home

Sessions Treats White Male Nominees Differently Than Female Latina Nominees

For Jefferson Beauregard Sessions III, white men deserve preferential treatment. Given his stated sympathies for the KKK, this is hardly surpising. But it is worth noting. In his opening statement, Sessions said, Sessions said:

I will not vote for no senator should vote for an individual nominated by any President who believes it is acceptable for a judge to allow their own personal background, gender, prejudices, or sympathies to sway their decision in favor of, or against, parties before the court.

(Emphasis supplied.) Yet, Sessions voted for Samuel Alito, who testified in his confirmation hearings that he does take his own personal background and sympathies into account as a judge:

Sessions demands preferential treatment for white men. He clearly applies a stricter standard to persons who are not white men. Given his history, this is hardly surprising. But it is also the perfect embodiment of the Republican philosophy.

h/t to Media Matters. Speaking for me only

< Hearing on Mandatory Minimums Today | Sotomayor Hearings Live Blog 3 >
  • The Online Magazine with Liberal coverage of crime-related political and injustice news

  • Contribute To TalkLeft


  • Display: Sort:
    I found it remarkable (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by Steve M on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 01:03:49 PM EST
    that in the course of arguing that Judge Sotomayor could have voted for rehearing the Ricci case en banc, Sessions just had to point out that Judge Cabranes is "another judge of Puerto Rican heritage."  What kind of mindset deems that to be a relevant fact to point out?  Does he realize he is on television?

    Republicans are determined to (5.00 / 2) (#3)
    by MO Blue on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 01:07:55 PM EST
    have hispanics vote Democratic for the next several years.

    Parent
    He doesn't realize anything (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by Dadler on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 01:13:00 PM EST
    He only hears what he wants to hear, sees what he wants to see.  Truly remarkable the caliber of sociopathy evidenced.

    Parent
    all whites judges think the same (none / 0) (#11)
    by lilybart on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 01:33:46 PM EST
    so it must also be true of PRican judges.

    OMG there are so many stupid Americans and a lot of them are also Senators.

    Parent

    Republicans (none / 0) (#43)
    by Socraticsilence on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:58:18 PM EST
    want to see how much of the vote they get if they manage to alienate everyone who isn't a White Christian Male.

    Parent
    actually (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by TeresaInPa on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 01:47:57 PM EST
    Sessions demands preferential treatment for white men. He clearly applies a stricter standard to persons who are not white men. Given his history, this is hardly surprising. But it is also the perfect embodiment of the Republican philosophy.

    I think this is true of men in the democratic party too.  Maybe not to as high a degree.  But it seems that even those embracing a black man (who I think is more old white boys club than his skin color would indicate) feel giving men preferential treatment is no problem.
    I have found over the years that there are as man bigots and sexists in the democratic party as the republican.
    As far as Sotomayor, I am bothered by the things she ssid too, mostly because all my liberal white guilt is gone and I see things differently than I did a few years ago. But she is a good candidate and I have no doubt that she will be confirmed.
    Next up, how about a truly brilliant black woman.  Lesbian black woman would be great, but I mean really brilliant, she could even be a pro-choice republican moderate.  I think that would be great.

    no way (5.00 / 3) (#14)
    by CST on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 01:54:38 PM EST
    there is no one like Sessions in the democratic party.  Not even close.  That doesn't mean there aren't bigots.  But there are varying degrees of everything.

    I'm glad your "white liberal guilt" is gone, but that doesn't mean racism is.

    Parent

    BTD was talking about (none / 0) (#18)
    by TeresaInPa on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:03:58 PM EST
    I thought from his comments, the whole republican parties operating principals.  I didn't say there was anyone like Sessions, though I am sure there is, just not anyone willing to admit it.  But that is because I have been around liberal white men all my life and believe me, they have no clue how sexist and racist they can be.  
    But IMO, I think that many liberals do not see how they give minorities less credit for being able to work out their own lives and problems, feeling the need to always cut black people a break as if they were lesser people is racism.

    Parent
    Whether or not (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by CST on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:15:35 PM EST
    there are members of the Democratic part who are bigots (and there certainly are), it is not currently part of the mainstream democratic platform to demand preferential treatment for white men.  It is part of the republican platform.

    Do you feel the same way about cutting women a break?  It's not about being lessor people.  It's about facing greater adversity.  The largest benefactors of affirmative action are women, btw.

    Parent

    Yeah (5.00 / 0) (#15)
    by squeaky on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:01:07 PM EST
    Sexism and racism is not bound by color of skin or gender. Remember what happened to the black women in the feminist movement when the white women made social advances?

    Parent
    nothing really (none / 0) (#20)
    by TeresaInPa on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:08:11 PM EST
    at least not at the hands of white women if that is what you are implying.  The whole story about Black women being rejected and held down by white women is some what of a myth.  Black women, like white women are/were "held down" by the white male power structure and for black women and now white women, just the male power structure.
    Here is how it goes in terms of power/income/ advancement etc.
    White men
    Minority men
    women

    Parent
    Wait are you honestly claiming that (5.00 / 3) (#40)
    by Socraticsilence on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:55:22 PM EST
    White Women have it harder than all men- not just white men, because statistically that's incredibly false- Black and Hispanic men have higher rates of unemployment, lower income, and much higher incarceration rates than White women, as well as less access to higher education- seriously, your claims are false on their face.

    Parent
    Re: above (5.00 / 1) (#53)
    by shoulin4 on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:20:13 PM EST
    Haha, wow. Not going to even touch that one.

    On a more serious note, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix!

    Parent

    OMG (5.00 / 1) (#54)
    by CST on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:22:15 PM EST
    SO EXCITED!!!!

    Parent
    Weeee! (none / 0) (#55)
    by shoulin4 on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:27:38 PM EST
    Are you going to a midnight showing?!

    (sorry btd for being off topic)

    Parent

    no :( (none / 0) (#58)
    by CST on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:32:37 PM EST
    gotta wait until tommorow.  I wouldn't want to waste it by falling asleep.  Way too tired.

    Parent
    Oh no! (none / 0) (#60)
    by shoulin4 on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:40:01 PM EST
    See, I'm gonna drink myself to heart-attack's worth of coke. No sleeping for me.


    Parent
    Title Mix-Up (none / 0) (#77)
    by shoulin4 on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 05:09:00 PM EST
    (I've been rereading all of the books lately, so sorry)

    *Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

    perhaps I need a cat-nap . . .

    Parent

    And if you are handicaped... (5.00 / 0) (#59)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:37:57 PM EST
    ...you fall to the bottom no matter your skin color or sex.  

    Parent
    certainly not (none / 0) (#24)
    by CST on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:19:11 PM EST
    income or advancement.

    Parent
    Nonsense (none / 0) (#26)
    by squeaky on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:21:21 PM EST
    White women, or anyone in America have no claim to being immune from our endemic social problem of racism and sexism. That is utter nonsense. You sound like Sessions.

    Parent
    How? (none / 0) (#28)
    by Jjc2008 on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:27:30 PM EST
    What power did white women have in civil rights issues?  
    I am curious.  My mother was an immigrant white women who worked in factories from age 13 until her early death in her fifties.  She was treated like scum by the male managers.  She voted for JFK and for LBJ but her and the women like her had no power.  They worked in factories; they cleaned houses and dormitories.  

    How did they participate in keeping black women out of anything?

    Parent

    Seems Obvious To Me (5.00 / 0) (#30)
    by squeaky on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:32:28 PM EST
    Same way as it always has been done. People of color are at the bottom in the US. The fact that someone is oppressed doesn't make them immune to being an oppressor.

    Each wave of immigrants in the US learned that they were one notch above the lowest in our society, so they had a group to repeat the oppression heaped on them. That group was African Americans whose families are as american as the lilly white Mayflower wasps, as they have been here almost as long.

    Parent

    Only two choices in life, (none / 0) (#32)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:36:25 PM EST
    you are either my savior or you are my oppressor.

    Makes it easy to keep track.

    Parent

    Well Actually Yes (5.00 / 0) (#34)
    by squeaky on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:44:03 PM EST
    Apart from your usual sarcasm, looking at power relationships on an individual basis, individual occurrence does make it easier to sort out oppression.

    Once groups start arguing as to who is the most oppressed, nothing gets done and everyone leaves the room mad.

    Power is abused all the time without regard to color creed or gender on the abuser or abused.

    Parent

    Sorry, I don't buy it (none / 0) (#85)
    by Jjc2008 on Fri Jul 17, 2009 at 04:25:49 PM EST
    My mother worked along side black women.  She had no power.  White women had less power than black males.
    Are you willing to blame black men for the oppression of all women??

    Parent
    uhh (none / 0) (#86)
    by squeaky on Fri Jul 17, 2009 at 04:38:39 PM EST
    ...looking at power relationships on an individual basis, individual occurrence does make it easier to sort out oppression.
    Once groups start arguing as to who is the most oppressed, nothing gets done and everyone leaves the room mad.

    Power is abused all the time without regard to color creed or gender on the abuser or abused.

    That in no way contradicts general trends.

    Parent

    The Eye Cannot See Itself (5.00 / 0) (#46)
    by squeaky on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:02:47 PM EST
    a black man (who I think is more old white boys club than his skin color would indicate)

    I guess by your thinking, black men can be white oppressors on the inside while white women somehow manage to stay pure?

    Is that due to a special gene that white women have?

    Parent

    I think it is what they don't have... (none / 0) (#48)
    by kdog on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:07:04 PM EST
    In some circles, the y chromosome is the root of all evil..you know this:)

    Parent
    lol (none / 0) (#51)
    by squeaky on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:16:35 PM EST
    Yeah how true... And yet another reason to throw creationism out of the classroom, they taught us in Sunday School that it is the x chromosome that is the root of all evil.

    Parent
    Well they were right (none / 0) (#71)
    by samtaylor2 on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 04:20:55 PM EST
    The x chromosome is the ROOT of all evil, its just that the y chromosome adds that extra little bit :) (they forgot to mention that)

    Parent
    actually... (5.00 / 1) (#76)
    by Dr Molly on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 04:47:54 PM EST
    biologically, the y chromosome is missing a bunch of stuff compared to the x. which is why there are sex-linked genetic problems, like male pattern baldness and colorblindness. but you should know that i think.

    Parent
    That is true (none / 0) (#81)
    by samtaylor2 on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 07:07:38 PM EST
    But if we are going to get into genetic finger pointing (always a fun thing to do :), there are mitochondrial diseases that are caused by the mother (but that is neither X or Y)- genetic humor isn't it great.

    Parent
    OK (none / 0) (#16)
    by lilburro on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:01:33 PM EST
    but find any currently serving elected official in the Democratic Party who has such a vile past.

    Parent
    easy (none / 0) (#21)
    by TeresaInPa on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:12:07 PM EST
    I am a big fan and he has changed...but Robert Byrd.

    And again BTD was generalizing and so was I.  I have been aware all my life that many liberal men are sexist as much if not more so than many of the conservative men I know.  
    And I have also come to believe that Liberal white guilt is also/ or engendered by a form of racism.

    Parent

    How about nominating someone (none / 0) (#17)
    by MO Blue on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:01:37 PM EST
    who is on the endangered species list at SCOTUS.

    A confirmed liberal.

    Parent

    good idea too (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by TeresaInPa on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:17:23 PM EST
    but I have to admit that I find a much stronger sense if unity lately with moderate pro-choice republican women than I do the old boy power structure in the democratic party and that includes most liberal men.  And even though I am a liberal woman and that has not changed, liberals in general have turned me off as far as being rational being by the way they attacked first Clinton, than Palin, in the most vile sexist hateful ways.

    Parent
    Pro Choice republican women? (5.00 / 2) (#42)
    by Socraticsilence on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:57:14 PM EST
    What all two of them? (Snowe and Collins)

    Parent
    Don't be silly (none / 0) (#79)
    by gyrfalcon on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 06:03:14 PM EST
    the vast majority of Republican women are pro-choice.

    Parent
    Ummmm (5.00 / 0) (#80)
    by squeaky on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 06:39:53 PM EST
    Out of the 17 republican women in the house 9 of them are against choice. The 4 women Rs in the senate they are split on abortion rights.

    Parent
    I have a funny feeling (5.00 / 0) (#83)
    by Steve M on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 09:17:50 PM EST
    that some of you are talking about voters and some of you are talking about Congresscritters.

    That said, I would be shocked if a majority of Republican women are pro-choice.

    I have a Republican friend who is very active in an organization that seeks to push the Republicans in a more pro-choice direction.  The last few years she's been pretty much at the point of giving up, because it's just so hopeless in today's GOP.

    Parent

    well, you know... (5.00 / 0) (#29)
    by Turkana on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:29:56 PM EST
    white men are so discriminated against. we have to give them a special dispensation!

    Alito is white? (none / 0) (#2)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 01:06:41 PM EST


    ummm, (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by eric on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:20:05 PM EST
    yeah?

    Parent
    How so? (none / 0) (#27)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:23:54 PM EST
    what ethnicities (none / 0) (#31)
    by lilburro on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:35:35 PM EST
    are included in "white" to you?

    Parent
    How is Alito white? Or, if you'd rather, how is he not white? Is there some standard that's being used here? If so, what is it?

    Parent
    Correct me if I am wrong (none / 0) (#35)
    by CST on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:44:22 PM EST
    isn't he italian?

    Parent
    In asmuchas (none / 0) (#36)
    by eric on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:44:46 PM EST
    he is of Italian decent, which I think he is, sure, he's white.  He looks white.  What else would he be?

    Parent
    Hmmm (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by squeaky on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:47:11 PM EST
    Is there a blood test? Guess it amounts to identification. He appears to identify with being a white male of italian decent, but I could be wrong. He may have secrets we do not know about.

    Parent
    OK, thanks. (none / 0) (#44)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:58:23 PM EST
    I guess didn't know the standard.

    Parent
    I don't know anyone (none / 0) (#38)
    by lilburro on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:51:14 PM EST
    who would say Italian-American is not "white."  It may not be "WASP" but being Italian-American doesn't fall under "Latina/o."

    Does that answer your question.

    Parent

    Apparently you didn't grow up in NJ (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:02:42 PM EST
    where I did.

    There are whites, and then there are Italian-Americans. And there's a huge difference between the two...

    Parent

    Odd sort of theoretical, (none / 0) (#61)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:46:36 PM EST
    but as to the last sentence there are many who would disagree, including a fair number of Ital-Americans.

    Regardless, the point is that from BTD & MediaMatter's perspective Alito apparently is "white," but that may not be the case with many others.

    I would think there are also many who probably consider Sotomayor "white," or at least "white enough." But these aren't people, likely, who are as fixated on these types of things as others...

    Parent

    For better or worse (none / 0) (#65)
    by lilburro on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 04:01:49 PM EST
    White, Hispanic, and Black are among our commonly used racial categories, and Italian-American traditionally falls under "White."  For ex. school performance -

    SAT scores by Race/Ethnicity

    or take for example the recently decided Ricci case.    The test was thrown out because Latinos and AAs did not pass at high enough rates.  Ricci presumably passed as a "white man" despite his Italian-American heritage.

    Parent

    Fair enough. (none / 0) (#72)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 04:22:20 PM EST
    Actually, now that I reread it, (none / 0) (#62)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:55:41 PM EST
    your theoretical is so odd it doesn't even make sense.

    The I-As I grew up with had/have numerous distinct and separate aspects of their "culture" that often set them apart - in their view and in the view of non-I-As.

    Parent

    As (5.00 / 1) (#64)
    by jbindc on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 04:00:20 PM EST
    someone who is 3/5ths (or whatever) Italian, I can honestly say no one has ever questioned if I was "white".  Now my mother used to get called "that little foreign girl" by the WASPS in her small town, even though she was a 4th generation American...

    Parent
    I think it's a generational thing (none / 0) (#68)
    by CST on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 04:12:00 PM EST
    remember "no irish need apply"?

    Personally, I grew up in a place surrounded by catholics, irish and italian.  I can't imagine considering them not white.  But a generation ago (or a few generations) it was different.  Makes you wonder what it will be like in 50 or 100 years.  Maybe we'll all be mutts by then.

    Parent

    As an Italian-Irish-American mutt (none / 0) (#69)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 04:12:15 PM EST
    I know exactly what you are talking about...

    Parent
    Ah I get what you're saying now. (none / 0) (#82)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 08:40:54 PM EST
    Of course. I don't disagree at all.

    Parent
    Or as an "official" standard (none / 0) (#39)
    by lilburro on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:53:52 PM EST
    Thank goodness! (5.00 / 1) (#41)
    by jbindc on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:56:50 PM EST
    I was nervous for a minute that my race had changed in the course of a conversation here!

    Parent
    wiki: White American (none / 0) (#47)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:05:16 PM EST
    White American (often used interchangeably with "Caucasian American"[3] and within the United States simply "white"[4]) is an umbrella term officially employed by the United States Census Bureau, Office of Management and Budget and other U.S. government for the classification of United States citizens or resident aliens "having origins in any of the original people of Europe,[5] the Middle East, or North Africa".[6]

    German Americans (16.8%), Irish Americans (12.1%), English Americans (9.3%), Italian Americans (5.9%), Polish Americans (3.3%), French Americans (3.2%), Scottish Americans (2%), Scotch-Irish Americans (1.8%), Dutch Americans (1.7%), Norwegian Americans (1.5%), Swedish Americans (1.4%), and Russian Americans (1%) make up 60% of the "White" population.[7] Included in the category are White Hispanics representing 8.11%,[1] mainly Mexican Americans.



    Parent
    Here is the official census (none / 0) (#49)
    by lilburro on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:11:57 PM EST
    from 2000.  The question is Spanish/Hispanic/Latino?  and THEN what your racial identification is.  Race and origin are different questions.


    Parent
    Well (none / 0) (#50)
    by eric on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:15:26 PM EST
    Hispanic is a cultural identification, really.  And it certainly has nothing to do with Italy.

    Parent
    It Is All (none / 0) (#52)
    by squeaky on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:17:38 PM EST
    Cultural identification. Race is a fiction.

    Parent
    White enough for Sessions. nt (none / 0) (#12)
    by lilybart on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 01:34:08 PM EST
    Because Alito's an arch-conservative... (5.00 / 1) (#63)
    by sallywally on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:56:43 PM EST
    but how long ago would Sessions and his ilk have seen Alito as essentially "non-white"? Wasn't there an ethinic slur attached to Italian-Americans?

    Maybe when Sessions was a kid? Especially in Alabama? Or elsewhere in the South, from GA to Texas?

    Parent

    Indeed, I find no evidence (none / 0) (#66)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 04:02:36 PM EST
    that Alito is "white" to Sessions.

    Parent
    Your evidence (5.00 / 4) (#67)
    by Steve M on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 04:09:50 PM EST
    is that none of the Republicans seem to have any trouble arguing that Frank Ricci got screwed because he's white.

    Parent
    Well, white enough, anyway. (none / 0) (#70)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 04:15:29 PM EST
    lol (none / 0) (#73)
    by squeaky on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 04:28:40 PM EST
    Good one. Of course what has been going on here is the obvious blurring between class and "ethnicity", quite silly.

    Parent
    Actually, I think you're pretty close. (none / 0) (#84)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Wed Jul 15, 2009 at 01:00:00 PM EST
    I think the truth of the matter is that BTD's headline should have read
    Sessions Treats Nominees He Supports Politically Differently Than Those He Doesn't
    Of course this really describes each and every one of the senators...

    Parent
    And dyslexic. Who knew the (none / 0) (#74)
    by oculus on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 04:37:33 PM EST
    Kennedy majority was so protective of the differently abled.

    Parent
    Why does Judge Sotomayor (none / 0) (#4)
    by oculus on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 01:09:21 PM EST
    say "precedence" as opposed to "precedents"?

    precedentS (none / 0) (#5)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 01:09:58 PM EST
    Either my hrg. (lousy) or her (none / 0) (#7)
    by oculus on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 01:14:14 PM EST
    enunciation.

    Parent
    She has mispronounced several words (none / 0) (#19)
    by Inspector Gadget on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 02:06:55 PM EST
    Nerves would be my guess.

    Parent
    KKK (none / 0) (#8)
    by rea on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 01:25:46 PM EST
    well it's not true that Sessions is sympathetic to the KKK--he doesn't approve of their dope-smoking.

    Heh (none / 0) (#9)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 01:29:02 PM EST
    Just like white is the absence of color (none / 0) (#10)
    by lilybart on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 01:32:09 PM EST
    white people are the absence of bias.

    White people are all color and race blind, like Colbert and O"Reilly.

    Dem's should pay Sessions! (none / 0) (#56)
    by mmc9431 on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 03:28:27 PM EST
    It's politician's like Session that will enable the Democrat's to maintain power in spite of themselves.

    Well to be fair (none / 0) (#78)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Tue Jul 14, 2009 at 05:38:19 PM EST
    I interpret it to mean that Sessions applies a stricter standard to DEMOCRATS than to Republicans.  All politicians are hypocrites.  This is nothing special about Sessions.

    And Alito is is a member of a racial minority too, born to Italian immigrants, very much subject to potential racial discrimination.  Put Sotomayor and Alito together and their skin tones are similar.  This isn't about dark skin or light skin, this is about typical hypocrisy.