Skip to comments.The Scalia – Sotomayor Thunderdome: A slug-fest in the footnotes on the affirmative action case
Posted on 04/22/2014 6:32:30 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
Ed Morrissey already brought you up to date on the SCOTUS decision regarding the Michigan referendum that ended affirmative action in college admissions, so if you happened to miss the story, read that first. It was one of the more raucous decisions in a while, with plenty of twists and turns in terms of who went with the majority or the dissent and what they said. But the Washington Examiner dug a bit deeper later in the day, finding what amounted to a bit of a slug-fest in the footnotes between Sonia Sotomayor and Antonin Scalia.
The scuffle erupted over Sotomayor’s not so thinly veiled inference that the hateful majority of voters in Michigan must be a bunch of blazing cat fur racists. Going one step further, she even invoked Jim Crow laws in her comments. Scalia was not exactly charitable in his response.
As Justice Harlan observed over a century ago, ‘[o]ur Constitution is color-blind, and neither knows nor tolerates classes among citizens,’” Scalia concluded, quoting the dissent in Plessy v. Ferguson. “The people of Michigan wish the same for their governing charter. It would be shameful for us to stand in their way.”
And then, the Parthian shot: And doubly shameful to equate the majority behind [the constitutional amendment] with the majority responsible for Jim Crow, he added in a final footnote, citing the first two pages of Sotomayor’s dissent.
I realize that such comments aren’t exactly on par with a WWE wrestler jumping out of the ring to grab a folding chair, but by the standards of Supreme Court written opinions, it’s not far off. Still, reading Sotomayor’s comments leaves us with some unsettling questions.
First of all, allow me to say that I’m as thrilled as the next guy to finally have a Wise Latina on the court and all, but is this really the level of discourse we can expect to see enshrined in the official records of our nation’s highest court for the next several decades? Invoking Jim Crow here should be a serious red flag for any observer, and even one of the other liberal justices bailed out on her on that one. I assume Justice Sotomayor was actually present in the Court when the arguments were being made and was aware of the substance of the referendum in question. We’re not talking about voting rights for minorities here, nor freedom of speech or religion. This was about college admissions. (Which, to be brutally honest, isn’t a constitutionally assured right for anyone.)
And the action in question, rather than restricting certain people from any activity along those lines, actually spoke to ensuring that everyone would have an equal opportunity at an education in taxpayer funded educational institutions regardless of race, gender, religion, etc. And yet, Sotomayor managed to squeeze this gem into her own footnotes.
“I of course do not mean to suggest that Michigans voters acted with anything like the invidious intent of those who historically stymied the rights of racial minorities,” she countered. “But like earlier chapters of political restructuring, the Michigan amendment at issue in this case changed the rules of the political process to the disadvantage of minority members of our society.”
But if we are to assume that what she wrote there is true, then we must also assume that minority students are less able to qualify for college acceptance on their own merits. I would certainly hope that’s not what she is suggesting. Also, it’s not as if there aren’t already numerous advantages available based on demographics alone, such as the wide variety of scholarships available only to minorities. (One of the huge barriers to college access is surely the ability to afford the tuition as well as having the grades required.) Yet I don’t hear anyone objecting to those. Then again, if somebody were to suggest a European Heritage Scholarship Fund it would be instructive to see the reactions.
Scalia’s rather dismissive reaction is not surprising here. What may come as a shock is the structure of Sotomayor’s arguments. This isn’t an instance of two people coming from opposing ideological backgrounds taking a different interpretation of some statute… that’s to be expected and even desired to ensure a robust debate on the merits of each case. But this dissent was more a case of other justices reading it and simply saying, “Um… what?”
The bigoted Wise Latina herself a product of reverse discrimination
No wonder she defends it with such political rather than judicial slant. She’s been spoonfed all her life and WOULDNT EVEN BE IN THE JUDICIARY OTHERWISE
Its important to note the pure idiocy of the appeals court ruling that overturned the ban in the first place. “The appeals court says the ban puts an extraordinary burden on those who have to mount a long expensive campaign if they want to protect it”. Basically they said that BAMN is too poor to lose.
Soto would prefer to use the original Constitution to wipe her arse with, while re-writing it to suit her political needs.
Because the decision was 6-2 maybe her influence will be weakened by her outburst. The wise Latina may have chosen poorly.
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So basically, Scalia gave Sotominor a majority STFU.
* If you are afraid that others will take away your vote, - - - - - - - - - - you might be a racist.
* If you claim that the potential loss of your vote is due to greed, - - - - - - - - - - you might be a racist.
* If you dont get your way all the time, - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -then you might be a racist.
* If you say that someone is a racist, and do not back it up with facts, - - - - - - - you just might be a racist.
Without quotas, she certainly wouldn’t have her current lifetime gig.
Shocker - An affirmative action Justice, appointed by an affirmative action President, supports affirmative action.
Heard that Sotomayor insisted on reading her entire, 58-page dissent when today’s decision was announced. What a funfest that must have been. It was longer than the four opinions in support of the majority.
Put another way, you know you’re on the wrong side of the argument when Stephen Breyer sides with Clarence Thomas. But of course, the Wise Latina knows best, and we’re stuck with her and Kagan for another 25 or 30 years.
Well said....I rest my case your Honor!...
6-2. Who was the other dissenting?
Two men enter. One man leaves.
The refined evil is when highest scoring whites and Asians are excluded entirely in order to put the highest scoring preferred races against the second or third tier whites and Asians. Whenever you see “other factors considered in order to secure a well rounded, diverse body” this is often in play.
Ginsburg. (Kagan was recused.)
She’s everything we thought she would be.
Scalia: Wake me up as soon as she’s finished reading her dissent or if I start snoring.
Scalia must feel bad having a fight with an intellectual ‘tard.
**The scuffle erupted over Sotomayors not so thinly veiled inference that the hateful majority of voters in Michigan must be a bunch of blazing cat fur racists. Going one step further, she even invoked Jim Crow laws in her comments. **
No too smart, are you lady?
**As Justice Harlan observed over a century ago, [o]ur Constitution is color-blind, and neither knows nor tolerates classes among citizens, Scalia concluded, quoting the dissent in Plessy v. Ferguson. The people of Michigan wish the same for their governing charter. It would be shameful for us to stand in their way.
And then, the Parthian shot: And doubly shameful to equate the majority behind [the constitutional amendment] with the majority responsible for Jim Crow, he added in a final footnote, citing the first two pages of Sotomayors dissent.**
Way to go, Scalia!
Sotomayor wouldn’t be on the Court but for Affirmative Action.
Affirmative Action, which liberals LOVE, is a racist policy that rests on the implicit premise that if you’re a minority,you’re not good enough to do it yourself. (No wonder liberals support it fervently.)
It’s what former President Bush called “the soft bigotry of low expectations.”
Leftists want anything but judging a person on the content of their character. Divide, dissent, lie, cheat and steal. That’s all they do.
Also read Justice Kennedy’s opinion. He points out that the logic used by the Wise Latina and other attackers of Michigan’s defense of racial equality is based on all the belief all Blacks think alike, all Hispanics think alike, all Asians think alike, and so on. So Sonya, tell me, who are the real racists in this case?
We know these types. The real issue was that traitor - Roberts. Nuff said.
Red Sonia sounds as smart as a 7 year old
“Affirmative Action, which liberals LOVE, is a racist policy that rests on the implicit premise that if youre a minority,youre not good enough to do it yourself. (No wonder liberals support it fervently.)”
I remember when we had the Bakke decision here in CA where racial set asides were allowing unqualified minorities into the UC David Medical School. This was the ultimate idiocy. We allow an unqualified minority to become an unqualified doctor who then goes back and “treats” his brethren in the hood. How’s that helping the minority community?
Worse yet whole societies become infected with AA fever and they begin promoting them in mainstream circles and are always given a pass no matter how many people they kill or maim.
Just as a reminder, it was Poppy Bush who put her on this path with her first nomination to a judgeship.
She’s the product of a Bush judicial nomination.
The first Pres. Bush is the one who first nominated her to be a judge.
Just musing here. Maybe the Justices realized that without Affirmative Action, Obama might not have become President.
Is the Democrat Party’s lingering support of the un-Constitutional Affirmative Action Law mainly due to their guilt that the Democrat Party founded the KKK?
I'll start with the second part regarding "guilt" and the KKK. Thomas Sowell wrote a column which was something like this:
If I hated blacks, and I wanted them to get an inferior education, broken families, high crime rates with high rates of homicides and drug usage, high out of wedlock births, and no hope of ever breaking out of the devastating circumstances they find themselves in, I wouldn't join the KKK, I would join the Democrat party.
In short, I don't think the Democrats have any feelings of guilt for founding the KKK because they have accomplished so much more catastrophic harm to blacks that the KKK could ever have.
Affirmative Action is another tool of the Democrats to accomplish much that is harmful to America. AA guarantees that over the years, the public sector, the private sector, and the military will be harmed by having to recruit, hire, and promote people who are clearly unqualified for the positions they are obtaining. If AA harms America, the Democrats are for it. If AA can be used to garner votes because stupid people must be admitted to higher education, the Democrats are for it.
I am hoping that in essence, the USSC has finally understood the paralysis AA has caused to Government, Education, Private Business, and the Military.
Then again, maybe not. Maybe the Justices thought that this wasn't anything more than a States rights case.
Thanks for your insightful reply. Dr. Sowell was right on the mark with that article!
We still have “a bunch of folks,” (to use a Haaaaaavud educated Obama phrase), that hang onto the racial hatreds of the 1960’s: for example, Revs. Sharpton and Jackson.
For them, nothing has changed since the pre 1960’s, and so they make a living by race-baiting with speeches, accusations, and of course, arm in arm “marches.”
To them, they receive with deaf ears the statement: “If you accuse someone of being a racist, and do NOT back it up with facts, - - - - - - - - - - - then you just might be a racist.”
Sowell's article was a true eye opener. Over the years one only has to look at liberal run schools and cities, and see how deadly accurate Sowell was.
No, rather it’s consistent with their centuries old theme of “keepin ‘em down”
From “The Great (not) Society” dependency classes to throwing them a preferential bone for admissions and employment, it’s all about control, always has been
Dare we say “Plantation politics?’