Peter Kenney, here and here, offers some historical perspective on the Mashpee land suit. It’s interesting to see the name Walter Jay Skinner pop up. Skinner, who died in 2005, presided over the 1986 toxic-waste case made famous in the book and movie “A Civil Action.” I covered the trial and most of the appeals process, and was impressed with Skinner’s patience and sense of fair play.
Skinner supposedly once told one of Kenney’s sources that he’d made some mistakes in a trial that went against the Mashpee Wampanoag tribe, and that if the tribe ever won official recognition — as it has — then it could bring the case again.
What does this have to do with Middleborough? What’s going on now could put the proposed casino on hold for years. Since last summer, I’ve been saying to anyone who’d listen that no casino would ever be built in Middleborough. There are just too many ways to stop it. This is one.