|By Ilcapo (Ilcapo) on Tuesday, September 28, 2004 - 12:40 am: Edit|
Just wanted to rant for a minute on how frustrating it is to live in a wealthy town full of white kids who refuse to acknowledge affirmative action as a sound program.
It all started in AP Politics with the discussion of the Michigan Supreme Court decision. Of course, being of college applicant age, this issue is of great importance to students. Because who, after all, wants to lose a spot to someone they believe is less qualified?
Here is where I must argue. Though you all have probably read my posts and have a handle on my personality, much of what I dislike about my self I hope I can work on in college. By surrounding myself with the same students that I went to high school with, what could possibly promote such a change? The teachers? Maybe. But the students, that is almost a given. There is nothing in this world that influences a person more than his peers (maybe his family), and I think that no matter where we go, we must be exposed to the ideas of people from all walks of life.
In my argument, one of the toughest points is always when someone asks me if I would give up my spot to someone with the exact same statistics who happened to be black. The reason this is so difficult for me is because I have been on tours with Prep for Prep students, I have seen them interact with interviewers, and it is not always a pretty sight. They are typically shy, disinterested, and seem as though they would be genuinely boring if they came to such a school. Whether this is because they look around into a sea of intimidating majority or not, is up for debate - but I do wish that I could meet more people like my Wesleyan interviewer, who was an African American woman that really took hold of my attention because of all the great things she has done during her years at Wesleyan.
A question I must ask myself then is, do the top colleges and universities simply say: "Oooh look a Native American with a 1450!" or do they look at the Native American and see if he or she can do more than just offer a few sentences here and there about her life on a reservation. Because I am so distrustful of the admissions situation, it is hard for me to place trust in the hands of an admissions committee to look more in to the person than to the prospect of saying "we enrolled 9 Native Americans this year!!!". Nevertheless, affirmative action cannot hinge on whether or not we think the system as a whole is fair. Instead, the outcome must be assessed.
In my opinion, the overall outcome of affirmative action has been incredibly important in shaping beliefs of students at universities across America. Sure, many of the black students are 1/2 and coming from upper class backgrounds, but many are also coming from Harlem or West Philly. It is my hope that those who can truly interest the others in the student body make up for the others who tamper with it.
Thus when I argue for affirmative action, I am not arguing whether one person should be accepted over me. I am arguing for the diversification of schools across America. In order for this to be done, an admissions committee must make a concerted effort to look past the numbers and evaluate the applicant as if he or she were NOT a minority (and only allow the URM status to contribute when the student's background is the most unique or redeeming quality)
|By Doveofpeace (Doveofpeace) on Tuesday, September 28, 2004 - 12:59 am: Edit|
I moved this here from the Parents' board since the parents board is only for issues related to parenting and college.
|By Ilcapo (Ilcapo) on Tuesday, September 28, 2004 - 01:17 am: Edit|
hah thanks and sorry about that...
i was wondering where it went!
|By Socalnick (Socalnick) on Tuesday, September 28, 2004 - 02:18 am: Edit|
One of the issues i have with this is, is that many of the people that affermitive action helps also want a nation where people wont be judged by the color of their skin. Affermitive action though is ment to "diversify" the student body. This is not a collerless idea, because it gives an advantage to people who will add to the color of the campus. If advantages are going to be given to people due to theri bcakground, it should be because of their socio/economic situation. You can have the poorest Asian who lives in a ghetto filled with gangs, get rejected because the son of a President of an Indian gameing casino was native american. The problem with affermitive action is essentially it uses 1 factor, race, to determine who to give the advantage to.
|By Davidrune (Davidrune) on Tuesday, September 28, 2004 - 10:35 am: Edit|
and your problem is spelling.
|By Davidrune (Davidrune) on Tuesday, September 28, 2004 - 10:40 am: Edit|
Anyways... I've fluctuated so much on my views on affirmative action, that I don't even know where I stand.
There is no clear-cut answer. There are pros and cons to affirmative action . And sometimes, it might seem that it fails in it's only goal to encourage racial interaction, because it fosters resentment.
One might say, that it gives under-priviledged blacks a chance. Then, what about priviledged balck students who also benefit from affirmative action? And will a student work as hard, if he knows that mediocrity will get him into a good school?
I'm not saying that the black people that get in due to affirmative action are not qualified. Of course, they are. But are they more qualified than others just because they are black?
And... by continuing affirmative action, are we not just saying that black people will always need a leg-up. Are we not saying that black people are not qualified members of our society? I mean, many other groups have managed to overcome prejudice...
|By Averagemathgeek (Averagemathgeek) on Tuesday, September 28, 2004 - 11:49 am: Edit|
I am against affirmative action. While I agree that this policy promotes diversity and gives some members of a minority a chance, I also believe that the ends do not justify the means. Should colleges discrimate against me because of my skin color? Some may say that this is an exageration. However, it is the truth. If someone is offered admission because of his/her race, then someone else is not offered admission because of his/her race. It is simple mathematics. If the size of a group must be constant and you add something, something else must be removed. Therefore, people are using racism to move towards ethnic equality.
|By Toblin (Toblin) on Tuesday, September 28, 2004 - 01:54 pm: Edit|
I oppose AA as it is presently practiced. I think it is immoral to give extra consideration solely on the basis of race. AA is nothing more than government condoned racial discrimination. If AA's sole criteria was economic I would then be all for it.
|By Thunder77 (Thunder77) on Tuesday, September 28, 2004 - 05:34 pm: Edit|
Do you know why AA is wrong? Because it completely disregard family income factors, which is a better indicator of a disadvantage background.
|By Thinkingoutloud (Thinkingoutloud) on Tuesday, September 28, 2004 - 07:47 pm: Edit|
Affirmative Action requires people to be identified based on their skin color and then rewarded based on their skin color. This is nothing but racism. Affirmative Action undermines the achievements of African Americans who earn their success. Using racism to cure the hardship African Americans experienced in the past, is not a moral solution.
|By Davidrune (Davidrune) on Tuesday, September 28, 2004 - 07:50 pm: Edit|
So... does anybody have any arguments supporting affirmative action?
Like, I'd actually like to know why? I actually want to support affirmative action, I just don't know why I should?
I mean, all my friends present such lucid arguments against affirmative action and all I can say is... "I know you are but what am I.."
|By Valpal (Valpal) on Wednesday, September 29, 2004 - 04:14 am: Edit|
I'm curious about your opinion: Would you support the preferential admission of a student based on his/her sexual identity? Many schools look to diversify their student bodies based on students' "sexual preferences", as well as race, nationality, etc. This is seen as being beneficial to the overall learning environment of the college community. Is it? Should it be a "tipping factor" at any time in the admissions process (assuming that he/she is also academically qualified for admission)?
|By Thinkingoutloud (Thinkingoutloud) on Wednesday, September 29, 2004 - 08:11 am: Edit|
The only valid argument in favor affirmative action that I am aware of goes something like this:
1. American society operates with less conflict if talent and wealth is evenly spread among Americans of different races.
2. Children rely on role models to help create career goals.
3. Children are more likely to rely on role models that look like them.
4. By giving preference to African Americans, more positive role models are created thereby creating an expectation among young African Americans that they can assume valued positions in society.
5. Thus, Affirmative Action reduces conflict in American Society by ensuring many African Americans are included among those with wealth and talent.
I think the argument is valid. The problem is that Affirmative Action relies on racism in order to reduce the harm caused by prior racism.
Valpal, I am not aware of any U.S. Constitutional problems with a college granting preference based on sexual identity (I am assuming you are using this phrase to mean sexual orientation, transgender, etc.) For example, a college that permitted only whites to attend would run into problems, but a college devoted exclusively to homosexuals would not have a problem. On the other hand, if a public college permitted only male homosexuals to attend but not female homosexuals, the college would face challenges based on gender distrimination.
|By Xdad (Xdad) on Wednesday, September 29, 2004 - 11:05 am: Edit|
FWIW, Affirmative Action is still based on race, gender, and ethnicity. Because affirmative action has worked much better regarding gender equality than regarding racial equality, you simply do not hear that much about it.
If you want an argument for the continuous validity of AA, you have to focus on what has not been accomplished in its search for inclusion. Compare the progress made for gender equality with the progress made for racial equality, and you should have no problem in finding arguments. In other words, if AA provides so many advantages to under-represented minorities, why do they still trail so badly in their representation in higher education, and to a certain extent, in higher paying jobs?
The problem is not to have a policy like AA, but that we still have to rely on one.
|By Driver (Driver) on Wednesday, September 29, 2004 - 12:07 pm: Edit|
I don't think gender has played a role in what we call affirmative action for quite some time. Because it was mostly just a matter of previously all-male schools getting used to having equally-qualified females around. When was the last time you heard a female student referred to as a "co-ed?" That's ancient history.
The problem is not that there are schools that actively seek to exclude women or minorities...it's that the people that we as a country have the strongest moral obligation to help---descendents of former slaves--aren't able to meet the admissions standards of our best colleges in proportional numbers. That problem will only be solved in the K-12 years, in my opinion. Changing the entrance standards at the top colleges doesn't do anyone any good.
|By Xdad (Xdad) on Wednesday, September 29, 2004 - 12:53 pm: Edit|
I may not have been clear enough on my comments about AA and gender. Affirmative Action has an effect on far more than school admissions. The government considers women-owned businesses as disadvantaged.
There are two issues in minority enrollment at elite schools: admission and retention. Isn't it interesting that the application of arguably lower standards does not result in lower graduation standards? Simply stated, the admitted students demonstrate that they can do the job, as I believe that the statistics show that minorities tend to graduate in numbers remarkably similar to their white and asian counterparts. Let's not forget that the selection process is based on comparing how well candidates do in their individual environment when compared to their peers. Don't non-URM candidates from rural areas also benefit from different standards?
In addition, I believe that a comparative analysis of recruited athletes -of all races- at less competitive schools would show a picture of our admissions policies that is much more damning.
I do agree that the problems of lower attendance in college by minorities start well before the college years. However, I do see the glaring merits of helping minorities gaining access to our elite colleges, and later at graduate schools. That said, I would also support measures to tie AA help to socio-economic restrictions, and expand the program to include economically disadvantaged students.
|By Valpal (Valpal) on Wednesday, September 29, 2004 - 01:40 pm: Edit|
X-dad, I couldn't have said it better myself!
|By Driver (Driver) on Wednesday, September 29, 2004 - 01:49 pm: Edit|
Harvard profs Gates and Guinier recently presented a study to an association of black Harvard parents/students. They were concerned that the significant majority of Harvard (and other black students at elite schools) were foreign born. The reason for this is that these students came from functional educational systems, and so, the elite colleges achieved their skin color diversity goals, while keeping their retention rates high. The college retention rate for black Americans is abominable, and that is the fault of our K-12 system. The fact that our top schools have to import students of color to meet diversity goals proves it.
|By Valpal (Valpal) on Wednesday, September 29, 2004 - 02:00 pm: Edit|
I do have to agree with you, Driver: When it comes to college-preparedness, our current K-12 system is failing to meet the needs of many African Americans. But the problem goes much farther than that, unfortunately. The roots of the problem are historically far-reaching, and are culturally nurtured, not just within the "African American community", but within the American mindset as a whole.
|By Driver (Driver) on Wednesday, September 29, 2004 - 02:14 pm: Edit|
I'm not sure what you mean valpal, but here's my perspective: Were I a college adcom, I would bend over backwards to admit a home-grown black kid that met my school's admissions criteria. As a parent, I would accept that as real, positive, affirmative, action. I think our public schools fail many kids, but particulary those who have no other options, which means a lot of urban black kids, among others. I've met a large number of African and Caribbean students at Williams, and their parents. I love the fact that my daughter has the chance to live and study with them. But it really frosts me that the most expensive public school district in America (D.C.) can't get its act together and graduate some similar number of young scholars as say, Jamaica.
|By Toblin (Toblin) on Wednesday, September 29, 2004 - 02:27 pm: Edit|
"Harvard profs Gates and Guinier recently presented a study to an association of black Harvard parents/students. They were concerned that the significant majority of Harvard (and other black students at elite schools) were foreign born. The reason for this is that these students came from functional educational systems, and so, the elite colleges achieved their skin color diversity goals, while keeping their retention rates high. The college retention rate for black Americans is abominable, and that is the fault of our K-12 system. The fact that our top schools have to import students of color to meet diversity goals proves it."
Best post ever on the subject of AA! Thanks.
|By Driver (Driver) on Wednesday, September 29, 2004 - 02:46 pm: Edit|
I should have said "from immigrant families" rather than "foreign born," though. Here's a quote from a Clarence Page article.
"Harvard law professor Lani Guinier and Henry Louis Gates Jr., chairman of Harvard's African and African-American studies department, reported that 8 percent, or about 530, of Harvard's undergraduates are black, but somewhere between one-half and two-thirds of them are 'West Indian and African immigrants or their children, or to a lesser extent, children of biracial couples.'"
|By Davidrune (Davidrune) on Wednesday, September 29, 2004 - 03:31 pm: Edit|
You say that all of the african american students accepted graduate. But that is not really the problem. Of course they are capable of doing the work. About 90% of the students that apply to ivies are capable of doing the work.
However, why should they get acceptance preferentially on their skin.
And we can't just skirt the issue and start to discuss athletes. This discussion is on minorities, you can solve a problem by pointing out another.
The only argument that actually makes sense would be Thinkingoutloud's. The one that involves role-models. And that's the explanation that actually justifies affirmative action to me.
However, when do we have enough role-models. When will preferential treatment stop?
|By Mexbruin (Mexbruin) on Wednesday, September 29, 2004 - 03:41 pm: Edit|
--------------------------------------------------Bottom Line American blacks and latinos are not represented in higher education as they should be,
|By Davidrune (Davidrune) on Wednesday, September 29, 2004 - 06:28 pm: Edit|
|By Davidrune (Davidrune) on Wednesday, September 29, 2004 - 06:28 pm: Edit|
|By Socalnick (Socalnick) on Wednesday, September 29, 2004 - 10:04 pm: Edit|
Comparing population % to college population % yes may minorities are not represented as they should be. affermitive action was made to help minorites who have over come odds to get where they are. the problem is is that many caucasion and asian students have overcame the same odds too, but dont get any credit for it. colleges claim they are trying to "diversify" their school, but that is construed by me to be racism. im not saying the poor latinos or african americans shouldnt be given an advantage, it is the affulent one who shouldnt.
|By Taffy (Taffy) on Thursday, September 30, 2004 - 12:42 am: Edit|
5% of MIT's incoming freshman had Highschool GPAs below 3.0
1% of MIT's incoming freshman had Highschool GPAs below 2.0
i dont support affirmative action, but i also dont support people BUYING THEIR WAY INTO A GOOD SCHOOL. and our nations leaders shouldnt be buying their kids into yale and stanford.
|By Socalnick (Socalnick) on Thursday, September 30, 2004 - 02:06 am: Edit|
i agree with you taffy, national leaders shouldnt buy their kids into schools. still if your last name was clinton and your parents names were bill and hillary i doubt very many schools will decline you. there is another way you can look at it which i dont feel like going into, but in the end it is always unfair for the ligitimate applicants.
|By Joseancer (Joseancer) on Thursday, September 30, 2004 - 12:33 pm: Edit|
“as I believe that the statistics show that minorities tend to graduate in numbers remarkably similar to their white and asian counterparts.”
Not to argue that there has been a drop in the quality of “graduates”, but the fact that graduation rates may be the same, doesn’t necessarily mean there hasn’t been a drop in the quality of graduates.
Graduation just means meeting the minimal standards required for one to move on from the university.. the drop in quality cited by many people isn’t at the lower spectrum of graduates who barely meet requirements, but at the other side of the spectrum.. that there may be less “stellar” graduates because of more “minimalist” ones…
Racial prejudice/discrimination in employment has been documented quite clearly in research done by sociologists. Now if its been shown to exist.. how else does one suggest combating it aside from affirmative action policies or at least.. extra incentives for employers to hire minorities. Do you expect it to addressed on a case by case basis?
It is almost IMPOSSIBLE for an individual to PROVE that racial discrimination has taken place in his employment attempts; that’s why general policies of affirmative action in employment have been implemented.
As for schools, racial prejudice has NOT been shown to exist in college admissions and I don’t believe it does exist. So I agree that there is no reason to base AA in colleges on ethnicity/race.. it should be based on something that actually has an effect on a student’s ability to perform in school, such as economic disadvantage or problems in family structure (single parent?) something that actually has relevance.
I’ve grown up in a single parent home and my mom’s income hovers but has never exceeded the mid 20’s and I managed to get a 1480. Of course I’m quite the exception rather than the norm in my neighborhood, but my being low-income certainly made it more difficult to perform in school than my ethnicity did. I hear all these Hispanic kids at my university talk about how the “person who wrote the SAT was a racist”. What in gods name are they talking about?
The truth is the low performance of Hispanics (I prefer only to speak for the ethnicity I belong to) is largely connected to our culture.. and by that I don’t mean latin-american culture.. I mean that generally the average Hispanic family in the US has working-class/low-income parents who came here from a different country to find work, not to get an education or have their kids get an education. I could get into a long discussion about this, and I think I mentioned it in a different post, but just trust me. The fact that Hispanic kids perform poorly in school may have a lot to do with income, but I would definitely argue that it has more to do with how much they prefer to play basketball, make money, and drive nice cars rather than go to college.
If people want to see improvement in Hispanic academic performance, they should stop trying to shove the kids into colleges and focus more on whats going on in the home and what kind of academic work ethic they are developing as children(especially in elementary and middle school).
The old saying I always bring up is… a student with a desire to learn will get far more out of a beat up old book than one with the latest educational software, but no will to use it.
|By Valpal (Valpal) on Friday, October 01, 2004 - 12:45 am: Edit|
Jose, your unique circumstances---those of being a high achieving hispanic, from a low income family already give you a trememdous leg up in college admissions. AA is your friend, like it or not. And people will resent you, and assume that you are not "worthy" of your spot, even though your stats clearly show that you are. All a person in your position can do is continue to excell and grab every oportunity that presents itself to you.
|By Babybird87 (Babybird87) on Friday, October 01, 2004 - 08:36 pm: Edit|
oh, ilcapo and your stupid arguments for affirmative action...may I remind you that yourself are a white child negatively affected by all of it. the end.
|By Joseancer (Joseancer) on Friday, October 01, 2004 - 11:24 pm: Edit|
"may I remind you that yourself are a white child negatively affected by all of it. the end."
Of course... no one ever argues for anything that isn't in their best interest.. why on earth would someone do something like that? Of course everyone fighting for gay rights must be gay themselves.
geese, lay off a little. I dont agree with affirmative action as its presently implemented, but simply dismissing ilcapo's arguments as "stupid" and reminding him that its in his best interest to argue against AA, you've added absolutely nothing to the discussion.
|By Sixsixty (Sixsixty) on Saturday, October 02, 2004 - 10:50 am: Edit|
"The worst form of equality is that which makes unequal things equal"
|By Babybird87 (Babybird87) on Saturday, October 02, 2004 - 03:05 pm: Edit|
nice quote, I'm in agreement
|By Joseancer (Joseancer) on Sunday, October 03, 2004 - 04:26 am: Edit|
"The wish to spread those opinions that we hold conducive to our own welfare is so deeply rooted in the English character that few of us can escape its influence."
"Each child represents either a potential addition to the protective capacity and enlightened citizenship of the nation or, if allowed to suffer from neglect, a potential addition to the destructive forces of a community. . . . The interests of the nation are involved in the welfare of this array of children no less than in our great material affairs."
|By Testertest (Testertest) on Tuesday, October 05, 2004 - 03:52 am: Edit|
You may be pleasantly surprised to discover that the admissions office is an understanding group of people. I would believe that if you are a pessimist then that is the fastest way to be rejected. WHAT school wants to admit someone that is down on life, the school, and advancement. WHO would want to give $$ to someone that dis's the benefactor?
What happens if you leave out of the acceptance equation, factors as race, color, ethnic backrouund, and religion? Is the resulting acceptance equation is to have an education system that benefits the rich. one with legacy, and being connected; and I add mediogre grades and IQ ? Resulting in GWB? I hope we are passed that phase in our history. I also would be ashamed to be have accepted, attended, and graduated from Yale with those credentials. How about the other repliers?
|By Originaloog (Originaloog) on Tuesday, October 05, 2004 - 09:28 am: Edit|
Ilcapo said something interesting...that many urm's come from privleged homes and many others from very underprivleged backgrounds. I believe that in the elite schools, AA considerations should take both ethnic and economic factors into consideration. And if diversity of the student body was really the goal of admissions, nonminority, first generation college students from impoverished, backgrounds should be considered for AA preferrences.
However the biggest admission preferrence program at elite colleges is reserved for athletes. In comparing these admittees with AA admittees it was found that the athletes generally performed worse academically, were less apt to graduate, were less engaged in college life, had less successful careers, and were less active as alumni than their AA counterparts. All this is documented in "The Game of Life'.
What is fascinating is that in the emotional debate about AA admissions, few people express concern about the far greater impact that athletic admissions have on the college. And preferrences are not only given to f'ball and b'ball players, but to tennis, soccer, hockey, wrestling, fencing, baseball and every kind of athlete. And when one further realizes that at a colleges like HYP field more varsity athletes than any Big 10 school, the impacts are potentially great.
Read the book.
|By Entropy (Entropy) on Tuesday, October 05, 2004 - 01:43 pm: Edit|
White women historically and currently, benefict more from Affirmative Action, than any other group. I don't understand why some people are still hellbent on making "racial minorities" (e.g. African-American, Native Americans) posterchilds for Affirmative Action.
|By Davidrune (Davidrune) on Tuesday, October 05, 2004 - 07:08 pm: Edit|
Entropy: How is that possible?
|By Fabrizio (Fabrizio) on Tuesday, October 05, 2004 - 09:12 pm: Edit|
I agree with Thinkingoutloud.
I do not support affirmative action. I feel it is wrong for a person to be given special treatment because of his race. That has nothing to do with anything.
The whole application of affirmative action is even more ridiculous when you examine how Asians are treated.
"Asian Americans are included in federal employment affirmative action policies which apply to most employers who receive federal funds. However, they are not considered an eligible minority for many of the federal student aid programs and their eligibility for special college admission programs varies with the educational institutions. In relation to affirmative action policy, Asian Americans are placed in a kind of buffer zone, sometimes treated as a minority and sometimes not" ("Asian Americans", n.d.)
"Asian Americans have made it without affirmative action so why can't everyone else?" Retrieved from on October 5, 2004.
|By Joseancer (Joseancer) on Wednesday, October 06, 2004 - 04:47 am: Edit|
"Asian Americans have made it without affirmative action so why can't everyone else?"
Precisely why I believe that the low overall academic performance of hispanics is more tied to cultural views of education rather than income, as the low-income effect is universal.
I think I remember reading somewhere that low-income asians tend to outperform middle-income hispanics and african-americans? not sure how true this is, but the fact that it isn't immediately unbelievable says something in itself.
However, AA programs based on things like income and family structure should certainly be implemented. Equal results shouldn't be a priority, but equal opportuntiy most certainly should be. AA is meant to be a mechanism to sort of "level the playing field" among students and I imagine if middle and upper-income students were to see benefits going to students that they know need them, there would be much less dispute over AA. Its the fact that much of AA's benefits go to people that aren't exactly in need of them, not so much making up for disadvantages but providing extra advantages, that, at least in my view, is the reason for so much controversy.
And just to respond to something I found in this thread.
"Bottom Line American blacks and latinos are not represented in higher education as they should be"
Ahh... most certainly they aren't.. but the question isn't whether or not they are represented correctly, but more, whose fault is it?
|By Takiusproteus (Takiusproteus) on Wednesday, October 06, 2004 - 02:34 pm: Edit|
Well, not -all- Asians are in this sort of "over-represented minority" "buffer zone" status. Don't forget the Southeast Asians are considered an URM, while East Asians are, well, not.
It seems we are all pondering which factors are in play here. Why are some people not academically high-achievers, while others are?
Economic/social class? Likely.
Race has nothing to do with it - all the other factors that are **seemingly** attached to it, on the other hand, are.
Rather than ask for race on apps, howabout...
"Has your family been especially encouraging about your academic career?"
"Has your family been pressuring and pushing you for higher education?"
"Has your family ever asked you to go to work to earn money rather than study?"
"Do you feel that going to an institution of higher learning would put an excessive financial burden on yourself or your family?"
"Have your parent/guardians expressed reluctance to send you to college, for financial reasons?"
With such a complicated issue, more detailed questions about situation should be asked. Nothing can be generalized and whittled down to a single factor - basing AA on race is one big assumption-filled misinformed mistake.
|By Joseancer (Joseancer) on Wednesday, October 06, 2004 - 07:55 pm: Edit|
I would definitely at least consider the argument that American society as a whole is greatly responsible for much of the problems tied to the low academic performance of african-americans, after all they were barred from attaining any form of education for 200 years. Whether or not this means that they should be given preferential treatment in admissions, I don't know. Perhaps the ends don't justify the means... yes racial preference was still wrong even with 200 years less of philosophical and sociological advancement, but wouldn't using it now to try to "correct" the wrongs of the past, with all that we've learned, be so much more unjust? I'd say thats a good question
In my opinion, two wrongs don't make a right. We should focus on distributing aid to those who need it, regardless of what kind of injustices may have occured in the past or what the cause of that need is. A low income white kid and a low-income black kid need help the same, and to tell either one that the other is going to get more because of something that neither had control over, is in my view, unjust. Otherwise, the ghosts of the past will contiinue to haunt us and the fighting will go on.
I myself don't really like the idea of arguing for one's own "community" when it comes to discussing issues like AA. In other words, the idea that when I grow up and make money, that I should donate money to the "Hispanic Scholarship Fund" and try to raise only hispanic performance...why? Is one student more entitled to my aid over another simply because he/she happens to be my same ethnicity? I could never stare a black student in the face and tell him that even though he needs a scholarship and deserves it, that I can't give it to him because we have different ethnicities.
Its all such an enormously controversial issue. Even I'm not sure whether I'm right in holding these views. Something inside of me tells me that if we would just stop isolating ourselves into ethnic communities and arguing only for our own ethnicity’s interest, that it would be to the benefit of all. But then, perhaps the tendency to group ourselves into small “communities” and defend our own interests is far more embedded into the human psyche than I take it to be, and then I’m really just hurting myself in attempting to not “participate” in one community or the other.
Its something I’ve constantly reflected on for quite some time, and will surely continue to do so.
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