The damage the Supreme Court inflicted on the country with its wrong-headed ruling in Citizens United should be evident enough even to its most ardent proponents, except for the columnist George Will, of course. The justices, with the likes of Will pulling at the floodgates, enabled multi-billionaires to pour millions of dollars into a presidential campaign that demonstrates how unceremoniously and crudely Citizens usurps the constitutional intent that the vote of any one individual is no more equal than the next.
Now come the warning signs that the court is going to undo programs that seek to increase the number of minority students in institutions of higher education. The court has accepted for review a case involving The University of Texas at Austin that five justices will use almost undoubtedly to roll back so-called affirmative action programs.
HispanicLatinos are living through a nationally decisive moment. The pressure is building on HispanicLatino leaders – elected, appointed, self-proclaimed and otherwise – to step up to a point in history as important as any since the mid-1960’s. In but a few months, the Supreme Court could waylay the progress HispanicLatinos have made over five decades to achieve social, economic a political parity with mainstream society – and in the process the Court could jeopardize America’s very future.
Years ago, when I was an editor at The Austin American-Statesman, I had to decide whether to run George Will, the conservative columnist at The Washington Post, on a regular basis to balance the pages with perspectives from the left and the right.
I had admired Will’s writing but more and more I had to force myself to read him – still do. My struggle began many years before with a piece that suggested to me that he fundamentally misunderstood where the country was headed. Will had written at the height of the Reagan Revolution – I’m paraphrasing – that the country had entered a conservative era that would last for generations.