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The Shame of Clarence Thomas

Bearing the Pain of Affirmative Action

 
    Everybody knows that the boat is leaking
    Everybody knows that the captain lied ...
    Everybody knows the deal is rotten
    Old Black Joe's still pickin' cotton
    For your ribbons and bows

            - Leonard Cohen
 

In honor of our Supreme Court I’ve decided to start this piece with a prayer.

Great Spirit of our imagination, have mercy on us stupid, hypocritical bipeds, especially those exceptional examples in black robes who decide whether an armed police officer can strip-search us in public or whether a one-hundred dollar bill has a conscience. Do all you can, Mighty Great One, to allow at least a little light and compassion into the hidden, dark recesses of their august institution.

Amen.

Now we can get on with this humble, scribbled note from underground.

Considering his appointment history in conjunction with his opinions and voting record concerning affirmative action, if Clarence Thomas had any sense of human decency ... No wait a minute. ... Given the facts of his career, if Clarence Thomas had any honor, a backbone or a pair of independent-minded balls, he'd stop whining about affirmative action and resign.

 Barbara and George Bush; Clarence and Virginia Thomas and Justice Byron WhiteThe scene of the crime: Barbara and George Bush; Clarence and Virginia Thomas and Justice Byron White
 

The Supreme Court’s recent banning of affirmative action in a case from Michigan should remind everyone how really offensive the Thomas appointment was and how it smells worse as time goes by. Thomas notoriously sits among his eight colleagues and does not ask questions, which suggests he lacks the intellectual confidence to swim with the big fish on the court. On top of that, he’s a virtual intellectual drone of Antonin Scalia. According to a recent study on Supreme Court justices and political bias, Thomas is the most conservative justice on the court -- even more so than his master Scalia. In an insightful article called "The Last Confederate Is Clarence Thomas", attorney Charles Pierce describes Thomas' legal philosophy as a bizarre retrograde advocacy of States Rights over the US Constitution reminiscent of pre-Civil War times. Thomas is, he writes, a “staggering political and historical contradiction. He is the last, and the truest, descendant of John C. Calhoun.”

(I realize the use of the word “master” for Justice Scalia may bother some. For example, I can hear Sean Hannity fulminating how it's “racist” to use plantation terminology. The fact is, unlike Hannity and friends, I don't speak in dog whistle language and prefer a French horn.)



story | by Dr. Radut