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August 20, 2009



RE: ""Dixie" is a song that celebrates a slave-owning culture . . . "

Wait, I'm confused. Does this mean that we cannot sing or enjoy songs from any culture that once owned slaves? Boy -- that sure leaves out a whole lot of cultures and a whole lot of music!

Maybe we can listen only to the music that *disses* certain cultures that once owned slaves, though -- yeh, that's it.

[roll eyes]

John Guest

At president Kennedy's inaugural parade, our unit played Dixie as we passed the reviewing stand and Lyndon Johnson took his hat off in salute. I do not recall a president that did more for the civil rights of black Americans.
The second poster is correct that Dixie is not a song about slavery nor is the Bole Weavel Song about slavery just because they refer to cotton and long ago slaves picked cotton. Rehnquist, Wilkey and Clerker are each right in their assessments. This nation's people need to seriously get over it and simply enjoy each other without fear of offense.


"Dixie" is a song that celebrates a slave-owning culture that is at odds with the Constitutional values of equal protection that Chief Justice Rehnquist was obligated to uphold, and it is offensive that he would include that song at a judicial conference among those similarly obligated to uphold the Constitution (and that at least one other judicial colleague would applaud his inclusion of such a song). His response to the issue of minority law clerks, that "the pool of applicants whom we consider is not a large one, and there are not many minorities in it," merely perpetuates the root problem, this "myth of meritocracy" that only those who have the highest GPAs from one of the "top" law schools are somehow the "most qualified" to serve as a Supreme Court clerk. The selection of these criteria itself reflects a subjective judgment about what constitutes "merit" and it is disappointing to see that lack of awareness among those obligated to protect the individual rights of ALL Americans.


Is this supposed to be an indictment of Rehnquist? In my mind, this portrays the former Chief Justice as a level-headed jurist: (1) "Dixie" is not a song about slavery and (2) the last thing the highest Court in the land needs is affirmative action.

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