Law School Discussion

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Messages - struggles

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11
Well, from my point of view there's no true detriment cause by AA. I believe in equality and for things to get closer to equal some get pulled back and some get pushed up. Which, is not entirely "fair" if your not the one reaping the benefits. However, there's a greater good here. Yes, is unfair if some over priveledged wealhty white kid gets pushed out of their spot in school X (if that's even the reality of what happens, and I'm not saying it is). But, that poor black kid who climbed mountains to get there is just as deserving of the spot, even if that means a few less points on the LSAT. If the LSAT can even be used as a good measurement or predictor of a minorities qualifications to go to law school. It will take years and years to change society into one that brings up equal black and whites in terms of education. And small steps along the way help. Its not so much an individual thing, that white kid vs that black kid. Its more a macro picture, there's no detriment to society for giving that URM an extra push, but there's possibly a detriment to that losing idividual....In fact, the more and more URMs that get in push us somewhere closer to a more equal society. Whats on the other side of that coin? there's a few less spot for whites? doesn't seem like much detriment to me.

12
I think it's pretty clear Cowher was joking.

Also, for those saying that the problem starts much earlier and we need to reform our elementary and high schools, and for those who talk about minorities being made to felt victimized - do you think a step in the right direction might be eliminating AA?  I guess the argument would go something like:  once we stop telling minorities they need additional help to get into the same schools as whites, won't they eventually start to do better once they're on a level playing field?  Of course the low achievement isn't just a psychological byproduct of AA, I'm sure it mostly has to do with inequities in funding for schools in different communities.  I guess I just don't see what AA is doing to make this whole situation better.

Its called breaking the cycle...AA may be a late start on the whole problem, but if it worked an a large scale for URM's then the cycle would not keep repeating itself. Yes, a change in our inner city elementary and high schools would be a tremendous help, but thats a much grander feat then AA. Plus, in my opinion AA if a kinda a cop out, false hope. I'm sure our great leaders knew the BEST way to fix the problme wasn't to start wasn't to start at the college level...

I think more than anything it's probably a PR thing, for universities and for politicians.  I think people are very reluctant to say or do anything that has even the slightest hint of not being overwhelmingly positive toward URMs, and admitting 98% whites would fall under that category. 

I'm sure there's also really noble intentions, but for every URM you admit, there's some non-URM that doesn't get admitted, so I guess I just don't see the benefit of letting in that URM over an oftentimes more qualified non-URM.  I don't see the benefit of "breaking the cycle."  I see AA as just changing around a little bit who gets what law school acceptances, jobs, money, etc (i.e. some URMs will get slightly better jobs at the expense of some non-URMs)  I don't see how AA increases the sum of human happiness - it seems that it just redistributes a little who gets what, but does so in a racially discriminatory manner.  I haven't thought about this too deeply, but I just don't see the value in AA.   

Ok. If you dont' see the benefit of "breaking the cycle" then we are obviously are completely opposite ends of the spectrum and there's really no point in arguing. 

13
I think it's pretty clear Cowher was joking.

Also, for those saying that the problem starts much earlier and we need to reform our elementary and high schools, and for those who talk about minorities being made to felt victimized - do you think a step in the right direction might be eliminating AA?  I guess the argument would go something like:  once we stop telling minorities they need additional help to get into the same schools as whites, won't they eventually start to do better once they're on a level playing field?  Of course the low achievement isn't just a psychological byproduct of AA, I'm sure it mostly has to do with inequities in funding for schools in different communities.  I guess I just don't see what AA is doing to make this whole situation better.

Its called breaking the cycle...AA may be a late start on the whole problem, but if it worked an a large scale for URM's then the cycle would not keep repeating itself. Yes, a change in our inner city elementary and high schools would be a tremendous help, but thats a much grander feat then AA. Plus, in my opinion AA if a kinda a cop out, false hope. I'm sure our great leaders knew the BEST way to fix the problme wasn't to start wasn't to start at the college level...

14
Another thing that's been bothering me lately, being a baseball fan, why aren't there more black people in major league baseball? And if you really wanna talk about injustice, look at the NHL. Thats probably the most racist sports league in the world.

It starts with lawyers and we need more black lawyers in order to achieve the black vision.

Again, black students should be able to get into schools regardless of what they score on the LSAT. If you are black and you are looking to go to law school, that should be enough to ensure your place.

this is a pretty lame post.  you come off as pouty.  you can do better.

First let me preface this with I, unlike most people of color,  did well on the LSAT. 

That being said I do think that there needs to be some sort of reality check about why students of color with sky high gpa's and low LSATS  can't get in to top schools.  I think attention needs to be paid from the start of a person of colors education--meaning look at the schools most of us went to!  From K-12 they are underfunded and poor in quality when you compare them to our white counter parts.  Even at school in the Bay Area regarded as "great" like Berkeley High--this place is actually two schools in one.  You have to test in to AP classes and students of color are often tracked in to classes that will not meet the admission course  requirements of UC or even CSUs.   So while making adjustments in comparing the LSAT scores for the students who are coming up now and applying to law school in the next 15 or so years is something we should do, imagine what would happen if the kids who are in pre-school/ kindergarten were given a quality education?  What if their parents were given parenting class on how to help your child be successful in their academic career?  What if they could afford healthy foods or even knew how to prepare them?  Yes I know there are poor white people as well, but when you're white and you work hard #1 you are more likely to score higher on standardized tests (statistically speaking, not because they are smarter)  and #2 once you work hard it is easier for you to get your foot in the door.  A man of color who is trying to catch a break through hard work can't tap in to the "good old boys" network ( that is present no matter what political party you are in)

The long term answer is not affirmative action BUT it is the best thing we can do right now.  In the long run what needs to be done is that our leaders and those in power (politicians, education admins, social workers, policy makers etc.) take a hard look at WHY these students aren't performing well on the LSAT and actually DO SOMETHING about it.  I know I plan to.

And to the poster who said that they are not a big fan of blaming society for problems....uhhh get real.  Black people still live in the land that enslaved them and racism still exists today. Several companies that reaped the benefits of slavery( i.e JPMorgan Chase and FleetBoston; insurance companies (e.g., Aetna and New York Life); railroads (Norfolk Southern, Union Pacific and CSX); tobacco companies (R.J. Reynolds, Brown & Williamson); and a textile manufacturer (WestPoint Stevens)

Or do you think that everything is fine and all are equal?  It is SOCIETY that creates the disparity between the quality of education students of color receive and that of their white peers...







I am a lot less sure than you, that the data would back you up.  My guess is that most AA recipients did not grow up dirt poor and second you seem to have made the assumption that most white people had excellent educational backgrounds, which I don't think data would confirm.  I do think the data would confirm on the whole African Americans do not have the opportunities that white people have and are given a lot less resources in their early life than white people.  That said, kids at law school and even college usually are not the best sample of their races, most white people who go to college and almost all that go to law school came from good stable backgrounds.  To say that is true for the majority of white people is probably a stretch.  I think the same is true of African Americans at college and law school (though I know less of their personal backgrounds and histories).  But I don't have data myself, so both of us are just speculating, and I doubt data even exists on what we are disagreeing about, so its a moot point, but it substantially affects how each of us views AA (Incidentally we are both pro-AA, just have very different perspectives on it).

In the end, all this focus on whether people were discriminated against (yes, yes I have to agree its pretty damn absurd to hear white people scream they are being discriminated against, at least in the context of dealing with law schools, run by white people) and whether each recipient of AA personally deserves it is petty and pointless.  For example it  is subjective, whether a person personally deserves AA because all African Americans have certain disadvantages that they must overcome, while obviously other disadvantages that many of them face come to them not because of their race, but because they are poor and second people make accusations without knowing the particularly recipient's background.  I think the proper focus should be on trying to sketch out the policy goals of AA and second whether the current system is a good system for promoting those policy goals.  (For what its worth I originally wrote a much longer response, going into my personal background to illustrate points and stuff, but decided that longer post wasn't warranted by the thread, where people have kept it pretty impersonal so far.)

Well, I have seen much of the research and many of the statistics regarding minoritys (and poor whites) and education and attainment, which is probably why I am so sensitive to these issues. So both views are right on certain points according to what I've read and studied. Skin color is not the only factor, the poor and lower class in general do have a larger hurdle then lets say, middle class minorities. Take for example the millions of Asians and East Indians, who are people of color and minorities in America, but who you will no doubt be sitting next to and across from in all your classes. Also, being white does give you an advantage that people of color will never obtain no matter how much education, money or upper class social skills they aquire.

Also, the population of poor, lower class whites is much larger then the population of poor and lower class minorities. Its the over representation thats the issue....last I read, 12% of the US population is black, and 35% of the prison population is black. Same over representation for hispanics.  4 out of every 10 black males will go to prison or jail at some time in their lifetime, only 1 out of 10 will go to college (not nessecarily graduate)!!!! While, +/-25% of the US population has a 4 year degree. I wish I had a link to these statistics...

15
Another thing that's been bothering me lately, being a baseball fan, why aren't there more black people in major league baseball? And if you really wanna talk about injustice, look at the NHL. Thats probably the most racist sports league in the world.

It starts with lawyers and we need more black lawyers in order to achieve the black vision.

Again, black students should be able to get into schools regardless of what they score on the LSAT. If you are black and you are looking to go to law school, that should be enough to ensure your place.

this is a pretty lame post.  you come off as pouty.  you can do better.

First let me preface this with I, unlike most people of color,  did well on the LSAT. 

That being said I do think that there needs to be some sort of reality check about why students of color with sky high gpa's and low LSATS  can't get in to top schools.  I think attention needs to be paid from the start of a person of colors education--meaning look at the schools most of us went to!  From K-12 they are underfunded and poor in quality when you compare them to our white counter parts.  Even at school in the Bay Area regarded as "great" like Berkeley High--this place is actually two schools in one.  You have to test in to AP classes and students of color are often tracked in to classes that will not meet the admission course  requirements of UC or even CSUs.   So while making adjustments in comparing the LSAT scores for the students who are coming up now and applying to law school in the next 15 or so years is something we should do, imagine what would happen if the kids who are in pre-school/ kindergarten were given a quality education?  What if their parents were given parenting class on how to help your child be successful in their academic career?  What if they could afford healthy foods or even knew how to prepare them?  Yes I know there are poor white people as well, but when you're white and you work hard #1 you are more likely to score higher on standardized tests (statistically speaking, not because they are smarter)  and #2 once you work hard it is easier for you to get your foot in the door.  A man of color who is trying to catch a break through hard work can't tap in to the "good old boys" network ( that is present no matter what political party you are in)

The long term answer is not affirmative action BUT it is the best thing we can do right now.  In the long run what needs to be done is that our leaders and those in power (politicians, education admins, social workers, policy makers etc.) take a hard look at WHY these students aren't performing well on the LSAT and actually DO SOMETHING about it.  I know I plan to.

And to the poster who said that they are not a big fan of blaming society for problems....uhhh get real.  Black people still live in the land that enslaved them and racism still exists today. Several companies that reaped the benefits of slavery( i.e JPMorgan Chase and FleetBoston; insurance companies (e.g., Aetna and New York Life); railroads (Norfolk Southern, Union Pacific and CSX); tobacco companies (R.J. Reynolds, Brown & Williamson); and a textile manufacturer (WestPoint Stevens)

Or do you think that everything is fine and all are equal?  It is SOCIETY that creates the disparity between the quality of education students of color receive and that of their white peers...







Yes Indeedy! Well said.

16
Another thing that's been bothering me lately, being a baseball fan, why aren't there more black people in major league baseball? And if you really wanna talk about injustice, look at the NHL. Thats probably the most racist sports league in the world.

It starts with lawyers and we need more black lawyers in order to achieve the black vision.

Again, black students should be able to get into schools regardless of what they score on the LSAT. If you are black and you are looking to go to law school, that should be enough to ensure your place.

Well thats probably going a little far, even for my taste, but not too far off. Its not really the schools fault I don't think, I'm sure that blacks and hispanics get preference because it looks good for the school to be diverse. In hindsight I would have applied to better schools and made it more known that I was Mexican had I known it was such a big deal to admissions.  I've gotten accepted to schools I shouldn't have...so makes we wonder how much my URM status really paid off. That said, I think its just more the injustices in our society that keep these minorities out, nothing overtly intentional on behalf of the schools themselves, at least one would hope. Its a problem that needs to be address way before people even get into high school...truthfully it never even dawned on me that I could go to law school or even college for that matter, until I was lucky enough to brush shoulders with people who told me I could and encouraged me to do it. Thats a part of whats missing for many minority and disadvantaged youth. They really are "disadvantaged" the term actually does mean something more then skin color.

17
I was seriously joking. Sorry, sometimes such things don't come through well when typed (and my jokes are generally lame).

However, my mom - a feminist - says such terms when said from a male to a female seem condescending to her and patronizing . . . I don't get it.

No, I knew you were joking...It could be seen as sexist and I would take it that way if it was from a male and if say it was in some sort of business or formal setting, but not if we had an informal friendly relationship.

19
LOL...not blaming the prisons....blaming society

20
Thats the plan my dear

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