One of the things I like best about Sonia Sotomayer is her voice. It is refreshing to hear a voice from the city, no less New York. There is something about it that tells me that she is not real good at taking crap. Probably make a really good justice.
We are missing a lot of the nice, big, distinctive voices we used to hear in politics. Moynihan, the erudite scrapper from Hell's Kitchen, Dirksen, whose voice cut like a dull sawblade, William Cohen, with his yankee pedigree. The folksy Byrd, whose high pitched drawl was honed at early cross burnings. Barbara Jordan. Humphrey. Most of the available orators today seem somewhat smaller than life. McConnell is still iconic. Rangel. A couple more.
Of course, the same thing runs true in television - no more Huntleys, Cronkites or Murrows, Rathers, Severaid's and Buckley's - now we are granted a bevy of anonymous pretty boys and glamorous stewardesses to deliver our news fix or forcefully opine.
I am one of those people that is a big believer in respecting my first impressions of people. And listening to a voice can tell a lot about a person. When the klondike clara belle Sara Palin first opened her mouth in public, my inner alarms went off immediately. There was something I caught, a wavering lack of self confidence in an intellect that seemed woefully deficient. A thin reedy voice that lacked sincerity, but like Saruman's, Limbaugh's or Father Coughlin's, enough voice to ensnare the weak or the witless.
Anyway I hope the judge from the Bronx is quickly confirmed and that we can hear some plain no bullshit New Yorkese every once in a while. It's been a long time.