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April 3, 2020

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Sotomayor: Past Comment Out of Line?

Many women’s groups have applauded President Obama for nominating U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Sonia Sotomayor for the Supreme Court – which would make her the first Hispanic on the high court and only the third woman. But she has taken lots of flak in recent days from critics for saying in a 2001 speech at a Berkley Law lecture: “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.” Do you think that statement should disqualify her for the high court? Let us know what her nomination means to you – and for all women.


Many women’s groups have applauded President Obama for nominating U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Sonia Sotomayor for the Supreme Court – which would make her the first Hispanic on the high court and only the third woman. But she has taken lots of flak in recent days from critics for saying in a 2001 speech at a Berkley Law lecture: “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.” Do you think that statement should disqualify her for the high court? Let us know what her nomination means to you – and for all women.

Comments

  1. I’m glad she said it. She was absolutely right; everyone else thinks she’s supposed to hold the “white” party line, but the reality is that minorities don’t grow up the same way that white males and females do, and have had to struggle to achieve a lot harder than white men and women. It’s not even close.

  2. Martha Weber

    On the contrary, I applaud Judge Sotomayor for voicing the idea that women who by virtue of being “othered” by society develop empathy and perspective shifting abilities that may give them greater insights when making decisions. Sotomayor and all women of multicultural or improvished backgrounds who rise to prominence should not be forced by society to adopt the mindset of a white male in their decision making. As we all know that white male mindset is “the norm” and anything else is labeled as “less than”.

  3. Bizby

    Women are just as smart and as capable as men to be judges on the Supreme Court. But not because they are women. It’s because women can be as smart and as capable. Being a woman doesn’t automatically make one smarter or more capable. And let’s not forget that it wasn’t just one lone comment in 2001; Sotomayor has espoused this opinion repeatedly. I’m glad Obama nominated a qualified, smart woman that just happens to have a cool background story that is perfect for a media love affair. But that doesn’t give her a free pass. Why is it okay for a minority woman to say that her experience and knowledge will make her decisions better than a white man’s, when we all know if a white man said anything remotely like that, the media would have him apologizing fast and furiously and he would then be quickly removed from serious consideration to run and hide somewhere in shame. Yep, you bet there’s a double standard. Let’s admit it ladies, we want special treatment simply because we’re women. But wait a minute — I thought we were equal not better. Let’s take the time to really check her out. Isn’t that the American Way?? Wouldn’t that be the smart and responsible thing to do? This automatic pass because of my gender and the color of my skin is the kind of position that makes us look whiny, demanding and childish. I want it to be my way because I’m so special and there’s not enough of my kind in that exclusive group. That should automatically move me to the top of the list. Really?? That’s not the kind of philosophy and logic that I want permeating the high court.

  4. Kathy

    OMG if a man would have said this and was a republican, he wouldn’t survive the media before the hearing. Absolutely a reckless comment and if we (women) want to be on the same playing field, that play the game, Sorry Pacman you loose!

  5. Alison Sargent

    I personally agree with her statement, I love men and have a son but do think most white men have absolutely no idea what it is to be a woman or a minority.

  6. Lynette Esposito

    Yes, I think Judge Sotomayor should NOT be confirmed. She has made the “woman better than man” comment more than once. Justice needs to be blind to gender, race, and background. She indicates a prjeduce against gender, race and history that are not her own. What if she were of Asian heritage and said this, or North Korean or French or Native American?

  7. HT

    I might be one of those rare holdouts on this one. Her comments lead me to believe her attitude may favor Latinos and women (race and sex) vs what may be a just and fair decision. It may promote supporting someone because of their race or sex, rather than what may be just.
    My mind goes back in time when the black community, including women, that stood behind OJ Simpson when he was acquitted from the murder of his wife. They were celebrating a man that shared their race rather than a man that killed his wife.
    The recent assault of Rihanna by Chris Brown raises the same attitude. Women should be outraged by his actions. Instead, he was uplifted and embraced by them because he shared their race and celebrity status.
    I’m proud President Obama sought a woman for the high court seat, but feel there may be better choices. I would rather have a fair man on the seat rather than a woman whose judgement I feel may be clouded by predjuice.

  8. Nancy

    I believe that some white male men are also wise and have learned lessons through tough experiences. I also believe that we should judge the individual, thier wisdom and not their race or gender. I applaud women who break through the glass ceiling, gives hope to the rest of us or hispanics for overcoming hard times, but sometimes, life is hard for most people, regardless of race or gender. So please, judge the credentials and wisdom of the individual and what they can bring to serving our country

  9. Harriet Kirschner

    No! She was simply stating a fact, that women ARE different than men, that Latinos had to work harder than non-Latinos to achieve in such a rich way and that those who did not have any of those experiences will see the human condition in a narrower way. In her case she lived those things in a bigger way than most. Ms. Sotomayor will make legal decisions and interpret the Constitution in a more humane way. Oddly, that is the intent of our American forefathers who wrote it. All Judges in our system allow for “mitigating circumstances” to soften law and that is allowed by our Constitution and the Constitution is written broad enough to allow such interpretations. That was intentional.

  10. Anonymous

    Do I think that statement should disqualify her for the high court? Yes. For me as an Black women it’s opening up more doors for Hispanic than Blacks – The more power we give Hispanics then more power they will take – Where do that leaves Blacks –

  11. Anonymous

    I think her comment is being overblown for political and personal gains. It goes without saying that anyone in any position is a product of their culture and upbringing. She is no different. Neither is Gingrich. Nor all of the other hyped up politicos too numerous and unimportant to mention.

  12. Sherron

    She should not be in the supreme court. The law not feelings. Thanks

  13. SKO

    I believe that her comment was absolutely factual and not at all “racist” as some would like to call it. It is perpexing to me how anyone can dispute her comment. I love my country, but as a nation, we are caught up in being politically correct. I wish that we could be more honest with our shortcomings, and recognize when people, such as Judge Sotomayor, bring a richness of diversity and experience to the table (and is finally honest about it) Once these shortcomings are realized and we can be honest with the weaknesses (as well as the strengths) of our country, it is only then that we can maximize our potential as a nation. The fact that she is being made to feel as though she needs to apologize for the comment or say that she “should have said it a different way” is shameful. The woman was not demonizing white men, she was simply stating the facts of how someone who has come from a diverse background, and experienced poverty (and I am certain prejudice) sees the world in a different perspective than those in a place of power and privilege. I ask…how is that NOT true?

  14. Jennie Viera

    yes, that is correct. Coming from different avenues means you need to be exposed to areas that you know nothing of. That is what makes a better person, not just a one sided view.

  15. Kristin

    At first, I agreed with Sotomayor, but after I thought about it, I realized that she was using reverse descrimination. We can’t assume that a white male has not had a life full of rich experiences. As well, a smart Latina woman could have had a past of luxury and ease.

  16. Annette

    I matters to me… I would rather another person be selected. You can’t tell me there isn’t another qualified candidate out there without this sort of mark. What we say matters, especially for a justice.

  17. Rose

    Sotomayor’s comment was not out of line. As an African-American female, I do understand that most white males could not understand the plight of me or my counter-parts. Perhaps better wording might be in order, but certainly not enough to remove Sotomayor’s name from nomination.

  18. kelli

    yeah, i think it was a pretty stupid thing to say. why even go there? Individuals should stand on their own merit, not the color of their skin, and that goes for ALL races. I want a judge who will make decisions based on fact – not feeling.

  19. Eva

    I interpreted Judge Sotomayor’s comment as “You cannot know or feel the intricacies of another person’s life unless you’ve lived and walked in their shoes”. Unfortunately, the comment was incorrectly worded. Could it have been worded differently to convey the same message and keep today’s “PC standards”? Absolutely. That being said, her nomination is history-making and I hope she is appointed to the Supreme Court.

  20. Watch Fox News. She has made many many of these comments over the years, not just one. This is America. It is NOT South America, Mexico, or Spain. We must hire Americans!

  21. Evelyn

    I feel like there is more to this comment that you need to hear and it is probably not as bad as it sounds. If I take the comment by itself, I think she means the Latino experience. Who else but a Latino(a) would better know about this subject. Now if she was talking about legal matters then it doesn’t make sense because she should know better that any one on the judicial system should be more than qualified to make a decision.

  22. Dianne

    I don’t think the comment is out of line, at least not enough to get her kicked out. She was just stating the obvious, and we all know that white men with little of no experience get jobs all the time. So I applaud her for her honesty. If anyone was offended, they should just get over it….we all do in the real world.

  23. Hurlicia

    I think she made a valid point. Some situations need a 3rd eye to get to the core of what’s going on. How can a person handle an urban situation without ever experiencing an urban situation. It’s like a man saying that childbirth doesn’t hurt.

  24. Marianne

    Her comment dismays me, not to the point of disqualifying her, but I question whether her personal history will cloud her judgement in that by this quote she herself gives it such prominence. I’d like to think that we’re beyond judging people by their sex, race, religion, etc. and judge men and women “by the content of their character” Her nomination doesn’t effect me personally or women in general. Our primary concern should be her ability to interpret the constitution objectively. It’s disappointing that she may not be rigorously examined because Republicans supposedly do not want to upset Latino voters. Their job is to make sure we have a qualified jurist and not to win votes for their party.

  25. I think this country is much better off embracing the diverse perspectives that women and minorities bring to the table. They don’t always agree and they aren’t always liberal either, but that’s OK. Their voices need to be heard.
    Anyone remember Shirley Chisholm when she ran for president in 1972? I thought here’s a really intelligent, courageous woman, but realistically she doesn’t stand a chance. And just a few decades later, a biracial man narrowly beat out a white woman for the nomination, who went on to become his secretary of state. And to be the third woman appointed to that position, it wasn’t even groundbreaking any more! Yes, we’ve come a long way and we’re not babies any more.
    In regard to Sotomayor, her whole record needs to be considered, not just a few speeches and statements. I’m rooting for her and hoping she will be a great Justice.

  26. No I don’t think they were out of line at all but a statement made by a women aware that she would bring to her new role the vastness of her experiences as a latina woman from the Bronx. I really think everyone who is “offended” by her remarks needs to think about something like this from various perspectives. For ex: as a Latina woman who grew up the way she did she would have her experiences to draw from when creating blanket laws taking into account the people who were her neighbors in the Bronx as well as the people she now runs in their circle. While a white person can certainly make wise decisions the are limited by the “white privilege” that certainly exists not because they may want it to but it does! That statement wasn’t an indictment of whites but again simply a comment of a person who has had to live the up and down life of a person of color.

  27. Judith Arkes

    The fact that the judge is Hispanic is irrelevant.
    No one should be chosen based on their ethnic background and I for one am sick of the labeling, gay, Hispanic. etc. Should we do backflips every time a person from a different ethnic group is chosen, of course not. As for her comment, it was arrogant, patronizing and stupid. There are white men who have also risen to high office coming from similiar meager backgrounds. Her
    judgements are not more worthy then them because she is a Hispanic woman. And just because someone comes from a poor background does not mean that their opinions are more relevant and insightful than someone coming from wealth.
    It was a stupid comment indicating her arrogance and poor judgement. We don’t need another fool on the Supreme Court. Dump her.

  28. Angelicia Simmons

    Absolutely not! I sincerely believe that Sotomeyer is saying is that many decisions made by white males are out of touch because their experiences are very different. This statement wasn’t an insult, but rather a truthful observation. Our cultures will normally lead us to decide differently, and if we aren’t careful, those decisions will be very exclusive, denying other individuals equality. unfortunately, the history of this country’s early beginnings is narrative of this fact. I only pray that Sotomeyer’s words ring true, that she will come to wiser decisions as many of her white male counterparts.

  29. Patti Steinmetz

    I would hope not because actually the comment makes sense even if it is from a larger text. Of course, the men in the congress feel threatened because they know it is true as well. I am all for Judge Sotomayor!!

  30. Anonymous

    Her (Sotomayor) remark was racist and uncalled for. Your heritage doesn’t make you smart. Supposed she felt that way as a justice and judged people according to their race?

  31. kaye

    There were Senators that began the push for a “Hispanic female” to be placed on the court starting as soon as Obama was sworn in. They weren’t interested in the most qualified, just the most “Hispanic”, all about pandering for the hispanic vote; its all political. Were/are her comments out of line? Well, that depends on whom you’re asking; Some women and yes, some minorities, could care less about what the judge said, what her views are on any issue that may come before the court, as long as they have a “hispanic women”. The spectrum of people who have had to struggle to make it is a mile long- so many of us have had to endure, experience so many different things, and there are those of us who are stronger, wiser and yes, even more compassionate for it. This country is over 200 plus years old, and guess what? We are still having race wars, we are still fighting about the color of a persons’ skin, we have learned nothing.

  32. She is correct in her assessment – women experience a different reality than men – race is irrelevant. The more prominanet the society holds males as power brokers, especially as it filters through to respective families, this experience is altered. White men encounter less bias as they are white men – it is a given. As I like men and white men, most are surprised and affronted by such a statement. It is well known black men pay more for a vehicle than white men, whereas hispanic and asian men pay in the middle of the lot. Not comfortable, but there it is.

  33. Rose

    The Oath of Office for the Supreme Court reads,
    “I, [NAME], do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will administer justice without respect to persons, and do equal right to the poor and to the rich, and that I will faithfully and impartially discharge and perform all the duties incumbent upon me as [TITLE] under the Constitution and laws of the United States. So help me God.” If Sotomeyer cannot swear to live up to this oath of office, given her prior statement, maybe she should remove herself from the running.

  34. Anonymous

    I agree with Bisby post, it is another winy!
    How come it is alright for an Hispanic person to make that comment, but not for American or a person from another ethnic men/women race. If she is that smart why didn’t she review her speech before delivered it? I was told, learn and still practice to: think before you speak!

  35. Karen

    No I do not think so, she is going to be trouble., she does not go by the rule book.

  36. Karen

    The comment was extremely racist, an example of reverse discrimination and has the potential to widen the gap amongst races. It leads me to believe that she is not open-minded, neutral and has a chip on her shoulders. I think these types of comments from a person who, if nominated, has significant power over our country, could lead to more racial problems. There are numerous highly-qualified, intelligent and articulate people in all races and no one should be nominated or elected “just because of their race or gender”. In regards to her past, again, there are numerous people who have had it even harder than she has – white, black, male, female etc. She has accomplished a great deal in her life and should be commended; however, that does not immediately qualify her for the Supreme Court.

  37. Eleanor Gaston

    I would like to hear the rest of her speech before making a comment about that particular line. All too often politicians words are taken out of context and used against them. It would be so wonderful if people stopped making snap judgments about other people.

  38. Rochelle Watkins

    If Senator Byrd(former KKK) can be appointed, why not Sotomayor? Who knows Byrd “exercised racism” than just ‘spewing’ racism. Sticks and stones may break your bones, but words can never hurt me. KKK on record for using sticks, stones, fires and nooses….so who deserves to be in office?

  39. jeri

    Yes. She is as racist as those she is calling racist. Empathy is a wonderful quality in a person but not in ruling on the letter of the law which is to be totally impartial. Supreme court judges are to rule on the letter of the law according to OUR constitution and not the world.

  40. Ria

    During Clarence Thomas’s hearings and the Anita Hill allegations, Thomas made a comment that included the phrase “from my standpoint, as a black American….” Not at a university address years before his nomination, but during his confirmation hearings, he asserted that his race and heritage gave him a unique perspective. This does not appear to have disqualified him from serving. What about Ms Sotomayor makes her different?

  41. Jean

    I think she should remove herself because she brought race into the equation and justice is supposed to be blind. Quite frankly I wouldn’t have been offended by her comment if she simply commented on her experience as a woman. But the race piece makes me think her judgement will be biased, and remember, this is a lifetime job.
    The media is a joke. No one pouncing on the Latina women vs. white male remark. Anyone else would have be crucified by those remarks. Those words or comparisons have no place in the role of a Supreme Court justice.
    How do we ever become a less racist society if the media continues to bring up race? She’s hispanic – BIG DEAL! She’s a woman – YEA!

  42. renee

    I believe if all men are created equal than anything anybody says then they should be held accountable for it. The double standards doesn’t work for anybody. I’m more concerned that she denied the Firemen a trial. You need to think about why was it that only the white men and one hispanic man passed the exam. I don’t believe that blacks don’t test well. What a cope out. We have created a mind set with Affirmation Action that you only have to wait, they have to promote you for the numbers, unless your whtie. Nobody seems to be asking the tough questions Why did they not qualify? The real reason, why work fot something if it is going to be handled to you. Kids do it all the time. Affirmation Action had it’s place and it was a good law and it accomplished wht it needed to. But like a lot of laws they are never reviewed and updated or done away with. We should be a nation were we do not need this law anymore, we should be well passed that kind of thinking. We have taught the younger generation that it should be handed to them not that they have to work for it. The symbol for justice is a blind fold with two scales, you don’t use your feelings and your past hurts when justice is involved. You use logic and The United States Constitution. Not the mind set I remember when this happened to me, or a friend. Anytime you put emotion into the law you will create a huge injustice for all. I also disagree with minorities growing up different from whites, i am white and i have friends who grow up a lot better off than i did and they were minorities. It is a mind set and nobody is a victim unless they make themselves victims. And nobody is entitled to anything, you need to work for it. I heard to many minorites say they were voting for Obama so they could get a check. It’s a mind set. Anyone on welfare should be suing the United States Government, because they have no say in anything. You complain they threaten to pull your check. If you have to depend on the government than you have no power. Welfare is a short term thing, to help people but it has turned into a way of life. I worked for the government i know how it works. The stimulus package that went to the States, when you accepted the money, a certain part of it required you to put 10% more people on welfare. Before the minorites have a fit about what i am saying, in the 1980’s the job i had i took people off of welfare and trained them on a job they could do anywhere in the world. When the people were tracked more than half within a 10 years period went back on welfare because it was easier. For most people whites and minorities it’s the time you’ve been here in the US. When you have been here for generations and the money gets handed down then you move up. I worked full time and went to college part time and paid as i went because that is the only way i could afford to do it. Some how the working hard and using your brain has gone. Schools teach kids how to work for companies not how to use their brains.

  43. Anonymous

    I think her comment highlights the issue of reverse discrimination. It may be difficult for others to see that, but her comments are discriminatory, Judges should be selected because of their knowledge of the US Constitution and the law, as the Founding Fathers stipulated. They should be able to interpret and rule on cases based on the Constitution and on legal precedent. Not because they are considering race/gender/ethnicity. Selections that favor one group over another, because of race/gender/ethnicity are inherently discriminatory.

  44. Brie

    It’s getting old, this idea that ‘white men’ have had it easy! White men came to this country from Europe, they are also the one’s who’ve fought for our freedoms, along with black men and women supporting them in Red Cross, etc.
    White men, were our founding Fathers, so why all this hatred for them?
    If you want to be the change that ‘is to needed’, than do what you want ‘them’ to do, think rationally, objectively and fairly.
    Why, for instance, do we say “African American’s”? Aren’t we all simply American’s?
    All this is old, hypocritical information…male or female, white, black, latino, asian, it doesn’t matter – two black women will feel differently, as will two white men…who cares, what we should be looking for are those who can truly handle the obligation and responbility of being in that supreme position!
    I think that was a racist comment, and I do not think she is a good choice, I believe she is simply a pawn in the mix. I recall Bush trying to do the same thing…it’s like there’s some medal of honor to getting the first ‘latino female’ into the Supreme Court.
    Time to move on!

  45. christina r.

    I personally do not think what she said was racist. i think she was stating a fact that is for the most part true. In America our white counterparts do not grow up the way minorities do. she should be able to speak freely and that’s why we all live in America to be able to have this rights.

  46. zaida

    No, however, Hispanics has been taken for granted. For example, I come from the projects in Lower East Side Manhattan and my parents are Puerto Rican. I have been having many problems in the Federal Government Systems. I had this African male from Ghana, just promoted to supervisor and I was promoted to grade 13. He said to me “I should be a cleaning lady and not an accountant and if you take this matter to the EEOC or the Union, I will make your life miserable and distroy your career for the rest of your life”. I filed a complaint and I got fired. While a color person, files a complaint, stays in the government. Where is equal rights? Tell me. I have gone from work to welfare. I have filed over 500,000 applications and still no work because I am an Hispanic and filed a compliant through the EEOC. Go figured that out.

  47. Kathy

    Sotomayor can unfortunately get away with such a racist comment because of her hispanic dissent, which is shamefull and unamerican! Having such an individual to be placed on the supreme court thanks to the great “Barack Obama”, who just happens to be black african would explain that discrepancy. I believe there are truly more qualified and deserving individuals to fill that seat. As far as minorities allegedly having to struggle more than the Whites is bogus, unfair and untrue! The whites have had to and still do “struggle” just like everybody else, whether losing a job or their house, proof is in the pudding. You minority stereotypes need to quit pulling the violin strings and quit being so envious of the whites, and grow up!

  48. Maryann

    While I am always happy to see the advancement of a woman in any endeavor — I feel the comment that she made is very telling about how she would rule from the bench. We cannot have different rules for different people and if she was a white male making this statement — they would have been immediately removed from consideration. This was not just a once time comment–she has apparently said it in one form or another on several occasions when giving speeches.

  49. Nicholas Riojas

    I think that she is no different than all the other Supreme Court Judges. Her only problem is that she says what she thinks. She needs to keep her comments to herself. Everyone has there own point of view depending how they were raised. A poor raised black man is going to have a different point of view than a wealthy raised white man. That just the way it is. Our government is made up of “Checks and Balances”. Why can’t the Supreme Court do the same thing?

  50. Pincushion

    I feel that her remark evidences that she is sexist, racist and (at the very least) not very discrete. I don’t feel that we should be compelled to support someone just because they are also female. That would make us just as prejudiced as they.

  51. Marion Robertson

    I don’t think that comment should preclude her from being appointed. In one way she was indicating that being a minority and a female gives her a perspective that a white male could not possibly share. What’s so wrong about saying that?
    What I do have a problem with is the this was an English speaking country. While we are tolerant and everybody can use whatever language they care to at home, I get frustrated that I am precluded from communications jobs these days because I’m a native English speaker, and don’t have a handle on Spanish. I speak other languages, but if I want to work again I must speak Spanish. Why can’t Spanish immigrants be forced to learn English to compete on the same playing field? It is coming to the point that the Hispanic have advantages of being bilingual and while their English may or may not be good, they get the bilingual jobs. We need to address this NOW, because the native speakers are being shut out of many opportunities. I’m more worried about that factor.
    I think the lady is smart and has merit, and maybe should learn to use her comparisons with discretion. It’s a refreshing change to have other than white males running the show. They are not 100% of the population after all. Until women are fairly represented in numbers, there will never be true justice in the world.

  52. Jo

    I think that any woman would fair better on decisions than any male, but I especially agree that a woman who has been in the mud and tasted the hard dirt of life will have a great deal of knowledge that a privileged white male will not understand. I think that law markers who are making billions of dollars cannot understand the plight of the single mother who gets layed off from her job, who must now make ends meet on $400 a week! Let that rich white male try and let me know how quickly he breaks!

  53. Margo

    She said, in short, that a wise Latina woman reaches better conclusions than a white male. Is this a sexist/racist remark? Definitely. Is her statement enough to disqualify her? Yes, and if a white male had said the opposite we wouldn’t even be asking the question. It’s too bad, because the Court is there to interpret our laws, and we have multiple justices in order to benefit from their multiple and varied perspectives. Whether a “wise Latina” or equally wise white male, or any other sex, color, or nationality is appointed should be IRRELEVANT as long as they add value to the decisions of the Court.

  54. TBR

    I don’t feel Sotomayor was being racist in her comments, she was merely expressing the difference in the lives of a minority compared to a white male/female. I really feel she is capable of making concrete decision with out using race or gender. I think her comments were taken out of proportion and over exaggerated.
    Our society is very fast to pass judgement before analyzing facts and understanding the person speaking reason for making certain comments.

  55. Jody

    The Supreme Court is supposed to make decisions based on the law not how they feel, but very often I believe they go by how they feel. I do not think she should get in based on that and other things she has said in the past. Anyone else say anything like that and they would have been automaticly out of the running.

  56. Sharon

    If you read most of the Comments it
    will show you who have been the ones
    to be Racist all along. The white men
    and women have to work just as hard to
    get what we want. If we didn’t all of
    us would be rich. We can’t form a group
    because then we would be racist. The
    White people need to start stepping up
    to the plate or we will be in big trouble.
    It just shows you the white people are the
    ones to be hated on. Why are we called white
    anyway because all of us came from some were.
    Italy,england,france,and so on. I’m part
    italian,Irish,Dutch, and Mexican. Were do
    I stand? I’ll tell you as white but i’m
    hated because i’m white. How are the whites
    suppose to over come without us being called
    racist.

  57. Latina in IT

    As a Latina myself, I am MORE outraged by the comments on this forum by ‘Americans’ than I am of the comments by Judge Sotomayor.
    I work in a male dominated field, and I do better work than my male counterparts and still get paid LESS for the same role. Often those of us who have ‘made it’, have to be ‘better’ than those in the good ole boys network. Frankly, I am proud that Judge Sotomayor had the guts to say what is real and true as fact.

  58. Anonymous

    A slanted or biased viewpoint from one group to another, such as a “white male” versus a “latino female” should not be the basis for a supreme court judge’s thinking but rather looking to the constitution. Should a person, such as the nominee feel compelled to state that there is not equal treatment of individuals, that person should feel free to discuss the constitution and point out the unfairness in details and to try to amend the constitution, rather than change it by a personal preference which would then simply show bias to another group rather than referring to the constitution. Personally, I disagree with her on the firefighter examination and feel that the exam should be looked at rather than simply allowing for the pass of a non pass. So, yes, unfortunately, two wrongs do not make it right in that a biased discision is not a method of decision making that a supreme court justice should be making. I believe the comment was not well thought out and not circumspect in all the ramifications regarding the impact on all those to whom the constitution protects. Perhaps the nominee could explaine in full details from many prospects how her decision would not be conflicting to various groups of individuals such as a “while male” and “latina female” or any other minority group. Certainly there have been a few who discussed in great detail prior to being confirmed on supreme court. Finally, to point up personal “born with” crededentials, is biased in itself and that should be addressed.

  59. Heidi

    I think what she said is fine. I do think that by virtue of having to struggle, some of us do know more about life and have better judgement than others. People need to stop being so easliy offended and calling everyone “racist” who has a strong opinion about things.

  60. Annonymous

    I can understand her comments to a point and would like to her the entire speech before making a judgement. However, I would like to add that no matter who we are, we all see things in a different light. You don’t have to be a minority, female or male to be placed in a disadvantage and see a side of things others may not see. Discrimination and hardships come from many different areas, life events and jobs. I am a white female, but I can tell you that when I worked in civil service in my city, I faced horrible discrimination. I left civil service because of it.
    Frankly, I think it’s time we stop putting so much focus on our differences and work toward acknowledging our sameness and our goals and work together toward the greater for our country.

  61. Tigressreow

    Let’s be honest…we each bring a different batch of life experiences to the table. To act as though we all are the same and of one brain/thought is a joke. The Constitution is not perfect, the Founders didn’t have it completely right nor expect it to be perfect or there wouldn’t be AMENDMENTS… When were non-whites considered equal? When were women permitted to vote? Ditto for blacks?
    Sonia Sotomayor brings another view from this “AMERICAN EXPERIMENT” might her prismatic view enhance and include more to the interpretation that will get us all a little closer to the “perfect union” envisioned by The Founding Fathers?
    For those who are opting to strive for such righteousness espoused by some comments on this thread, I ask you WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU STOOD UP FOR THE HONORING OF TREATIES WITH NATIVE AMERICANS, RESPECTING THEIR SOVEREIGN LAWS AND RIGHTS, THE HAWAIIANS, OR THE TERRITORY OF PUERTO RICO? Hmmm I thought so, you worry so much that someone may rule over you when you’ve had no problems accepting the benefits of unfair dealings.
    I am a multi-cultural, multi-ethnic American who understands the BS that Native Americans, Hawaiians, Puerto Ricans have endured when AMERICANS KNOW WHAT IS RIGHT from their perspective. There is a prism to see these UNITED STATES OF AMERICA through. Give yourself the opportunity to experience an enlightened, perhaps different view.

  62. Michelle B.

    Being a person of color in America means you know just as much about your cultural as you do about White America. However, White America knows little or nothing about people of color. Judge Sotomayor merely expressed her worldliness to effectively make decisions on matters because she has a more diverse opinion of politics, views and issues to make fair, well thought decisions. She is not just a one sided American who can’t think outside the box.
    There are many wealthy people who travel all over the world but they never experience or connect to the world. Life is not all inclusive resort. Judge Sotomayor is of the world not just in the world.

  63. “I would hope…more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn’t lived that life.”
    I think ppl are misreading this and it’s taken out of context. If she’s saying she that latinas make better decisions, get upset.
    What she’s saying is that she hopes the diversity, life expierence, and alternate view point would help Latinas make a better choice, a different choice. This is a response to the previous judges O’Connor and such saying “wise old mean and women should come to the same conclusion. Sotomayor was talking about Hispanic diversity needed in the Court systems and the she hoped that they could make better choices, not the same ones that have been made before. It’s a comment on the need for change. She was speaking to and about Hispanics…it’s like giving a speech at a school and saying your team rules the other team drools! Try reading the ACTUAL speech from Berkely before you make judgements.
    http://berkeley.edu/news/media/releases/2009/05/26_sotomayor.shtml

  64. Karen

    The High Court exists to interpret law as it is currently written. Her background in interpreting law would be more relevant than her race or what she experienced in her life.

  65. Deborah

    I find it unbelievable that the Republicans are dregging this woman through the mud about this comment when they continually spout such ridiculous and even more dangerous nonsense on a daily basis…but because they are Republicans it’s ok. Judge Alito referred to his nationality and his empathy but that is ok because he was a Republican pick, President GH Bush said that one of his candidates would have empathy and that was ok because he was a Republican pick! I am so sick of the hypocracy of the Republican party…the party of get no where fast!!!! This is the same party who spouts abstenance and then crowns the queen of their party to a woman who has a child who is pregnant out of wedlock….hypocracy!!!! Whatever happened to the moral left???? Then to parade this young woman around and hold her up for ridicule???? The same party that tried and convicted Bill Clinton on a lie about sex but finds it wrong to even think about considering an investigation against thier own who blatently commit treason an who lied to the whole country about why we were going to war!!!! About waterboarding, wiretapping, etc. etc.
    Sonia Sotomayor stands high above those who wish to degrade her and misrepresent her in order to play partisan politics. It is my hope that when she does get seated, she will continue to rise above those who doubt her or have misrepresented her and prove through her actions that once again the Republican blowhards are just that… old white men who are full of hot air and screaming at the top of their lungs in fear of a new tomorrow where they are no longer in charge.

  66. bettie

    no, tell me how many men have tried to keep women
    in the background and say they are not gualified,
    just because they are women? we forget how
    we as women struggle and fought for our rights.

  67. Kacy

    I’m confused as to why anyone needs to ask if Sotomayor should be disqualified for the high court. What she said is very true as she shouldn’t be punished for speaking what is fact. Many white men and women grow up in suburbia, or some other protected environment, that is very separate from people of color, poverty and hard work. They are usually clueless to the goings on of the rest of the country, and the reality of the way things really work. I usually don’t feel comfortable even discussing anything of importance with white men and women because we view things totally different. Hopefully, now that the country is moving just a tad in the right direction toward creating a level playing field for all Americans, my hope is that more people of diverse backgrounds and realistic viewpoints will finally have a shot in the important decision making processes that affect the masses.

  68. Audrey J

    What she said was perfectly okay when you read the entire quote. It is okay for the blacks and browns in this nation to be judged by whatever stereotypes and artifical profiles that are out there, but as soon as we mention our own race or heritage, we are racists, or playing the race card. As a Black woman in the corporate world, if I had a nickel for each time a white male told me that if I did not like something then head on back to Africa, I would not need to work at all- I would literally have all the nickels in circulation! Of course our experiences put us in a better situation to judge- experience gives EVERYONE the upper hand, no matter the situation. Thats why experience gets you the better job! Homogenous caucasion males, unless they are from poor urban or rural areas (trailer parks and ghettos), have very limited experience, understanding, or real life examples of what it is like to be ANYONE else, except for what is on television. They don’t understand the life of being seen as less than, nor of the difference in opportunities that we face. The fact that some of us still rise despite the odds should not nean that we should forget once we have “made it”.

  69. Karen

    With the never ending racial tensions that continue to divide this country, there is nothing to be gained and only more to lose by making racial comparisons and she should know that. Her qualifications, her skills and her experiences should be all that we are looking at in deciding whether she should sit on the high court.

  70. Maritza

    I have read all the posting and I am surprised that Americas that look white feel offended or considered themselvs a minority. I believe every race and ethnic groups had and still do bring new flavor to the United States of American culture; that all of us should embrace our differences instead of criticizing them, but the reality is that a few groups do not accept differences. Ms. Sotomayor brings a change that is necessary and is long overdue. She stated an opinion using her first ammendment right for freedom of speech and some have decided that this those not qualify her for her position. I say, it those. Is easy to make judgements on who qualifies or not for this job base on the comment she made. Ms. Sotomayor is entitled to her opinion, and her opinion is based on a social reality that most do not want to talk about or refused to faced. She is the first female with real court experience in different areas of the law in comparison to her counterparts. Mother justice is blind because the law must change, be adjusted or modified according to the times. All the people working in these positions bring their personal experiences and somehow their final decision be affected by those experiences, eventhou they swore to follow the constitution. Nothing stays the same, everything changes. A republican and a democratic president nominated her for other positions and found that Ms. Sotomayor was well equipped to do those jobs. Change is comming weather anyone likes it or not. I hope Ms. Sotomayor is sworn in soon because she has earned it and deserves it. Good luck Ms. Sotomayor and I will keep you in my prayers.

  71. Carmen L. Melendez

    I think that judging only one sentence of judge Sotomayor speech shows how narrow minded we can be. If we take this comment out of context it may sound racist. However, if we do the right thing, and the smart thing, we would take the time to read her speech. Only then we can come to our own conclusion. As she ended her speech she thanks her audience for allowing her to reflect on being a Latina voice on the bench. Soooo, how is that racist? Just to remind you, we are in the land of the free and the home of the brave. I have to add that Judge Sotomayor is brave and calls thing by their name. She does not sugar code.
    For those that want to tarnish her reputation I think you have a nothing better to do, and need to get a life.

  72. Anonymous

    It takes an extraordinary person to rise out of poverty and make something of themselves. I think her comment was taken out of context. Interesting how when Bush recommended her for a post no one was criticizing her. I think it’s a political ploy to deny President Obama’s pick for Supreme Court justice. I know where she comes from. I grew up in the Bronx, in the projects and went to catholic school like her. Even though I’m not Latino I know what she meant. She is proud of her heritage and what it had to offer. She was not saying that she is smarter. But that she understands the opportunities (or the lack of opportunities) that poor people and minorities have. It is not intelligence that she touting but experience that most people don’t get. Latinos are very proud people and this comment is an expression of their pride. It is not meant to be racist against any other group. We are all human and to judge a judge we would have to view her entire record and experience to determine if she is right for the position.

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