Whenever a Latino is nominated for some political post I’m not the type who starts cheerleading right away for them. I’m more of a “what have you done for me lately” type of supporter. And to be honest, the nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court hasn’t inspired my support.
Let me be clear, there is no doubt that the Sotomayor nomination and what looks like will be her officially become a Supreme Court Justice is historic and important, especially from the perspective of one daughter of Puerto Rican immigrants looking at another. Pero, I felt much the same way about the initial nomination by the Democrats of Obama for the presidency. Historic? Yes. Impressive? Does he reflect my politics? Ehhh.
The way Sotomayor’s nomination process has been handled by the media and by certain members of the Senate itself has revealed just how deeply connected racism and sexism are. And we saw something similar with during Obama’s presidential run. While Obama wasn’t targeted by sexism, his wife sure was, enduring the double oppressions that women of color struggle with.
There is much ado about what Republican Senators are behind Sotomayor and those that are against her. Everyone is acting all surprised that the GOP is “alienating” Latinos. A few years ago after Congressional midterms elections I was on NPR and I think it was Leslie Sanchez said to me and the radio audience something about all Latinos being Republicans and just not knowing it yet. My response then and now to the alienation issue is, “Are you fucking kidding me?”
While the refrain post Katrina was that George Bush doesn’t care about black people, the GOP hasn’t cared about Latino people for a long ass time (trust me the Dems aren’t doing much better they just have more Latino spokespeople and better pandering techniques). Sentaor John McCain’s non-support of Sotomayor doesn’t surprise me and shouldn’t surprise anyone. From his statement on the floor of the U.S. Senate delivered on Aug. 3:
“Judicial activism demonstrates a lack of respect for the popular will that is at fundamental odds with our republican system of government. And, as I stated earlier, regardless of one’s success in academics and in government service, an individual who does not appreciate the common sense limitations on judicial power in our democratic system of government ultimately lacks a key qualification for a lifetime appointment to the bench. For this reason, and no other, I am unable to support Judge Sotomayor’s nomination.”
And proof that he doesn’t hate Latinos? According to him, his support of one time Supreme Court nominee Miguel Estrada. Forget that Estrada had no judicial experience, he was Latino. Yes, McCain pulled out of his ass the “some of my best friends are Latino” line.
So I agree that non-support of Sotomayor does not a Latino hater make. The GOP has alot of other ways to prove how much they hate us.