The Silent Confirmation

(AP Photo/Pool, George Bridges) Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor is sworn in on Capitol Hill in Washington, Monday, July 13, 2009, during her confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee.
(AP Photo/Pool, George Bridges) Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor is sworn in on Capitol Hill in Washington, Monday, July 13, 2009, during her confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

I know there will be individuals who will instantly disagree with me without sincerely taking into consideration what it is I’m stressing isn’t a political partisan attack, but a warning.

I’m not coming against your precious or regarded political beliefs. I don’t care if you’re a Republican, Democrat or subscribe to any other political party.  I’m just trying to point out something that some may not realize their actions or the actions of those in whom they support is suggesting.

My intentions are not to personally attack any specific group, because all are guilty of this. I’m raising this point because of the message that’s being delivered over the past year throughout the world that is silently confirming a sad reality in our political and social systems. Damn me if you please, it doesn’t bother me. I hold not political power or influence with any political official to my knowledge.

During the Judicial Confirmation Hearings for Judge Sonia Sotomayor this week, we have patiently listened to some Senators harp on certain questions over and over and over again. What part of the answer do they not understand? If they just read and listen to the context of what the judge had to say they would clearly comprehend what she’s saying. But there’s something else at work here that I’m telling you will backfire if it is continued and if socio-politically aware advisors are paying attention to press the question to voters it will be difficult to dispute.

Race baiting – Now please understand that race baiting is not an exclusive tactic used by politicians, because it has been effectively used in religion too. It’s not an exclusive practice of a political party, because multiple parties have used it. It’s not just used by a specific ethnic group or exclusively directed by another ethnic group, because many ethnic groups including Black and White have used it, so make note that I’m again not suggesting that it’s just one group doing this. The silence of one group’s actions of the other’s use of race baiting is equally as wrong.

Being too timid or apprehensive of openly discussing what can be a sensitive topic of race because of the unwillingness to address the uncomfortable truths in our society is not a good strategy. Own up to it and let’s move on. The more one denies it, the more the other will resent them, however subtle it may be.

So in the nicest way I can put this, Judge Sonia Sotomayor does not dislike White Men. I can come up with some reason to distrust some White men, but I would contradict myself with an equal number of reasons to trust some White men. I have Black family members who I don’t trust and some who I trust absolutely. Stop asking the same question over and over again and just read the speech. Should I say it again? Consider what she is saying, the context of the entire statement and not just what you want to hear. You can take and some have taken a phrase from this blog and attempted to use it against me as if I’m some sort of racist. Not reading the rest of the statement that proves their assumptions false, they just seek an argument and disagreement.

The message some politicians questioning Judge Sotomayor is sending to minority constituencies, which includes White women is negative and a growing stench of some level of racial animosity or lack of cultural socialization or something, because it’s backfiring. It makes the argument I’ve strive to convey to people that White people are not innately evil or racist, because we can point out the same attributes in all races. But if a political party continues to march down this road of racial alienation it will be a party that is made up of primarily White men with an extreme minority of women and other races.

I may not subscribe to the current ideology of ones political party, but I’m fair minded enough to listen and consider what it has to say and even defend certain aspects I agree with. I just hate seeing someone or something destroy or damage itself. Please listen to what I’m saying to you. The race baiting is backfiring, we can see behind the curtain Wizard of Oz. We may disagree politically, but I know you’re smarter than this. Why aren’t the grown-ups of the party doing something about this? More importantly, why aren’t the adults of my own political affiliation speaking up?

In the end of it all Judge Sotomayor will most likely be confirmed. When she is I ask you to watch the reaction of those who are campaigning against her as a racist. Observe the intent of their words and pay attention to their actions.

Racism is not dead, but sincere love, respect and honest cooperation for justice and equality for all can be what helps kill it. Don’t let your silence be the confirmation it needs to continue living.

References & Inspirations
The Atlantic – 07/15/09 “The Efficacy of Race-Baiting
Human Events – 07/14/09 “Pat Buchanan: How to Handle Sonia
The Daily Beast – 07/14/09 “Yes, It’s All About Race
Huffington Post – 07/14/09 “Sessions Suggests Sotomayor Should Have Been Influence By Her Ancestry
The White House Blog – 06/04/09 “A New Modern Record
U.S. Senate Judicial Committee – “Supreme Court Assoc. Justice Sonia Sotomayor Questionnaire

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4 thoughts on “The Silent Confirmation

  1. Oh, they’re baiting alright.

    She will also be confirmed.

    I disagree with her decision concerning the firefighters and advancement, but that doesn’t make her racist. She made a decision, I believe it was the wrong one in principal, but it was an interpretation of law that was pretty accurate.

    According to Stanford U Law professor, Richard Ford…
    New Haven’s decision may sound like blatant racial favoritism, but in fact the city rejected the firefighter exam because the test violated Title VII, the federal civil rights law that prevents discrimination in employment. Title VII requires employers to consider the racial impact of their hiring and promotion procedures in order to prevent discrimination that’s inadvertent as well as intentional.

    …There are two ways an employer can discriminate according to Title VII. He can intentionally discriminate by making race a factor in employment decisions — choosing a black candidate over a white candidate because he is black. Frank Ricci claims the city intentionally discriminated when it threw out the exam results because most of the people who scored high were white. An employer can also discriminate by using a selection process that has a disparate impact — in other words, that screens out a particular group for no good reason. New Haven claims that the test it tossed out had a disparate impact. Eight black, 25 white, and eight Hispanic firefighters took New Haven’s test for promotion to captain; three black, 16 white, and three Hispanic candidates passed. Nineteen black, 43 white, and 15 Hispanic firefighters took the test to become lieutenant; six black, 25 white, and three Hispanic candidates passed. This result counts as discriminatory under the rules of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. New Haven was right to worry about the possibility of a lawsuit from black firefighters if it accepted the results of the tests.

    The SCOTUS cleared it up and that’s that. But her intention was to evaluate the law and rule accordingly. Not to keep the white guys from advancing.

    1. I actually made a post about that decision awhile back on a Friday. I was surprised to hear that the case was brought back-up, but it is politics. Although I never saw or took a firefighters (FF) exam from any city or government to have 19 Black FF, 43 White FF & 15 Hispanic FF take and pass the test says something. If New Haven wasn’t so concerned about what Black FF would say or do they could have avoided all of this. Just do what’s right. If the test was bogus I’m sure someone would have said something by now. To have 43 White Firefighters take and pass the test is not too surprising coming from New Haven, CT. If it was Detroit or Atlanta and only 19 Black Firefighters then I can see taking a different look. New Haven isn’t exactly a mecca for Black people. Nice city, but not that diverse.

      Now as for as the silent confirmation, I believe one party has did enough damage to its image in terms of diversity that one doesn’t need to even mention any names, because it’s understood who has the problem. That’s the problem and what the point of the silent confirmation essentially has resulted during this judicial confirmation hearing. To repeatedly ask the same questions over and over again and attack someone who is better credentials and more experience on the bench than the rest of the court at the time of their confirmation says more than they believe it did to an audience they were not intending to target. The ads and attacks were aimed at their base, but the impression it has made to minorities in this country who are not apart of their base has been greater and have silently confirmed what some of us were giving them the benefit of the doubt upon.

      I agree with you. They do not realize what tremendous political damage they’re doing in terms of diversifying their party beyond what it essentially is today. This was just another silent test. I simply just don’t see how some political strategist haven’t said something about the cultural perception to their current strategy and how that is counterproductive to their cause.

      Oh Well, I appreciate you commenting and I agree with your points.

  2. Hi Tim,

    Please don’t sell yourself short with too much humility, because you already strive to be fair by all accounts, often listening to opposing view-points, yet maintaining your own value system in a respectful and healthy manner. However, with that said, I do appreciate you and Jesus’ regard for others (the Golden Rule is always a good thing).

    Have a fun Friday and a happy weekend.

    1. Thanks Al.

      I was a little reluctant to reference Jesus because I believe not all would get the point I was making and believe I was trying to compare myself or them to Jesus instead of the response from the people around him in addition to him.

      I try to be fair, but I’m not always successful at it. I honestly believe that most people strive to do what they feel is right, but not all take into account how it is interpreted by others or if another way is better or more effective.

      My son and I are going to the driving range, to the park, get some ice-cream from Baskin-Robbins and I believe he told me he wanted to practice is taekwondo. Somehow I got to find time to finish cleaning up and cutting the grass. Oh Well, being a father is the best job I’ve ever had and the toughest. I enjoy spending time with him because he will be grown-up and hanging out with his friends before I know it. I’m going to try to persuade him to sit and watch some of The Open Championship on the Golf Channel. We’ll see. I have to start him early 🙂

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