By Landis Lain
President Joe Biden promised that if he was elected, he would appoint a Black woman to the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS). It is the highest court in the federal judiciary of the United States of America if given the opportunity. The announced retirement of Justice Steven Breyer from the Supreme Court has caused folks to lose their minds at the possibility. Aren’t people supposed to keep their promises?
The very United States Constitution Article One, Section Two, (ratified 1788) declared that any person who was not free (read enslaved kidnap victims, Black and Indigenous people) would be counted as three-fifths of a free individual for purposes of determining congressional representation, to increase the power of kidnappers in captive holding states. That is race politics at the highest levels of government.
Established in 1789, the SCOTUS consisted of all white men who sat on that court for centuries. They made heinous decisions to uphold the white supremacist regime that was America from its inception. The modern-day Encanto folks spout is that they don’t see color. That ridiculous snake charm lie is insulting to boot. How does one ignore the most obvious God-given trait of a person and pretend it does not exist? That is erasure. America established the one-drop rule (codified as law in some states), a social and legal principle that states if one has one Black ancestor then one is Black in this country. That rule was associated with invisible blackness because a lot of white men couldn’t keep their pants up and they wanted to keep the enslaved women they raped and impregnated plus their children as chattel captives and commodities. The Constitution that Federalists tout doesn’t even mention women as existing, but we don’t talk about that Bruno, right?
The GOP (“Grand Old Party”) led Senate recently rammed the last two justices through the process because they could. Mitch McConnell plays the race card with every word he speaks and every action he takes. Many argue about qualifications when every Supreme Court Justice in history has been appointed for distinct political purposes.
According to my country, I am qualified to serve as a SCOTUS justice. I am a licensed attorney. I have practiced law. I have more qualifications than some of the past Supreme Court Justices. One justice, Justice James F. Byrnes (1941-1942) did not graduate high school. He taught himself law and passed the bar at age 23. Systemically, Black people have been murdered, disenfranchised, and have carried the heavy burdens of racism in America for centuries. Like Luisa, we have superhuman strength, try never to fall behind in our duties, and try never to let our families down. There is a multitude of Black Women attorneys and jurists in this country trained in American jurisprudence, who are imminently qualified to become a justice. WE are all qualified.
Why, suddenly, are the GOP and so-called conservative pundits spouting pretension to colorblindness when it comes to the possible advancement of just one Black woman when America has practiced race politics since its inception? Explain it to me.