“I would hope that 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.”
Unlike the Obama media, the most important thing we must examine in a Supreme Court candidate is not the color of the person’s skin, their racial or ethnic background, their economic roots or their gender. All of these things are merely distractions to the bigger picture. Skin, genitals, and past history, both genetic and personal, do not decide cases before the nation’s highest court. A mind makes a decision, votes, and writes or signs on to a finding. Regardless of the fact this nomination is neither historic nor groundbreaking, it is not important to argue Benjamin Cardoza was Hispanic nor that women have been on the Supreme Court since the 1980’s. Instead let’s explore Ms. Sotomayor’s mind.
The opening quote, from a speech by the jurist, is evidence of how this mind thinks. This mind believes that identity, more than law, is integral to finding of law and the enigmatic truth. She believes that a minority female from a distressed economic background is more able to discover the ‘truth’ than a white male. It is not important that the group maligned is either white or male but that this judicial mind actually believes some protected classes are BETTER at finding the law than others. That belief requires a certain amount of bias and prejudice. Judges, like all people, come to an issue with certain beliefs and certain prejudices. But, unlike ordinary people, a judge is supposed to set aside those prejudices and rule on the facts or discover the rule. They are not to celebrate those prejudices and use them at work. It is that hubris which must be addressed.
Ms. Sotomayor has expressed remorse at saying those words, but the intent and belief behind them are startling and not gaffes. They express a belief that some protected classes are more capable on the face of it than others. She didn’t just say she believed her being Latina and a woman gave her insights or special understanding to certain issues. She said that being Latino and a woman and a history of poverty made her more likely and more surely able to arrive at a truer solution than a white male whom she assumes hasn’t experienced poverty. With this statement she has relegated all white males as being not only in a certain mindset but also have prejudged and decided their economic background. In other words, she has expressed a certain bias about white males in general. This presumption that all white males must be ignorant about poverty and about ‘life on the street’ is a fallacy. It is with this fallacy in place that she makes the case.
Of course, many collectivists believe exactly the same thing. They believe in identity politics which argues and presumes that white males have a certain background and a certain viewpoint just by being white males. That isn’t any different than a bigot arguing that all Latino females are a certain way. It is exactly the same thing. It is bigotry, plain and simple. President Obama has actually nominated a bigot to be on the Supreme Court. Only the Great Prevaricator would have the hubris to do such a thing openly. Her words are not secret. These weren’t words whispered in the dark of night to a close companion and then broadcast against her wishes. These were words given by Ms. Sotomayor in a speech, in public. She honestly believes that white males, and who knows what other groups, have a certain economic background and a certain perspective on issues that they may or may not have. She has presumed for whole groups of autonomous and independent minded people certain attributes. That is a bigoted mind. Are we supposed to take a bigot into the Supreme Court while smiling blithely? Are we supposed to pretend because the press has called this unhistoric event history that we must shrink like a violet from the truth of her biased mind? No. We must instead speak boldly and loudly to power. We must point out her biased mind and bigoted perspective. The fact that she is Hispanic or a woman is immaterial. Instead, we must examine her mind, free from silly distractions. We must find out what perspective she brings to the table and whether that perspective will pervert justice instead of facilitate it.