Victory, of sorts
April 5, 2012
If you think it’s nonsensical, embarrassing, and self-defeating to pigeonhole people by race and ethnicity as a method of achieving equal treatment before the law and across society, you’re onto something that has thus far eluded the courts and most legislative bodies.
We refer to the recent federal court order to reconfigure two Milwaukee Assembly districts so as to concentrate Latino voting strength. The court’s finding that 97 Assembly districts were properly drawn is a victory for the Republican Legislature. The reasoning behind ordering a do-over on two districts is a nagging reminder of bad habits not yet outgrown.
In an opinion piece for the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel last week, journalist Aaron Rodriguez raised a series of interesting points that—not necessarily by design—point the way toward common sense for those willing to see it.
We need to get rid of the self-refuting notion that members of any given ethnic group are denied full participation as citizens unless higher authority ensures they are treated as if they all think alike and have identical interests.
All citizens of whatever ethnicity have a common set of compelling interests that are advanced by honest political leadership, not by pandering to qualities that are lawfully excluded from consideration in daily commerce.