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Stand with Sotomayor!

June 25, 2009

Sotomayor_Poster

Ever since Obama nominated Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court, the right wing has attacked her with racist and sexist remarks, part of a coordinated strategy to tarnish her credibility. Sotomayor is a Puerto Riqueña from the Bronx, and if confirmed, would be the Court’s first Latina justice, and its third female justice.
I created a poster to celebrate pride in this historic nomination in collaboration with Presente.org, a national online organizing effort that strengthens the political voice of Latino communities.
Click here to download poster
The attacks against Sotomayor from the conservatives have been vicious. On his show, Limbaugh said that nominating Sotomayor was like nominating David Duke, former Grand Wizard of the KKK. He also said, “Here you have a racist — you might want to soften that, and you might want to say a reverse racist.”
Spread this poster far and wide, download it, and invite your friends and family to do the same. Hearings on Judge Sotomayor’s confirmation are scheduled for July 13. That means we only have a month to get this poster distributed and reproduced everywhere—on web sites, in street windows, and on office walls.

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9 comments on “Stand with Sotomayor!”

What?!? Shame, shame. I realize not everyone in this collective is an anarchist, and previous posts have sometimes flirted with positions more akin to liberal Democrats, but this post takes the cake.
Granted, nominating Sotomayor may not be like nominating David Duke, and conservatives are out of their minds to make the comparison (though I wouldn’t call their attacks “vicious” — more like “desperate” and “pathetic”). But nominating Sotomayor IS like nominating just another corporate stooge who will take her place alongside the other corporate stooges on the imperial bench (hell, she seems like she might even be to the right of Obama). Just because
Sotomayor’s a Latina doesn’t make her any less of a capitalist, and, if she’s confirmed, she’ll be just another member of the bureaucratic elite working to ensure that the country stays open for business as usual. She’s hardly worth celebrating or defending, regardless of her race, or how much conservatives feign outrage (which is most likely just a pose in an attempt to save face with their electoral base).

There are way too many nuances in this world to be holding up some template of ideological definitions.
Many folks in the group hold anarchist ideals, yet we do not wear a circle A on our site, sleeve, or philosophy, that would be way too limiting.

I am happy to support Sotomayor and I encourage you to read up on her. I consider myself a radical, and that means to me that I don’t isolate myself with my ideas, I feel its important to stand alongside of people who are oppressed, misrepresented, and treated as second class. Read up on Sotomayor’s history and you will understand more about her. As radical people, we are sometimes better at exercising our critical eyes instead of our hopeful hearts. Instead of thinking in the old limits, do something about what you CAN do. Why do we have to put up with a Supreme Court of mostly old white men?

…nor do we all agree with each other. i deplore the ridiculous level of overt racism and sexism that’s been leveled against Sotomayor- the right’s arguments have seemingly been “she’s a woman of color- therefore we must oppose her.”
that said, i don’t think, as a card-carrying anarchist, i could really see myself as “standing” with someone so embedded within our fundamentally flawed criminal justice system.

I feel its important to stand alongside of people who are oppressed, misrepresented, and treated as second class.
Favianna — That’s certainly admirable, but Sotomayor isn’t one of them, nor could she ever hope to represent them. She made her choice and traded up for the robes of the oppressor a long time ago.
Identity politics is a dead end because changing the gender or ethnicity of a politician or judge doesn’t change the fact that they’re still a politician or judge. Politicians and judges serve the demands of power, not oppressed persons.
The history of representative politics has shown that women are just as capable as men of being ruthless capitalists (e.g., Thatcher and Reagan), and non-whites are just as capable as whites of being imperialist warmongers (e.g., Obama and Bush). Instead of celebrating the ethnicity or gender of our oppressors, we should spend more time figuring out how to render their positions of domination obsolete.
“There are way too many nuances in this world to be holding up some template of ideological definitions.”
kc — Yes, but I’m sure Just Seeds draws the line somewhere. For example, I very much doubt the collective would approve of celebrating a pro-capitalist or pro-empire poster here. I would have also guessed that the same would be true about a poster celebrating the “historical nomination” of a potential Supreme Court justice, whose purpose it is to serve the interests of both capital and empire (and especially a nominee who, even the mainstream media recognizes, quite often has favored corporations over the little guy).

I don’t see Sotomayor as an oppressor nor do I see Obama as an oppressor. Many activists and organizers I admire were behind Obama and are behind Sotomayor, and that does not mean we are sell outs or we are somehow less enlightened. In fact to say that we do not know what we are talking about is very condescending and precisely the kind of rhetoric that alienates us as radical people. We simply don’t agree on what social change looks like. Also, you don’t have to like nor agree with everything in the blog, its a forum for discussion and ideas.

(Just a comment as someone in the co-op) There’s been a handful of things on the site that I consider politically sketchy, this is one of those things. I’ve considered our general tolerance and respect for each other’s different politics to be one of our strengths, at least in our ability to continually function as a group.
I think if this was for sale on the site I might have a problem with it, but on the blog it didn’t bother me. Maybe that’s a fucked up view to have? I’m not sure. Between the blog and actual stuff for sale, there’s been thousands of images on this site. These express a range of views. Does this cross a boundary that is too much, Jon? Radicals’ engagement with electoral politics is an old issue that I doubt will be hashed out over the Justseeds blog, but at least this is political work. Some of the stuff that borders conceptual/art-world/art-market stuff offends me more.
We are a co-op and don’t have an official line to cross or not to cross (as of yet). I identify with anarchism (though I don’t carry a card) but I also vote, in large part because I am pro-choice and these kinds of day to day issues are, unfortunately, decided by electoral politics.
As usual, I feel like my thoughts on this are incredibly scattered.

I don’t see what would be wrong about having this for sale. I mean, its a poster like others, expressing a common sentiment that folks feel around the country, especially Latinos. Some of the most radical Latino bloggers have come out in support of Sonia. I encourage you to read up on their opinions. Its a bit condescending to suggest that we are somehow backwards or not radical enough because we want to see Sonia in the Supreme Court. This after all is the court that is about to hear some important cases, ranging from juvenile life sentences to immigration cases. I even saw a group of incarcerated activist push for her nomination because she will be the one to hear an important case of about lifetime sentences. I don’t identify as an anarchist because frankly I have perceived it as too white and disconnected from what I experience as a Chicana. Folks should take a hard look at whose around them and make their own assessments about where Black and Brown folks in America stand, not cool to suggest that we can’t be radical when we want politicians and government heads to reflect who we are. Just ran into this great article about the Puerto Rican grassroots movement that helped make Sonia a judge. She is a product of a radical Puerto Rican community. http://ofamerica.wordpress.com/2009/06/18/justicia-sotomayor-and-the-long-march-of-puerto-rican-history/