Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Hispanic Judges and Who Said It First

 

Sotomayor Latina MagazineJustice Sonia Sotomayor’s comment that a “wise Latina woman” will make a better decision than a white male judge is well known and, inexplicably to me, didn’t get her branded a racist and disqualified from the bench.

However, now that Donald Trump is taking mega-heat from all sides for saying the judge in his case, who is of Mexican descent, might not be fair to him, another of Sotomayor’s comments, even more on point, needs to be looked at:

“Whether born from experience or inherent physiological or cultural differences,” she said, for jurists who are women and nonwhite, “our gender and national origins may and will make a difference in our judging.”

Note well: She said, “…may and will make a difference in our judging.”

I did a word count of her confirmation hearing. The Senators preening for the cameras outspoke her 67 percent of the time, which is probably why none of those amateur cross-examiners had time to ask her, “Your heritage will affect your judging? How?”

Now comes Donald Trump, who worries that exactly what Sotomayor said will happen is happening to him. What I’m curious about is the cognitive dissonance of the American noosphere when processing Sotomayor’s and Trump’s shared contention. Let’s examine:

Sonia Sotomayor said a judge of Latino heritage will be affected in his judging by being Latino. The American response was to slather ourselves in the self-glory of multiculturalism and put her on the Supreme Court for life.

Donald Trump said what Sonia promised will happen is happening to him now, and America’s response is to say it’s impossible for such a thing to happen and brand him a racist and unfit to serve for even four years.

Same contention — different response.

For the purpose of this piece, I don’t care whether anyone agrees with Donald and Sonia, disagrees, or any other measured, well thought out or careless analysis in the middle. I want to know what causes a society to accept as true a maxim presented by one person who gets rewarded, yet accept the same maxim as impossible to be true when said by another, who gets figuratively tarred and feathered.

I see several possibilities. Perhaps we are so afraid to be mistaken for racist that we won’t disagree with a person of a certain heritage, even if that person herself says something racist. Perhaps we suffer media malpractice in the manner and frequency certain ideas get presented (or media omission of facts and ideas). Perhaps we have short memories. Perhaps we have divided ourselves into such rabid political teams that no one wants to admit their teammate said something wrong.

As for me, I find at least some blame in the harmful little chestnut so often stated that we are “a nation of immigrants.” I put some blame on the idea that assimilation and American culture are not important. I blame Sotomayor and others for putting any significance on bloodline ahead of Americanism.

We are not a “nation of immigrants.” A family legally loses immigrant status with the first generation that was born here. By the second generation born here, they’ve lost most if not all cultural traditions of wherever their ancestors came from.

I speak from experience. My grandparents were born in Italy. My father was born here. I was born in New Jersey and have nothing but American cultural traditions and loyalties. Am I supposed to call mine “an immigrant family?” I’ll damn you for suggesting it. My grandparents were immigrants. The 50 or so people who descended from them were all born and raised here. We are an American family.

It appears schizophrenic when a country at one time screams for diversity, insists upon diversity, legislates diversity, and applauds diversity, but then calls anyone racist who points out that another person is different from them. So what is it? Why is Trump in trouble for using the Sotomayor axiom that a judge’s lineage affects judging, while that same axiom helped her become a judge?

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  1. Songwriter Inactive
    SongwriterJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    I love this post.

    • #1
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:09 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  2. Lash LaRoche Inactive

    Tommy De Seno:

    As for me, I find at least some blame in the harmful little chestnut so often stated that we are “a nation of immigrants.” I put some blame on the idea that assimilation and American culture are not important. I blame Sotomayor and others for putting any significance on bloodline ahead of Americanism.

    We are not a “nation of immigrants.” A family legally loses immigrant status with the first generation that was born here. By the second generation born here, they’ve lost most if not all cultural traditions of wherever their ancestors came from.

    Exactly. You nailed it.

    • #2
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:11 PM PDT
    • Like
  3. Hammer, The Member

    good point, Tommy.

    • #3
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:11 PM PDT
    • Like
  4. Basil Fawlty Member
    Basil FawltyJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    This is vile.

    • #4
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:11 PM PDT
    • Like
  5. TKC1101 Inactive

    Spot on, Mr De Seno. Spot on.

    Well argued, well spoken, well said.

    Trump is the everyman American who is wondering why all these supposed smart people are going crazy because he said the Judge is a Mexican and that might affect his judgement on Trump.

    Most people, white, black, brown, yellow, red, green or whatever assume people will take that into account.

    The myth that judges are superhuman seems to be perpetuated by the legal profession. Most other people know better.

    • #5
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:12 PM PDT
    • Like
  6. Frozen Chosen Inactive

    So let’s cut through all of the racial BS and ask a simple question;

    Why were the records in this case sealed in the first place? Why should the con man known as Donald Trump have his nefarious con jobs shielded from the eyes of the public? I thought the guy was pure as the driven snow, a man of the people.

    Isn’t it obvious to everyone why he wanted them sealed? Anyone who believes Trump is innocent in this case is a naive fool, plain and simple.

    • #6
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:12 PM PDT
    • Like
  7. Tommy De Seno Contributor
    Tommy De Seno

    Songwriter:I love this post.

    Thanks.

    For the record an editor put the word “Hispanic” in the title.

    I never use that word. I don’t even know if Sotomayor speaks Spanish.

    • #7
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:13 PM PDT
    • Like
  8. Tommy De Seno Contributor
    Tommy De Seno

    Basil Fawlty:This is vile.

    Oh no! What’d I do?

    • #8
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:16 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  9. Teresa Mendoza Inactive

    Basil Fawlty:This is vile.

    Hee hee.

    • #9
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:18 PM PDT
    • Like
  10. Basil Fawlty Member
    Basil FawltyJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Tommy De Seno:

    Basil Fawlty:This is vile.

    Oh no! What’d I do?

    Copyright infringement.

    • #10
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:19 PM PDT
    • Like
  11. Tommy De Seno Contributor
    Tommy De Seno

    Basil Fawlty:

    Tommy De Seno:

    Basil Fawlty:This is vile.

    Oh no! What’d I do?

    Copyright infringement.

    Serious charge. Who said it first.

    • #11
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:22 PM PDT
    • Like
  12. TKC1101 Inactive

    Frozen Chosen:So let’s cut through all of the racial BS and ask a simple question;

    Why were the records in this case sealed in the first place? Why should the con man known as Donald Trump have his nefarious con jobs shielded from the eyes of the public? I thought the guy was pure as the driven snow, a man of the people.

    Because the records had the names, addresses and vital info on all customers. Now the media has it thanks to your sainted ‘respected jurist’, who seems to have taken a higher oath to the DNC than the constitution.

    So now thousands of people who have nothing to do with this are open books to the public.

    Judges have immense power and this one abused it.

    That cut through it for me. Pure as the driven snow, sure, respected jurist, right. Just another Lois Lerner in robes.

    • #12
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:22 PM PDT
    • Like
  13. BrentB67 Inactive

    Great work and all that, but we’ve no room for reasoned arguments.

    All that matters is Trump is bad/racist/progressive/democrat, etc.

    A white gentleman highlighting ethnic, racial, or gender bias is forever a racist, sexist xenophobic, bigot, etc. There are bonus points to be made by other white men preening for cameras and casting judgement whether grounded in facts or otherwise.

    • #13
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:26 PM PDT
    • Like
  14. Basil Fawlty Member
    Basil FawltyJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Tommy De Seno:

    Basil Fawlty:

    Tommy De Seno:

    Basil Fawlty:This is vile.

    Oh no! What’d I do?

    Copyright infringement.

    Serious charge. Who said it first.

    Said what?

    • #14
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:26 PM PDT
    • Like
  15. Tommy De Seno Contributor
    Tommy De Seno

    Basil Fawlty:

    Tommy De Seno:

    Basil Fawlty:

    Tommy De Seno:

    Basil Fawlty:This is vile.

    Oh no! What’d I do?

    Copyright infringement.

    Serious charge. Who said it first.

    Said what?

    Now you’re just confusing me man…

    • #15
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:27 PM PDT
    • Like
  16. Nick Stuart Inactive

    Thank you.

    • #16
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:31 PM PDT
    • Like
  17. Paul Erickson Inactive

    Frozen Chosen:So let’s cut through all of the racial BS and ask a simple question;

    Why were the records in this case sealed in the first place? Why should the con man known as Donald Trump have his nefarious con jobs shielded from the eyes of the public? I thought the guy was pure as the driven snow, a man of the people.

    Isn’t it obvious to everyone why he wanted them sealed? Anyone who believes Trump is innocent in this case is a naive fool, plain and simple.

    Not ready to pronounce a verdict, but I would like some of our legal eagles to comment on the merits of Trump’s position and the judge’s action. If what the judge did is out of line, I could see Trump’s argument that he is biased.

    (If someone’s already done that could you comment and link?)

    • #17
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:32 PM PDT
    • Like
  18. Trinity Waters Inactive

    Mike LaRoche:

    Tommy De Seno:

    As for me, I find at least some blame in the harmful little chestnut so often stated that we are “a nation of immigrants.” I put some blame on the idea that assimilation and American culture are not important. I blame Sotomayor and others for putting any significance on bloodline ahead of Americanism.

    We are not a “nation of immigrants.” A family legally loses immigrant status with the first generation that was born here. By the second generation born here, they’ve lost most if not all cultural traditions of wherever their ancestors came from.

    Exactly. You nailed it.

    Another vote for nailing it. I’d never considered that I’m a German immigrant; my family’s melding with America is nearly identical to Tommy’s, and assimilated as rapidly as possible. I only wish I could read German to personally decipher my grandmother’s cookbook.

    • #18
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:35 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  19. Bob Thompson Member

    Tommy De Seno:

    Songwriter:I love this post.

    Thanks.

    For the record an editor put the word “Hispanic” in the title.

    I never use that word. I don’t even know if Sotomayor speaks Spanish.

    And I thought all along she was an American jurist.

    • #19
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:37 PM PDT
    • Like
  20. Tommy De Seno Contributor
    Tommy De Seno

    Tom Riehl:

    Mike LaRoche:

    Tommy De Seno:

    As for me, I find at least some blame in the harmful little chestnut so often stated that we are “a nation of immigrants.” I put some blame on the idea that assimilation and American culture are not important. I blame Sotomayor and others for putting any significance on bloodline ahead of Americanism.

    We are not a “nation of immigrants.” A family legally loses immigrant status with the first generation that was born here. By the second generation born here, they’ve lost most if not all cultural traditions of wherever their ancestors came from.

    Exactly. You nailed it.

    Another vote for nailing it. I’d never considered that I’m a German immigrant; my family’s melding with America is nearly identical to Tommy’s, and assimilated as rapidly as possible. I only wish I could read German to personally decipher my grandmother’s cookbook.

    I wish I had her cookbook. The pea soup with the ox tail is something I haven’t had since she died.

    • #20
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:37 PM PDT
    • Like
  21. Trinity Waters Inactive

    Frozen Chosen:So let’s cut through all of the racial BS and ask a simple question;

    Why were the records in this case sealed in the first place? Why should the con man known as Donald Trump have his nefarious con jobs shielded from the eyes of the public? I thought the guy was pure as the driven snow, a man of the people.

    Isn’t it obvious to everyone why he wanted them sealed? Anyone who believes Trump is innocent in this case is a naive fool, plain and simple.

    Your comment isn’t even relevant to this post. Not every thread on Ricochet can serve as a vehicle for assailing Trump. Go over to Michael Stopa’s post; he chummed the water in uproarious style today.

    • #21
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:38 PM PDT
    • Like
  22. Goldwaterwoman Thatcher

    Anyone who thinks judges are pure as the driven snow must not know any judges very well. They are very political and very human.

    • #22
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:38 PM PDT
    • Like
  23. Susan Quinn Contributor

    A very good post. Just one more way we show our inconsistencies, our conflicted ethics and world view. Thanks.

    • #23
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:43 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  24. Paula Lynn Johnson Inactive

    I think most lawyers know this is a crock because most lawyers have had to select a jury for trial. It’s inevitable that in selecting for perceived impartiality you stereotype based on race, income, etc. . . because otherwise you get OJ.

    • #24
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:43 PM PDT
    • Like
  25. Tommy De Seno Contributor
    Tommy De Seno

    Bob Thompson:

    Tommy De Seno:

    Songwriter:I love this post.

    Thanks.

    For the record an editor put the word “Hispanic” in the title.

    I never use that word. I don’t even know if Sotomayor speaks Spanish.

    And I thought all along she was an American jurist.

    From the looks of things you’d darn well better call her that now!

    • #25
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:43 PM PDT
    • Like
  26. Profile Photo Member

    I blame it on 24 hour news, people get hysterical about everything. Politicians and Supreme court justices are not supposed to be this important to our lives. It is almost like we are electing a new emperor. I want to go back to not giving a crap about politics and especially politicians and who they nominate.

    • #26
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:44 PM PDT
    • Like
  27. Basil Fawlty Member
    Basil FawltyJoined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Tommy De Seno:

    Basil Fawlty:

    Tommy De Seno:

    Basil Fawlty:

    Tommy De Seno:

    Basil Fawlty:This is vile.

    Oh no! What’d I do?

    Copyright infringement.

    Serious charge. Who said it first.

    Said what?

    Now you’re just confusing me man…

    Just messing with you, Tommy. You made the Sotomayor case better than I did.

    • #27
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:52 PM PDT
    • Like
  28. Trinity Waters Inactive

    Tommy De Seno:

    Tom Riehl:

    Mike LaRoche:

    Tommy De Seno:

    As for me, I find at least some blame in the harmful little chestnut so often stated that we are “a nation of immigrants.” I put some blame on the idea that assimilation and American culture are not important. I blame Sotomayor and others for putting any significance on bloodline ahead of Americanism.

    We are not a “nation of immigrants.” A family legally loses immigrant status with the first generation that was born here. By the second generation born here, they’ve lost most if not all cultural traditions of wherever their ancestors came from.

    Exactly. You nailed it.

    Another vote for nailing it. I’d never considered that I’m a German immigrant; my family’s melding with America is nearly identical to Tommy’s, and assimilated as rapidly as possible. I only wish I could read German to personally decipher my grandmother’s cookbook.

    I wish I had her cookbook. The pea soup with the ox tail is something I haven’t had since she died.

    My mother was smart, though, and knew the way to a young man’s heart. My dad’s mother spoke no English, and with nine kids, no time to learn it, so my mother parked in her kitchen in Portland with my dad at hand to translate, and she wrote out all the good German/Russian recipes. My dad and all his kids profited immensely, gustatorially, no small thing for Americans!

    • #28
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:56 PM PDT
    • Like
  29. Tommy De Seno Contributor
    Tommy De Seno

    Basil Fawlty:

    Tommy De Seno:

    Basil Fawlty:

    Tommy De Seno:

    Basil Fawlty:

    Tommy De Seno:

    Basil Fawlty:This is vile.

    Oh no! What’d I do?

    Copyright infringement.

    Serious charge. Who said it first.

    Said what?

    Now you’re just confusing me man…

    Just messing with you, Tommy. You made the Sotomayor case better than I did.

    Then I got once in a lifetime lucky. Think Buster Douglas and Mike Tyson.

    • #29
    • June 7, 2016, at 3:59 PM PDT
    • Like
  30. Goldwaterwoman Thatcher

    Frozen Chosen: Anyone who believes Trump is innocent in this case is a naive fool, plain and simple.

    This is a civil case, not a criminal case. Anyone can file a civil suit against anyone else as long as they can find a lawyer to file it and a judge willing to hear it. Judges throw out lawsuits they deem to have no merit all the time. Without knowing all the facts, none of us is qualified to judge whether or not the plaintiffs are simply attempting an old-fashioned shakedown of a billionaire and fortunate enough to find some politically-connected lawyers willing to take their case on contingency — or, there is a genuine grievance. I am a bit suspicious of the motives of the judge here only because two of the lead plaintiffs were dropped from the case when the defense produced written and audio praise of the course from them. It is odd that he allowed the suit to continue.

    • #30
    • June 7, 2016, at 4:06 PM PDT
    • Like

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