2014's fast food atrocities
Burger King's black cheeseburger: Made with squid ink and bamboo charcoal, arguably a symbol of meat's destructive effect on the planet. Only available in Japan.
I’m not entirely sold on Solicitor General Elena Kagan as our newest Supreme Court Justice. Ironically, one of my reservations has to do with her approach to leveling racial discrimination – specifically her reported role in scuttling a Clinton administration plan to do away with sentencing disparities between crack and powder cocaine (which has meant heavier punishment for African Americans than whites for dealing or using the same drug.)
That said, Republicans on the Senate Judicial Committee are trying to make the case she’s outside the mainstream of American jurisprudence, by attacking her clerking for (and admiring) legal giant Thurgood Marshall, the first African American Supreme Court justice, while singling her out as a denizen of “Manhattan’s Upper West Side” – you know, the neighborhood known for Zabar’s and bagels and, well, Jews.
Sen. Jefferson Beauregard Sessions of Alabama, who wasn’t crazy about Sonia Sotomayor, you’ll recall, denounced Kagan having “associated herself with well-known activist judges who have used their power to redefine the meaning of our constitution and have the result of advancing that judge’s preferred social policies,” and he cited Marshall, the NAACP Legal Defense Fund leader who argued Brown vs. Board of Education. According to Talking Points Memo, Republicans mentioned Marshall an astonishing 35 times in the hearing (compared with 14 mentions of President Obama) with his son, Thurgood Marshall Jr., sitting in the audience.
“Not only is Ms. Kagan’s background unusual for a Supreme Court nominee, it is not clear how it demonstrates that she has, in the President’s words, ‘a keen understanding of how the law affects the daily lives of the American people.’ One recent article noted that ‘[Ms.] Kagan’s experience draws from a world whose signposts are distant from most Americans: Manhattan’s upper West side, Princeton University, Harvard Law School and the upper reaches of the Democratic legal establishment.’”
Unfortunately, it was Politico’s otherwise smart New Yorker Ben Smith who supplied Kyl with that silly soundbite. But Fox News’s awesome duo of Megyn Kelly and Bret Baier foreshadowed the GOP’s strategy early Monday morning. Here’s how Kelly said she knew Kagan was a liberal:
“Living in New York City, I can speak to this. She grew up on the upper west side of Manhattan. We walked around the upper west side of Manhattan not too long ago. And I asked my husband aloud, ‘Do you think it’s true what they say, that this is… the liberal center of New York City, of one of the most liberal cities, this is the center of it. And at that moment… a woman walked by us with a tee shirt that read, ‘Kill Cheney First.’ So, yes. So I’m gonna say, ‘Yes.’ It is a liberal area and it is the area from which Elena Kagan hails.”
Baier concurred: “So there you have it.”
So there you have it. Unable to find any personal statements by Kagan they can use to prove she’s beyond the pale, so to speak – no “wise Latina” moments on her transcripts – they deride her for coming from the Upper West Side, and admiring one of the heroes of American justice, who happens to be black.
Stay tuned for more not-so-coded bigotry from the GOP.
Joan Walsh is Salon's editor at large and the author of "What's the Matter With White People: Finding Our Way in the Next America."More Joan Walsh.
Domino's Specialty Chicken: It's like regular pizza, except instead of a crust, there's fried chicken. The company's marketing officer calls it "one of the most creative, innovative menu items we have ever had” -- brain power put to good use.
KFC'S ZINGER DOUBLE DOWN KING: A sandwich made by adding a burger patty to the infamous chicken-instead-of-buns creation can only be described using all caps. NO BUN ALL MEAT. Only available in South Korea.
Taco Bell's Waffle Taco: It took two years for Taco Bell to develop this waffle folded in the shape of a taco, the stand-out star of its new breakfast menu.
Krispy Kreme Triple Cheeseburger: Only attendees at the San Diego County Fair were given the opportunity to taste the official version of this donut-hamburger-heart attack combo. The rest of America has reasonable odds of not dropping dead tomorrow.
Taco Bell's Quesarito: A burrito wrapped in a quesadilla inside an enigma. Quarantined to one store in Oklahoma City.
Elena Kagan is the 45th Solicitor General of the United States, confirmed in March 2009. Prior to her confirmation, she was the 11th Dean of Harvard Law School. Among her previous positions is a stint at the White House, from 1995-99, where she served as a counselor.
Kagan received her
bachelor's degree, summa cum laude, from Princeton in 1981. She attended Worcester College, Oxford, and then Harvard Law School, where she was supervising editor of the Harvard Law Review, and graduated magna cum laude in 1986.