The NEWS with Tim O'Callaghan

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Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Sotomayor proof of evolving melting pot

One Man’s View:

By Tim O'Callaghan (contact)
Tuesday, July 14, 2009 6:29 p.m.

The hot days of summer are finally upon us in the relentless Mojave Desert. Even for a native desert rat like myself the 110 degree temperatures can be tough. It seems just a bit hotter since my return from the Pacific Northwest where temperatures are either pleasantly warm or down right cold.

Things are apparently heating up in Washington DC as well with the opening of the Senate confirmation hearing for U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Sonia Sotomayor and her honor in the hot seat.

It never fails to amaze me how the parties line up for or against the president’s nominee, to the point where their political colors are unmistakable no matter how qualified a nominee may be.

Seriously, don’t you think the small number of Americans that actually follow the confirmation hearings don’t see through the veil of political partisanship? Or are they also stuck on their own political agendas?

The most honest statement made during the opening day of the hearing was from Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, saying to Sotomayor, “Unless you have a complete meltdown, you are going to be confirmed.”

Then Graham followed up with a jab at her “Wise Latina” comment she had used in several speeches. She would say, “I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experiences would, more often than not, reach a better conclusion.” And in one speech she added, “than a white male who hasn’t lived that life.”

Not the wisest choice of words, however, it does ring with truth, and I hardly find it to be racist or sexist. I do find it ironic because, until my generation, white males pretty much controlled this country in every sense of the word. And by the way, if you haven’t noticed, the country is still dominated by white men.

However, things are changing in America, the “Melting Pot” of the world. If America is to continue the path set forth in the Declaration of Independence, we must accept it wouldn’t always be “all men are created equal” but it would evolve to be all people are created equal.

Yes, America is evolving in many ways as people pursue their happiness, struggle to keep their unalienable rights and for many to simply grasp those rights.

From the time I type this column to when you read it and to the end of the Senate Confirmation Hearing for Sonia Sotomayor, plenty can happen. However, I’m betting with Sen. Lindsey Graham to say Judge Sotomayor will be confirmed, because a meltdown is not likely to happen with one as strong, confident and qualified as she is.

Judge Sotomayor and I may not share all the same philosophies or the same life experiences, but I’m confident she will be a needed balance in the pursuit of blind justice for all.

Tim O’Callaghan, co-publisher of the News, can be reached at 990-2656 or tim.oc@vegas.com. He writes a regular blog at tocomv.blogspot.com.

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