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Author Topic: Am I an underrepresented minority?  (Read 9147 times)

amelus

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Re: Am I an underrepresented minority?
« Reply #20 on: November 01, 2004, 09:17:58 PM »
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The term "African American" is supposed to count black Americans who's ancestors where enslaved here, not white Africans. I say you are better off marking other instead of being a pompous ass. Have a good day!

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acc. to what you wrote, afr. american (i assume u mean in terms of aff. action) refers specifically to a/o whose ancestors were enslaved.  so do you feel the goal is to give someone whose ancestors were enslaved, but his parents worth millions and he has had no problems or hardships growing, an extra leg-up on e/o else?  i'd imagine not.  if not, do you think a person in the above described scenario is wrong for checking african american?  i assume not again since he/she fits in your described category.

the point i'm making, same as made b/4, is that systems exist for better or for worse, and some ppl will benefit who possibly should not while others wont benefit as much (read white man/woman who had severe disadvantages growing up) when possibly should.  but you cant blame someone for using a system as it exists merely b/c it doesnt fit within the exact intention.  can try to reframe or redesign system ok.  but dont blame (certainly not w/ such strong and uncalled for lang) s/o for using a system that is in place.

if you want, take issue with the facts.  again, i'm not talking about individual at hand if deserve URM status, merely your comments.

strouse

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Re: Am I an underrepresented minority?
« Reply #21 on: November 01, 2004, 09:33:01 PM »
However you want to justify that behavior, I thinks its crap!  This guy is no more African American than I am.  Its inapropriate and I think it would bite you in the ass.

amelus

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Re: Am I an underrepresented minority?
« Reply #22 on: November 01, 2004, 09:37:31 PM »
However you want to justify that behavior, I thinks its darn! This guy is no more African American than I am. Its inapropriate and I think it would bite you in the ass.

if you're ref. to my comments then just read what i wrote.  i plainly took issue simply with the logic of the arguement.  nothing more and nothing less.

(as an aside, though not really relevant, i am a minority (at least it seems i'm labeled that on a variety of issues to my detriment) that doesnt get any underrep. status, so i'm losing out in every which way)

dominikasson

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Re: Am I an underrepresented minority?
« Reply #23 on: November 01, 2004, 09:44:55 PM »
No, you're not an URM

In the application instructions for several schools, Middle Eastern/North African/European by birthright are explicity considered WHITE (and stating otherwise could have severe consequences- i.e. revoked acceptance).

The optional essay on diversity should provide you with an excellent opportunity to express how your culture/heritage has framed your perspective, adding to the diversity of the law school. I spoke with a former adcomm at UChicago about this matter, since I am originally from Poland, and she told me just that- it's not the same as being an URM, but it gives you "bonus points" (her words).

If in doubt, contact the schools, but I'd bet you'd hear the same thing. Best of luck

JRG83

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Re: Am I an underrepresented minority?
« Reply #24 on: November 04, 2004, 07:45:51 PM »

The term "African American" is supposed to count black Americans who's ancestors where enslaved here, not white Africans. I say you are better off marking other instead of being a pompous ass. Have a good day!


This is possibly the most ignorant thing I have heard today.  "African American" does not just encompass "black Americans who's ancestors WERE enslaved here."  Does this mean that blacks whose ancestors were not enslaved in the US are not African American?  What about people whose ancestors moved to the US after slavery was abolished?  Does this make them any less African American? 
The bottom line is, if Hocine's family is from Africa, then she is indeed free to label herself African American and indicate that on her law school applications (unless there is a more specific ie "North African" category).  I can understand your anger at her wanting to gain admissions help by using this label, but it is not fair to call her a "pompous ass" for merely labelling herself what she clearly is: African American.  There are some valid reasons against doing this (see other posts within this thread) on a law school applications, but not having enslaved ancestors is not one of them.

amelus

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Re: Am I an underrepresented minority?
« Reply #25 on: November 04, 2004, 07:49:48 PM »
well said JRG83

Regal_Muse

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Re: Am I an underrepresented minority?
« Reply #26 on: November 04, 2004, 09:52:26 PM »

The term "African American" is supposed to count black Americans who's ancestors where enslaved here, not white Africans. I say you are better off marking other instead of being a pompous ass. Have a good day!


This is possibly the most ignorant thing I have heard today.  "African American" does not just encompass "black Americans who's ancestors WERE enslaved here."  Does this mean that blacks whose ancestors were not enslaved in the US are not African American?  What about people whose ancestors moved to the US after slavery was abolished?  Does this make them any less African American? 
The bottom line is, if Hocine's family is from Africa, then she is indeed free to label herself African American and indicate that on her law school applications (unless there is a more specific ie "North African" category).  I can understand your anger at her wanting to gain admissions help by using this label, but it is not fair to call her a "pompous ass" for merely labelling herself what she clearly is: African American.  There are some valid reasons against doing this (see other posts within this thread) on a law school applications, but not having enslaved ancestors is not one of them.


Before you start calling people ignorant, check yourself. First of all, the original poster's comments were extremely offensive because he was trying to find ways to categorize himself as part of a group that has historically and continues to be discriminated against in mainstream society. Unless the original poster has categorized himself as an "African American" before, he shouldn't start jumping on the race bandwagon now.  His rationale is disgusting and continues to reinforce racist ideologies.

Secondly, you've completely took my post out of context. I was not excluding other blacks/African Americans. Then again if you bothered to pay attention in any sort of US history course, you would know the vase majority of Blacks/African Americans living in the US are the descendants of slaves. Being a young BLACK woman of East African/Caribbean heritage, I am well versed on issues pertaining to slavery. So stick to a subject that you might actually have an understanding of. Many White Africans (which sounds like an oxymoron to tell you the truth; more like descendant of imperialist/colonist) are NOT disadvantaged. So for the original poster imply that he might try to manipulate the system by tricking the Adcoms into believing that he is what is TRADITIONALLY believed to be "African American" (as in blacks who are descendants of slaves or AFRICA) is dishonest and downright criminal.

Basically my whole post is to tell you to STFU and think before you start calling people ignorant.


I really can’t stand stupid broads sometimes….





TLFKARG

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Re: Am I an underrepresented minority?
« Reply #27 on: November 04, 2004, 09:55:59 PM »

The term "African American" is supposed to count black Americans who's ancestors where enslaved here, not white Africans. I say you are better off marking other instead of being a pompous ass. Have a good day!


This is possibly the most ignorant thing I have heard today.  "African American" does not just encompass "black Americans who's ancestors WERE enslaved here."  Does this mean that blacks whose ancestors were not enslaved in the US are not African American?  What about people whose ancestors moved to the US after slavery was abolished?  Does this make them any less African American? 
The bottom line is, if Hocine's family is from Africa, then she is indeed free to label herself African American and indicate that on her law school applications (unless there is a more specific ie "North African" category).  I can understand your anger at her wanting to gain admissions help by using this label, but it is not fair to call her a "pompous ass" for merely labelling herself what she clearly is: African American.  There are some valid reasons against doing this (see other posts within this thread) on a law school applications, but not having enslaved ancestors is not one of them.
You're seriously missing the point here.  Are white Africans technically African?  Sure they are, and I don't think either Regal or anyone else on this board disputes that.  The contextual focus of this discussion, however, has been "checking the box" to increase one's chances of admission to law school.  Racial preferences, under AA, are designed to benefit Black Africans, who, as a result of their distinctive look and the inherent racism in our society, have been chronically disadvantaged socially, economically and educationally.  A white African who has never faced such hardships because she looks as white as any WASP and who checks the box simply to coat-tail off the hadships genuinely faced by their darker counterparts is not only taking advantage of the system, but also demontrating her questionable ethics.  Ethical considerations alone ought to be enough to keep someone from "checking the box" simply to get a peice of a special advantage not designed for her, but practical problems may aslo arise.  The ABA is known to investigate people who check the box for the first time on thier law school applications.  (This is info directly from a presentation on ethics at my law school, so it is not to be taken lightly.)

Regal is rightfully disturbed by the OP's ignorance of her ancestor's plight, for had the OP actually made any consideration of such, she would not be here asking this question.  Calling her ignorant is disrespectful and pompous.  I am convinced that if you are not African-American, no amount of reading, observing, comiserating can ever bring you to a full understanding of the hardships faced by them and making comments such as the "ignorant" comment made toward Regal does nothing more than demonstrate the ignorance of the person making it. >:(

cali444

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Re: Am I an underrepresented minority?
« Reply #28 on: November 04, 2004, 10:06:11 PM »
I'll say it one more time, since it seems that many of you still haven't got the point: on every application I've seen, the box says "African-America/Black."  The two terms, for the purposes of the application, are synonyms, so if you are not phenotypically black (although your ancestors may very well be from Africa), you should not check the box.  It's as simple as that.

JRG83

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Re: Am I an underrepresented minority?
« Reply #29 on: November 04, 2004, 11:21:47 PM »
Regal, while the vast majority of blacks who live in the US are those whose ancestors were enslaved, as you point out, they are very poorly represented within higher education, which is a shame.  Unfortunately, race is so poorly defined on law school applications that affirmative action cannot help those people who most need it: African American people who have faced racism and disadvantages stemming from Jim Crow laws, segregation and decades of racism.  This has a lot to do with unclearly defined aims of affirmative action.  I quote from an article I read this summer from the NYTimes: "You need a philosophical discussion about what are the aims of affirmative action,'' Professor Waters said. "If it's about getting black faces at Harvard, then you're doing fine. If it's about making up for 200 to 500 years of slavery in this country and its aftermath, then you're not doing well." 
I agree with the statements made previously in this thread: it is a shame that affirmative action in this country is not helping the people who most need it.  Studies have shown that descendants of black people from places other than Africa do better at first in college because they come from majority-black countries, so they are less psychologically handicapped by the stigma of race. In addition, many arrive with higher levels of education and professional experience.  This would indicate that it is indeed descendants of slaves should be the principal beneficiaries of affirmative action.  This is an issue that is hopefully coming to the forefront, and I will quote some more of the NY Times article, because I think it was so very on key, because I want to convey that I do agree with each and every word, and because it is also very interesting: 
“At the most recent reunion of Harvard University's black alumni, there was lots of pleased talk about the increase in the number of black students at Harvard.  But the celebratory mood was broken in one forum, when some speakers brought up the thorny issue of exactly who those black students were.  While about 8 percent, or about 530, of Harvard's undergraduates were black, Lani Guinier, a Harvard law professor, and Henry Louis Gates Jr., the chairman of Harvard's African and African-American studies department, pointed out that the majority of them — perhaps as many as two-thirds — were West Indian and African immigrants or their children, or to a lesser extent, children of biracial couples. They said that only about a third of the students were from families in which all four grandparents were born in this country, descendants of slaves…What concerned the two professors, they said, was that in the high-stakes world of admissions to the most selective colleges — and with it, entry into the country's inner circles of power, wealth and influence — African-American students whose families have been in America for generations were being left behind.…Others say there is no reason to take the ancestry of black students into account. "I don't think it should matter for purposes of admissions in higher education," said Lee C. Bollinger, the president of Columbia University, who as president of the University of Michigan fiercely defended its use of affirmative action. "The issue is not origin, but social practices. It matters in American society whether you grow up black or white. It's that differential effect that really is the basis for affirmative action.  Researchers at Princeton University and the University of Pennsylvania who have been studying the achievement of minority students at 28 selective colleges and universities (including theirs, as well as Yale, Columbia, Duke and the University of California at Berkeley), found that 41 percent of the black students identified themselves as immigrants, as children of immigrants or as mixed race.”
I understand what you were getting at, Regal, and I agree.  What I took issue with was the message you relayed that Hocine should check “other” and should not check “African American” on the law school applications because this was meant for those with ancestors who were enslaved.  As was demonstrated above, most young black people who benefit from affirmative action do not fit that bill either.  I simply think that if Hocine identifies with being African, she should not feel guilty in calling herself so (and that you should not call her a pompous ass for it).  Unless she couldn’t care less about her African heritage and is using this identification just to gain an edge in admissions—then feel free.  And I can tell that you are definitely quite versed in issues pertaining to slavery.  But just because I disagree with you and just because I am not black does not mean that I do not have knowledge of these issues.  In fact, the truth is quite the opposite.
I would like to conclude that it is rather tasteless to use the label “broad” when referring to a woman, even one whom you might think is “stupid.”  It perpetuates the similar negative stereotypes that you yourself seem so very (and appropriately so very) eager to eradicate.