Democratic Desire For Diversity Stops At The Party’s Edge

The Senate Judiciary Committee has just approved the nomination of Miguel Estrada to the Circuit Court of Appeals for the District Court of Appeals on a party line vote of 10-9.

When a minority nominee is a conservative, the Democrats’ ostensible desire for “diversity” goes out the window. When they look at a conservative Hispanic all they see is a conservative. That demonstrates that what they mean by “diversity” is even less than skin-color diversity. It is necessary for the diversity-providing minority candidate/applicant to possess an approved political as well as pigmentary coloration.

UPDATE – The Estrada nomination “divides Hispanic groups,” reports Knight-Ridder (Link via Howard Bashman).

The League of United Latin American Citizens, the Hispanic Business Roundtable and the Latino Coalition back Estrada.

He is opposed by the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, the Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund and the Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund (MALDEF).

“The most difficult situation for an organization like mine is when a president nominates a Latino who does not reflect, resonate or associate with the Latino community,” said Marisa Demeo, regional counsel for MALDEF.

Note to future ethnic nominees: be sure to hone your reflecting, resonating, associating skills before having your name put forward.

Assume for the sake of argument that Ms. Marisa Demeo is right. So what? Must every nominee whose ethnicity can be identified be regarded as a representative of his or her ethnic “community”? Even judges? But assume (just for a moment; I know this is hard) that even this is right, or at least how things are, and that nominees must be judged on the reflectingness and resonance of their ethnicity. Even assuming that, where do Mexican and Puerto Rican organizations derive their authority to pass judgment on a Guatemalan nominee?

For these ethnic advocacy groups, ethnicity, like “diversity” for the Democrats, extends no further than the edge of political conformity.

Say What? (2)

  1. AMac January 31, 2003 at 12:08 pm | | Reply

    OK. ‘Diversity’ is critically important, and it goes beyond epidermal pigmentation. Doesn’t this obligate its advocates to lionize those who are “credits to their race (or, less offensively, ‘group’)”?

    Miguel Estrada, Clarence Thomas, and Ward Connerly are therefore exemplary, in that that their accomplishments and opinions are distinctly different from most other public figures in their respective “groups”.

    In this context, it’s irrelevant if diversity advocates disagree with the views of Connerly or Thomas or Estrada. Logic compels them to pay special homage to these outliers.

    Doesn’t it?

  2. [...] would have been more joy among blacks at Clarence Thomas’s appointment and among Hispanics at the failed nomination of Miguel Estrada to the Court of Appeals for the District of [...]

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