Matt Barber

It speaks volumes about Judge Southwick’s eminently qualified status that, despite placing under a microscope nearly 7,000 cases he ruled on during 12 years on the Mississippi Court of Appeals, his critics were able to find only two opinions upon which to base their flimsy opposition. Ironically, Judge Southwick wrote neither opinion.

In one opinion Southwick’s detractors complain of the court’s use of the term “homosexual lifestyle.” According to liberals, that’s a “homophobic” slur, you see. Isn’t it rich that Bill Clinton — that world-renowned homophobe — also used the term “homosexual lifestyle” while announcing his “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy? Additionally, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg — an off-the-charts left-winger — concurred with the majority decision in Lawrence v. Texas, which also dared to address the “homosexual lifestyle.”

But even more annoying is the fact that — true to form — Judge Southwick’s attackers are once again playing that worn-out race-card. By doing so, they’ve displayed their own anti-Southern-white-male racism for all to see. Because Judge Southwick is a white male from Mississippi, he must be a racist, goes the supposition.

Of course the only case they’ve been able to drum up as evidence of this offensive and defamatory slur against Southwick suggests nothing of the sort. The case involved a state employee’s one-time use of the “n-word” while at work. Rather than exhibiting proof that Southwick is a racist, as his opponents would have you believe, the Southwick court actually ruled that, “unwarranted use by a state employee of any inflammatory or derogatory term when referring to or directly addressing a co-worker is an action that cannot be justified by any argument.”

However, the court ruled that the state cannot apply an, “arbitrary, across-the-board rule” in determining how to discipline that employee. That’s it. For that, Southwick is being falsely portrayed by the left as Larry the Cable Guy’s cross-eyed cousin with a white hood in his pick-up and a rebel flag on his porch.

But there’s good news. Republicans in the Senate have said that — as Larry himself might put it — they’re fixin’ for a fight. They’ve publicly stated that they’re prepared to go to the mat over President Bush’s judicial nominees generally and Judge Southwick specifically.

Still, liberals are laboring under a critical misconception (sorry for stating the obvious). The American people aren’t as stupid and uninformed as they think. They’re becoming more and more aware of Judge Southwick’s impressive credentials and the fact that he selflessly and heroically gave up a lucrative law practice so that he could bravely and honorably defend his country during a time of war.

If liberal senators keep it up, there’s little doubt that the American people will be none too happy with them for denying this good man the fair up-or-down vote he so richly deserves.

Matt Barber

Matt Barber is founder and editor-in chief of He is an author, columnist, cultural analyst and an attorney concentrating in constitutional law. Having retired as an undefeated heavyweight professional boxer, Matt has taken his fight from the ring to the culture war. (Follow Matt on Twitter: @jmattbarber).