Super Mujer: Justice Sonia Sotomayor as a Role Model

When President Barack Obama nominated Justice Sonia Sotomayor a year ago, the debate surrounding her confirmation included a wide array of scrutiny.  Some of the items of discussion were more relevant and more substantive than others.

As the US Supreme Court’s first Latina, third female, and first Type 1 Diabetic to serve on the bench, the greatest amount of focus seemed to fall upon her non-legal, personal history.  Particularly, as this blog has noted, the confirmation hearings concentrated on whether that personal history and her self-identified “Wise Latina”-ness would enhance or detract from her ability to effectively and fairly “say what the law is.”

Nearly a year after her confirmation, the evaluation of the Wise Latina’s first session as a Justice has already begun.  But what if, a year later, we approached the discussion concerning her role on the Court from another direction?  Instead of a debate centered only on Justice Sotomayor’s specific job performance, the discussion might also include the value that comes from choosing a role model that can inspire the underrepresented within the legal community.

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