is not too common among
judges So Dexter I can say is one of
the few of our judges who really has
a superb education. We're proud of
him. And after going through engineering
school at North Carolina
State, of course law school at Carolina
was a brcc/.e for him and he's
been doing well ever since.
He's a Vietnam veteran. We share
that and many other points in our
background. So it is a particular privilege
for me to be down here on this
historic occasion.
Judge Brooks will become the first
Name American e\er to serve in this
stale as a Senior Resident Superior
Court Judge And lor that reason, if
no other, it is a v cry single honor for
nic and a high point in rnv public
career to be here to be a part of tins
I'm not going to drag on forever
You are not here to see me. but to sec
; nd be with and honor our friend.
Dexter Brooks
1 ani going to ask the reverend
John Campbell. Executive Director
of the Robeson Counts Human Relations
Commission to give our invocation
Just a moment. Reverend, but
let me mention this while I'm here
Robeson County has always been
a meant a great deal to me Back in
the early years of my political career
I used to come down here and be led
around by some of the folks who told
nic vv hat to do 1 ike Jolt n Wi 11 ic Oxcndtnc
and some of those folks. 1 started
our coming down here to?years ago
to Jaycee meetings at Pembroke Jaycees
and thoroughly enjoyed that So
it is a real pleasure for me to be back
here and see so many personal friends
long standing out here in this courtroom
I'm not going to get started on
trying to recognize you all But one of
my dear friends from this county,
which has caused me to launch into
this has passed away It was a friend
of you all's. Dr. Joy Johnson, a wellknown
and respected leader from
this community. And those of you
who arc going to that funeral today.
I would appreciate it if you would
convey to the Killians and the rest of
the family my regrets that I have to
get back to Raleigh to meet with the
Senate on the court's budget for the
state court system and 1 will not be
able to be there, but I will certainly ?my
thoughts and prayers will be
with Reverend Johnson and his family.
And now if I could ask you. Reverend
Campbell, to give our invocation.
Reverend Campbell: Thank vou.
Judge Mitchell Here within the last
few days I've had occasion to revisit
what Dr. Johnson wrote some years
ago entitled from "Pov erty to Power"
And 1 want to just share a couple of
quotes excerpted from that book that
1 think is so appropriate, so appropriate
at this historic hour to preface my
prayer. He writes: "Our experiences
may be different, our skin color different.
our religions different and our
bank accounts may even be different
but as humans we have a basic common,
divine connection No man. no
community. no race is an island unto
itself. We can't fight thc challengcs
of our day descending to the level of
the problems around us We must
rise above racism until n does Rise
about intolerance until n dies Rise
above sexism until it dies Rise about
disunity and discrimination until thc>
die In all we do we must take the
high road rather than the low road
until the day conic when vvcall learn
what Martin Luther King. Jr stud
was true We must learn to live together
as brothers and sister or we
w ill surely perish as fools "
hven now he speaks to us on this
late occasion Let us pray
God of our wears eves. Godof our
silent tears, thou w iio has brought us
thus far along the way. thou w ho has
by they might led us into the ntarv clous
light, keep us forever in the path
vvc pray And God vvc pray a special
blessing upon this thy servant who
shall take a special oath to serve you
in this county as he alway s has But
to cont i nuc that service may he never
become misguided on the path to
truly abundant ltv ing as he listens to
the directions that come from all of
those w hose culture or color or class
may be unlike his own
May this servant use the precious
hours y ou give him to create community
May he continue to use his lamp
to light the way to brotherhood and
sisterhood and create the environment
in which crime some day will
become extinct and law enforcement
officials will be singing of guides
instead of misdraws.
Bless him now and bless all of us
Be thou our chief in light and life Be
his present help and help him be
steadfast and move and will always
abound in the w ork oftheofthc Lord.
We pray in the name of our lord and
Savior Jesus Christ for this great
county and for this great people
Next week we itill continue with
my introduction by Attorney Arnold
l.ocklear and my remarks on that
historic occasion.
i 1
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f Reflections
by Alta Nye Oxendine j
This is the special season of Lent,
leading up to Jesus' arrest, persecution.
crucifixion, and finally his glorious
Resurrection' At both West
Luniberton's Branch Street and
Pembroke's First UMC, I've been
hearing thought provoking sermons
I would like to share Also I would
like to just concentrate on my grandson.
Byron But every day 1 learn of
some new world or national problem
1 feel SOMEONE needs to address in
a different w ay from w hat others arc
now doing
It's been a decade since i discovered
that many peace and justice
groups have been secretly used to
promote communism in this country
Later that year (1987) I read that
a communist cell had even been set
up in an organization related to my
Methodist denomination before 1 was
Since then I have made a VERY
serious attempt to research the impact
of communism upon our country
and the rest of the world over the
past 80 vears.
Maybe desperation is a good
term for what we see happening
all around us these days.
Personally, I'm still in a slate of
shock over on going campaign finance
In 1956. on my way back from my
yearly visit to my Montana family
(shortly before moving from Caswel l
to Robeson County) 1 stopped in
Washington to visit Maxine. my room
mate while at Scarritt College in
Tennessee Besides meeting her
medical student Husband and enjoying
their cute baby boy I took a tour
of the Capitol and the White House.
In all my mental images of our
"First Family's' dwelling. I have never
pictured anyone other than familymembers,
close friends, or a staff
member spending the night in the
Lincoln (or any other) bedroom there!
Of course, that does NOT mean it
has never been done before I suppose
I'm just naive. Now I'm curious
to know how many past presidents
have carried out the same kind of
Apparently there's no law against
it And president Clinton's defenders
have said it was NOT a matter of
"renting out" the room by REQUIRING
a campaign contribution.
ONE tiling seems to come through
loud and clear. Members of the
Clinton administration were "running
scared.'*Thcy were so afraid of
losing the eletlion that they were
desperate. >< jx ?
Back in 1972, according to an
article in the November 28 issue of
the Fayetteville Observer Times,
Richard Nixon and his aides were
also scared of losing their bid for a
second term In their desperation _
lhc> talked about resorting to a different
king of questionable strategy
Whether or not an> of these men
had racist feelings toward Black
people, tapes rc\cal that they considered
"using" a Black (as so mam
whites have done for various reasons
in the past) to assure that they could
win, There was talk of secret!} paymg
a Black candidate to run. as an J
independent, just to drain off demo- !
cratic votes (According to the AP
article, nothing was actually done t<\
carry out that idea.) '
In fact, it seems that Nixon and .
his staff discussed a lot of different ;
ideas from time to time. Of course the
most damaging one they actually <
carried out was the Watergate break- .
in and the later cover-up, which led |
to Richard Nixon's impeachment and
his replacement as President by Vice
President Gerald Ford. ;
Perhaps Lent is a good time to
reflect on Jesus' life while He lived
here in this world.
I've decided (hat He was consistent
in both LOVING every person
unconditionally, and CONDEMNING
sin wherever he saw it.
One of the best examples is the
woman caught in the act of adultery
who was about to be stoned (killed
with stones) by religious scribes and
Pharisees as reported in the eighth
chapter of John's gospel. These men
reminded Jesus of the commandment
(in Leviticus 20:10 and
Deuteronomy 22:22) to put adulterers
to death.
Jesus said. "He that is without sin
among you, let him cast a stone at
The men left, one at a time.
Then Jesus said to the woman,
"Hath no man condemned thee?' She
answered, "No man, Lord."
Here are Jesus' timeless words to
a woman caught in the very act of
sinning, whose life was on the line:
"Neither do I condemn thee. GO.
Carolina Indian Voice
is published every Thursday by
First American Publications
304 Normal St. - College Plaza
Post Office Box 1075
Pembroke, North Carolina 28372
Phone (919) 521-2826
Fax (919) 521-1975
Connee Brayboy, Editor
One year in NC, $20.00
Out of state. $25.00
Second Class Postage Paid at
Pembroke, NC
Say you read
it in Carolina
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I -
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