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Author Topic: Morality of AA  (Read 6830 times)

TopGunna

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #10 on: March 08, 2006, 05:36:27 PM »
re: 146s at tier1 and tier2.  prove to me that these are the urms that are failing out of law school.  i bet these individuals likely have very high gpas and are capable students.  where do you get that data.  in general urms have stats at the 25s (at least one of the numbers is usually at the 25 for those given any boost).  you are first going to have to show me data on how many 146 scores getting into tier1 and tier2.   i bet it's not that many in the tier1.  even if its 50 total in the top 50 schools and 100 in the tier 2 that would not have a really strong impact on the data.  that's only 1/2 students per school.  and some of these students will presumeably do just fine. 


Shaz,

I wish I had the article link, it was posted a while ago (pdf file)...so I don't have the "concrete proof" you're looking for...nor do I have the time to go searching for it. I could ask you the same thing: to prove to me that schools aren't having trouble keeping minority students enrolled.
You're reading into what I'm saying entirely too much. I am in no way implying that minorities all have sub 146 LSAT's, or that all minority students aren't qualified or are dropouts. A girl who got into Minnesota had a 146 on her LSAT last year. I was using her as an extreme example. I wouldn't doubt that she's highly motivated. I happen to be one of those highly-motivated people who bombed the LSAT. I agree with what you say below: if it means that T2 students gets bumped into a T1, then so be it. However, it's often not the case. More accurately, it's T3 students getting bumped up to a T1 school, and T4 students getting bumped up to a T2 school.

Zuckpsu,

I just think you are bitter and ungreatful when it comes to this argument.  If you are going to post something dealing with specific numbers, the least you could do would be add a site with the findings or add a disclaimer saying that it is your estimation.  Without doing so you make your whole point invalid, categorizing it as an editorial.
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Miss P

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #11 on: March 08, 2006, 06:04:13 PM »
My $0.02:

1. Can we talk instead about the morality of living in a world with such extreme racial  disparities (and biases) in wealth, income, educational opportunity and achievement, LSAT scores, community resources, etc., etc., and NOT coming up with any sort of remedy?  When it comes down to it, affirmative action in LS admissions is not about individual applicants getting a boost of a couple of points or securing some sort of advantage over applicants from overrepresented groups, it is about ensuring that future generations have a diverse community of lawyers and a credible legal system to serve them. If you don't know why this is important, I can only assume you've never needed a lawyer to deal with a matter of deep personal importance -- whether that's getting fired from your job, buying a house, getting sued by your landlord, or being threatened with incarceration.  Not everyone is so lucky.

2. It's time to get over the notion that affirmative action is somehow to blame for the very real problem of low achievement by URM students (and students from other underrepresented groups, like older students).  I think the study to which zuckpsu refers is the LSAC bar passage rate study  published in 1998(www.lsacnet.org/Research/LSAC-National-Longituinal-Bar-Passage-Study.pdf). This formed the basis for most other studies (including Richard Sander's anti-affirmative action study last year). 

The study and others of its ilk show that URM students with the same numerical "entry credentials" (LSAT, GPA) as similarly situated (same-tier LS) white students earned lower law school grades.  The obvious implication is that something other than "aptitude" as reflected in those numbers leads to differences in LS performance.  Most researchers theorize that it is, rather, the environment of law school that is to blame -- particularly its failures to adequately redress institutional racism (leading to, among other things, hostility among white students, feelings of alienation among students of color, and diminished expectations from professors).  These results do not in any way implicate affirmative action as a problem.  Indeed, as I have said elsewhere on these boards, they imply that increased efforts to recruit and enroll URM students might be a good way to make law schools more accountable to all of their students and to improve the likelihood of their URM students' success.  But shaz is right that better funding might be just as good a place to start.
That's cool how you referenced a case.

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shaz

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #12 on: March 08, 2006, 06:12:03 PM »
z,

you can't find the data because richard sanders didn't really give any comprehensive, concrete data on all school and all tiers.  he collected some data and used it to fit his own warped hypo.

here is another viewpoint on the issue and sanders' article.

http://www.frontpagemagazine.com/Articles/ReadArticle.asp?ID=15907
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HK

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #13 on: March 10, 2006, 11:44:47 PM »

" Can we talk instead about the morality of living in a world with such extreme racial  disparities (and biases) in wealth, income, educational opportunity and achievement, LSAT scores, community resources, etc., etc., and NOT coming up with any sort of remedy?"

Two wrongs do not necessarily make a right. Just because a situation is bad, it does not mean it is OK to use immoral means to remedy it.

Miss P

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #14 on: March 11, 2006, 12:43:25 AM »
" Can we talk instead about the morality of living in a world with such extreme racial  disparities (and biases) in wealth, income, educational opportunity and achievement, LSAT scores, community resources, etc., etc., and NOT coming up with any sort of remedy?"

Two wrongs do not necessarily make a right. Just because a situation is bad, it does not mean it is OK to use immoral means to remedy it.

1. I don't think you have two wrongs here. The OP referred to AA as "someone getting a preference because of her race" or something like that.  I guess I would agree that this is wrong, stated this way.  But AA is something else entirely. AA means reading applications contextually, taking account of various advantages and disadvantages the applicant has had throughout life, and considering the role that applicant might play in the student body and in the profession.  And whether you're comfortable admitting it or not, race is one of the most reliable indicia of academic and other advantages. It may be an imperfect proxy, but it's what we've got. There are communities that are underserved because their members don't have the same opportunities other people do.  Do you really want to deny them adequate and effective representation?

The more privileged among us should work to create opportunities for the less privileged among us.  This is a principle that would stand the OP's test of time and circumstance, and it's a much better description of what affirmative action is about.

2. But even if you hold onto the belief that both affirmative action and the vast racial divides in our country are wrong, it's still a matter of degrees.  I'm sick of people talking about how AA is "immoral" or whatever, without giving any thought to the alternatives or acknowledging that we have to do something.  It's like corporate whistleblowing.  Is it "immoral" to breach your employer's trust, break confidentiality agreements, etc.?  Well, sure, probably.  But come on, if the company is, say, knowingly dumping carcinogenic materials into the local reservoir, isn't that "immorality" on a much grander scale, more worthy of public attention?  If a bunch of corporate shills came out whining about fiduciary duties and proprietary information and all the rest, wouldn't you just want to yell at them, "The kids are getting f-ing cancer! Get over it"?

I'd like to give a shout out to John Galt, who is much more patient than I, for starting a thread that poses the challenge to construct your own admissions system.  At least I think it was JG.  Anyway, it was a good idea.
That's cool how you referenced a case.

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shaz

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #15 on: March 11, 2006, 01:21:03 AM »

" Can we talk instead about the morality of living in a world with such extreme racial  disparities (and biases) in wealth, income, educational opportunity and achievement, LSAT scores, community resources, etc., etc., and NOT coming up with any sort of remedy?"

Two wrongs do not necessarily make a right. Just because a situation is bad, it does not mean it is OK to use immoral means to remedy it.

very easy answer.  can you suggest any possible solution that will be both fair to all and remedy past history?  if you can't suggest anything better than aa then...

if it rains god wrongs those on a picnic.  if the sun shines he wrongs the farmer in need of rain.  there is no solution that will make everyone happy.  what people in the majority need to realize is that the system as it is can do good for those it was ment to.  if that system does you wrong don't cry about it.  try to understand the reason behind it and the need for it.  rarely do people acknowledge the need.  it's like people who always say racism doesn't exist anymore.  yes it does. and so does prejudement, which is worse.  these same individuals will look down on every minority professional in their career path.  "he's not as qualified for this job as me.  i know he /she got aa!"  you have probably done this yourself already, though you probably won't admit it.  that's why there is no easy solution.  what is hoped to be gained by this whole aa process is that minorities are given every opportunity to climb to the highest positions so that they can in turn aide the next climbers.  it's hard to follow in someones footsteps if you can't find them.  it's even harder if they don't exist. 

do you realize that very few minorities period make it into big law.  (don't even try to fool me into thinking that's not important! )  few of those that do will make partner.  those are the jobs that those in the majority feel have been taken away from them.  the whole thing is so stupid.  morality?!?  i find it incredibly immoral for anyone in the majority to even speak on it.  inside i just shake my head and take a mental picture of a closet biggot. 

i'll give you an example of immorality in this country.  crack v. meth.  it's ok for the trash to tear up families in the inner cities, sure.  as soon as meth hit suburban house-wives the whole country was in an up-roar.  if i've got to see one more article on oklahoma's epedimic...  i got an epedimic going on down the street!  and somebody wants to talk to me about the morality of getting out of this sh1t and into a good school?  i wish i could just go around knockin sense into people! 
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Kay Dee Kane

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #16 on: March 11, 2006, 02:06:28 AM »
Shaz,

    Huh, as you may or may not no I have debated this issue until my face turned blue. I commend you on the eloqence of your post and method of expression. Unfortunately, it is in vain; these anti-AA posters are only concerned with their own advancement and progression. Inequality and racism are not experienced on the same level for them as that of Afr-Amers. Frankly, most could care less if crack kills blacks or if socially created ignorance does worse. Many of them understand the argument that you are making. However, the majority just don't care, its not their problem. Thats why the majority or Law school grads aren't interested in pursusing answers to the problems you have set forth. Most simply charge high legal fees and explot the ignorance of minoritys. Empowerment of minorities equals less money in the pockets of the haters.

3blindmice

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #17 on: March 11, 2006, 02:47:47 AM »
Shaz and Miss P - i feel u both.

It really is silly to me when (white) people challenge us to "omit" our URM status from our applications, as if it's just a box we check and not a part of who we are. ??? As members of the dominant and hegemonic group in this country, yall have the luxury of thinkin (incorrectly) that race is an inconsequential characteristic. I don't know about you, but even if I had checked "decline to state" on the race question, it would have been obvious in other aspects of my application...and I wouldn't have it any other way. Race may be more a social construct than a biological fact, but it has very real social and cultural consequences...and where's the problem in that?

A real problem this nation seems to have is the belief that difference = inequality. Why do I hear people look forward fondly to a a time when racial distinctions will "fade away" and we'll just be a world of curly haired golden brown people. The problem is not race, the problem is raCISM, and the idea that differences must be ranked into some kinda hierarchy of smart to dumb, pretty to ugly, good to bad. You wanna fix sumthin? fix that...

AA is definitely a flawed system as it is implemented at most law schools today...but to point out the flaws and call for its elimination without seriously discussing an alternative approach is to deny the existence of racial inequality and the need for policy to alleviate it. I guess the first step in trying to fix the system is to ask ourselves: what is the goal of AA? diversity? community uplift? What's the professed goal, and what do u think the goal should be?

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #18 on: March 11, 2006, 03:20:20 PM »
Hey 3blind --
As a curly haired golden brown person I take offense  :'(

Seriously though I think more race mixing would help race relations on several levels.
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3blindmice

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #19 on: March 11, 2006, 04:48:58 PM »
Aww, sorry dbgirl...no offense intended  :-* If it makes u feel any better, I'm a curly haired brown person myself, tho most of the "race mixing" responsible for that can be traced 3 or 4 generations back  8)

See, I don't have a problem with interracial reproduction, I just don't like to hear it presented as a "solution" to problematic race relations - I agree that people should have the option and the freedom to marry whoever they want, and to reproduce with whomever they wish, but I don't feel comfortable saying that kind of action, on a mass scale, should be encouraged as a goal. It seems to give too little credit to people, as if to say that the only way we can get past racism is to eliminate race - as if we don't have the ability (or the responsibility) to appreciate difference without calling it inferiority. It blames the problem of racism on the existence or race, rather than on the faulty assumptions that PEOPLE make, based on race.

Cause there is a lot to appreciate in racial and cultural difference. It reminds me of a class I took last year. In one of the assigned articles, the researchers identified "rate of interracial marriage" as a measure of group prejudice. It struck me as odd cause in-group marriage seemed "natural" to me. But I guess it all comes down to how you identify yourself, and how much race plays into that. Someone who says they are "just human" and pretends/believes that race has no bearing in who they are and how they're perceived would find it easier to marry outside of their race and have interracial children than, say, I would. And if that makes me prejudice - because I believe and acknowledge the role that race plays in my identity and those of others - then I guess I'm in good company.
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