EppsNet Archive: Affirmative Action

The Moral Compass Oscillates

 

Following up on the college admission scandal . . . Now that we have faces and names, sums of money, and details on specific subterfuges, the level of anger, shock and indignation is much higher than I would have expected regarding what I thought was already taken as a truism: that parents with money and influence can get their kids into colleges that they couldn’t get into on their own merits. Everyone also knows that students are routinely admitted to colleges based on various forms of diversity rather than on academic achievement. Moreover, virtuous Americans agree that tilting the system in this way in favor of academically unqualified individuals is a good thing. I would have thought that the moral question is whether it’s right to tilt the admissions process at all based on non-meritorious criteria such as demographics, including the demographic of having rich parents. If everyone agrees that… Read more →

Are We Agreed That Rigging the College Admissions Process is a Good Thing?

 

Outraged parents are filing lawsuits in the college admissions scandal . . . One parent, Jennifer Kay Toy of Oakland, believes her son Joshua was not admitted to some colleges because wealthy parents thought it was “ok to lie, cheat, steal [steal?] and bribe their children’s way into a good college.” She has therefore filed a $500 billion lawsuit (sounds reasonable) accusing 45 defendants of defrauding and inflicting emotional distress on everyone whose “rights to a fair chance at entrance to college” were stolen through their alleged conspiracy. Not reported: where (or if) Joshua is actually attending college, or which colleges Ms. Toy thinks he would have been admitted to if not for the aforementioned skulduggery. There are also students filing suits, alleging among other things that their degrees have been devalued by skepticism over the validity of the admission process. I think these lawsuits founder on at least a… Read more →

NYT Misrepresents California’s Affirmative Action Results

 

In reporting on yesterday’s Supreme Court decision to uphold a Michigan ban on the use of racial preferences in admissions to public universities, the New York Times looks at results in other states that have banned racial preferences. Here’s what the Times says about my state, California, which voted to ban racial preferences in UC admissions in 1998: Hispanic and black enrollment at the University of California, Berkeley, and the University of California, Los Angeles dropped sharply after voters approved a statewide ban on affirmative action. Those numbers have not recovered, even as the state’s Hispanic population has grown. That is a misleading analysis for a couple of reasons: One: Affirmative action was banned at all UC campuses, not just Berkeley and UCLA. Ignoring all the other campuses allows the Times to say that black and Hispanic enrollment “dropped sharply” when there was actually only a 2 percent decline in… Read more →

Banning Racial Preferences in California Helped Everyone

 

When racial preferences were banned by the voters in California, there were dire predictions that this would mean the virtual disappearance of black and Hispanic students from the University of California system. What in fact happened was a 2% decline in their enrollment in the University of California system as a whole, but an increase in the number of black and Hispanic students graduating, including an increase of 55% in the number graduating in four years and an increase of 63% in the number graduating in four years with a grade point average of 3.5 or higher. Instead of the predicted drastic decline in enrollment in the system as a whole, there was a drastic redistribution of black and Hispanic students within the University of California system. Their enrollment dropped at the two most elite campuses, Berkeley and UCLA — by 42% at the former and 33% at the latter.… Read more →

Things You Can and Can’t Do

 

Things You Can Do Discriminate against Asians in college admissions. Things You Can’t Do Use “Chink in the Armor” as the headline for an article on the New York Knicks. Read more →

Engineering is Serious Business, Says Engineering Major

 

The dean of UC Berkeley’s College of Engineering expressed support today for a recommendation from a student group that the college create a recruitment and retention plan for women and underrepresented minority students. — California Watch It sounds like the dean might be up for lowering the engineering standards to meet diversity metrics. Bad idea. Engineering is serious business. Also: Preferential treatment by a public institution based on race, sex or ethnicity is prohibited by California law. I’ve got a better and more legal idea: How about if the women and “underrepresented” minority students suck it up and meet the same academic standards as everyone else? Or apply to a different school? If they can’t meet the standards at Berkeley, they might do fine at a less demanding institution like Stanford or UCLA. I’ve attended engineering school myself. We had diversity admits. After one semester, maybe two, they weren’t there… Read more →

Brown Vetoes SB 185

 

Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed a controversial, affirmative action-like bill Saturday that would have allowed public colleges and universities in California to consider demographic factors in admissions processes. — Brown vetoes affirmative action-like SB 185 – The Daily Californian Like! I hate to sound selfish but whatever “demographic factors” they were planning to consider, I’m 110 percent sure they’d serve to penalize my kid, nieces, nephews, grandkids — everyone in my family now and forever — and for what? Racial inequities of the past that they had nothing to do with? Not interested in taking the hit for that, sorry. We’re good people. We stopped inviting the slaveholders to the family reunions because they’ve all been dead for about 100 years . . . Read more →

Diversity Bake Sale Sparks Controversy

 

Despite massive outcries of protest from campus organizations, the Berkeley College Republicans are adamant in going ahead with their controversial bake sale. The sale — intended as a satirical response to the affirmative action-like SB 185 currently awaiting Gov. Jerry Brown’s signature — will involve baked goods that are priced by race and sex. Under the pricing structure, white students would have to pay $2.00 for a pastry, for example, while Latinos would pay $1.00 and Native Americans would pay $0.25. Women would receive a blanket 25 cent discount. — The Daily Californian I love it! “Massive outcries of protest”! “Controversial bake sale”! The lack of perspective is staggering. It’s okay to favor kids of one race over another in college admissions, just don’t try it with something truly important like the price of a cupcake . . . Read more →

Why is Obama a Bad Politician?

 

The answer is distressingly obvious: Obama’s the biggest affirmative action baby in history. When other pols are trying, failing, learning, while climbing up the middle rungs of the ladder, he got a pass. — Mickey Kaus Read more →

Diversity in Practice

 

This is how “diversity” works in practice: Intellectual contention is drowned out in a sea of emotion, much of it phony. Members of designated victim groups respond to a serious argument with “pain” and “shock” and accusations of “hate,” and university administrators make a show of pretending to care. — Best of the Web Today Read more →

Cancer is Racist

 

From an American Cancer Society email: While minorities have made great social strides in the United States in recent decades, many still experience disproportionately higher incidences of disease — especially cancer. The American Cancer Society is working to eliminate cancer disparities among minority populations and the medically underserved, a fact underscored by National Multicultural Cancer Awareness Week, which is April 15-21, 2007. Sounds like more white people need to get cancer . . . Read more →

A Ready Answer on Diversity

 

From a corporate diversity report: The issue of having less diversity in the management ranks than in the aggregate among the workforce is faced by virtually every company in America and is one for which we do not have a ready answer. You don’t have a ready answer? I’ll give you one: From a management perspective, diversity, like outsourcing, is best implemented on some other sucker’s job. Read more →

I Love the BCA!

 

The Black Coaches Association (BCA) is about to issue grades to colleges and universities on their minority hiring practices: The BCA asked each of the 28 schools that had job openings during the past year to complete a form that was analyzed by an outside firm. Any school that does not complete a form receives an F. At USC, our traditional football rivalries are with UCLA and Notre Dame. Both of these schools have black head coaches and we kick their tails every year. Last year’s scores: USC 47, UCLA 22 USC 45, Notre Dame 14 More black head coaches! Fight On! Read more →

Two Short Arguments For Affirmative Action

 

It’s not what you say, it’s how you say it . . . Read more →

HW Solves Two of the Thorniest Problems in American Education

 

Racial Gaps On average, black students who graduate from high school are equipped with the skills the average white student mastered by the eighth grade, according to federal tests. — “Equal access to schools fails to equalize education,” USA Today Blah blah blah . . . Read more →

Quote of the Day

 

Wesley Clark on affirmative action: Not everybody’s born on a level playing field. That is undeniable. I, for example, was born in a hospital . . . Read more →

Three Short Arguments Against Affirmative Action

 

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. The Fairness Argument If it was unfair when we used to discriminate against blacks and Jews, don’t tell me it’s fair now to discriminate against whites and Jews. Read more →