The longer my thoughts linger over the appointment of Samuel Alito to the Supreme Court the more aghast I become at what this tells about our president and his views on women:
Remember that the vacant seat belonged to the first woman to sit on the Supreme Court. Now that symbolic seat is offered to a man whose judicial past indicates that he would not only be willing to strike down women's rights for reproductive choice but also reduce the government's ability to keep sex discrimination in employment illegal:
You'll hear a lot about some of Alito's other decisions in the coming days, including his vote to limit Congress' power to ban even machine-gun possession, and his ruling that broadened police search powers to include the right to strip-search a drug dealer's wife and 10-year-old daughter—although they were not mentioned in the search warrant. He upheld a Christmas display against an Establishment Clause challenge. His prior rulings show that he would raise the barriers for victims of sex discrimination to seek redress in the courts. He would change the standard for analyzing race discrimination claims to such an extent that his colleagues on the court of appeals fretted that Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, which prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin, would be "eviscerated" under his view of the law. He sought to narrow the Family and Medical Leave Act such that states would be immune from suit—a position the Supreme Court later rejected. In an antitrust case involving the Scotch tape giant 3M, he took a position described by a colleague as likely to weaken a provision of the Sherman Antitrust Act to "the point of impotence."
And he has indicated that his view of women and children is at least partly as property of men:
In Doe v. Groody, Alito agued that police officers had not violated constitutional rights when they strip searched a mother and her ten-year-old daughter while carrying out a search warrant that authorized only the search of a man and his home. [Doe v. Groody, 2004]
This is outrageous. This is an insult against all American women, even the ones who are pro-life. Women have just been treated like dirt by the president of this country. While he kowtows to the radical cleric wing of his base (what wing? they are his base) he is making this country a worse place for all women, not only his own wife and daughters.
Read this Kos diary to see what Alito might mean for young women in this country. Or this diary. Then remember that similar diaries could be written about the women who might be denied employment or promotions on discriminatory grounds, yet have little access to judicial remedies.