Tuesday, June 14, 2005

Derrick Z. Jackson on the GOP's poverty pimping

Another well-argued column by the Boston Globe's Derrick Z. Jackson. Some highlights:

Today's pimps are conservative politicians who run off at the mouth about poverty-stricken nominees of color. Janice Rogers Brown, the conservative and African-American California Supreme Court judge, was finally confirmed this week to the federal appeals court in the District of Columbia. Her confirmation came after a host of Republican senators made her childhood part of her qualifications for the job.

In speeches from the floor, interviews, and press conferences, Senate majority leader Bill Frist, Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Arlen Specter, and fellow Republicans Elizabeth Dole, Jeff Sessions, Mitch McConnell, George Allen, John Cornyn, Jon Kyl, Rick Santorum, and Kay Bailey Hutchison all talked about how Brown was the daughter of a sharecropper.


All this comes from the party that has slashed the budget for literacy, housing, youth programs, and community development grants for the millions of other would-be Janice Rogers Browns. While praising Brown for pulling herself up by her bootstraps, the White House and the Republican majority in Congress won't raise the minimum wage and has even taken to trashing Head Start. Janice Rogers Brown, born in 1949, should be thankful that she is old enough to have had a boot with a strap. Most of today's black girls are expected to excel in public schools funded on shoestrings.


The support of Owen began:

''Priscilla Owen graduated at the top of her law school class and then earned the number one score on the Texas bar examination . . ."

The support of Brown began:

''Janice Rogers Brown, the daughter of an Alabama sharecropper, attended segregated schools and came of age under the shadow of Jim Crow culture . . ."

The shadowy culture of the Republicans is out in the open again. For Owen, the first words were about merit. For Brown, the first words were about race and poverty. That is Jim Crow in the 21st century.


Post a Comment

<< Home