Monday, June 1, 2009

I'm Forced to Ask . . .

You know, I haven't really heard of anyone from the pro-choice camp murdering anybody for, I don't know, preventing women from having abortions. If you have, please drop a line. But how anyone can murder in the name of "pro-life" is beyond me, even if you argue they're ultimately saving lives.

By the by, has anyone heard anything for Gloria Steinem or Geraldine Ferrarro responding to the racist and sexist attacks against Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor? I mean, I know they didn't defend Michelle Obama much when she was being called an "angry black woman" or Pres. Obama's "baby mama," so I guess their silence here is par for the course. A little disappointing, though. A little disappointing. You know. They come across as only being interested in making white women the equal of white men, not in equality for all. Of course, I already thought Ferrarro was racist, but Steinem? I'm disappointed. Maybe they'll say something by the time Judge Sotomayor is confirmed.

And oh, yeah. I'm sure you've heard all the "colorblind" talk about how Sotomayor's race and gender shouldn't play a role in the decision to confirm and deny her. Which is odd. I mean, you never hear that about white men. Don't get me wrong, I know that's because white men are held as the "norm" and everything else is a deviation from the "norm." But, it just bothers me because the people making all the "colorblind" talk are conservatives who, you know, aren't exactly thrilled to have a more diverse court. They want to argue that her race and gender shouldn't matter in that they don't necessarily make her a better judge; they have more sense than to argue her race and gender make her a worse judge. But, with all the talk that she's too focused on her race and how she's an anti-white racist based on all of one phrase and her membership in the National Council of La Raza, the largest Latino civil rights group, I kinda get they feeling they'd like to if they could.

What really gets me is how they argue that a court of 9 white men can make just as good decisions as a court of 9 Latinas. To prove this, they point out that a court of 9 white men decided Brown vs Board of Education which overturned Plessy vs Ferguson, as though it wasn't 9 white men who decided Plessy vs Ferguson in the first place.

But, every time I hear someone say Sotomayor's race and gender shouldn't matter, it's like a cloud floats by right out of my reach. I can't quite get my mind to figure out why it bothers me. I guess because conservatives want to pretend that you don't have to take race and/or gender into consideration in order to reach a fair decision in choosing who to place on the Supreme Court. They call her an "affirmative action" pick, which is ironic in itself. They, of course, mean that she was chosen just because of her race and gender and nothing else. As if excusing her race and gender, she doesn't have any other qualifications. They question her depth of intelligence as though graduating in the top 2 of Princeton University is so easy a caveman could do. As though Bush did it. They question if she's smart enough to be on the court, as though she hasn't spent the past 17 years as a judge in the federal courts. They question her temperament, which actually doesn't bother me accept they use the word "temperament" as a euphemism for "she may not always decide for the rich, the white, or the corporations."

But, of course, affirmative action means we just made sure her race and gender didn't hold her back. I guess what conservatives don't want to publicly acknowledge is that due to historical and recent racism, if you just reach into a pool of judges "color-blindly" you'll probably pull out a white guy. I'm guess they would disagree, and Clarence Thomas would be their example, but according to their rhetoric, the only way to choose someone without regard to their race or gender would be to choose a white man. And that, of course, only furthers the cause of white male dominance, of patriarchy and racism. I guess that's what bothers me about the whole argument that Sotomayor's race and gender shouldn't matter. For conservatives, it seems like the only time race and gender don't matter, which probably means as much as anything else that it's the only time they don't notice, is when a white man is involved. And that's just plain racist and sexist and I wish I knew how to scream this to them and put a stop to it. If only, if only.

If only I could further crystallize my thoughts! We'll see in the coming days. I'll keep trying to think this out. Enough for tonight, though.

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But Don't Jack My Genuis