I can see how some sheltered persons could be intimidated by a Supreme Court justice nominee who was quoted saying, as Sonia Sotomayor told a crowd at Berzerkley seven years ago in re judicial selection, "I would hope that a wise Latina woman, with the richness of her experience, would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn't lived that life." ("Racist statement," says Rush Limbaugh here.)
I wish I could have asked my late grandfather, a Cuban citizen who graduated first in his class at a Boston night law school that Harvard tried to shut down, what he thought of this. As befit a corporate counsel, he was skeptical of politicizing the judiciary: "I don't agree with the idea that we need one Catholic, one Jew, one Anglo-Saxon on the Supreme Court." Good justices are rare; they need to make law for everyone; no ghetto. (Sotomayor would make the court two-thirds Catholic; nobody seems much worried about that.)
On the other hand, as befit the son of a revolutionary, Grandpa was also an ardent Latin American nationalist. And in our family we knew lots of wise Latinas in his and the next generation: My Cuba-born mother, my Mexican grandmother, my Puerto Rican godmother, and their pan-American amigas y companeras who filled our home en tiempos festivos gave me harto excellent advice, on education, money, women, family, and what constitutes true success. In those cases where I didn't follow it, I came to wish I had.