Confirming that Sotomayor was a bad choice for the high court

The Supreme Court correctly decided the Michigan higher education racial preferences case. The 6-2 decision reaffirmed two important principles:

1) Let voters decide these issues.  There is no evidence that these voters in Michigan want to take minorities back to the 19th century or any other century. Also, my guess is that some minorities voted for the referendum, too. So let's respect voters. 

2) Why should race be a factor in college admissions anyway?  Are you telling me that minority kids can not survive in the real world without government programs?

The 6-2 decision included a dissent that confirmed why so many of us thought that Justice Sotomayor was a bad choice for The Supreme Court. Her long dissent was more of a "rant" than any outline of legal principles, as reported by The Washington Post:

"In her most personal moment in 41 /2 years on the court, Sotomayor read part of her dissent from the bench to emphasize her disagreement with six colleagues who upheld Michigan’s constitutional amendment banning the consideration of race in public university admissions.

It is a 58-page dissent, longer than the combined efforts of four other justices who wrote.

The court’s first Latina justice directly took on Roberts’s view that the nation’s continued reliance on racial classifications hinders rather than promotes the goal of a color-blind society.  

Sotomayor noted Roberts’s famous statement in a 2007 opinion that “the way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to stop discriminating on the basis of race.”   

Too simplistic, she said.   

“This refusal to accept the stark reality that race matters is regrettable,” Sotomayor wrote.

“The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to speak openly and candidly on the subject of race, and to apply the Constitution with eyes open to the unfortunate effects of centuries of racial discrimination.”  

She added: “As members of the judiciary tasked with intervening to carry out the guarantee of equal protection, we ought not sit back and wish away, rather than confront, the racial inequality that exists in our society.”  

Roberts responded with a short, sharp statement of his own.  

“To disagree with the dissent’s views on the costs and benefits of racial preferences is not to ‘wish away, rather than confront’ racial inequality,” Roberts wrote.   

“People can disagree in good faith on this issue, but it similarly does more harm than good to question the openness and candor of those on either side of the debate.”

The judges got this one right.  They respected the voters and that is really refreshing.


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