Borked Forked!

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May 27, 2009 3:13 p.m.

Brian Beutler talks to The Hill reporter whose seeming parody we flagged earlier this afternoon. No joke: A conservative source really did draw a connection between Sonia Sotomayor’s gastronomical preferences — traditional Puerto Rican cuisine — and her allegedly “activist” jurisprudence.

ed. note: A sidenote to this nonsense. Lots of readers have complained that The Hill, and by extension TPM, has butchered the translation of Sotomayor’s Spanish here:

Sotomayor also claimed: “For me, a very special part of my being Latina is the mucho platos de arroz, gandoles y pernir — rice, beans and pork — that I have eaten at countless family holidays and special events.”

This has prompted some Republicans to muse privately about whether Sotomayor is suggesting that distinctive Puerto Rican cuisine such as patitas de cerdo con garbanzo — pigs’ tongue and ears — would somehow, in some small way influence her verdicts from the bench.

TPM Reader HM speaks for many when he implores:

Just a comment about the news about food and Judge Sotomayor. First the issue is idiotic, second the translation is even worse. “Patitas de cerdo” are not pigs ears (that would be “cuajitos”), it is pigs feet and it is served as a kind of soup, thus the “garbanzos.” I beg you to correct the record because it is ridiculous that TPM follows into the mistake of the Hill. …

Here’s what Sotomayor actually said in the 2001 speech in question, at least according to a transcript posted by UC-Berkeley:

For me, a very special part of my being Latina is the mucho platos de arroz, gandoles y pernir – rice, beans and pork – that I have eaten at countless family holidays and special events. My Latina identity also includes, because of my particularly adventurous taste buds, morcilla, — pig intestines, patitas de cerdo con garbanzo — pigs’ feet with beans, and la lengua y orejas de cuchifrito, pigs’ tongue and ears.

It appears The Hill transposed a couple of the dishes there, but I don’t speak Spanish, so I will leave it to others to judge what got lost in translation and how, and where the blame may lie. And then we will not speak of this subject again.

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