affirmative action generally means giving preferential treatment to minorities in admission to universities or employment in government & businesses. The policies were originally developed to correct decades of discrimination and to give disadvantaged minorities a boost. The diversity of our current society as opposed to that of 50 years ago seems to indicate the programs have been a success. But now, many think the policies are no longer needed and that they lead to more problems than they solve.
One notable example is a case argued a few years back in the Supreme Court concerning admissions to the University of Michigan. The school had a policy of rating potential applicants on a point system. Being a minority student earned you more than twice as many points as achieving a perfect SAT score. Three white students sued citing this as raced-based discrimination. School officials said that diversity is desirable and affirmative action is the only way to achieve true diversity. Several other cases involving affirmative action have followed similar arguments.
Affirmative action leads to reverse discrimination. Affirmative action is designed to end discrimination and unfair treatment of employees/students based on color, but it in effect does the opposite. Whites who work harder and/or are more qualified can be passed over strictly because they are white. Contrary to many stereotypes, many minorities fall into the middle or upper class, and many whites live in poverty. Unfortunately, the way things are set up now, a poverty-stricken white student who uses discipline and hard work to become the best he can be can be passed over by a rich minority student who doesn’t put in much effort at all.
Affirmative Action = Reverse Discrimination We are all aware that discrimination took place over 50 years ago. What some might not be aware of is that because of the actions of our ancestors, we, white males, are held responsible and are penalized because of these actions. Affirmative action is a way to help minorities in sex and race to get accepted into colleges or get hired for jobs while the ...
Affirmative action lowers standards of accountability needed to push students or employees to perform better. If a minority student can get into Harvard with a 3.2 grade-point average, why should she push herself to get a 4.0? Although some students or employees are self-motivated, most people need an extra push or incentive to do their very best. By setting lower standards for admission or hiring, we are lowering the level of accountability. We should reward hard work, discipline, and achievement; we shouldn’t reward a student simply because he or she is a certain race, nor punish another student simply because he or she isn’t.
Students admitted on this basis are often ill-equipped to handle the schools to which they’ve been admitted. Imagine an AA minor league baseball player suddenly asked to bat cleanup in the majors, or a high school science fair contestant suddenly asked to take a rocket scientist job at NASA. There’s a possibility of success in these situations, but it’s more likely they will be in over their heads. Schools like Harvard and Yale have high GPA and SAT requirements because it is extremely difficult to graduate from them. Thus, when they’re forced to lower standards to achieve a minority quota, some students can’t keep up. This isn’t to say these students are less capable, but chances are that if they can’t meet minimum requirements, they probably aren’t ready to go there. The far-lower graduation rate of minorities is testament to the fact that they are too often going to schools that don’t match their ability. The original application criteria of schools were put in for a reason. We should adhere to them.
... Fact: If half of the people of color who are admitted to schools under affirmative action programs were cut, the acceptance rates of ... denied admittance at Boston Latin High School even though she tested higher than eleven minority students who did get in. Is this ... p.5). Is this worth General Powell's concern? However, some minority students might not need to worry about their academic achievements ...
It would help lead a truly color-blind society. When you apply for a job or fill out a college application, how often are asked about things like your hair color, eye color, or height? Unless it’s for a modeling or athletic position, probably never. Why? It’s because hair & eye color or height don’t have any effect on your ability to do a job or succeed at a school. There’s no association between hair/eye color and intelligence, discipline, ambition, character, or other essentials. Thus, it’s useless to even ask about the information. Conversely, there’s no association between skin color and intelligence/discipline/etc. So why do we keep drawing attention to it? Wouldn’t it be great if we one day lived in a society when skin color was ignored as much as hair & eye color?
It is condescending to minorities to say they need affirmative action to succeed. When you give preferential treatment to minorities in admission or hiring practices, you’re in effect saying “You’re too stupid or incapable of achieving on your own, so let me help you”. It is condescending and insulting to imply that minorities cannot achieve their goals through hard work and ability.
It demeans true minority achievement; i.e. success is labeled as result of affirmative action rather than hard work and ability. Ask Condi Rice or Colin Powell how they got to where they are — hard work or affirmative action? Both were hired because they are bright, articulate, and well-suited for their positions. Clearly both would be offended if you said they got to where they were strictly because of affirmative action. The same can be said of minority doctors, lawyers, business leaders, etc. Too often, their achievements are demeaned by people who believe preferential treatment got them to their current positions. Minorities must then work twice as hard to earn respect.
Affirmative Action in Higher Education In its tumultuous forty year history, affirmative action has been both praised and attacked as an answer to racial inequality. The policy was introduced by President Lyndon Johnson in 1965 as a method of redressing discrimination that persisted despite civil right efforts and constitutional guarantees. After the passage of Title VII, which prohibits ...
Based on a website aa supporters believed that aa is a way to pay reparations to the descendents of wrongly treated minorities during the construction of the U.S., The U.S should actually pay reparations to the descendents thereby supplying disadvantaged homes with money to go to private schools and have a option to enjoy the opportunities that advantaged people have. If there able to explore these different options as others are able to, diversity will be maintained thereby appeasing affirmative action supporters concerns that diversity will be compromised. With diversity maintained because the no longer underprivileged are able to afford the same opportunities as others, it will open their minds to explore career paths that they wouldn’t have otherwise considered… just like, if not better than what affirmative action supporters believe affirmative action does now.