affirmative action

Anti-Racism’s Threat to Academic Freedom

Medpage Today reports that “a paper advocating against affirmative action in cardiology programs is melting under a blast of Twitter heat.” Melting is more wishful thinking than reporting—the substance of the paper was untouched by the firestorm, which was instead inflamed by the author’s opinions—but the assault has indeed been vicious. It also raises an ominous […]

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University Removes Director for Mild Criticism of Affirmative Action, Violating Free Speech

The University of Pittsburgh has removed a program director at its medical center because he published a scholarly, peer-reviewed white paper discussing the pitfalls of affirmative action for black and Hispanic students. This violated the First Amendment, which protects even harsh criticism of affirmative action. The white paper was gentle in its criticism of racial preferences, merely […]

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The Invention of ‘Systemic Racism’

It is now the official view in government, industry, and education that African Americans and certain other “people of color” perform poorly in schools and the workforce, but nonetheless must be treated as if they perform well. The statistically weak performance of African Americans, according to the official view, is not their fault; it is […]

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Biden ‘Racial Equity Plan’ Would Enrich Wealthy Lawyers at Employers’ Expense

Joe Biden released his “racial equity plan” on Tuesday. Some of it deals with racial issues, like a major expansion of affirmative action and lots of race-related government spending. But it also contains radical changes to America’s employment laws that have little to do with race. Under his plan, even the tiniest employers with only […]

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Scheming to Revive Racial Preferences in California

California’s deep-blue legislature has been itching to repeal Proposition 209 for years. Now, in the midst of a global pandemic, legislators are giving that effort priority over the state’s plainly more urgent concerns. Shame on them. Adopted by voters in 1996, Proposition 209 amended California’s constitution to prohibit the state from engaging in preferential treatment […]

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Another Scheme to Justify Racial Preferences

In 1996 55% of California voters shocked Democrats by approving Proposition 209, which added a provision to the state constitution prohibiting state agencies from “discriminating against, or granting preferential treatment to, any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin in the operation of public employment, public education, or […]

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Tricking Voters to Accept Racial Preferences

The margin of victory for Washington state voters who opposed the return of affirmative action has been inching up. A few days ago, it was .6%, about 13,000 votes. As of Friday night, November 15, it was 1.08%, around 21,000 votes. It should continue to increase as the remaining returns come in. In my recent […]

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Washington State Voters Reject Affirmative Action, Again

All the votes cast on November 5 in the “duplicitous attempt” to bring affirmative action back to Washington state have not been counted, but since the counties with large numbers of uncounted ballots all voted heavily against affirmative action it is now all but certain that attempt fell short. As of Monday morning, November 11, […]

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A Duplicitous Attempt to Rescue Affirmative Action

Despite all the attention that has been devoted to Students for Fair Admissions v. Harvard in which a U.S. District judge in Boston recently held that Harvard’s discrimination against Asian applicants was not illegal, the next chapter in the generations-old battle over affirmative action will not be written by the First Circuit in Boston or […]

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Why Harvard’s Affirmative Action Victory Should Be Overturned

The recent affirmative action opinion (discussed here) in Students For Fair Admissions v. Harvard University held that Harvard’s discrimination against Asians did not amount to discrimination. Despite the victory of Harvard and the entire higher education hierarchy, committed as it is to using racial preferences to promote “diversity,” there is a reason to believe this […]

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Will SCOTUS Back Harvard’s Affirmative Action Win?

A few days ago, Judge Allison Burroughs, appointed by President Obama to the Federal District of Massachusetts, issued her decision in Students For Fair Admissions v. Harvard College in which the plaintiffs claimed that affirmative action preferences awarded to blacks and Hispanics amounted to illegal discrimination against Asians. It’s a doozy, by which I mean […]

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Doing Physics While Black

If “diversity” is not only good but an essential core ingredient of a quality education, as the current academic mantra insists, then physics — the least diverse of all fields (blacks earned 2% of bachelor’s degrees in 2015) — has a big problem. Now Stanford claims to have a solution. “Physics faculty and students are […]

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Liberals and the Looming Big Money Problem Facing Higher Education

Today’s liberals not only tolerate but encourage colleges and universities to give preferences based on race (see affirmative action and the College Board’s new “adversity” score). Now they want to prohibit giving preferential admissions treatment based on … well, it’s not completely clear, but family wealth comes pretty close. As a result, many defenders of […]

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News and Fake News About College Admissions

As demonstrated by both the complaint that Harvard discriminates against Asians (the Boston federal district judge’s decision is presumably imminent) and the furor over the spreading pay-to-admit scandal of rich parents buying their kids’ admission to selective colleges, affirmative action remains a hotly contested matter of ongoing public debate. The latest brouhaha comes from Washington […]

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Most Americans Reject Race-based College Admissions

A large majority of Americans—73 percent—say that neither race nor ethnicity should be factors in deciding which students are granted admission to colleges and universities. Only 7 percent think race and ethnicity should be major factors, and 19 percent favor allowing them to be light factors. The survey was conducted by Pew Research Center in […]

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Two Shaky Reasons Why Harvard Could Win Its Racial Bias Suit

The hearing last week in the case of Students For Fair Admissions v. Harvard College, presumably the last until the judge offers her opinion, witnessed the unfortunate prominence of both a red herring and a red flag. The Boston Globe captured both the red herring and a red flag in its lede: “US District Judge […]

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Undocumented Students and Affirmative Action

DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) is on everyone’s short list as a primary building block of any possible compromise between President Trump and the Democrats on immigration. Thus, it is surprising how little attention has been paid to the striking similarities between the debate over that issue and the equally contentious debate over affirmative […]

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Can A University Be Found Liable For Telling The Truth About Racial Preference?

We may be about to find out whether a university can be found liable for giving accurate advice to an applicant. Inside Higher Ed reported yesterday that Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia is being sued by a rejected applicant to its medical school for, among other things, providing advice in an interview that in all […]

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Heather Mac Donald: In the Crosshairs of a Progressive Campaign

Heather Mac Donald’s book The Diversity Delusion: How Race and Gender Pandering Corrupt the University and Undermine Our Culture, was published more than four months ago, but I just checked Amazon, and it still stands impressively among all book sales at #798. It ranks #1 in two sub-categories of education. She appeared on Tucker Carlson’s […]

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Is Being Black a Badge of Merit?

 The question of whether, or to what degree, applicants are admitted or hired because they are black or Hispanic (or American Indian/Alaska Native (AIAN) or Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander (NHPI)) is a central and indeed indispensable component of the ongoing debate over affirmative action. Now, if a recent Classics meeting in San Diego is any indication, […]

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Darpa image on spectrometers

The Push for Unconstitutional College Programs

There they go again. Inside Higher Ed reports on a new handwringing study lamenting the “underrepresentation” of members of various “Underrepresented Racial and Ethnic Groups” (URGs) among engineering students. The study by the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, funded by the National Science Foundation, found, as all such studies always find, that “Hispanic and […]

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Reminding Us Why Racial Preferences are a Bad Idea

Jason Riley, one of my favorite writers, is black and opposes racial preferences (for all groups) on the grounds that they don’t solve underlying problems, sow discord, and become a source of political chicanery. A few years back, he wrote a very illuminating book entitled, Please Stop Helping Us in which he explained why the […]

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Bow Down to Diversity or Risk Your Academic Career

When jobs are scarce, and when you’ve spent your 20s living spartanly, reading books, books, books, writing a dissertation, and you’re sick of being a nobody whose only recognition comes from students in your freshman comp course who thank you for spending time correcting their grammar and punctuation, you’ll say anything the people who control […]

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Asian students

Education Journals Show the Flag for Harvard in Lawsuit

The coverage of Students For Fair Admissions v. Harvard College reveals as much about the state of “diversity” in the press, especially the specialized education industry press, as the trial itself does about Harvard’s practices. Inside Higher Ed I have criticized the bias of Scott Jaschik, Inside Higher Ed’s editor and one of its three […]

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Debating the Lawsuit Against Harvard

This is an edited selection of recent correspondence between Stuart Taylor, Jr., an author and expert on the Supreme Court, and John S. ROSENBERG, a lapsed historian who blogs at Discriminations. ROSENBERG’s article, “Harvard’s Strip Tease About Wealth and Race,” was published on Minding The Campus October 22nd . Stuart Taylor, Jr., is co-author of […]

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Harvard’s Strip Tease About Wealth and Race

The trial of Students For Fair Admissions v. President and Fellows of Harvard College began last week in federal district court in Boston to determine whether “Fair Harvard” treats its Asian-American applicants, and perhaps others, equitably. The SFFA plaintiffs claim Harvard discriminates against Asian-American applicants, and others, every which way from Sunday, but it is […]

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Asian students

Ending Anti-Asian Discrimination at Harvard: Plan B

It is uncertain how the current lawsuit regarding Harvard’s alleged discriminate against Asian applicants will eventually turn out, but the smart money predicts little will change. After all, this is just one of many similar previous lawsuits, and racial preferences survived them all. Nor should we ignore administrative ingenuity in circumventing court orders. At most, […]

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Is Affirmative Action Near Its Expiration Date?

Writing in the Washington Post, Megan McArdle points to the threat to racial preferences posed by the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, noting that although his nomination has led to much handwringing over the fate of Roe v. Wade, the future of “another landmark case,” Regents of the University of California v. […]

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Asian students

Harvard, Not Trump, Could Kill Affirmative Action

Editor’s note: Even though the Trump administration has reversed Obama era affirmative action policies as they apply to schools, and even though Trump will likely appoint another conservative Supreme Court Justice before the end of the year, academia will continue to write its own rules and institute its own policies on racial preferences. More important […]

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Taking a Stand on Gender Equity—for Men

Quick Read! A doctoral student at the University of Southern California with no Connection to Yale has filed a Title IX complaint against Yale’s affirmative action programs for women. The student, Kursat Christoff Pekgoz alleges that since women do better than men in gaining admission and academic performance at Yale, there is no basis for […]

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