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  • A Troubling Decision, a Troubling Speech, and a Troubling Nomination

    Imagine if you can a situation in which a white federal judge approved the clear and obvious discrimination engaged in by a small Southern town in denying black firefighters promotion by throwing out the results of a civil service examination. Only black firefighters did well enough on the racially-neutral exam to merit promotion, but the city decided to scrap the exam and not promote the successful test takers because none of them were white.

    This same white federal judge also gave a speech at a prominent Southern university in which he said: “I would hope that a wise Caucasian man with the richness of his experiences would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a black male who hasn’t lived that life.” In the same speech, the judge opines that white males engage in judging differently than black males “[w]hether born from experience or inherent physiological or cultural differences.”

    Does anyone doubt that if a president nominated that same federal judge to be on the U.S. Supreme Court, that his nomination would be still-born and that the president would be quickly (and rightly so) embarrassed into withdrawing the nomination?

    Of course, that has not happened – or has it? Because if you simply change the races and ethnic groups being discussed, that is exactly what President Obama has done. In fact, Judge Sonia Sotomayor claimed in a speech at Berkley in 2001 that “wise” Latina women would make better decisions than white men and that those differences may be based on inherent genetic differences, something so outrageous that I still have a hard time believing that she could have said such a thing.

    And in a case pending before the U.S. Supreme Court, Ricci v. New Haven, Judge Sotomayor approved the outright dismissal without trial of the discrimination claims of 19 white firefighters (one of whom suffers from dyslexia) and one Hispanic firefighter against the City of New Haven, Connecticut. There is no question that the city threw out the results of promotional exams because they were unsatisfied with the race of the successful exam takers – because no blacks (and seemingly not “enough” Hispanics) had scored well enough to be promoted. Judge Sotomayor also engaged in procedural trickery to try to bury the case and avoid Supreme Court review. The district court opinion was unpublished, so Sotomayor and her two fellow judges at the Second Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the district court’s opinion in a summary one paragraph order. Only after the 3-judge panel learned that the opinion would not be reviewed by the full Second Circuit did the panel withdraw that order and publish an opinion that incorporated the entire district court opinion as the operative law of the Second Circuit – using procedural shenanigans to make her views approving racial preferences the law of the entire Circuit.

    Should discriminatory views of ethnicity be accepted if the individual with such a view is Hispanic? Should discriminatory treatment be accepted if it is aimed at whites (and Hispanics)? Not in our culture and our society, and certainly not in our legal system where we believe in the rule of law and the equal treatment of all individuals under the law. Judge Sotomayor’s views on race as expressed in her public speaking and her actions in the Ricci case are extremely troubling. They make it imperative that the Senate fulfill its full duty under the “Advice and Consent” clause of the Constitution to carefully and thoroughly examine Judge Sotomayor’s principles, character, and temperament before deciding whether she is qualified to sit on the Supreme Court.

    Posted in Legal [slideshow_deploy]

    13 Responses to A Troubling Decision, a Troubling Speech, and a Troubling Nomination

    1. humblecitizen, Alexa says:

      We continue our descent down a slippery slope into the abyss of liberal socialism

    2. Boyce Robbins Easley says:

      Democrats have not done well recently in their wars- see Korea, Vietnam, the Cold War- but they have found a war they may win. Call it a war on prosperity, a war on the middle class, a war on those living in the heartland of America, the majority of Americans or whatever name fits. This war they stand a frightening chance of winning. If Obama has his way, the middle class will be dragged down so that the non-workers among us no longer have reason to be envious. Those who pay their bills, work hard, obey the law and serve their country in the armed forces and contribute so much through their volunteer work and the good works of their churches will find the courts, the Congress and the full power of the Federal bureaucracy stacked against thityem. Whether it is discipline in public schools or traffic accidents or applications for credit or jobs, members of the majority will enter that arena with two strikes against them. Irresponsible behavior will not be allowed to be used as a basis for decision making since the perpetrator was not acting freely but was dragged into his criminal acts or his financial irreponsibility by an unjust society. Just as minorities can say whatever they wish about the majority without being called racists, they will be given a free pass when it comes to performing in school, on the job or in dealing with the challenges of life.

    3. The Intelligence Rep says:

      This story hits the mark!

      Sonia Stotmayor is no more qualified to sit on the US Supreme court than Joe Biden,She is clearly a racist and issues rulings with her personal opinions rather than law like she is supposed to..Obama stood in front of the american public and lied as he usually does..We have discovered through our investigations that Obama is in fact a socialist,we have absolute proof he belongs to the socialist party,with pictures!..His paying back campaign contributors at the american peoples expense has got to be stopped..He has not done one legal thing since being in office..When will the media wake the hell up and start reporting on this?..Republicans are all but worhtless and have lost their spine!

    4. Ozzy6900, CT says:

      This incident at the New Haven Fire Dept. was a disgraceful turn of events. It has been well established in that City, if the tables were turned and the "minorities" out performed the whites, there would have been immediate promotions. Judge Sotomayor’s actions here were no different than the actions of the Mayor of New Haven, CT in that "If we bury it, no one will notice the mess!". Judge Sotomayor will fit nicely within the "Obama" way of doing things. Just what we need, another liar and cheat, heading the Supreme Court of the USA.

    5. Murph, Seattle says:

      This story says it all. Why would any reasonable person be opposed to job promotions being made based on merit? To have thrown out test results because too many white firefighters passed is beyond explanation. Personally, I want the qualified person helping me out of a burning building, regardless of their skin color. And the racist comments that Sotomayor has made clearly indicate that she is not capable of being unbiased. Is there freedom of speech only if it is liberal, white-male hating speech?

    6. Pingback: Imagine if you can « RockStar PeterSon

    7. Pingback: A Troubling Decision, a Troubling Speech, and a Troubling Nomination | Republican Party of Sauk County

    8. Beastie Boy says:

      Can we get real here?

      What happened in Ricci happens in every federal court in the land on a daily basis. Appellate judges don't even read the opinions "they" deliver, as a general rule, to say nothing of actually reading the briefs or holding oral argument. Michael McConnell of the Tenth Circuit (who is quitting in a pique because he has no chance to get on SCOTUS) was so busy teaching classes and giving lectures that he scarcely bothered with his day job. I can point to a decision wherein "he" made a mistake so basic that a first-year law student at Regent would have been reprimanded for it. Harrington v. Wilson, No. 06-1418 (10th Cir. Jun. 7, 2007) (withdrawn) (if you don't have jurisdiction to hear a claim, you can't dismiss anything with prejudice [Ex parte McCardle]).

      And it's even worse at the district court level. It is not only possible, but quite common, for a complaint to never be considered by an Article III judge.

      We need to have a serious conversation about the quality of services our nation's courts provide.

    9. waterfowler says:

      The racist part doesn't bother me, a white male. What bothers me is her ascribing "wise" to herself. People that do that, ain't.

    10. Pingback: So…Sotomayor, Huh? : The Sundries Shack

    11. Conservative, Vermon says:

      Cry, cry, cry. Fact is she is a very qualified candidate, more so than any serving in the current court. If you read into her controversial decisions they all seem to make sense and are correct. With the majority the Dem's have, we should be thankfull she is such a good pick.

      She seems to be pro-life. How many other picks do you think there will be like that? Shoot here down and you get the next in line. Be carefull what you ask for.

    12. Citizen, California says:

      Sotomayor is by her own words and rulings a bigoted racist. This is change? The court exists to uphold the laws made by the legislature and elected officials. In a speech at an October 2001 conference sponsored by Berkeley La Raza Law Journal she stated, "I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experience would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn’t lived that life." If it is felt race is important in choosing judges then let us pick the best, who does believe justice should be blind without regard to gender, race or economic standing.

    13. Challenge yourself, says:

      I cannot speak to the accuracy of what is being written here. And I truly hope that we as a nation can put an end to ALL bigotry. Further, my sincerest hope is that those of you who are outraged at this seemingly racist rhetoric would be just as outraged had the minority parties been different. Would you be writing just as passionately in defense of the millions of gay men and women who continue to be denied fair and equitable treatment in this country?

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