About Judge Sotomayor and racial poisonousness, one could publish many letters. Let me share with you just one — maddening and heartbreaking at the same time:
You say in Impromptus, “The news is drenched with Sotomayor now, and also drenched with the word ‘Hispanic’: She’s Hispanic, you know. She would be the first to tell you (though maybe she would say ‘Latina’).”
I have been reflecting on the “empathy” standard enunciated by President Obama, Judge Sotomayor’s decision in Ricci v. DeStefano (the firefighter case), and her remark that “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.”
I am Australian (a “white male”). My wife is from Ecuador, which I guess makes her a “Latina” and possibly “Hispanic,” though she never refers to herself by either word. She does look South American — her skin is a coffee colour. It would also be fair to say that my wife grew up in extremely modest circumstances.
We have a three-year-old son. He is white — no mistaking it. He will grow up to be a “white male.”
I wondered how Judge Sotomayor would treat my son if he were one of those firefighters. Would she regard him as a white male? Would she regard him as part Hispanic because his mother is Ecuadorian? Would she arrive at a different result depending on the knowledge she had — about his paternity or maternity?
The real question is, Why is any of this “identity” stuff even relevant? More important, what is this obsession with the colour of skin? It occurs to me that, if my wife and I have another child, that child could have the same skin colour as my wife. If that happens, should that child get more favourable treatment than my “white male” child?
As you and Thomas Sowell and others say: This is poison, sheer poison.
P.S. Maybe Judge Sotomayor would call for blood analysis.