Posted on June 20, 2005

Not Invited “Because she is White”

New York Post, June 17

When Harlem political leaders held a memorial service for Judge Bruce Wright, they neglected to invite his widow, Liz Davidson Wright — “because she is white,” her friend Lyle Stuart told PAGE SIX.

The event — organized by Wright’s son, State Assemblyman Keith Wright, a candidate for Manhattan borough president — was held June 4 at City College with such pillars of the community on the dais as Basil Patterson, Rep. Charles Rangel, former Mayor David Dinkins and Inner City Broadcasting powerbroker Percy Sutton.

Stuart — who published Wright’s last book, “Black Justice in a White World” — had planned to attend, but decided against it when he learned Liz had not been invited.

“I was aggravated. Bruce was very fond of Liz and she was very protective of him. You’d see them together holding hands, they were like high school kids,” Stuart recalled. “This is reverse racism, no question about it. None of his sons had spoken to him in five years because he married a white woman.”

Wright, who died in March at 86, lived in Paris and represented jazz musicians before he became a judge known for his elegantly expressed decisions. But he became infamous as “Turn ‘Em Loose Bruce” because of his leniency with violent criminals.

He married Liz, 52, a former teacher, and moved with her to Old Saybrook, Conn., five years ago after a heart attack.

“He didn’t want a funeral, so there wasn’t one. I stuck to what he wanted,” Liz said. “He didn’t want a memorial, so they renamed it a ‘celebration.’”