Common sense scored a victory today when the SCOTUS ruled that Connecticut firefighter Frank Ricci and his mostly white colleagues were unfairly denied promotions because of their skin color. Ricci was among the 20 firefighters — 19 white and one Hispanic — who sued the city of New Haven, Conn., arguing that they were discriminated against when the city threw out the results of a promotion test after too few minority firefighters scored high. The 5-4 decision provides some measure of hope that we as a country have not entirely lost our ability to think rationally.
The decision also has significant political ramifications as it is the sixth decision that Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor has had overturned by the SCOTUS, out of seven cases reviewed. Now I am certainly not an expert on judicial qualifications and fully recognize that there are other factors which need to be considered in the nomination and confirmation process. However, in the real world were I to receive a resume indicating the candidate made incorrect decisions, as determined by those at the top of her chosen profession, 86% of the time, that candidate’s resume would likely be one of the first to find its way to the circular file. One would hope that somewhere during the confirmation process this particular statistic is given due consideration by the 19-member Senate Judiciary Committee. Common sense was victorious today. Let’s hope another victory can be achieved before we find ourselves with a Supreme Court justice with a track record worse that your local meteorologist (with apologies to meteorologists).