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We Are More "Racial" Than Ever

  

 

Justice Sonia Sotomayor, 54, formally took her seat on the Supreme Court recently as its first Hispanic Justice and its third woman.  In the parlance of modern "diversity" grammar, these latter two items are of paramount importance.  She had been a judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit when President Obama nominated her in May 2009 to replace the retiring Justice David H. Souter. 

In the putative "post racial" candidacy of Barack Obama, the biracial man, we were assured that he would deliver us unto a decidedly post-racial age.  But having arrived in this enlightened era, we come to find that if anything we are more "racial" than ever.  In the Age of Obama, normal political discourse over significant policy initiatives is, in the minds of many on the left, tainted by race – simply because they are opposed. Routine debate appears no longer permissible; we are to remain silent or else endure racial smears.  The premise seems to be that any criticism of the first black President is, by definition, racist.  Never mind that the he seeks merely to upend one sixth of the economy in overhauling health care or spend the nation into oblivion. 

In reviewing the Sotomayor record in her own words, we find an individual well suited to add not subtract from the racial acrimony of the day; we must imagine that the man who selected her and who himself spent formative years associating with extreme individuals, must have done so to satisfy his own regnant racial inclinations.

In her infamous “wise Latina” speech given in 2001, Sotomayor stated, "Personal experiences affect the facts that judges see."  She went on to proclaim, "…a wise Latina woman, with the richness of her experiences, would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn't lived that life." 

A white judge uttering such words, only reflecting on the superior qualities of "whiteness,” would have ended his career, but in the politically correct universe of the left, such overt racial commentary by members of favored minorities is, if anything, laudable. 

We can easily observe the racialism that influences Sotomayor's thinking, the tendency to look at life, politics, and the law through the prism of race, and recognize that it is not the sort of predilection one would want in a judge who is expected to remain objective.  This is the world that our post-racial President was supposed to transcend; but in selecting such an individual, consumed as she seems to be with race, gender, and ethnicity, one sees that rather than transcending it, he, in fact, dwells comfortably within it, not post-racial at all.

She has also stated, "women or men of color" have "basic differences in logic and reasoning."  There would then necessarily be a "difference in the process of judging" as more minorities assume positions as federal judges.  "What the difference will be in my judging," she could not say, but she claimed "there would be some, based on my gender and Latina heritage."  Wonderful.

Sotomayor's biases as a judge were made clear in the recent Ricci v. DeStefano case, in which the Supreme Court, on June 29, 2009, reversed the decision of the Second Circuit (and, therefore, Sotomayor) in favor of the white firefighters against the city of New Haven for rejecting the results of an examination in which the white firefighters performed disproportionately better than minority applicants. 

Twenty Connecticut firefighters (19 white, one Hispanic) were refused promotions despite superior performance on the examination because of inadequate representation of "minorities."  The firefighters sued, charging, quite properly, discrimination.  A federal district court ruled in favor of the city of New Haven, ignoring the firefighters' obvious equal-protection claims and despite the evidence that the only reason they were denied promotions was because of the color of their skin.  Sotomayor and two other judges on the Second Circuit, in a questionable action, formed a panel and attempted to bury the case through an unpublished order supporting the district court.  The strategy ultimately backfired with the Supreme Court's recent reversal of the Second Circuit's ruling.

President Obama once stated that judging should be influenced as much or more by "empathy" than by legal reasoning, of "... understanding and identifying with people's hopes and struggles."  Sotomayor's "empathy" and “understanding” apparently did not extend to the white firefighters.

Obama had campaigned as a "uniter," a post-partisan and transformative figure who would lift the nation beyond bigotry and stereotypes and bind our racial wounds.  But in selecting an individual so obviously steeped in the politics of identity, he has engaged in old fashioned racial patronage - elevating a person who, quite proudly and openly, expresses racial chauvinism, and, perhaps, judging by any number of her statements, may very well believe in Hispanic/racial supremacy.  Rather than delivering us from our racial past, Obama has driven us deeper into it.  Rather than “post-racial,” he is fully immersed in the politics of racial grievance.  Far from healing and reconciliation, the era of Obama finds us as divided as ever – and probably more so. 

 

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