Sunday, July 19, 2009

[old white] mens and sonia sotomayor - the ‘honorable senators’ from alabama and oklahoma put the moron back in oxymoron

a choctaw woman i know had a wonderful way to express women’s somewhat jaded response to the silliness of my gender. she would say with simple exasperation ‘mens’. as the honorable sonia sotomayor faced questioning by male senators, she would have probably been happy to say the same thing, perhaps making it ‘old white mens’.
oklahoma’s dynamic owm performed predictably: tom coburn, the doctor, tried to play lawyer and then dropped in a ricky ricardo joke/quote - would he have dropped in a stepnfetchit joke line if clarence thomas - or barack obama - was testifying.
tulsa world.
jimmy imhofe decided early against her and made sure the hearings didn’t change his own bias.

’From the outset, I have opposed the nomination of judge sotomayor based upon her record and past comments. the theater of this hearing does not change that.’

of course he was speaking of the wise latina woman quote which provided the fodder which the owm ran into the ground. it was up to one jefferson beauregard sessions iii* , a son of selma, alabama, to symbolize the ultimate intellectual and moral depravity of their performance and position. in 1986 sessions and sotomayor were both nominated as federal judge by ronald reagan. both had been federal prosecutors and to varying degrees advocates for their own people. no one found sotomayor's prior advocacy inappropriate and she was approved. sessions record of unbelievably prejudiced/racist remarks and actions was so offensive that even the not notable senator from alabama who had sponsored him voted against him and his nomination died in the judiciary committee. shan .
before these hearing, sessions said he was was hurt by accusations that he was a racist back then and said that use of accusing sotomayor of being a racist was not appropriate now.
the briefing room but of course when the hearings began he was right up there with the rest of the boys using her comments to call her a racist in fact if not words. all these guys’ shenanigans brings out a response that’s been sitting in me for a long time. I’m not going to thank them for it but i am going to offer my own words and then turn the stage over to a white woman and a black man whose comments I’ve only barely been able to edit down.
This is the most recent example of my mind and heart wandering to thoughts of the good/bad old days of out front prejudice when you didn’t have to look behind the words and deeds of white men and institutions for racism and sexism. i still remember cringing when i first heard heard the term ’discrimination’ applied to white males when injustice to minorities was finally being partially remedied. the underlying concept was bogus then and is still now - but it has become enshrined in the law and everyday life. offense against prejudice expressed in derogatory language or jokes has become ‘political correctness’. elimination of prejudice and discrimination in our society and institutions has been subsumed under terms like ‘multi-cultural’ and ‘diversity’.

notmine comments: maureen dowd talked about a ‘gaggle of white republican men afraid of extinction’ in her white man’s last stand

'After all, these guys have never needed to speak inspirational words to others like them, as Sotomayor has done. They’ve had codes, handshakes and clubs to do
Like the president who picked her, Sotomayor has been a model of professorial rationality. Besides, it’s delicious watching Republicans go after Democrats for being too emotional and irrational given the G.O.P. shame spiral.
W. and Dick Cheney made all their bad decisions about Iraq,
W.M.D.’s, domestic surveillance, torture, rendition and secret hit squads from the gut, based on false intuitions, fear, paranoia and revenge.
Sarah Palin is the definition of irrational, a volatile and scattered country-music queen without the music. Her Republican fans defend her lack of application and
intellect, happy to settle for her emotional electricity.
And then there’s the Supreme Court, of course, which gave up its claim to rational neutrality when the justices appointed by Republican presidents — including Bush Sr. — ignored what was fair to make a sentimental choice and
throw the 2000 election to W.
Faced with that warped case of supreme empathy, no wonder Sotomayor is so eager to follow the law.'

a huffington blogger:
Never have I wanted more to throw a brick through the screen of my television.
But yesterday's cavalcade of conservative GOP Senators decrying Sotomayor's statements about her heritage and the role of judges in making law -- boldly honest statements she had to know would come back to bite her someday -- also
reinforced that age-old Republican canard, that conservative and white people don't make decision based on their culture. It's what I have often called the privilege of being generic.
When Chief Justice John Roberts reaches back to his heritage and personal values to make decisions, he's simply allowing timeless principles to guide his thinking. But Sotomayor using the experience of being the first and the only in so many places of power is shrugged off as bias -- an unforgivable unfairness for GOP Senators, mostly because it doesn't benefits their causes.

eric deggans
ps. there may or may not be a cartoon at the to p of this page. i decided to google for an appropriate one and was brought back to the daily oklahoman's bizare most 'internetted' entry. check out a local lawyer of interest to see the cartoon and her and others' take on it:
* yes, that really is his name.


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