Clarence Thomas lived up to his “Clarence ‘Uncle’ Thomas” nickname on Monday when he ruled in favor of racists twice.
The Supreme Court of the United States issued rulings in three cases yesterday, two of them having to do with discriminatory practices in the workplace and the courts. In the first case, Foster v. Chatman, the court ruled 7:1 to throw out the death sentence of Georgia’s Timothy Tyrone Foster. Foster, who was convicted of rape and murder, argued that he was only sentenced to death because prosecutors in his case kept African-Americans off of the jury.
Prosecutor’s notes from the case proved Foster’s claims to be true. Potential jurors were labeled by race, black jurors’ names were highlighted in green and three of them were identified in notes as “B#1,” ”B#2,” and “B#3.” Prosecutors also wrote “No Black Church” in the notes indicating that African-Americans who went to church would be dismissed from the jury pool. In addition to their notes, the state attorney also used lies to kick black people out of the jury pool. For instance, one juror was dismissed because prosecutors said his son was convicted of “basically the same thing that this defendant is charged with.” Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., who wrote the majority opinion, called that dismissal “nonsense” because the potential juror’s son was actually convicted of and given a suspended 12-month sentence for stealing hubcaps off of cars in a mall parking lot. Another juror was dismissed for other ridiculous reasons. This led Chief Justice Roberts to say:
Two peremptory strikes on the basis of race are two more than the Constitution allows.
Justice (I use that term loosely for him) Thomas, however, did not agree that Foster’s conviction had anything to do with race, despite the evidence he was presented with. In his dissent, Thomas whined about defendants being allowed to look at the prosecution’s notes:
The court today invites state prisoners to go searching for new ‘evidence’ by demanding the files of the prosecutors who long ago convicted them. If those prisoners succeed, then apparently this court’s doors are open to conduct the credibility determination anew.
How dare those defendants make sure they weren’t put in prison based on the color of their skin or the color of their jury’s skin! Thomas, the only African-American on the court is seriously upset that Foster believed his trial should not have been rigged against him because he is black.
Thomas, the only African-American on the court is seriously upset that Foster believed his trial should not have been rigged against him because he is black. But this wasn’t the only case he dissented in on Monday that made us scratch our heads.
The SCOTUS also ruled on workplace discrimination in the case of Green v. Brennan. In this case, mailman Marvin Green accused his employer of retaliating against him for speaking to a counselor at Equal Employment Opportunity Commission about racial discrimination he suffered at work. Shortly after speaking to the counselor Green was forced to quit because he could no longer handle the abuse. After leaving his job he contacted another EEOC counselor and complained of “constructive discharge.” That basically means his workplace was so hostile he was forced to resign. A judge dismissed his case because he said that it was not filed within the 45-days of the alleged discrimination.
The Supreme Court reversed the judge’s ruling and said that employees should be allowed to file their complaints within 45 days of leaving their jobs, not 45 days since the last incident of discrimination. Thomas, again, was the lone justice dissenting and agreed with the lower court’s ruling that is was too late. Given Thomas’ history of harassing employees that worked for him, ironically at the EEOC, and his refusal to help the African-American community, his opinion wasn’t surprising.
Justice Clarence Thomas has proven time and again that he has no business sitting on the Supreme Court. He’s not interested in protecting the citizens of this country, especially minorities and women. But when he consistently rules in favor of white supremacists, who no doubt resent his position of power, it’s baffling.
If these people had their way, Thomas would still be sitting in the back of a bus and drinking out of separate water fountains. It’s just mind-blowing that he doesn’t recognize this, but one thing is for sure, his opinions on Monday affirmed that he has taken Scalia’s place as the worst justice on the court.
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