Clarence Thomas quotes

Clarence Thomas photo
100   0

Clarence Thomas

Birthdate: 23. June 1948

Clarence Thomas is an American judge, lawyer, and government official who currently serves as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. He is currently the most senior associate justice on the Court following the retirement of Anthony Kennedy. Thomas succeeded Thurgood Marshall and is the second African American to serve on the Court. Among the current members of the Court he is the longest-serving justice, with a tenure of 28 years, 110 days as of February 10, 2020.

Thomas grew up in Savannah, Georgia, and was educated at the College of the Holy Cross and at Yale Law School. He was appointed an Assistant Attorney General in Missouri in 1974, and subsequently practiced law there in the private sector. In 1979, he became a legislative assistant to United States Senator John Danforth, and in 1981 was appointed Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights at the U.S. Department of Education. In 1982, President Ronald Reagan appointed Thomas Chairman of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission .

In 1990, President George H. W. Bush nominated Thomas for a seat on the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. He served in that role for 16 months, and on July 1, 1991, was nominated by Bush to fill Marshall's seat on the U.S. Supreme Court. Thomas's confirmation hearings were bitter and intensely fought, centering on an accusation that he had sexually harassed attorney Anita Hill, a subordinate at the Department of Education and subsequently at the EEOC. Hill claimed that Thomas had repeatedly made sexual and romantic overtures to her, despite her repeatedly rebuffing him and telling him to stop; Thomas and his supporters claimed that Hill, witnesses who came forward on her behalf, and her supporters had fabricated the allegations to prevent a black conservative from getting a seat on the Supreme Court. The U.S. Senate ultimately confirmed Thomas by a vote of 52–48.

Since joining the court, Thomas has taken a textualist approach, seeking to uphold the original meaning of the United States Constitution and statutes. He is also, along with fellow justice Neil Gorsuch, an advocate of natural law jurisprudence. Thomas is generally viewed as the most conservative member of the court. Thomas is also known for almost never speaking during oral arguments. Wikipedia

Works

My Grandfather's Son
My Grandfather's Son
Clarence Thomas

„I agree with Ralph Ellison when he asked, perhaps rhetorically, why is it that so many of those who would tell us the meaning of Negro, of Negro life, never bothered to learn how varied it really is.“

—  Clarence Thomas

1990s, I Am a Man, a Black Man, an American (1998)
Context: I agree with Ralph Ellison when he asked, perhaps rhetorically, why is it that so many of those who would tell us the meaning of Negro, of Negro life, never bothered to learn how varied it really is. That is particularly true of many whites who have elevated condescension to an art form by advancing a monolithic view of blacks in much the same way that the mythic, disgusting image of the lazy, dumb black was advanced by open, rather than disguised, bigots.

„I come to state that I'm a man, free to think for myself and do as I please.“

—  Clarence Thomas

1990s, I Am a Man, a Black Man, an American (1998)
Context: I have come here today not in anger or to anger, though my mere presence has been sufficient, obviously, to anger some. Nor have I come to defend my views, but rather to assert my right to think for myself, to refuse to have my ideas assigned to me as though I was an intellectual slave because I'm black. I come to state that I'm a man, free to think for myself and do as I please.

„Since well before 1787, liberty has been understood as freedom from government action, not entitlement to government benefits. The framers created our constitution to preserve that understanding of liberty“

—  Clarence Thomas

Obergefell v. Hodges http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/14pdf/14-556_3204.pdf (26 June 2015).
2010s
Context: The Court's decision today is at odds not only with the constitution, but with the principles upon which our Nation was built. Since well before 1787, liberty has been understood as freedom from government action, not entitlement to government benefits. The framers created our constitution to preserve that understanding of liberty. Yet the majority invokes our Constitution in the name of a 'liberty' that the framers would not have recognized, to the detriment of the liberty they sought to protect. Along the way, it rejects the idea—captured in our Declaration of Independence—that human dignity is innate and suggests instead that it comes from the Government. This distortion of our Constitution not only ignores the text, it inverts the relationship between the individual and the state in our Republic. I cannot agree with it.

„Government cannot make us equal; it can only recognize, respect, and protect us as equal before the law“

—  Clarence Thomas

Concurring in Adarand v. Pena, 515 U.S. 200 http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/scripts/getcase.pl?court=US&vol=000&invol=U10252&friend=oyez (1995).
1990s
Context: [I disagree] that there is a racial paternalism exception to the principle of equal protection. I believe that there is a 'moral [and] constitutional equivalence,' between laws designed to subjugate a race and those that distribute benefits on the basis of race in order to foster some current notion of equality. Government cannot make us equal; it can only recognize, respect, and protect us as equal before the law.

„I am a man, a black man, an American.“

—  Clarence Thomas

1990s, I Am a Man, a Black Man, an American (1998)
Context: Despite some of the nonsense that has been said about me by those who should know better, and so much nonsense, or some of which subtracts from the sum total of human knowledge, despite this all, I am a man, a black man, an American. And my history is not unlike that of many blacks from the deep South. And in many ways it is not that much different from that of many other Americans.

„One opinion that is trotted out for propaganda, for the propaganda parade, is my dissent in Hudson vs. McMillian. The conclusion reached by the long arms of the critics is that I supported the beating of prisoners in that case. Well, one must either be illiterate or fraught with malice to reach that conclusion. Though one can disagree with my dissent, and certainly the majority of the court disagreed, no honest reading can reach such a conclusion. Indeed, we took the case to decide the quite narrow issue, whether a prisoner's rights were violated under the 'cruel and unusual punishment' clause of the Eighth Amendment as a result of a single incident of force by the prison guards which did not cause a significant injury. In the first section of my dissent, I stated the following: 'In my view, a use of force that causes only insignificant harm to a prisoner may be immoral; it may be tortuous; it may be criminal, and it may even be remediable under other provisions of the Federal Constitution. But it is not cruel and unusual punishment.' Obviously, beating prisoners is bad. But we did not take the case to answer this larger moral question or a larger legal question of remedies under other statutes or provisions of the Constitution. How one can extrapolate these larger conclusions from the narrow question before the court is beyond me, unless, of course, there's a special segregated mode of analysis.“

—  Clarence Thomas

1990s, I Am a Man, a Black Man, an American (1998)

Similar authors

Donald J. Trump photo
Donald J. Trump901
45th President of the United States of America
Gunnar Myrdal photo
Gunnar Myrdal26
Swedish economist
Dwight D. Eisenhower photo
Dwight D. Eisenhower173
American general and politician, 34th president of the Unit…
George S. Patton photo
George S. Patton77
United States Army general
John F. Kennedy photo
John F. Kennedy469
35th president of the United States of America
Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva photo
Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva10
Brazilian politician, 35th president of Brazil
Arthur Miller photo
Arthur Miller147
playwright from the United States
Eleanor Roosevelt photo
Eleanor Roosevelt148
American politician, diplomat, and activist, and First Lady…
Ben Carson photo
Ben Carson191
17th and current United States Secretary of Housing and Urb…
Amartya Sen photo
Amartya Sen29
Indian economist
Today anniversaries
Chris Colfer photo
Chris Colfer24
actor, singer, book author 1990
Henry Kissinger photo
Henry Kissinger49
United States Secretary of State 1923
Peter Marshall photo
Peter Marshall3
American preacher 1902 - 1949
Louis-ferdinand Céline photo
Louis-ferdinand Céline88
French writer 1894 - 1961
Another 64 today anniversaries
Similar authors
Donald J. Trump photo
Donald J. Trump901
45th President of the United States of America
Gunnar Myrdal photo
Gunnar Myrdal26
Swedish economist
Dwight D. Eisenhower photo
Dwight D. Eisenhower173
American general and politician, 34th president of the Unit…
George S. Patton photo
George S. Patton77
United States Army general
John F. Kennedy photo
John F. Kennedy469
35th president of the United States of America