Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Racist, Leftist, Activist and Not a Surprise

I had major misgivings about Senator McCain, but I voted for him in no small part because of the kind of justice he would appoint to the Supreme Court. President Obama didn't have to wait long for a vacancy and today he nominated Judge Sonia Sotomayor, the first Hispanic woman to be nominated. Growing up in the projects in the Bronx, she has an amazing rags to riches story that speaks to the greatness of this country.

Obama had stipulated that his choice would be based largely on the "depth and breadth of one's empathy" and whether he/she had "the empathy to understand what it’s like to be poor or African-American or gay or disabled or old—and that’s the criteria by which I’ll be selecting my judges." This is insanity. Isn't justice supposed to be blind? Isn't the role of the court to interpret the law and judge it against the Constitution? What does knowing what it's like to be black, old, gay or disabled have to do with the role of the court? Is it also important to know what it's like to be rich, white, or heterosexual?

Obama has apparently found his judge with empathy (read: liberal activist), but now claims that “a judge’s job is to interpret, not make law." This is in stark contrast with Sotomayor's actual record of judicial activism and President Obama's opposition to Justice Roberts and Alito who actually believe that statement. Obama cleverly adopts conservative catch phrases - he speaks about being "fiscally responsible" while giving us a deficit four times the record, he talks about "reducing the number of abortions" while promoting legislation that would remove every restriction on abortion and force Christian and Catholic hospitals to perform them. Now he gives lip service to judicial restraint while nominating someone who will seek to advance a liberal agenda no matter what the law says.

In one decision (now before the Supreme Court) Sotomayor ruled against a white firefighter who was denied a promotion because no blacks qualified for the same promotion. He bought $1,000 worth of books and studied for the required exam, getting a friend to read the books onto audiotapes because he is dyslexic. However, the city decided that not enough minorities had passed the test and refused to promote him. Apparently, Sotomayor lacked the "empathy" to understand what it's like to be dyslexic, not to mention was lacking in understanding of the 14th Amendment guaranteeing equal protection under the law.

This statement might help to understand Sotomayor:

“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.”

and this:

"[W]e who judge must not deny the differences resulting from experience or heritage but attempt . . . continuously to judge when those opinions, sympathies, and prejudices are appropriate."

You could say that the argument that her "opinions, sympathies and prejudices" were at least sometimes appropriate to factor into her decisions precludes her from the job, considering the oath she'll have to take:

"I, __________, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will administer justice without respect to persons, and do equal right to the poor and to the rich, and that I will faithfully and impartially discharge and perform all the duties incumbent upon me as (name of position) under the Constitution and laws of the United States. So help me God.”

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