New Jersey To Eliminate ‘Freeholder’ Term, Born From Racism

New Jersey will get rid of the term “Freeholder” from government, replacing it with county commissioner, a term used by other states.

“As our nation tears down symbols of injustice, we must also tear down words we use in New Jersey that were born from racism,” Gov. Phil Murphy, Senate President Stephen Sweeney and Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin said in a joint statement Thursday. “It’s past time for New Jersey to phase out the term ‘freeholder’ from our public discourse — a term coined when only white male landowners could hold public office.”

“This is not a matter of political correctness; it is a corrective action to replace an outdated designation that is rooted in institutional prejudice.”

Freeholders have been the term used in New Jersey for the legislative branch of county government. They make laws, vote on resolutions, approve or reject the spending, budget and other proposals of the executive branch or the county executive.

Click here to sign up for Baristanet's free daily emails and news alerts.


  1. Note to Real Estate agents: For your listings, “Master Suite” should now be “Boss Suite”.

    Note to Auto Mechanics: “Master Cylinder” should now be “Fluid Cylinder”.

    Note to Washington football fans: Your team stinks, so just call them “the losers”.


  2. The term is less problematic than the costs associated with a part of government filled with patronage positions and political hacks from both political parties that divide up the spoils in a way that makes sure that both parties get theirs, the “leaders” of each ethnic group in the county get taken care of and tax payers get……..! Getting rid of the position would be more helpful than getting rid of the name.

Comments are closed.