It is no secret that anti-abortion lawmakers and their supporters have no shame flaunting their white supremacist beliefs for everyone to see. We have long been exposing the ways in which white supremacy and the anti-abortion beliefs are one in the same. During the Senate Supreme Court confirmation hearings of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, anti-abortion lawmakers had a challenging time hiding their white supremacist and anti-Black beliefs from the world.
Questions and behaviors from anti-abortion lawmakers were not meant to intentionally and genuinely inquire about Judge Jackson’s career. Rather, this was an opportunity to continue to fearmonger their followers into believing baseless claims and lies to contort Judge Jackson’s career and intellect into the portrait of their delusions manifest.
Let me be clear, anti-abortion lawmakers and advocates have no problem espousing racist and white supremacist ideals and theories. We saw this not only during the Senate confirmation hearings of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, but also in anti-abortion policies, organizations, anti-abortion fake clinics, cultural hostility, and in the harassment of patients outside of abortion clinics. Much of the disrespect directed at Judge Jackson during the hearings, as well as the delusional, pseudo-scientific, manipulation that anti-abortion opponents spew day in and day out is because they are scared. Their lies need to be louder than our truths to be perceived as legitimate. The confirmation of Judge Jackson moves us closer toward a future where the climate crisis, reproductive oppression, homophobia, transphobia, an unjust criminal justice system, worker exploitation and a predatory health care system could be a thing of the past, and that future has no room for white supremacy.
On our recent webinar, we broke down all of the ways that the anti-abortion movement is a white supremacist movement, and neither can exist without the other. The treatment of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson by Senate members who opposed her nomination is a perfect example of how this movement and their leaders’ disrespect and degrade Black women. Never mind their pathetic attempts to claim they support Black women, if they did, Judge Jackson would have been asked relevant questions about her career, rather than the tricks and mind games that were thrown around in an attempt to get Jackson to say things they could twist to benefit the reality they are living in.
For myself, and other Black women and people who could see some of themselves in Judge Jackson, the scene was all too familiar. [1, 2] For me, it brought me back to days in college classrooms being spoken over and questioned as if my words were inflicting pain and violence onto the misled white men who wanted to smear my knowledge and intellect in front of an audience. I am hopeful we can create a future where Black women and people do not have to accept verbal abuse, whether it is a Senate confirmation hearing or a poorly written joke. Our survival and success should not be dictated by our ability to mask the pain, anxiety, anger, and fear that is required to be Black and survive the systems our society rests on.
In Ketanji Brown Jackson’s testimony, Black women saw themselves reflected (19thnews.org)
How Black Women Saw Ketanji Brown Jackson’s Supreme Court Confirmation Hearing – The New York Times (nytimes.com)