I wrote this back in 2014 when I really was upset that an African American female was not then-President Barack Obama’s choice for Supreme Court Justice. I have been thinking about this because here is our opportunity to make a history-changing decision to appoint the first African American woman to the Supreme Court. This vacant seat is ours to fight for and win. We have the first AA female running for VP, and we should not settle. Remember, it is not just that we need a female, but we need a legal scholar who equals and surpasses the late SCJ Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Growing up, two of my heroes were Barbara Jordan and Shirley Chisholm. I was in high school and college when they took their places in the Democratic Party and changed it forever. They both were on my wall. I often think that the pick would have to be an incarnation of these two great women. Each woman would so eloquently pass the scrutiny of this Congress with courage and strength.
It was Barbara Jordan who was a lawyer, legal scholar and an educator who rose through the ranks and, to my memory, gave one of the best keynote speeches ever heard at any political convention. I was in my first year of college and getting ready to vote in my first election. We had hoped she would be the first black female to be appointed to the Carter Administration as US Attorney General, but that did not happen. It was a dream, “deferred”. Nevertheless, she went on to greatness.
Only two African Americans, Justices Thurgood Marshall and Clarence Thomas, have served on the Supreme Court. There is only one woman of color, Justice Sonia Sotomayor. Other qualified African American women have made their way through the ranks by doing excellent work and making a difference. They are waiting for the chance to courageously step forward. It is time for one of these African American females to take a seat on the Supreme Court.
This is a significant moment in history. The next SCJ should be nominated by the next president. We must make sure that it is not the present occupant of the White House. We have the once in a lifetime opportunity to fulfill those dreams and hopes that Barbara Jordan referred to at the 1976 Democratic National Convention. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FIuB3b1NEwU
More importantly, these are the dreams and hopes of all those little girls empowered by two courageous women and who now are inspiring the next generation. If Biden is elected and follows through on his promise, his nominee would be the first black woman to serve as a justice.
For more information and a list of these qualified women go to Demand Justice: