It was the “I’m gonna let you finish” look seen across the world as many tuned in for the confirmation hearing of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson. If confirmed, Judge Brown Jackson will be the first Black woman to serve on the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court first assembled in 1790. Just sit with that year for a minute. It has been 232 years. White people have entrusted Black women to cook their food, run their homes, even nurse their children but having a Black woman serve on the highest court in the land was inconceivable to them. And even today, many White people are against it. However, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson has more experience than any current judge that serves on the Supreme Court.
Even now, we have to sit through a vetting process that will be a shitshow for a Black woman that is not just qualified; she is overqualified. While them speaking of her many achievements is excellent, I can’t help but think, “Who are you trying to convince?” You don’t have to convince me. As a Black woman, I know what we bring to the table. However, this is the process, and as Black women, we understand that Judge Brown Jackson will be asked some “I’m not racist but” questions. We are prepared for the racist speeches that have nothing to do with her but everything to do with the person speaking. They want to make sure they are recorded in history as being the most racist as possible when it was time to confirm a Black woman. As such, we are prepared to stand in the gap for Judge Brown Jackson because that is what Black women do.
While we know that Judge Brown Jackson can hold her own, Black Women have assembled like the Dora Milaje. We are not here for the stupidity, and believe me, there will be stupidity. And clearly, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson isn’t here for it either as she gave Senator Josh Hawley the looks of all looks while he mentioned her record. It was a look that many Black women know, as we have had to sit and listen to some basic, beneath mediocre person try to explain something that we are beyond proficient in. Hawley’s claim to fame is supporting (allegedly) a group of domestic terrorists who attempted to overthrow the United States government, but sure, Josh, go ahead and ask your questions.
As Judge Brown Jackson sat in her seat, her face was priceless. As I watched, I was cracking up because, as a Black woman, we all know that look. We all have made that face. While not being confirmed for the Supreme Court, damn near every Black woman I know has had to sit and listen to someone like Josh. It is excruciating because you want to say, “You are really too stupid to insult.” Still, you purse your lips and smile through it often because you are focused on the greater outcome.
I can only imagine the thoughts that were racing through her mind on the first day of confirmation as she sat, hands folded, and just listened to White people speak about and question her. I imagine some of the thoughts flowing through her mind went like this:
- Bless his little heart. He really thinks he can question me.
- Well, isn’t that cute? My confirmation forced him to read something.
- If there was ever a picture of mediocre in the dictionary, he would be the face.
- Where is his white shirt and khakis?
- Is this man really asking me about my record when he sells cheap mugs on his website that shows him supporting domestic terrorists?
- Wasn’t this man throwing up a fist in support of insurrectionists?
- I know this muthafucka aint really sitting here asking me this.
- I wonder what’s for dinner tonight because I ain’t listening to shit he is saying.
- I hope my husband sat out the chicken. *checks nails, adjusts glasses*
- Oh, he thinks he gonna try me to today? Your questions are child’s play, Josh.
- I was doing law while you were still lighting tiki torches.
- Oh Josh, you thought, didn’t you? Don’t ever do that again.
- I know Mitch McConnell is big mad.
- I’m shocked Ted Cruz is even here. He didn’t wanna go on vacation?
- Let me swallow this water down before I choke on his stupidity.
- I wish a muthafucka would. I have waited all my life for this.
- You know you ain’t even worthy of being in the same space as me, right?
- Josh should have caught a case for his support of January 6 like he needs to be catching these hands.
- How many more days must I listen to mediocre White people?
- I know I can’t act like Brett Kavanaugh, so let me just fold my hands before I give him a spicy two-piece and a biscuit.
- Must we really do this? I can do this in my sleep.
- Did this woman even read the 1619 Project?
- I can’t wait to call my girls so we can talk about this muthafucka.
- My credentials ain’t nothing but a little light flex.
- I am smarter than everyone questioning me.
- Let me sip this water before I cuss someone out.
- Go high, go high, go high.
- Doesn’t this man know I have receipts? Unlike some other mediocre people, I actually write things down.
- Whew, I am glad I got that manicure because the hand folding I’m gonna have to do through this!
- Let me adjust my glasses so I can see clearly through this bullshit.
- I am more than prepared, but as usual Black women always are. I am days away from making history. Let me just smile.
We stand with you, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson. We have all been there before. We understand sitting through mediocrity is never pleasant. Being a spacemaker is often not easy. It is shameful that a Black woman still must prove herself in a sea of Whiteness to people that will never be as accomplished as her. We can only imagine what you have gone through to sit where you are sitting this week and where you will sit for the remainder of your career – on the highest court in the land. Know that we are standing with you, and always know that some of your sistas believe that when they go low, we must and will go lower, and we are proficient in knuck if you buck!