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Affirmative Action is Reverse Discrimination

Affirmative Action is Reverse Discrimination

When the Civil Rights Bill was being debated on the floor of the Senate, Barry Goldwater predicted that this particular bill might be abused. Herbert Humphrey, however, stated that he would eat every page of the bill if ever it were used to justify discrimination against anybody on account of race or sex. The bill eventually passed and became the Civil Rights Act. From college admissions to government contracts, the Civil Rights Act has been grossly abused by giving race and gender primary consideration in admissions and hiring, resulting in blatant reverse discrimination.

Paul Craig Roberts and Larry Stratton, co-author of The New Color Line: How Quotas and Privileges Destroy Democracy, document the silent change of the 1964 Civil Rights Act from a statute forbidding preferences based on race and gender into a weapon to coerce employers to adopt and implement quotas.

This change is not so silent today. Roberts and Stratton show that, “quotas are based on an intentional misreading of Title VII and are strictly illegal under the 1964 Civil Rights Act.” An explicit example of this intentional misreading, or abuse, of the Civil Rights Act is when a person is fired to fulfill a quota.

On August 8, the Federal Third Circuit Court of Appeals agreed. The court ruled that the Piscataway, N.J. Board of Education violated the Civil Rights Act when it fired Sharon Taxman, an “overrepresented” Jewish female school teacher, to make room for a black woman under the school system’s affirmative action plan. The school district was ordered by the court to pay $144,000 in back pay. The judges’ decision was based on their own investigation into the legislative history of Title VII …

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…they are black?

There is no question that racism did exist in our society and still does today, but the solution is not reversing the discrimination. It is hard to imagine that segregation of our schools was still legal in California as late as 1974, it is even harder to imagine that university admissions are still based on race in 1996. The solution to preferences in hiring and college admissions should be stricter penalties to those who discriminate based on race or gender. Also, it is a little late in the game to squeeze unqualified students into graduate school. We should be working with these students in grade school. Our universities and our government will unlikely look at any logical solutions because of their reputation of putting bandaids on social problems.

There is no doubt, if Herbert Humphrey were here today, he would be eating a lot of paper.

Affirmative Action is Necessary

Affirmative Action is Necessary

Affirmative action is the perfect fuel for a heated debate. Ever since formal plans for affirmative action were proposed by President Lyndon B. Johnson and instigated in 1964, this fiery topic has been battled back and forth at presidential campaigns, discussed in depth in classrooms, and been thoroughly explored at the dinner table. Put simply, affirmative action affects everyone’s lives. This has become particularly evident during this past year in the state of Texas, and more specifically in the city of Austin, due to the recent ruling in an affirmative action lawsuit. The ramifications of the decision of this case have effectively destroyed all affirmative action plans created by universities in Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi. Thus these states are on the brink of re-creating a segregated society, in which minorities are forced to linger outside of the world of higher education and risk becoming social monsters.

In 1992, four white applicants, Cheryl Hopwood, Douglas Carvell, Ken Elliott, and David Rogers, were denied admission into the law school at UT Austin. In September of that same year, all four filed a discrimination lawsuit against the law school. When the case was presented before U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks in August of 1994, Sparks denied them their 14th Amendment right to equal protection, because they could not prove reverse discrimination and thus could not prove they would have been admitted to the law school under a system in which all applicants were judged equally (Phillips 3). In turn, the prosecutors took their case to the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Judge Jerry Smith reversed Judge Sparks decision, ruling the law school’s affirmative-action…

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… is that, like the monster in the novel, many of these minorities may very well likely resort to violence in order to release the feelings of injustice that they rightly feel.

This is an alarming situation that promptly needs to be corrected. Our schools and society cannot be allowed to follow in Victor’s Frankenstein’s footsteps. Minorities are full-fledged members of our society and must be treated as such. Society cannot merely abandon an entire portion of itself, nor plans that are designed to protect this portion. If society is to prevent a whole new generation of ‘monsters’ from being created, it must take responsibility for its members and educate them.

Works Cited

King, Michael. “With All Deliberate Speed?” The Texas Observer. May 3, 1996. Phillips, Jim. “Court Lets Hopwood Ruling Stand”. Austin American Statesman. July 2, 1996.

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