Sunday, May 10, 2009

US Supreme Court

THE five men who make up the conservative majority of the Supreme Court lose their heads over social issues. They become emotional, irrational, petty. You might even call them the weaker sex.

They could use a few good women to balance them out. But to insist that President Obama nominate a woman, period, is to miss the point. The court's lack of gender diversity relates to a bigger problem: The court lacks a sufficient number of judges who believe the Constitution extends to the ladies.

No question, I'd love to see more women on the court. Their presence is inevitable, since women constitute a critical mass in politics and law.

Still, it's offensive to treat gender as a requirement for Obama's next nominee rather than a plus factor. It's insulting to women, who are hardly interchangeable, and it's unfair to men, plenty of whom are quite capable of "getting it." Far better for Obama to target the court's weakness on equal rights and identify the most persuasive moderate around to help reshape the court's opinions.

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