Monday, June 29, 2009

Supreme Court Rules for the White Firefighters


We analyzed The New York Times' coverage of this story a couple months ago, well the verdict is in from the SCOTUS and it's about as white privileged as one might have feared.

[Justice Kennedy] concluded that city officials had no "strong basis" for believing the test was flawed and unfair, and therefore, they had no legal basis for setting aside the results.

No strong basis like the city being something like 70% Black and yet not a single Black person passed the test. Nope, the huge disparity isn't good enough.

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, speaking for the liberal dissenters, said it was understandable the white firefighters would "attract the court's empathy. But they had no vested right to a promotion, and no person has received a promotion in preference to them."

Ginsburg said the court's conservative majority ignored the history of discrimination against blacks and Latinos in the New Haven Fire Department.

LOL, the "liberal dissenters," thanks for showing us just where YOUR loyalties lie LA Times! Right, they're "liberal dissenters" not just dissenters, and they're dissenting because they're liberal, because liberals really enjoy participating in "reverse discrimination", right LA Times?


That's not to let the city off the hook though. They've largely framed this as "we're afraid of lawsuits!" Why? Why couldn't they frame it as "this test clearly shows a racial bias and we're not ok with that"? Because the SCOTUS decision clearly hinges on the way they presented their case. And in the meantime they tried not to support racism in hiring but did just that by reinforcing stereotypes of people of color as irrational, "reverse racist" and sue happy.

Just seems like a lot of failing all around.

Except for Justice Ginsburg, because she's awesome.

And on that note, the people using this as some sort of "omg a ruling Sotomayor was a part of got over turned she must suck!" hey guess what, the guy she'll be replacing voted with Ginsburg and dissented. Being on the losing side of a 5-4 decision is hardly some catastrophic black mark.