The nomination of Sotomayor brought up some bad memories. As a victim of affirmative action, I can feel the pain of those White and Hispanic firefighters in New Haven, CT who were treated so cruelly by the decisions of Judge Sotomayor in Ricci v. DeStefano.
For whatever reasons, I do not think liberals appreciate how painful it was for me to study to be a political science professor throughout my 20s, only to be told at the end of the process..."oops you're White." In my case, I spent about two years coming in 2nd for various full-time political science teaching jobs before I figured out that I was wasting my time and that academic elites didn't like me simply because I was the wrong sex and wrong color.
That 10 year investment of time is particularly painful to remember because I grew up poor and lived in poverty most of those years. Despite a lack of resources and family support, my academic work was good enough to win public recognition, citations, and publication. However, I was rejected for various jobs - not all jobs, of course - simply because of my ethnicity.
Accordingly, I feel a special sympathy for Frank Ricci and others who have studied hard and overcome various challenges only to become the victims of reverse discrimination. I know liberals like to pretend that the victims of affirmative action just get over it and go away.
In my experience, however, the pain is just as fresh now as it was then... It was cruel of the liberals to have me prepare for and perform exceptionally well in a series of interviews when - all along - the decision was going to be made by racial/gender and not merit reasons. This is a humiliation I really don't want to see anyone else endure...
Consequently, I think both Sotomayor and Obama underestimate the degree to which her nomination is a big mistake for the Obama administration - close to his hasty and flawed decision to close the Guantánamo Bay Detention Camp without a plan.
Part of the problem is that their liberal "the-ends-justify-the-means" ideology makes all the pain and suffering they cause for other people okay in their own minds.
In a larger sense, however, I think that Obama has made another hasty and unwise decision and that he will be surprised by the outrage and anger caused by his nomination of a prominent promoter of racial injustice. I think Obama’s nomination of Sotomayor may be particularly useful in helping swing voters - particularly Asian-American voters - see that Obama is not the centerist he pretended to be when he ran in the general election.