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kaffiria Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 10:02 AM
Original message
Women on the supreme court.
My view is that there must be more women on the supreme court. I know that it might be more beneficial to women as a class to have male justices that interpret the constitution in a way that preserves women's rights over a female justice that does not, but I do not think things are likely to happen that way.

Right now, people that are justices still come from a generation raised with stringent gender norms and I do feel this subconsciously affects how they see things. Morever, I feel that since we do not have an equal rights amendment, women are systematically treated as a different category of people by the law in a number of instances. The roles women are allowed to do in the military are different. Women are seen differently than men in criminal cases.

As long as women are a separate legal category under the law, we must have physical representation. If we are so different that the law often treats us differently, then our category of people cannot be represented by males.

In practice, I know that women do see women's issues differently. The reason I think Bush has picked 2 male justices is because it would be close to impossible for him to find a philosophically qualified (not Miers) woman age 50+ that would vote to overturn roe vs. wade etc. There are plenty such men though. A woman of that age group would have broken all sorts of norms and expectations to dedicate herself to a judicial career at that level. They do not turn around and vote conservatively. Regan and the repubs expected Sandra Day to vote conservatively on such issues, but when the time came, she would not do that because such people do not vote against their own rights.

I think it is practically impossible for a panel of only one woman (or less if something happens to Ginsburg) to vote the same way that a panel with more women.
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William769 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 10:07 AM
Response to Original message
1. Becareful what you wish for.
Clarence Thomas.

BTW, Welcome to DU. :hi:
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kaffiria Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 10:09 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. He's no woman
A black man is not a woman. And blacks are not nearly as differentiated by the law as men and women are.
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William769 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 10:11 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. Ok, if you say so.
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noamnety Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 10:15 AM
Response to Original message
4. the people bush nominates
aren't going to be doing anything for women's rights. They will do enough real harm to women to more than offset any effect they might have as a token female in that position.

Court of Appeals, 9th Circuit
Carolyn Kuhl (failed nominee), persuaded the Attorney General to reverse an 11-year Internal Revenue Service policy and reinstate the tax-exempt status of Bob Jones University and other racially discriminatory schools. Dismissed a breast cancer patients claim of invasion of privacy, after her doctor brought a drug company representative into the room during a breast exam. The unidentified man who came in with her doctor was "introduced as 'a person' who was looking at Dr. Polonsky's work." The doctor took Ms. Sanchez's fan from her hand during the exam and asked the man to fan her, after which they both laughed and refused when she asked to have it back.

Judge, Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
Priscilla Owen, Enron's political action committee gave Owen $8,600 for her successful Supreme Court bid in 1994. Two years later, Owen wrote the majority opinion that reversed a lower court order and reduced Enron's school taxes by $15 million. Since 1993, Enron contributed $134,058 more than any other corporation to Owen and other members of the Texas Supreme Court. A study by Texans for Public Justice found that the court ruled in Enron's favor in five out of six cases involving the company since 1993.

Judge, Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
Deborah Cook, has authored well over 300 dissents, more than any other Justice in the eight years she has been on the court, and a large majority are dissents against injured workers, consumers, and other plaintiffs and in favor of big business interests.

FDA's Advisory Committee for Reproductive Health Drugs
Dr. Susan Crockett, co-author of the chapter Using Hormone Contraceptives Is a Decision Involving Science, Scripture, and Conscience in "The Reproduction Revolution (Horizons in Bioethics Series): A Christian Appraisal of Sexuality, Reproductive Technologies, and the Family"

Presidential Advisory Commission on HIV/AIDS
Anita Smith, believes abstinence is the only true prevention." (Family Voice, July/August 2001). Smiths organization lobbied against including HIV/AIDS status in the Americans With Disabilities Act.
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kiahzero Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 10:16 AM
Response to Original message
5. Two words:
Margaret Thatcher.
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kaffiria Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 12:51 PM
Response to Reply #5
29. well
I dont think supreme court justices are all that comparable to democratic political leaders. Some female political leaders feel that they will be seen as soft or irrational by standing up for womens rights and they feel they must not be looked at that way in order to maintain a dominant respected position in politics. This is what happened with Benazir Bhutto, who is probably the most extreme case of an elected female leader turning against women. Since supreme court justices dont need to worry about political pressure to the same degree, they dont have a motivation to do this. While Benazir Bhutto willingly sacrificed women's welfare for her own power, I doubt she would have done this if she were on a supreme court (this does not exist in Pakistan- its theoretical).
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Warpy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 10:20 AM
Response to Original message
6. A funny thing happens to us when we turn 50
We realize that the whole gender rat race is pretty much over for us and we stop giving a shit what men think, or even if they think.

Even women who have been nice, predictable doormats all their lives start to become shockingly independent.

O'Connor was supposed to be the nice Catholic girl who would allow the nice men on the court to chip away at women's rights. That didn't work out too well.

You bet your ass they'll appoint men. They know they can't trust women over 50 to do what they're told.
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kaffiria Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 10:26 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. well
"aren't going to be doing anything for women's rights. They will do enough real harm to women to more than offset any effect they might have as a token female in that position."----


Well, the senate wont confirm such judges (like Miers) because they are obviously not intelectually up to the job. When the senate sent miers the basic questionairre of constitutional matters, she was flustered by it and sent back answers that were positively embarressing. No doubt Bush can try appoint some country bumpkin zealot or some evangelical that happens to have a law degree, but no one else will accept this. The dems will filibuster and the repubs will insist that he do better. Roberts may differ from me on our views, but I cant deny that roberts is informed enough and mentally agile enough for his position. There are women that are intellectually equal to Alito or Roberts (who are both qualified for the position), but none of them will vote against women's rights.

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kaffiria Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 10:27 AM
Response to Reply #6
9. yep
I agree. It might be possible in theory to have a bunch of women on the court that vote against women, but in practice- aint gonna happen.
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BoneDaddy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 10:26 AM
Response to Original message
8. Ok
Sigh, these threads that ignore a huge percentage of women who identify themselves as republicans, fundamentalists or corporatists are staggering.

"If women ruled the world there would be no wars"
Great example of the laughable.
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kaffiria Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 10:34 AM
Response to Reply #8
10. .
"Sigh, these threads that ignore a huge percentage of women who identify themselves as republicans, fundamentalists or corporatists are staggering."

Such women are never qualified to vote on the supreme court and even then, once you put them on there, even if they did vote against roe vs. wade, they would still vote in favor of women's welfare whenever the church didn't directly tell them not to by instinct.
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BoneDaddy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 10:40 AM
Response to Reply #10
11. I guess my point
is that that I would take anyone, male or female, who uphold RvW and that this kind of black and white thinking about gender gets tiring on DU.
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kaffiria Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 10:49 AM
Response to Reply #11
12. well
I think it's theoretically possible but unrealistic to expect that an all male panel would ever represent womens rights the way a mixed gender panel would. This is not black and white thinking. This is pragmatic thinking.
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BoneDaddy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 11:06 AM
Response to Reply #12
13. Wow
Edited on Thu Mar-22-07 11:27 AM by BoneDaddy
that is really funny for me to hear considering the ALL MALE PANEL that originally set the Roe v Wade standard.

Edit: 7-2 by the way.
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blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 11:14 AM
Response to Reply #12
15. Emotions and political issues aren't always pragmatic and logical.
An all male SCOTUS upheld Roe v. Wade and a court with women on it has upheld limits on the same.

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kaffiria Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 11:25 AM
Response to Reply #15
16. .
In the 1970s there couldnt have been anything but an all male panel since there werent enough good female lawyers. But it was the feminist movement, pushed by women, that influenced them to uphold womens rights. And you cannot compare an all male panel in the 1970s to an all male panel in a later era when there could be female justices.

Bush is going to try and put someone else in power that will not uphold roe vs wade. If this person is a man, he most certainly will vote it down. If it is a woman, there is a much better chance that she wont.
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blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 11:29 AM
Response to Reply #16
17. You have got to be kiddining. Bush has a litmus test.
Male or female, there is no way Bush will appoint ANY justice who he thinks for a moment will uphold Roe v. wade.

I'll see where this thread goes, but logic isn't a strong side of your argument.
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BoneDaddy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 11:31 AM
Response to Reply #17
19. Thank you
I appreciate your balanced view. Some of the men haters at DU make some of the most illogical calls.
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BoneDaddy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 11:30 AM
Response to Reply #16
18. Why is it all about gender with you
instead of looking at the person appointing. If Bush appoints they are more likely, regardless of gender, to be anti-choice. If a Democrats/liberal appoints it will more than likely be a person who is pro-choice, regardless of gender.

Stop recreating the gender war. Men= all bad. Women= all good. It is not only annoying it is irrational and childish.
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kaffiria Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 12:37 PM
Response to Reply #18
26. well
It is true that a democrat appointee will certainly be pro choice regardless of gender, a Bush appointee wont work that way. Didnt work with Sandra Day.

"Stop recreating the gender war. Men= all bad. Women= all good. It is not only annoying it is irrational and childish."

It is not annoying and childish. The male gender has kept women in virtual slave status in every civilization for thousands of years. I refuse to trust an all male Supreme court because some men have been on good behavior for all of 3 decades.
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BoneDaddy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 12:52 PM
Response to Reply #26
31. How do you get along with
the men in your life? I mean on some level this anger towards patriarchy must come across in your relationships, no? Don't you think it is a bit hypocritical to judge all men by this standard? Well I do. And if you think that you will be able to pass off sexist, radical feminist propaganda on my watch, you are mistaken.

What I find disturbing is that so much of this anti-male rhetoric is allowable on DU. I don't report posts because I believe in free speech, but I will not remain silent, especially when I see this kind of crap on DU. The right has their sacred cows ie: patriotism, authority, corporatism, religion but so does the left. You can make grand sweeping generalizations about men, but God forbid any on here do that to women, they would get crushed. You don't see the hypocrisy in that? I guess not. It is a sign of immaturity that you cannot divorce patriarchy from men and it is a shame.
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kaffiria Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 01:29 PM
Response to Reply #31
36. very well
I get along with the men in my life very well. I have healthy heterosexual relationships. (yeah yeah, I know how that sounds. Not implying that homosexual relationships are unhealthy).

I have a few friends that think as I do and we are all minority females that have much closer roots to patriarchial culture in terms of generational distance. My vietnamese friend has a granfather with 3 wives (at the same time). Another friend is from Uzbekestan and I am from India, which has made great strides but it still more gender biased than the west.

Let me put it to you this way. My grandmother has a third grade education. My mother has a graduate level education. This is a lot of improvement over one generation. Now my male cousin and his wife both have engineering degrees in India. I went to their house and as is culturally expected, the wife stands beside the table and serves the men and children dinner. She holds the spoons in her hand and just stands there waiting to be told to spoon out food or get drinks. The women then eat what is leftover and clean up afterwards. My cousin had lived in california for a few years and it just didnt occur to him that this was not the way someone should be treated.

Being that I do not respect my own partially backward culture, I told my cousin's wife- its uncomfortbale for me to sit there while she stands and serves like this. If I were raised in India, I would not sit there, I would probably go make myself useful in the kitchen, but since I am American and dont know to deal with an Indian kitchen (which has stone grinders and stuff), I end up sitting at the table. My father says nothing even though he has been in the US for 25 years and has a German wife. My cousin says nothing. Even though his wife invented the wireless surveillance camera, she never thought that she should have the self respect not to serve people like this. I told her she should and immediately, she wanted things to change. She does not want her daughter to serve at the table like she does as my mother raised me not to serve at the table like she once did.

When I try to make my family change, the women listen, the men fight. They dont vote against womens rights or anything. My father even performed an abortion once, but they dont have the kind of sensitivity to women's dignity than other women do.

I think that 99% of men would be the enemy to women unless society takes great pains to raise them otherwise. That is what I have seen.
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BoneDaddy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 01:44 PM
Response to Reply #36
42. I certainly understand
Edited on Thu Mar-22-07 01:45 PM by BoneDaddy
your situation, but even though you may not believe me, there are alot of men who support women, especially in the Western world. I work with a large indian/pakistani population and it is a struggle for me not to say what is on my mind yet still stay workable. It is maddening for me, so I can only imagine what you may be experiencing. It is so true that we gain perspective when we attempt to walk in one another's shoes.

I grew up in a relatively loving family where my mother probably weilded more power than my father in alot of things. Men and women were treated with respect. I have had wonderful teachers/mentors who have been both men and women and I currently work in an office where I am the lone male of eight women.

That said, I have experienced a tremendous backlash from the "progressive" community of radical ideological feminism. Granted I may understand it, but I do not agree with it. I will not be lumped into a category of abusers nor will the reason oriented side of me accept vast generalizations. Patriarchy is extremely abusive to men too, you forget. Innocent boys are conditioned to deny the feminine in themselves and are not encouraged to access "soft" emotion. Instead patriarchy demands us to cut a part of ourselves out. In my experience boys and young men do more damage to one another than they do to women. The victims of violent crimes are overwhelmingly male. Patriarchy as an institution pollutes both genders. The only way we will defeat it is by working together.

Good luck and be well.
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kaffiria Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 02:07 PM
Response to Reply #42
43. well
I think very few men are unredeemable. I do think that some men are actually more capable of working for women's rights because women may internalize discrimination they have faced and think it is acceptable or even right while men see women being discriminated against and think that they would not want to be in that position. In a sense, some women cant see what they are missing while men can see "sucks to be you".

Its not that I hate men. I just dont trust them to look out for women when they are in power.
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BoneDaddy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 07:38 PM
Response to Reply #43
44. That is good to hear
Edited on Thu Mar-22-07 07:57 PM by BoneDaddy
and we are certainly stuck in a bad time with this administration that I do not think has women's rights in mind.... Good talking to you
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blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 11:35 AM
Response to Reply #16
20. "There weren't enough good female lawyers"??? How terribly sexist of you!
There were plenty of them but they yes, the culture held them back. Feminism made it acceptable to be a powerful woman.

Wonder if you'll edit that completely sexist argument out--it's still in my post here, yanno?

BTW, I am every bit a feminist and a woman.
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BoneDaddy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 11:37 AM
Response to Reply #20
21. male and pro-fem here
but I reject the radical anti male feminist view as it is as fundamentalist as the religious whackos out there.
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kaffiria Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 12:33 PM
Response to Reply #20
24. plenty?
The amount of experientially qualified female lawyers to be supreme court justices in 1970 was plenty?

How when a number of top law schools didnt even admit female students until after the civil rights movement?

You call me a sexist for not believing this?


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blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 12:37 PM
Response to Reply #24
25. Yes, indeed I do. I knew 2 emininently qualified women lawyers as a child, both in my family.
It was hard as hell to get into law school for a woman then, but the fact that many women accomplished it proves that they were exceptionally qualifed, IMHO.

Ever heard the saying a woman has to be twice as good to make it half as far? I think the law profession pre-1980s is an excellent example.

See past your agenda if you REALLY care about debate on DU--or "rational thinking" in general.
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kaffiria Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 12:42 PM
Response to Reply #25
27. Many?
Many as in 1 to 100? Probably more like 1 to 1000 even. You had good lawyers in your family and I have an 80 yr old great aunt with a PhD in engineering. This says nothing about who was most qualified to make judicial decisions at the highest level. Even if there was some miniscule percentage of female lawyers qualified to be supreme court justices, no pre civil rights senate would have confirmed them.
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blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 12:50 PM
Response to Reply #27
28. On your last point, I absolutely agree.
But you stated explicitly that there were no qualified women lawyers. Period.

And that's just utter crap. The culture held them down, and for that reason, they may have lacked broad experience--but that doesn't mean they lacked QUALITY experience.
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Solo_in_MD Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 11:45 AM
Response to Reply #12
22. To think that gender would matter that much in the real wold is wishful thinking
The hardest core RW people I know are women, not men. Law tends to attract liberals or at least liberal arts majors. Most of the lawyers I know have tended to get more liberal with age. That is what has kept SCOTUS from turning the country completely over to the right wing. It has nothing to do with gender.

To think that only people of group X and represent the viewpoints and look out for people of group X is very backwards thinking
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kaffiria Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 12:30 PM
Response to Reply #22
23. no way
backward? Not quite. Its the view with a historical precedent that is 10,000 years of human history.
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blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 12:51 PM
Response to Reply #23
30. 10,000 years?
Okay--now I KNOW this is a joke.

Bye now.
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kaffiria Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 01:14 PM
Response to Reply #30
33. ok
Lets make it 6000 years. Its not a joke. Its fact. Anthropologists try to dig up all sorts of obscure tribes where women were seen equal to men and there are almost none. Its not that all men are bad, its just that almost all large groups of men are dangerous to women.
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blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 01:24 PM
Response to Reply #33
35. If large groups of men holding dominion over women were that dangerous, you and I
wouldn't be having this discussion--we have more power over men than you think. Wombs and vaginas--they need both.

History proves a patriarchy, we still are in a patriarchy, but we have something men can't survive without.

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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 01:31 PM
Response to Reply #35
37. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
blondeatlast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 01:39 PM
Response to Reply #37
39. And with that, I must vehemently disagree. Broad brush much?
Your statement about men is sexist and bigoted.

I'm not sure I want to see you try to defend it, but like a train wreck, I can't look away.
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kaffiria Donating Member (77 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 01:42 PM
Response to Reply #39
41. So
Label it as you want but I believe it is true and you cant prove its false.
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Marie26 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 11:11 AM
Response to Original message
14. Agreed. nt
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Madspirit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 01:08 PM
Response to Original message
32. If Only!
Edited on Thu Mar-22-07 01:10 PM by Madspirit
I gave you a recommendation because it's interesting stuff to think about but it's just not something we can count on. It is true that when the chips were down, Sandra Day O'Conner always came through for us, much to the conservatives dismay and chagrin and so does Ginsberg. I also think the post about women over 50 has some validity.

All in all though, there are some pretty piggy women out there. You should go lurk at Ann Coulter's forum for a while before deciding that with those two X's, somewhere lurking, there is a "coolness" chromosome. Unfortunately, it's just not true.

...and keep in mind, though it does seem to mostly go along party lines, there are even anti-choice Democrats. Abortion is more than just a political issue. For some, it is a religious issue. We have anti-choice Democrats right here at DU.

Welcome to DU.


Lee *woman over 50 and pro-choice*
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LeftishBrit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 01:39 PM
Response to Reply #32
40. Yes, one can't count on these things
O'Connor certainly turned out much better than e.g. Scalia; but at least two male judges appointed by Republicans - Stevens and Souter - are more liberal than she is. I don't think gender is a very reliable criterion.
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Donald Ian Rankin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 01:17 PM
Response to Original message
34. I was born in Britain in 1983. Giving women high office is no panacea.

Less frivolously, I think that appointing Supreme Court Justices for their gender as opposed to their merits is a very bad idea indeed, and one I would oppose tooth and nail.
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LeftishBrit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Mar-22-07 01:36 PM
Response to Reply #34
38. I voted for the first time in Britain in 1983!
And it wasn't for the party with the woman leader.

On the Supreme Court topic, I just think that ANY Bush appointee- male or female - would be bad news. Let's just hope that there are no more court vacancies until 2009 at the earliest.
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