ketanji brown jackson confirmation hearings
The Senate Judiciary Committee is on its third day of hearings considering the nomination of Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to the United States Supreme Court.
Though Republican members devoted a significant portion of the first day's opening remarks to dredging up grievances from the hearings of Trump-nominated Justices Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett in 2018 and 2020, promising they would be more subdued than their Democratic counterparts at the time, the hearings haven't been without their tense moments and combative lines of questioning.
One such moment came from Republican Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, who invoked conservative hysteria over critical race theory while interrogating Judge Jackson.
Cruz pointed to Jackson's position on the Board of Trustees at the pricey Georgetown Day School, the curriculum of which he claimed is "filled and overflowing with critical race theory." He particularly focused on a 2020 children's book, Antiracist Baby by Ibram X. Kendi.
Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson takes a moment to gather her thoughts after Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) asks her if she believes babies are racist. pic.twitter.com/h9GcxHYcrd
— The Recount (@therecount) March 22, 2022
Though Cruz falsely claimed the book posits that babies are racist, its description says its goal is toward "providing the language necessary to begin critical conversations at the earliest age, Antiracist Baby is the perfect gift for readers of all ages dedicated to forming a just society."
As Washington Post book critic Ron Charles points out, the 24 page book argues the opposite of Cruz's point, that it makes the "perfectly reasonable contention that people are not born racist; they learn racist attitudes from the society around them — and far earlier than most of us want to admit."
Kendi, the book's author, soon reacted to Cruz's screed on Twitter.
You know Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson has impeccable credentials—and you know you're doing the work—when @tedcruz questions her about your books since he can’t touch her record.
— Ibram X. Kendi (@DrIbram) March 22, 2022
Cruz's hysteria may have backfired, as Antiracist Baby, which debuted two years ago, has taken multiple top spots in subsets of Amazon's children's books bestsellers list. At the time of writing, it's currently number one in sales for children's books on Difficult Discussions, on Prejudice and Racism, number two in Geography & Cultures Books, number six in Growing Up & Facts of Life, and number 15 on the overall bestseller list.
Social media users were quick to share the news.
Congratulations to Ibram X. Kendi, who book "Antiracist Baby" is now a #1 Amazon bestseller thanks to Ted "I'm running away to Cancun" Cruz and his racist garbage questioning. Nothing like winning on the back of their attempts to bring you down.
— Arcturus SaDiablo, Malicious Compliance Officer (@ASadiablo) March 23, 2022
the Antiracist Baby book by Dr. Ibram X. Kendibook being a #1 bestseller on Amazon is the type of petty i am always here for
— Steph G. (@Steph_Gaither) March 23, 2022
"Antiracist Baby" is a No. 1 bestseller on Amazon a day after Ted Cruz railed against it during Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson’s confirmation hearing.
— Micki (@00micki) March 23, 2022
Ted Cruz made a spectacle of himself grilling Ketanji Brown Jackson over @DrIbram's Antiracist Baby - which is all the more reason to read it and these other books to combat racism. Would bet $ this ends up back on our bestsellers list next week. https://t.co/8kMssmsA5e
— Barbara VanDenburgh (@BabsVan) March 23, 2022
Others expressed their intentions to buy Antiracist Baby and other books Cruz decried from the dais.
I love the book Antiracist Baby… I didn’t know about Stamped (for Kids). Thank you @tedcruz for the book recommendation. I will be buying this book asap. 😉 @DrIbram ❤️ pic.twitter.com/cxUHiFvgU6
— Susie Wren (she/her/hers) (@susierw) March 22, 2022
My wife didn't know @DrIbram wrote a children's book and she's buying it now for our kids. So... thanks for the book recommendation @tedcruz
— Elie Mystal (@ElieNYC) March 22, 2022
Thanks @tedcruz for the list of books I will be buying and donating:
"How to Be an Antiracist", "Stamped", and "Antiracist Baby" by Ibram X. Kendi @DrIbram.
— The Saucy Jalapeño (@roughchop) March 22, 2022
Wow thanks for reminding me that I need to buy Ibram Kendi’s Antiracist Baby for my niece and for every future baby in my life from now until the end of time
— Kristan McCullum (@krismccullum3) March 22, 2022
Thanks for the book recommendation, Ted Cruz! My kids are going to love it! pic.twitter.com/r7qJr2KZdw
— Adrienne (@MorazonInc) March 23, 2022