Donald V. Watkins
Justice Amy Coney Barrett Will Disappoint Conservatives
By: Donald V. Watkins
Copyrighted and Published on November 18, 2020
On October 26, 2020, Amy Coney Barrett was sworn in as the newest Justice on the U.S. Supreme Court. She is the third Justice President Donald Trump has placed on the High Court and his first female appointee.
Conservatives are ecstatic about Justice Barrett. They see her as a political hack who will use her seat on the High Court to overturn Roe v. Wade and dismantle Obamacare. They expect Justice Barrett to betray the sacrifices and advances made by women in America just like Justice Clarence Thomas betrayed African-Americans. They also believe that Justice Barrett’s conscience will allow her to snatch away the security of health insurance for 20 million Americans covered under Obamacare while she and her family sleep well each night knowing they enjoy the best health insurance policy money can buy.
I like Justice Barrett. She is incredibly gifted, highly intelligent, down-to-earth, classy, hardworking, and inspirational. Throughout her entire life, Justice Barrett has had to fight for all of the benefits that are automatically conferred upon her white male counterparts in school, college, academia, and the legal profession solely because of our society’s obsession with white male privilege. At every turn, Justice Barrett used her turbo-charged brainpower to rise to the number one spot on the playing field of life. She has outworked and outthought all of her male competitors in every venue. Unlike Thomas, Barrett is not a pollical “fluffer” for Republican males in Washington.
I take pride in seeing Justice Barrett dominate her profession and doing it with ease. She should have been Trump’s first Supreme Court pick, not his third one. When compared to Justices Brett Kavanaugh and Neil Gorsuch, Justice Barrett is the class valedictorian. She can outthink them all day long. They were selected first solely because both men are white males.
The qualification that won me over is Justice Barrett’s love for children – of all colors. In her world, love sees no color. Two of Barrett’s seven children are Haitian-born orphans whom she and her husband adopted. That’s a special kind of motherly love – the kind that I admire and respect.
Most conservatives say they are “prolife”, but what they really mean is they are “pro-forced birth”. Once the baby is born, these conservatives could care less about what happens to the newborn. This is why they do not fight to reduce the high rate of infant mortality in states like Alabama and Mississippi. They work to cut benefits for poor women, infants and children. What is worse, very few of these conservatives would adopt a black child sitting in a state-run children’s ward in Alabama much less an orphanage in Haiti .
Amy Coney Barrett is obviously “prolife” and not just “pro-forced birth”. She made a conscious decision to raise someone else’s two children as her own and add two children of color to her family. She is leading the “prolife movement” by showing America what it truly should be. What woman would abort a child of any color if they knew that a loving mother like Amy Barrett was waiting to adopt him/her regardless of the child’s color or national origin?
The adoption of two Haitian-born children will help Justice Barrett to see America in a different light. She will now experience what the parents of all black children in America experience – insidious and overt forms of white racism, from strangers and friends. It will impact all seven of her children, her husband and Barrett herself, especially as the two Haitian children grow older. Barrett’s seat on the High Court will not shield her children from being called “niggers”, “nigger lovers”, “coons”, and much worse by classmates in their schools.
Membership on the High Court will not shield the Barrett family from the daily grind of dealing with the “polite” white racism that breeds in Washington’s elite power circles. I believe it will help Barrett to understand the role Justice Thurgood Marshall played on the bench in guaranteeing equal equality for all.
Barrett may like Justice Thomas, but she will not be led by him. Thomas has been rated by prestigious legal journals as one of the four worst Justices in the history of the High Court. He is ranked alongside Chief Justice Roger B. Taney who authored the 7-2 Dred Scott decision ruling that blacks – freed or slaves – had no rights that the white man is bound to respect.
Furthermore, Thomas was an “affirmative action” appointment to the bench. At times, Thomas’s views on laws that prohibit discrimination against women and minorities are so extreme and hostile to these groups that even the Supreme Court’s conservatives have had to abandon him in the voting.
I expect Barrett’s protective instincts as a mother to find their way into her rulings on cases that seek to eliminate discrimination against women and racial minorities. If woman are going to be forced to give birth in situations of unwanted pregnancies, Barrett will make sure the law treats them fairly and with the respect and dignity they deserve.
Barrett will try to lead America forward, not backwards. Her legacy will be one of inclusion, not exclusion. Her decisions will inspire confidence in the Court, not undermine it. Barrett’s biracial family will eventually emerge as the conscience of the High Court.
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