Tuesday, May 26, 2009

A Wise Latina Whose Lived That Life Is So Much Better Than A White Guy. Uh huh.

I have the post-Memorial Day blues and Sonia Sotomayor is the reason why. Obama managed to disappoint me again by nominating someone no different than Ruth Bader "legislate from the bench guinea pig" Ginsburg ths morning. For a life-term on the Supreme Court.

I should have expected it. Globama said something about wanting someone who understands poverty, racism, and homelessness, that can basically legislate from the bench 5% of the time. Well he got what he wanted. In a proof that she's a liberal activist judge, she's been reversed a lot.

It pains me so much that we went from mourning those who fought and died for our Constitution yesterday, to nominating a woman who thinks that the Constitution isn't as important as her own opinion. She gave a speech in 2001 declaring that the ethnicity and sex of a judge “may and will make a difference in our judging." The law itself doesn't seem to matter as much.

Call me crazy, but I thought that legislating was done by legislatures with the Constitution as The Bible. Not for Sonia Sotomayor. Apparently, she knows better than any tattered piece of paper. In a complete departure from the neutral arbitration so important to the law that it's almost a hippocratic oath, we have Sonia making plans to reinvent the Constitution according to her whims.

"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,” she said.
We can thank Bush #1 for this sad turn of events. Instead of nominating a strict constitutionalist as he did with Clarence Thomas in 1991, he picked David Souter in 1990. The reason was of course, that Bush wanted to be bi-partisan, and hoped that he could get Miguel Estrada appointed later if he got Souter for the liberals the first time. The favor was supposed to be returned with Bill "womanizer" Clinton, but like most of the Clinton promises, this was another empty one.

So now we get Sonia Sotomayor, because all that really matters to Globama is race.

Not the fact that she's about to be appropriately overturned on her ruling that a White firefighter should not be promoted, because Black guys scored lower on that promotion test, but heck those Black guys should get the job.

I get it.

She's Sonia Sotomayor and she knows all about racism, poverty, gay rights, homelessness, and Puerto Rico. Those White guys need to just go eat their microgreens, tear up their Constitutions, and leave the legislating to her and Ruthie. She knows better because she's lived that life.

Spare me.
So now affirmative action is back on the table. Great. I can't tell you how many jobs I haven't gotten over the years because I'm Caucasian. Everytime, I go to the State to interview, there's an African-American or Hispanic girl so much more qualified. No college, no relevant experience, but so much more qualified. Uh huh.

And I suppose that we can expect abortion to be legislated from the bench more and more too. We should never have left abortion to the courts. We should have left it to the people. But, then we wouldn't need lawyers.

Some of you may know that as a history major starting out in 1997 at Texas, I was headed towards law school. I quickly veered off that course and went towards biology, but kept the history I loved so much in play. Until now, you couldn't have known why I decided law was not for me.

You need only to look at law today to understand why. Our kids can't even go to public school because of lawyers. A teacher can't give a crying child a hug when she gets a boo-boo because of the law. In one recent instance, a teacher had to call the police instead so they could touch the child.

We have too many lawyers and judges who are not neutral arbitrators. For instance, the defendant in the Roe vs. Wade case was Norma Leah McCorvey, a.k.a. Jane Roe. Thanks to Roe vs. Wade, individual state's were no longer allowed to make decisions against abortion. This all happened because Ms. McCorvey's lawyers wanted the spotlight, and wanted someone to legislate from the bench on their behalf. They didn't care about Mrs. McCorvey or her rape.

Today, Ms. McCorvey is pro-life and wishes her decision was reversed. She wrote about fetal pain and love for babies after seeing a fetal development poster.

I have a feeling that Ms. McCorvey wishes everyday that we didn't have so many lawyers expecting legislation from the bench. She probably wishes that people would take up a profession in need like nursing, so we can avoid the ego of a Sonia Sotomayor whose so above the Constitution.

Oh Reagan, you did things right with Sandra Day O'Connor. A neutral arbitrator. And I love you Bush #2 for choosing way, way conservative John Roberts. A strict constitutionalist.

Pray with me today, dear readers. Pray that Ruth Bader Ginsburg survives her pancreatic cancer through all of the Globama terms. And that when she finally meets her maker or retires first, it's during a Republican presidential tenure. One can dream.

14 comments:

  1. I think it's important to include that viewpoint in law, but I do not agree with, say, you going for a job and not getting it because of your ethnicity. That's just going right back to where they started from (and is creating a new divide, when they're trying to fix an old one).

    Love you Lisa <3

    ReplyDelete
  2. What’s wrong with what Ms. Sotomayor said about the sex and ethnicity of a judge influencing how he or she judges? That’s honest. Anyone who doesn’t think that even judges have bias is being a little naïve. My interpretation of her “I would hope that a wise Latina woman…” comment is not a jab white men, but again honest. Personally, I value someone’s advice and opinions more if he or she has either had the experience or can relate to the experience that I’m going through. I don’t think by saying that she was trying to take a jab at white men or to say that she’s going to forget about the Constitution.

    Also, I've never really understood the issue with "activist" judges. Why is it a bad thing? I guess people will say “We don’t want judges legislating from the bench”, but isn’t that sort of their job? The judiciary is the third branch of the government. I really am interested if anyone can logically explain to me a for/against argument regarding so called “activist” judges.

    Affirmative action was designed to aid people of color and WOMEN of all races. I don’t know the circumstances of the jobs (whether you saw the women interview, what the jobs were or whether the employer actually did prefer someone with no college or no “relevant” experience as a means of retention). Did you ever think that you may have only been in the running for those jobs because you are a woman? I’m not trying to discredit your experience, but lets be real life isn’t “black and white” so to speak.

    ReplyDelete
  3. revolutionary spiritMay 27, 2009 at 4:47 PM

    Your post angered me. It seemed the underlying problem was not that she is a liberal but Puerto Rican who stated the reality of how the law can and is legislated. Race has everything to do with it. Race and law have been used to oppress others with a legitimate authority...law was used to state that slaves were two-thirds of a person...that jim crow and segregation was a 'reasoned' set of precedents and norms based on judges opinion that becomes government standard.

    It seemed your problem was her race and how it affect her perspectives not her political leanings. As a Puerto Rican women I am offended.

    Get over your perfect republic and see the truth for what it is because I have to live it everyday. I have to live with the discrimination of others.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Ellen 557,

    The thing is that affirmative action applies only to Hispanics and African-Americans. It's not as though the system would help either of our husbands, an Indian, Chinese, etc. So that's the real problem with it. Not to mention the reverse dicrimination. I loved your points. Love you lots!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Mrs. S,

    The reason that activist judges are problematic is really simple. Our Legislature is inclined to MAKE law. Our judicial branch is the one who simply UPHOLDS it. There is such a big difference there habibty.

    Basically, where legislating from the bench goes wrong is that it means too much government. Government intruding even more in our lives. Again, the courts only uphold our Constitution, their job is really quite simple. Congress MAKES the law. We've been blurring things with letting the Supreme Court have all this power.

    How does this go wrong? What we get is a judge who instead of just upholding our Constitution, has a certain interest, a pet project. For instance, Sonia because of her background wants to reverse disciminate against White firefighters. She is not thinking neutrally, she is running with her political agenda, and it isn't in line with our Constitution, the only thing she needed to uphold.

    And look at gay laws in California. Because of some liberal judges going nuts and legislating from the bench, we barely avoided legalizing gay marriage yesterday.

    The problem with legislating from the bench is that it's not about country or people anymore. It's about what the judge wants come hell or high water.

    The argument FOR legislating from the bench is that I can pass a law any law, because I have that power. If I love abortion, then great. If I'm gay and want rights for my partner, perfect. Also, if you want government in your life on every level, it is wonderful. So it isn't always bad.

    But, we have to remember that it's NOT for the people. It's for the judges. When you do it, it means that the executive branch and legislative branch have less power, and we were supposed to be more balanced than this.

    I would have loved affirmative action. But, I'm Caucasian and it doesn't help me. IT also fails to help Asians, our husband's and Indians. Notice the White/Pacific Islander/Asian box you often check on job applications or college apps. They see you checked that box and say "nope." "We have good ole Michael Jackson, and he needs to get in more, because we only have 1 Black for every 10 Whites." Doesn't matter that White Jeff Foxworthy had better SATS and GPA.

    I'm not AS worried about her comments about being better than a White male. But, there is an underlying tone that she's also an activist judge. This is the REAL problem sweetie. That's my concern, because her vote could mean that we allow gay marriage, throw out the death penalty, add to affirmative action, make partial birth abortion easier. That scares me.

    Oh I LOVE this topic. Thank you thank you thank you for making it so interesting. I love you habibty.

    ReplyDelete
  6. REvolutionary Spirit,

    Sometimes I'm afraid that if I use a bunch of legal jargon like I did in the comment to Mrs. S, no one will want to read.

    I sincerely didn't mean to offend on the race level, though I was somewhat put out by Sonia's comment about being better than a White male judge.

    I have no problem with her being Puerto Rican, I LOVE J-Lo and Marc Antony, I really mean that.

    My problem is what I expressed to Mrs. S. We do not and DO NOT need to make it even more likely that our judges have all this power. They are only there to uphold law, not MAKE it. That is left to Congress. I know, I know. This means the Supreme Court is actually pretty boring. And Sonia and Ruthie don't like it. They want to be out making gay marriage a reality. Making partial birth abortion normal.

    Doing SOMETHING. But, that was NOT the intention of the Founding Fathers. They wouldn't want us wasting all this time appealing, re-appealing, and trying to change Prop 8 in California, just because a few dislike it. And similarly, they wouldn't want Sonia Sotomayor to have MORE power than Congress and the Exectuive Branch combined.

    We are VERY dangerously close to Obama and Congress having less power than the Supreme Court. No good.

    I love you sweetie, and love that you are Puerto Rican!

    Sweetie, Jim Crow is a PERFECT example. This issue stems not just from Democrats, but Republicans too. Jim Crow was legislated straight from the bench just like Roe V. Wade, Scopes Monkey Trial, Brown vs Board of Ed. etc, etc. We have to be SOOOOOOO careful of the slippery slope.

    I get that you live with discrimination. One of the things I really want to say is that on this we are similar sweetie. Reverse discrimination is real too, and just because Whites have had power, doesn't mean that they deserve it too. No one and I mean NO ONE should benefit from affirmative action.

    Love you SO dearly sweetie!

    ReplyDelete
  7. revolutionary spiritMay 28, 2009 at 7:30 PM

    First, of all Puerto Rican culture is older than the United States. Second, I refuse to be defined by J-Lo and Marc Anthony--that is not a fair representation. What about Maria Cadilla? The first Puerto Rican woman to earn a PHD. Alberto De Jesus Mercado? an environmental activist? Joseph M. Acaba? First Puerto Rican astronaut. Rafael L. Bras? An expert in global warming. Dr. Figueroa? The director of Mars Exploration at NASA. Could you know any first woman to run for political office in the United States or the Surgeon General? Can you know any of the US Puerto Rican diplomats to other countries? It’s as if I said yes Madonna and Michael Jackson were so American and I love America! What an insult.


    Yes, everyone lives with discrimination but most times you don’t have to think about your whiteness. You don’t have to think of race until something or someone brings it to your attention. Affirmative is a joke and I will tell you why. The dominant race: white: allows some ‘token’ minorities into the universities and jobs but we have to accept the ideology and politics. We have to accept that we are seen differently. I am accepted by white culture because I’m light-skinned with ambiguous features; I don’t have an accent and have an education. Because they can forget I am Puerto Rican and pretend I am white. Pretend that I am one of them. That is the reality. You do not have to change who you are or feel you are betraying your cultural background and people. You do not have to stand up to those who could fire you or demean you for what courses through your blood. You can experience class issues or whatever but race? Never.

    The problem with the United States is the Founding Fathers created a broke system. They did not anticipate the phenomenon of modernity. Modernity is an entity that causes people to search for the cult of myth and religion to offer stability; to infuse their lives with meaning. Unfortunately, we cannot keep doing that because the Constitution was not created for the 21st Century. It was not meant to be a living document nor should it be. That is why we should scrap it and write another. That is what democracies do: they evolve. Democracy building is a constant effort and we need to do it. We stopped that as soon as the ink dried on our Constitution. That is why we are caught in our political and cultural battles. If we can force Afghanistan and Iraq to re-write Constitutions, when they had ones, then we can do it.

    The problem-are we a republic or democracy? The second—is law truly meant to be objective? People WILL always legislate their morality. It is up to the populace to check that. But unfortunately, America is not united. We have always been divided.

    ReplyDelete
  8. "I have no problem with her being Puerto Rican, I LOVE J-Lo and Marc Anthony, I really mean that."

    HAHA...Lisa, I can't decide if that is one of the most offensive lines I've heard in a while or pure hilarity...I think it's a tie. You're so cute. Thanks for giving me the "for" and "against" argument.

    The pain! My heart! Who knew someone so sweet could be such a dirty Republic (no offense =P)? Affirmative action is the process of taking positive steps to hire and promote QUALIFIED persons in protected groups. Those groups are defined as: women, minorities, those with disabilities and veterans. That being said, white wmen do benefit from affirmative action.

    College apps are a little savvier now and realize that not everyone fits into three boxes: White, Black or Other. AA has most definitely helped my husband, who got a scholarship for college specifically created to assist first generation college students, people of color, WOMEN and the economically disadvantaged. I can also explain the history of why Arabs are legally recognized as "White".

    Also, I've never understood "reverse" discrimination. I always took the reverse of something to mean the opposite...hmmmm.

    Oh, well, listen to me ramble on. Speaking of race, I was watching CNN before I left the other day and I heard an anchor say that the Republican senators are "afraid" to vote against Sotomayor because they don't want it to be seen as a vote against the Latino community in the US. I've heard the same thing came up when Clarence Thomas was nominated. Has anyone else heard that?

    P.S. I cannot believe you have Strange Fruit playing on this. I can brush off a lot, but I have to tell you, girl, I am OFFENDED!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Uhhhhh......offended by a song by Billie Holiday that condemned lynchings against black Americans in the U.S.????? Interesting. People sure do have their hang-ups!

    Lisa: I enjoy reading a lot of your stuff, I just happen to read this post when I came over from your Journey Westward blog. I disagree with many things you say, but I respect the fact you have the guts to talk about what you believe in and don't back down when others gang up against you. Hope everything works out for you! Keep your chin up and be brave for yourself and your precious son!

    ReplyDelete
  10. ER, you have clearly misinterpreted my “hang up”.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Revolutionary Spirit,

    Sweetie, I hear you about the Puerto Rican stuff, I really do. I couldn't think of any good examples, and my mind ran first to J-Lo who I have lots of respect for actually!

    As a White person, I was lucky enough to never experience racism. But, I did feel the pains of being a minority in Islam despite the white skin. So I do feel I have walked the road of a minority, and like Bill Cosby, would not feel a sense of entitlement stemming from it!

    Overall, I think the Fathers did anticipate modernity! They really did, they knew how important Free Speech would become in a protesting Vietnam world, they foresaw the need for the 2nd amendment. Love you sweetie, sorry this comment arrives so late!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Mrs. S,

    Ahhh! Sorry for getting back to this comment so late. Somehow, I didn't realize that there were others like an idiot!

    Well I'm definitely glad you're husband benefited from AA as much as I hate it! And yes, it's mostly because I'm White and it desn't really help me at all. A White woman is in the very worst position, because really what should she do? There is nothing she can do, the system offers her nothing... Normally, unless you are African American or Hispanic, you're not supposed to get AA, so I'm thrilled that the system has a few internal errors!

    Ha ha someone told me to include Strange Fruit, one of the most prolithic political American songs...I really didn't think about it...I saw what you said about Sotomayor. Republicans cannot vote against her or they will lose the Hispanic vote again...

    Love you sweetie!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Eastern Reflections,

    I didn't actually know about the Strange Fruit song, except that it's the most famous political song in America...

    Hi sweetie, and thank you for stopping over here. I really would love it if you had a blog, I know I'd be a huge fan. I am glad to see you and thanks for your well-wishes! Love you lots.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Mrs. S,

    Sorry I wasn't aware of the songs meaning! Oh my gosh, walahi I don't mean to offend any of you!

    ReplyDelete