Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty
  /  03.23.2022

Monday (Mar. 21) marked the start of the Senate Judiciary Committee’s confirmation hearings for President Joe Biden’s Supreme Court nominee, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson. Her potential confirmation will follow Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer’s retirement announcement (after Breyer served more than two decades on America’s highest court). Jackson is presently a judge on our nation’s second-highest court and may soon become the first Black woman to serve as a Supreme Court justice.

Our Senate’s four-day hearing will affirm that Jackson has more years of experience as a trial court judge than any Supreme Court justice. She actually has more trial court judge experience than four of the sitting justices combined, among other distinct qualifications. Before reviewing her credentials, it may be helpful to examine how this court came to be, especially since Black people were not eligible for consideration upon its inception. Details about the Supreme Court of the United States are documented on its governmental website:

“The Constitution elaborated neither the exact powers and prerogatives of the Supreme Court nor the organization of the Judicial Branch as a whole. Thus, it was left to Congress and to the Justices of the Court through their decisions to develop the Federal Judiciary and a body of Federal law. The establishment of a Federal Judiciary was a high priority for the new government, and the first bill introduced in the United States Senate became the Judiciary Act of 1789.”

For readers who may be puzzled on how America’s highest court has yet to confirm a Black woman in its 233-year history, REVOLT reexamined the National Archives’ “Charters of Freedom” exhibit, which acknowledges 1787’s “Three-fifths compromise.” The United States Constitutional Convention confirmed that within the House of Representatives, three-fifths of the enslaved populace would be quantified, meeting the country’s direct taxation and representation procedures. Black men and women were registered as less than those within the white majority. 

In summary, facing particulars, PBS’ Thirteen Organization recorded, “Although the Constitution did not refer directly to [enslaved people], it did not ignore them entirely. Article one, section two of the Constitution of the United States declared that any person who was not free would be counted as three-fifths of a free individual … thus [increasing] the political power of slaveholding states.” Black Americans were historically excluded from various political procedures, including the U.S. Supreme Court processes, until 1967 when Former President Lyndon B. Johnson nominated Thurgood Marshall to become the first Black Supreme Court justice. Jackson is en route to follow suit, potentially aiding perspectives surrounding minority women 55 years later. Her presence on the panel would raise the number of women figures to a historical total of four.

For her part, Jackson was groomed for success from the start. Even her name reads like the premonition of future possibilities. “[Her] aunt — based in West Africa with the Peace Corps at the time of her birth — sent her parents a list of African girls’ name options, from which they picked ‘Ketanji Onyika,’ meaning ‘Lovely One,'” logged Politico. Born in Washington, D.C., the candidate’s parents relocated to Florida, where she was taught within Miami-Dade public schools. These details position Jackson beside Justice Alito and Justice Kagan, as they represent the few constituents who also ascended to an Ivy League from public school systems.

Additionally, the need for higher education was enforced at home as Jackson’s parents attended HBCUs following their graduations from then-segregated American primary schools. She was heralded to go far as her high school’s student body president. Jackson’s tenure at Harvard University and Harvard Law School was hard-earned, as were her contributions within the Harvard Law Review as an editor. Upon completing her degrees, she began her career clerking for a Supreme Court justice. This year’s nomination deliberation may become a full circle moment as Jackson once supported Justice Breyer’s endeavors for the Supreme Court.

According to The Washington Post, “Law clerks act as assistants and counselors to judges, conducting legal research, preparing memos, drafting and proofreading orders and opinions … six of the nine current justices [began here].” As far as the current justices, the nominee is the only professional with a background as a federal public defender

As per Vox, “During Jackson’s time as a federal public defender … she represented some of the country’s most vulnerable people, which has given her a perspective that would be unique on the current Supreme Court.” More than work credentials, her lived experiences offer nuances colleagues with privilege were not required to navigate as justices. Moreover, if confirmed, Jackson would be the only justice with a previous standing on the U.S. Sentencing Commission, as Breyer is soon retiring. Referencing her excellence, the Demand Justice organization issued a statement saying, “Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson is an extraordinarily well-qualified Supreme Court nominee, who has already been confirmed by the Senate on a bipartisan basis three times.”

In conjunction with Former President Barack Obama‘s nomination of the first Latina Supreme Court justice in our nation’s history, Sonia Sotomayor, Jackson would be the only other justice who served as a district judge. Alongside this information is a note from Brookings Institution on why Jackson’s confirmation would benefit all civilians. “A Justice Brown Jackson will know what it is like to grow up in a community whose value and values have been considered subordinate to ‘mainstream’ values. She will know what it is like to be entangled in a criminal justice system … She will know how hard Black women work to keep families afloat, and that Black and Brown people in the United States continually have to prove their value,” wrote the nonprofit public policy organization.

Even so, some political leaders are not impressed. Josh Hawley, a senator from Missouri, began publicly opposing Jackson’s nomination ahead of the ongoing hearings. “I’ve been researching the record of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, reading her opinions, articles, interviews & speeches. I’ve noticed an alarming pattern when it comes to Judge Jackson’s treatment of sex offenders, especially those preying on children,” he tweeted Mar. 16. Since then, AP has debunked some subsequent claims, including those concerning child pornography cases’ verdicts. ” Hawley extrapolated that Jackson had drawn conclusions when she hadn’t …,” the publication wrote.

Alongside Hawley and his incorrect assertions were those from the Republican National Committee, who took to Twitter ahead of hearings to post the following, “Ketanji Brown Jackson’s record also includes defending terrorists. She worked as a lawyer for terrorists at Guantanamo Bay, including for a Taliban officer who was likely the leader of a terrorist cell,” AP’s report verified this GOP-led statement was also false. Those against Jackson’s nomination cannot deny her ranking as a federal judge preceding her nomination to work from the high court. 

The New York Times published, “While Republicans had initially been wary of the optics … some G.O.P. members of the panel — particularly those with presidential ambitions — assailed Judge Jackson’s record … seeing an opening to score political points if not block her confirmation …” Discussions across media detail the nominee’s potential inclusion of underserved communities. Adjacent to views regarding Jackson’s perceived shortcomings, or lack thereof, were her own perceptions directed to Senator Cory Booker on a CNN telecast.

“I had struggled like so many working moms to juggle motherhood and career … there will be hearings during your daughters’ recitals … I know so many young women in this country … have to make a choice [between family and professional life] … I didn’t always get the balance right. So, I would hope for them … hopefully, you all will confirm me, seeing me move to the Supreme Court, that they can know that you don’t have to be perfect …,” she detailed of her career trajectory. A full Senate vote will be reached upon the committee hearing from the American Bar Association and outside witnesses’ arguments concerning Jackson’s qualifications tomorrow



Walmart has the home essentials for everyone on your holiday shopping list

Below, our gift guide highlights some of our favorite Walmart finds for anyone in need of a home refresh.

  /  11.24.2023

5 things you need to know about the 2023 Billboard Music Awards

“REVOLT Black News” correspondent Kennedy Rue counts down the top five moments from the 2023 Billboard Music Awards, including surprising wins, historic firsts, and dope performances. Sponsored by Amazon.

  /  11.20.2023

Walmart's HBCU Black and Unlimited Tour kicks off at Central State University

On Oct. 10, Walmart unveiled a brand new, state of the art creative studio on the campus of Central State University.

  /  11.14.2023

The Walmart HBCU Black & Unlimited Tour visited Mississippi Valley State University

The Walmart HBCU Black & Unlimited Tour made its final stop at Mississippi Valley State University (MVSU) and left a lasting impact on students and alumni alike.

  /  11.22.2023

Walmart continues HBCU Black & Unlimited Tour during lively Virginia State University stop

After unveiling their state of the art creative studio on the campus of Central State University, Walmart brought the HBCU Black & Unlimited Tour to Virginia State University (VSU) on Oct. 13.

  /  11.14.2023

Walmart HBCU Black & Unlimited Tour brings attention and wisdom to North Carolina Central University

On Oct. 17, Walmart brought the third stop of the HBCU Black & Unlimited Tour to North Carolina Central University (NCCU).

  /  11.15.2023

Walmart's HBCU Black and Unlimited Tour kicked off at Central State University

In October, Walmart unveiled a brand new, state of the art creative studio on the campus of Central State University. The HBCU located in Wilberforce, OH was the first stop on Walmart’s Black and Unlimited HBCU Tour.

  /  11.28.2023

Dig In & Drink Up | 'Bet on Black'

In this new episode of ‘Bet on Black,’ food and beverage take center stage as aspiring Black entrepreneurs from It’s Seasoned, Black Farmer Box, and Moors Brewing Co. present their business ideas to judges with mentorship from Melissa Butler. Watch here!

  /  11.15.2023

The Auditions | 'Shoot Your Shot'

The competition begins at REVOLT WORLD as rising rappers, singers, and musicians line up to audition for their spot on the main stage. Brought to you by McDonald’s.

  /  11.28.2023

Groovey Lew on hip hop style, Johnell Young's industry secrets, BGS salon's wig mastery and more | 'Black Girl Stuff'

Fashion King Groovey Lew on masterminding hip-hop’s most iconic looks. Actor Johnell Young reveals the secret to breaking into the entertainment industry. Celebrity hairstylist Dontay Savoy and got2B ambassador Tokyo Stylez are in the BGS Salon with the perfect wig install. Plus, comedian Lauren Knight performs.

  /  11.15.2023

Pheelz talks expressing himself through music & his biggest inspirations | 'On In 5'

On this all-new episode of “On In 5,” multitalented Nigerian artist Pheelz opens up about waiting for his opportunity to fully express himself through music, his inspirations and emotions, and the musical icons he grew up admiring. Watch!

  /  07.11.2023

Kareem Cook talks growing up in The Bronx, studying at Duke & networking | 'The Blackprint with Detavio Samuels'

On this all-new episode of “The Blackprint with Detavio Samuels,” the host and REVOLT CEO sits down with Kareem Cook. Throughout the introspective episode, Cook talks growing up in The Bronx, studying at Duke and being nervous to be in the South at the time, network vs. education, taking advantage of your opportunities, and connecting with Debbie Allen. Watch!

  /  07.10.2023

Tiffany Haddish on therapy, wild fan interactions & the upcoming 'Haunted Mansion' movie | 'The Jason Lee Show'

On this all-new episode of “The Jason Lee Show,” the one and only Tiffany Haddish sits for a must-watch conversation about wild interactions with fans, her new movie ‘Haunted Mansion,’ bringing her therapist on dates, and being present. Watch the hilarious interview here.

  /  07.12.2023

BNXN talks leaving IT for music, linking with Wizkid, going viral & new album | 'On In 5'

For this all-new episode of “On In 5,” singer-songwriter BNXN discusses his journey from IT to music, finding his voice and originality, linking up with Wizkid for their hits “Mood” and “Many Ways,” and what fans can expect from him this year — including a new album. Watch the full episode here!

  /  08.08.2023

Walmart brings in heavy-hitters for Black and Unlimited Tour panel

REVOLT is continuing its impactful partnership with Walmart by teaming up to showcase Black creatives at HBCUs all-across America. The panel consisted of three experienced, accomplished Black HBCU alumni: Actor and media personality Terrence J, entertainment attorney John T. Rose, and actress and “REVOLT Black News” correspondent Kennedy-Rue McCullough.

  /  11.30.2023

Investing in stocks in a recession | 'Maconomics'

Host Ross Mac provides useful advice for preparing your personal finances in the event of a recession. He emphasizes the importance of budgeting properly, building an emergency fund, and maintaining discipline when investing.

  /  11.21.2023

Dr. Jaqueline Echols' mission to cure environmental racism

The health of a community can often be traced to the health of the environment that surrounds it. In Atlanta, a woman named Dr. Jaqueline Echols has dedicated her life to helping ensure that people in economically underserved communities have clean rivers – for better health and for the joy of outdoor recreational space.

  /  12.01.2023

Best chef's kiss | 'Bet on Black'

“Bet on Black” is back with an all-new season! Watch as judges Pinky Cole, Bun B, Van Lathan, and Target’s Melanie Gatewood-Hall meet new contestants and hear pitches from entrepreneurs Saucy D and Chef Diva Dawg.

  /  10.24.2023

Good taste test | 'Bet on Black'

With the help of host Dustin Ross and correspondent Danielle Young, entrepreneurs Diva Dawg, Brooklyn Tea, and The Sable Collective pitch their ideas to the judges. Watch the all-new episode of “Bet on Black” now!

  /  10.31.2023

From city lots to lush gardens: The power of urban farming with Karen Washington

This is the inspiring story of Karen Washington, a pioneering urban farmer who has been revolutionizing urban spaces by transforming them into vibrant community gardens and educational hubs. Sponsored by State Farm.

  /  11.17.2023
View More
Revolt - New Episodes