Sonia_Sotomayor_1395839cThis week, with the president’s appointment of Sonia Sotomayor, much of the buzz is about the motive for the choice.  Why are opponents making an issue of her race?  No one suggested President Bush chose the last Supreme Court appointee, Justice Roberts, for his race or gender.  It’s perfectly legitimate to question the nominee’s views and scrutinize her credentials, but why make race an issue when the candidate is clearly qualified to hold the office?  As a woman and a minority, it exhausts me that few in the media point out the sheer arrogance of the argument – the inherent assumption that if the candidate is a minority or even a woman, that somehow she must have been given some sort of special consideration.   Perhaps I am sensitive to it because I’ve experienced it first hand.  Perhaps you have, too. 

When someone has achieved the American dream through hard work, grit and determination – whether we agree with their views or not – can we, as Americans, drop the race card?  Or rather the reverse racism card.  Why is it assumed that minorities can’t be ‘color blind’?  No one ever asks that about those in the majority.  Will we ever stop making assumptions about people based on outward appearances?  What do you think?

Coachable moment:

As we make progress in the areas of race and gender relations, it is essential that conscious individuals lead by example.  Whatever your race or gender, consider a way in which you have held a grudge or made an assumption about someone different from you solely based on their race or gender.  In what way could you let go of an unfair assumption or give them the benefit of the doubt?  When you dust the chip off your shoulder, it’s surprising how much lighter your load feels.