Robert L. Carter: A lifetime lesson on the value of bucking trends

Associated Press

The lawyers for the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund Inc. From left, Louis L. Redding, Robert L. Carter, Oliver W. Hill, Thurgood Marshall and Spottswood W. Robinson III.

Robert L. Carter was a former federal judge in New York and a leading strategist in the legal assault on racial segregation in America,  He died on Tuesday morning in Manhattan. He was 94.

The New York Times article paints the life of yet another African American who changed the world and made it a better place.

Judge Carter presided over the merger of professional basketball leagues in the 1970s and was instrumental in opening the New York City police force to more minority applicants. But perhaps his greatest impact came in the late 1940s and 1950s as a member of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund Inc., led by Thurgood Marshall.

In his attack on segregated schools, Mr. Carter insisted on using the research of the psychologist Kenneth B. Clark.  Experiments by Mr. Clark and his wife showed that black children suffered in their learning and development by being segregated. Mr. Clark’s testimony proved crucial in persuading the court to act, Mr. Carter wrote in a 2004 book, “A Matter of Law: A Memoir of Struggle in the Cause of Equal Rights.” – see below.

Stories of lives past such as these are always informational,  instructive and most importantly, inspirational.   Among many other things, they demonstrate the futures don’t just happen, but can be created, as long as one has hope and perseveres.

Read the full and fascinating obituary here: