“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.” - Judge Sonia Sotomayor, 2001
President Obama has nominated Judge Sonia Sotomayor for Supreme Court Justice. Newt Gingrich, Ann Coulter, and Rush Limbaugh have taken to calling Sotomayor a racist. I think that is too extreme. I would say what Sotomayor said (see quote above) is, well, just stupid. I mean really, this was not an off the cuff remark - this was in a prepared speech she gave. Good Lord, what kind of things does she say when comparing Latino women and white males in private?
It is pretty ridiculous to use a stereotype to lump all white males into one giant bucket. For that matter, it is pretty ridiculous to lump all Latino women into one giant bucket. For white males we have Abe Lincoln on one hand and Son of Sam on the other. We have George Washington on one hand and Adolf Hitler on the other. For Latino women, I am sure that extreme opposites can be found too.
Or perhaps what Sotomayor said should be taken at face value. If you can somehow find the exactly average Latino woman, and the average white man, then she truly may think that the Latino woman will “reach a better conclusion” than the white man. How can she know this? Well, on the average a Latino woman will be more liberal in her conclusions than a white male. This can be shown from political polls. So if you are a liberal, as Sotomayor surely is, you might like her use of sweeping stereotypes.
And Obama keeps saying that life experience has been so key to his choice for the nomination. If life experience is so deeply important as Obama claims - shouldn’t it matter that Sotomayor has no children? What if the nominee was a white male raised by a single-parent white father and the nominee never had children? Wouldn’t this lack of life experience be an issue?
Also, if Latino women make better decisions than white males - then why is Puerto Rico not a more livable place? And ditto Mexico for that matter.