Two Short Arguments For Affirmative Action

16 Jun 2004 /

It’s not what you say, it’s how you say it . . .

The Football Argument

SOUTH BEND, Ind. — Hall of Famer Paul Hornung said he won’t return to Notre Dame football radio broadcasts this season because of a flap over his comments that the school should lower its academic standards to recruit black athletes.

“The reason I’m not going to be on the air for my last year is because Notre Dame does not want me there,” Hornung told the South Bend Tribune for Sunday editions.

What Hornung said to cause the “flap” was this:

“We’re playing eight bowl teams next year . . . and it’s always year in and year out . . . one of the toughest schedules.

“You can’t play a schedule like that unless you have the black athlete today. You just can’t do it, and it’s very, very tough, still, to get into Notre Dame. They just don’t understand it, yet they want to win.”

The Diversity Argument

WASHINGTON (CNN) — The Supreme Court ruled Monday that race can be a factor for universities shaping their admissions programs, saying a broad social value may be gained from diversity in the classroom.

This was a case involving admissions standards at the University of Michigan. The president of the university, Mary Sue Coleman, had this reaction:

“This is a wonderful, wonderful day — a victory for all of higher education, because what it means at its core is that affirmative action may still be used and the court’s given us a road map to get there.”

Strangely enough, there was no “flap” over Dr. Coleman’s remarks, even though she’s saying exactly the same thing as Hornung, i.e., we need to be able to admit black students under a lower set of academic standards than white students . . .


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