Is Sotomayor Hispanic or Latino?

by Alex Goldmark and Janaya Williams

With Supreme Court confirmation hearings for Judge Sonia Sotomayor starting next week, be prepared for the words "Hispanic" and "Latino" to scroll across the bottom of your TV a lot! She is set to be the first Latina on the Court, or is it first Hispanic? So we at WNYC are asking: what is the distinction? Is there one? Does it matter?

Add to that this historical fact: Justice Benjamin Cardozo, who served on the court in the 1930s, was born to parents who claimed Portuguese descent. So does that make him the first Hispanic on the high court? The first Latino? One but not the other?

We want to get it right. Help us out. Tell us: Is Sonia Sotomayor Hispanic or Latina, or both? Was Cardozo?

To sort it out, WNYC's Alex Goldmark spoke with a few friends from our Public Insight Network, Juan Tornoe and Marina Chavez. Listen to their conversation about the difference between the two terms: Hispanic and Latino.

Join the Public Insight Network here.