RE MICHAEL Smerconish's recent shameful and troubling column about Judge Sotomayor:

It's troubling because either Smerconish did no research before writing and just took right-wing talking points, or did the research and still wrote it. Did he have anything to say about Judge Alito, who said, "When I get a case about discrimination, I have to think about people in my own family who suffered discrimination because of their ethnic background or because of religion or because of gender. And I do take that into account."

When Smerconish quotes Judge Sotomayor about hoping a wise Latina woman would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn't lived that life, does he give the context of that quote? No! She was discussing the importance of judicial diversity in determining race- and sex-discrimination cases. As for his other claim that because she said "the court of appeals is where policy is made" she has a mindset that welcomes and encourages activism.

Aren't appeals courts higher than the others, thus actually setting policy? Smerconish ends his column by saying someone needs to engage Sotomayor intellectually about her very personal views expressed in her speech. Did he ask for the same thing of Alito?

Jesus Gonzalez, Philadelphia