I've had some mentally challenged trolls leave some deranged scribblings in the comments section of my blog, which I promptly deleted. But in thinking about the charges of racism being thrown around by the mentally challenged extremist conservatives, wingnuts, and trolls who visit here, I decided to do some research. As a result, I've uncovered some real racist/anti-woman statements written by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, John Roberts. I'll post them here with the appropriate link, as well as Judge Sotomayor's remarks, and let you decide who the racist is:
"Though the Supreme Court nominee [John Roberts] offered straight legal advice, and sometimes savvy political suggestions, he also expressed partisan views in the 35,000 pages released yesterday from his years as White House associate counsel from 1982 to 1986.
In some memos, for example, he made jokes about Hispanics and women. For a 1983 Reagan interview in Spanish Today, he said, "I think this audience would be pleased that we are trying to grant legal status to their illegal amigos."He also joked in 1982 about Kickapoo Indians, saying "a group of them made Newsweek by choosing to live in squalid conditions beneath the International Bridge in Eagle Pass, Texas, rather than their Mexican homeland."
And in a 1985 memo about a corporate scholarship program for women, Roberts said, "Some might question whether encouraging homemakers to become lawyers contributes to the common good."
Charles Blow, writing in today's NYTimes says:
And, The New York Review of Books published a scolding article in 2005 making the case that during the same period that he was making those jokes, Roberts marshaled a crusader’s zeal in his efforts to roll back the civil rights gains of the 1960s and ’70s — everything from voting rights to women’s rights. The article began, “The most intriguing question about John Roberts is what led him as a young person whose success in life was virtually assured by family wealth and academic achievement to enlist in a political campaign designed to deny opportunities for success to those who lack his advantages.”
Mr. Blow also writes:
"...there’s former Chief Justice William Rehnquist. When the Supreme Court was considering Brown v. Board of Education, Rehnquist was a law clerk for Justice Robert Jackson. Rehnquist wrote Jackson a memo in which he defended separate-but-equal policies, saying, “I realize that it is an unpopular and unhumanitarian position, for which I have been excoriated by my ‘liberal’ colleagues, but I think Plessy v. Ferguson was right and should be reaffirmed.”
Furthermore, Rehnquist had been a Republican ballot protectionist in Phoenix when he was younger. As the Washington Post columnist Richard Cohen correctly noted in 1986: Rehnquist “helped challenge the voting qualifications of Arizona blacks and Hispanics. He was entitled to do so. But even if he did not personally harass potential voters, as witnesses allege, he clearly was a brass-knuckle partisan, someone who would deny the ballot to fellow citizens for trivial political reasons — and who made his selection on the basis of race or ethnicity.”
"The same Newt Gingrich who once said that bilingual education was like teaching “the language of living in a ghetto” tweeted that Sotomayor is a “Latina woman racist.” The same Rush Limbaugh who once told a black caller to “take that bone out of your nose and call me back” called Sotomayor a “reverse racist.” The same Tom Tancredo, a former congressman, who once called Miami, which has a mostly Hispanic population, “a third world country” said that Sotomayor “appears to be a racist.”
This is rich.
Even Michael Steele, the bungling chairman of The Willie Horton Party knows that the Republicans have no standing on this issue. In an interview published in GQ magazine in March, he was asked: “Why do you think so few nonwhite Americans support the Republican Party right now?” His response: “Cause we have offered them nothing! And the impression we’ve created is that we don’t give a damn about them or we just outright don’t like them.” Ding, ding, ding, ding."
Judge Sotomayor's remarks:
"The larger context of the sentence is Sotomayor addressing former Justice Sandra Day O'Connor's famous quote that "a wise old man and wise old woman will reach the same conclusion in deciding cases."
"I am also not so sure that I agree with the statement," Sotomayor says. "First, as Professor Martha Minnow has noted, there can never be a universal definition of wise. Second, 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."
"Let us not forget that wise men like Oliver Wendell Holmes and Justice Cardozo voted on cases which upheld both sex and race discrimination in our society," she said. "Until 1972, no Supreme Court case ever upheld the claim of a woman in a gender discrimination case. I, like Professor Carter, believe that we should not be so myopic as to believe that others of different experiences or backgrounds are incapable of understanding the values and needs of people from a different group. Many are so capable. As Judge Cedarbaum pointed out to me, nine white men on the Supreme Court in the past have done so on many occasions and on many issues including Brown."
"However, to understand takes time and effort, something that not all people are willing to give," she continued. "For others, their experiences limit their ability to understand the experiences of others. Other simply do not care. Hence, one must accept the proposition that a difference there will be by the presence of women and people of color on the bench. Personal experiences affect the facts that judges choose to see. My hope is that I will take the good from my experiences and extrapolate them further into areas with which I am unfamiliar. I simply do not know exactly what that difference will be in my judging. But I accept there will be some based on my gender and my Latina heritage."
She went on to say that "each day on the bench I learn something new about the judicial process and about being a professional Latina woman in a world that sometimes looks at me with suspicion. I am reminded each day that I render decisions that affect people concretely and that I owe them constant and complete vigilance in checking my assumptions, presumptions and perspectives and ensuring that to the extent that my limited abilities and capabilities permit me, that I reevaluate them and change as circumstances and cases before me requires. I can and do aspire to be greater than the sum total of my experiences but I accept my limitations. I willingly accept that we who judge must not deny the differences resulting from experience and heritage but attempt, as the Supreme Court suggests, continuously to judge when those opinions, sympathies and prejudices are appropriate."