Sonia Sotomayor has been confirmed! She will be confirmed this Saturday and will be the first Latina ever on the Supreme Court and only the third woman. While I would like to write more about this, it will have to wait. Maybe I’ll do a roundup of coverage a bit later – for now, here’s some linkage.
The Boston Globe – Sotomayor Makes History
The New York Times – For Puerto Ricans, Sotomayor’s Success stirs Pride
The Washington Post – Senate Confirms Sotomayor to Supreme Court
So I know my coverage of the Sotomayor nomination has been scant, but that doesn’t mean that I’m not following it! Below is a great post by my colleague, Sally Kohn, about why we shouldn’t shy away from the topic of race in the Sotomayor hearings. For more analysis of the confirmation hearings, you can also check out a great New York Times editorial from yesterday. And, I have included the much-watched video of Rachel Maddow reading Pat Buchanan the riot act on his statements about Sotomayor. And now, the video where she basically tears his argument to shreds.
you can check it out here.
originally published at the Huffington Post
Instead of sidestepping the conversation on race and trying to change the topic, we should use this as our own teachable moment for ourselves and the nation. Instead of criticizing Judge Sotomayor for seeing race in America, we should be asking: Why don’t the rest of us?
The area of the South Bronx where Sonia Sotomayor grew up, in the poorest urban county in the United States, is predominantly African American and Latino. In the Bronx, African American and Latino children are more likely to be arrested and tried as adults than White kids who commit the same acts, even though kids of color are ultimately found innocent at higher rates than White kids. The average household income is $29,000; a few miles away in mostly-White Manhattan, it’s $56,000. Only 16% of Bronx adults have gone to college; in Manhattan it’s 57%. Less than 20% of Bronx families own their home, one of the lowest homeownership rates in the country. In the 1990s, New York City unilaterally relocated sewage treatment facilities and waste transfer stations to the Hunts Point section of the Bronx. Rates of diabetes, heart disease and obesity are far greater in the South Bronx than in comparable, White communities.
For those of you who didn’t get to check out the first day of Sonia Sotomayor’s confirmation hearings, below is her opening statement. For more videos, check out America’s Voice.
Today marks the first day of the Senate Judiciary Committee’s confirmation hearings for Supreme Court nominee, Sonia Sotomayor.
Tune into the LIVE hearings here.
And for more on these hearings and the attacks on the Latina nominee, check out the America’s Voice blog.
According to today’s NY Times, confirmation hearings for Judge Sonia Sotomayor will begin July 13th. We all know her nomination has been surrounded in controversy – mostly from the usual crowd of extremists, but here’s to hoping her confirmation goes smoothly.
Senator Patrick J. Leahy (D-VT), the chairman of the confirmation panel, says that the confirmation process could be over and done with as soon as the close of session in August. That is,
…unless some people put up the kind of obstacles that were not raised for the confirmation of Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. four years ago.
Let’s be honest, the anti-Latino, reverse racism crying crowd are certainly going to be raising obstacles, but let’s hope the process is rooted in Sotomayor’s voting record, which incidentally has gotten fairly little media coverage. Take action and sign the petition from NCLR to RNC Chairman Michael Steele to stop the attacks on Latinos and Sotomayor.
Props to Favianna Rodriguez, the artist behind the lovely poster at the top of this post.
So we all knew that the nomination of Sonia Sotomayor would bring the extreme attacks from the usual crowd. What we didn’t know is exactly how far they would go.
Last week, Tom Tancredo (the ever-present anti-immigrant xenophobe from Colorado) called the National Council of La Raza (who Sotomayor is affiliated with) “‘a Latino KKK without the hoods and the nooses”. This attack on NCLR, which is a Latino advocacy organization that does great work to aid in education and civil rights for Latinos and people of color in the United States, is based solely on the inclusion of “La Raza” (the race) in their title.
This outburst was reprehensible not only to Hispanics and communities of color, but to all Americans who want to put this ugly chapter of our history behind us.
Check out the video below to see Janet Murguia, the president and CEO of the NCLR, respond to Tancredo’s outrageous claims.
Help stop the smear campaign against Sotomayor and NCLR by signing THIS PETITION to Chairman Michael Steele of the RNC to condemn these statements as soon as possible.
And, for the record, from TPM:
A literal translation [of La Raza] is “The Race” (according to their Web site, other possibilities include “the people” and “the community”) and in the full linguistic context it refers essentially to advancing the civil rights and economic opportunities of Latinos. As a comparison, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People does not propose to oppress non-blacks, and the American Jewish Committee doesn’t aim to keep the Gentiles down.
And, as a Latin American Studies student, I know that “La Raza” comes from “La Raza Cosmica”, a term coined by Jose Vasconcelos, a Mexican intelectual in an essay from 1925. Vasconcelos’ notion of the “cosmic race” was the combination of various races and ethnicities into one “cosmic” people or community. His term actually blurs racial lines, as opposed to sharpening them. Maybe this should be some required reading for Mr. Tancredo…
This morning I was reading all the commentary that is rolling in about how Obama’s nomination of Sonia Sotomayor is a move to “buy time” on immigration reform for the administration. And, frankly, I think that folks are wrong about this. Below is an excellent post from Frank Sherry at America’s Voice about exactly why reform will move forward, regardless of Sotomayor and the attention her nomination is garnering.
Originally posted at America’s Voice and cross-posted at the Huffington Post:
Question on Sotomayor: What does Obama’s SCOTUS Nomination have to do with Immigration Reform?
Well, almost nothing. To watch the coverage on mainstream news and in the blogosphere one might think exactly the opposite, however.