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Author Topic: Morality of AA  (Read 6934 times)

shaz

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #40 on: March 19, 2006, 04:36:12 PM »
"It just seems to me that certain hardships are glamorized and made representative of a social phenomenon. I mean...how many law school applicants really grew up on the streets with bullets flying by their heads, and how many play up on that romantic image, although they made have been raised in those sorts of areas? Most of the time, not always, but most of the time you can avoid trouble if you want, and find trouble if you want."

i grew up in an area like this.  i live in an area like this.  i will come back to aide an area like this.  i have tragic stories.  i did not mention them anywhere in my app.  i never knew the ghetto was romantic.  wow.  

you know,  it only takes one time for trouble to find you.  
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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #41 on: March 19, 2006, 05:37:05 PM »

You posted thoughts on a discussion board but didn't want them understood, discussed or critiqued? I give you more credit than to believe that, no matter what you now say.

Nevertheless, you have reevaluated your use of condescension toward people who speak of their personal experience in relation to race and admissions; and you have tightened your incoherent thoughts into something that it is reasonable and fair for people to understand and comment on.

I understand your point now as being that poverty should be a criterion for affirmative action.

Fair enough.

philibusters

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #42 on: March 19, 2006, 11:34:31 PM »
I going to intentionally break away from the discussion a little (actually a lot) because its more personally than substantive and I want nothing to do with that.

A little hypo for you guys.  Imagine we lived in a communist country.  All jobs pay the same.  If one job is more strenous than another job they are compensated by having to work less so that a coal miner would work 1/4th the amount of time as a lawyer and ideally his extra free time would compensate for the tougher nature of the work.  Would affirmative action be a problem in this society?

In my opinion the answer is yes.  I think so because what is at stake in affirmative action is legitimating a hierarchical system that distributes monetary resources and political power very unevenly.  Tests like the SAT and LSAT are used to justify or legitimate a system that gives some lots of money and power and others very little.  However, I am NOT saying the SAT or LSAT is completely without merit (in fact they probably have some correlation with eventually success in law school and later practice) I'm just saying  that those who get good scores and later earn a good salary, learn how to use the political system, marry attractive partners, and have adorable kids who are well provided for, legitimate their success by pointing to the SAT and LSAT.  In fact like I said earlier the SAT and LSAT may be like an accurate picture in that it captures the moment of time, but it doesn't tell a story about why the person got a score they did.  They may have studied for two years, took a prep course, be naturally smart, beat the odds and instead of guess 1 out of every 5 right, guessed 1 out of 2 right, who knows.  In that way standard tests don't tell the story of how a person got the score tehy got, and therefore don't measure merit in potential, but only in a snapshot at one moment.

But back to my main theme, can one really justify having so much money and power while others get much less based on a standardized test score that doesn't really say much.  Not really, it seems that the only real justification for having huge discrepancies in power and money is that its an efficient setup.  I think thats where affirmative action comes in.  I don't think  necessarily the main purpose of AA is to  benefit the disadvantage minorities (though I think it does, and that that is a purpose, just not the main purpose), but to justify the imbalances in wealth and power.  Black people can't complain that they have no real power as a group and its not fair, if those in power can say X amount of black people have this or that social status.

To a lesser extent I think AA is about politics.  There are literally thousands of interest groups, urm's make up a few of those interest groups.  Isn't politics about give and take-if there is no give, the political process is not perceive as fair or legitimate by the group that gets nothing. AA is one of the few things that urm's get, they get so little compared to groups like the middle class that its like comparing an elephant to a mouse.  In other words, we can see AA as a development from political coalitions where urm groups support the initiatives of other groups in return for support for some benefits that go to them.  Thats not really immoral.

For those reasons I have no problem with AA, to me  its just part of the political process in that it results from political coalitions and in that it justifies the status quo in its own way by legitimizing the legal profession, which would be viewed all illegimately if it was an all white profession.  I also think that there are geniunely altrustic motives behind it, to help the disadvantaged, however I didn't emphasis those because I think the reasons behind AA are complex and involve mixed motives that include both 1. altrustic motives 2. and perserving the status quo (self serving motives) so why dwell on the more obvious of the two, especially when I think it plays the lesser role. 

Last to Shaz and Red, you are so harsh on people for looking after their own interest, but thats just human nature.  Maybe you altrustic people, but you should know from life that its rare for most people to do nice acts for those they are unrelated to and have no connections to (friends, co-workers, et cetera would count as connections to).  How would you two feel if a white student with a 150 and 3.1 got into an ivy over you for unknown reasons-if you could honestly claim you trust the opinion of admissions committee-then wow, but if you would be mad you can start to understand the position of your opponents.
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BrerAnansi

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #43 on: March 20, 2006, 12:47:41 AM »
So I read this little thread (well at least for now...it’ll be interesting to see what the morning and with it the bored LSN-addicted professionals stuck at their desks all day) and I’ll have to say it was fairly interesting as far as AA threads go.  I knew what to expect from Red who polices the AA board as if she were a member of the “Logic Reich”.  Shaz tends to wear his heart on his sleeve and his contributions were not surprising.  Kisssuicide, you being a newbie offered an opportunity for a “fresh perspective”, because after all if it’s been posted before why would we all want to hear it again.  It started well, with the obligatory dig at Red and the upbraiding of Shaz for being too smaltzy and horror of horrors helping to romanticize life in the ghetto.  In case you were wondering, Shaz failed.  MTV be damned, I still do not want to live in the ghetto.  I was with you but then there was this:

Growing up in rural Idaho there have been times that I've been exposed to racial and sexist sentiments, quite often in the form of jokes amongst classmates and co-workers. And usually they're offered with little chagrin. But growing up in such an environment puts someone like me at a disadvantage as well. For those less reflective and insightful than I am, they come to see minorities as inferior, or as a joke, or as wrong, just because of the way they are talked about in stories or jokes, from what their parents told them, and what their parent's parents told them. So being in the majority we are already socially handicapped at a young age, albeit in a quite opposite fashion than a minority would be. But it's a handicapping nonetheless, and one that is also hard to be overcame without a senstive and thoughtful intellectual constitution, or a quality education, both of which can be rare. Should we also be penalized for such an upbringing, when in reality it really isn't our faults? 

Okay…so say I was of Middle-Eastern descent and I grew up surrounded by people who looked exactly like me, it would then, to follow your argument not be my fault if I were to despise white people, or Christians, or women in mini-skirts for that matter because my education was for crap?  It’s a slippery slope my friend…watch your step.

Then there was this:
"There are examples of historically and socially disadvantaged races that are indeed no longer more disadvantaged than other races, especially those that are typically historically and socially advantaged"

Umm...okay how about you stop sending us postcards from Utopia and resume this argument when you’re back here with the rest of us in the real world….”races”…are you serious?  More like outlier cases that are not representative of the entire race.

Yet there are instances of certain races not being, at least in some instances, disadvantaged. In this case, socio-economically. My example...a wealthy suburban black child, with college educated professional parents, herself well educated, with a trust-fund. Such examples do indeed exist, though is certainly not the norm.

Whew…thought we had lost you there for a sec…nice to have you back.

About the ghetto being romanticized....puhleeze. It's completely romanticized to the point of being tired. Every actor, rapper, musician, athelete, if they want to have "cred", plays that card of growing up on the "streets", to the point where that romance gets into the heads of bored, safe little suburban whiteys, who take it upon themselves to create an environment that mirrors the ones of their heroes, if nothing else but because of ennui

And people in the ghetto are to blame for this how…or should be made subject to your jaded perspective why?  Because they of course are running multi-million dollar companies and are busy making money on their own misery.  And you know what’s great about inner-city living…they then get to walk around and see all the things that are not available to them and their children.  You know like parks with grass instead of concrete and schools with trained teachers and classrooms that are not…gasp crowded.  But I guess they should just be happy we allow them to see it.  Okay ghetto people, watch the privileged class use up all that education, look how they flock to two of the best schools in the country (I live in NY) but don’t get too close and don’t smudge the looking glass.  Now take the half-hour train ride back to the ghetto and never think of it again.  Don’t you know you’ve got it good?  There are white people all over this country who are poor and inadvertently racist.  You don’t hear them complaining do you?

So I’m bitter…sue me.   

Grrr...

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shaz

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #44 on: March 20, 2006, 02:47:17 AM »
"...the upbraiding of Shaz for being too smaltzy and horror of horrors helping to romanticize life in the ghetto.  In case you were wondering, Shaz failed.  MTV be damned, I still do not want to live in the ghetto."

how did i romanticize the ghetto?  i said there was nothing romantic about it.  my point was countered by the arguemnet that popular mediums do romanticize it.  i never said it was romantic.  in no way did i make any effort to entice anyone to move to the ghetto.  so how did i fail? 
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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #45 on: March 20, 2006, 08:21:50 AM »
Shaz: You didn't romanticize the ghetto. You actually said exactly the opposite.

Brer: You almost had it - I expect what I read to make sense. That's a pretty reasonable expectation to have and a pretty low bar to set.

BrerAnansi

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #46 on: March 20, 2006, 12:09:02 PM »
Shaz: You didn't romanticize the ghetto. You actually said exactly the opposite.

Brer: You almost had it - I expect what I read to make sense. That's a pretty reasonable expectation to have and a pretty low bar to set.


Shaz I was just refering to Kisssuicide's claim that you did just that...that text you quoted was my sarcastic take on it. 
Grrr...

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BrerAnansi

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #47 on: March 20, 2006, 06:16:57 PM »
Kiss...no one says you can't post your views but we think it's polite to at least peruse some of the AA threads before rehashing hackneyed issues.  You know how in every class there's a guy who completely ignores directions/instructions and raises all sorts of questions that could be easily answered by reading what in front of him...you're being just a little like that guy.  Oh and by the way this will get you nowhere on these boards, which is something you would have known had you, you know perused...

And if that de facto makes me racist someone, then I suppose I'm racist. And I suppose my half-black, halk-Korean wife is the same.

Sorry, I'm just bitter.


horsely i have nothing against you. but really, every person who is secretly racist or enjoys the benefits of racism and want it to continue say things like "i'm not racist because i hang w/ minorities". so maybe you don't want to say that because it makes you seem like a closet racist. no offense.

horsely i have nothing against you. but really, every person who is secretly racist or enjoys the benefits of racism and want it to continue say things like "i'm not racist because i hang w/ minorities". so maybe you don't want to say that because it makes you seem like a closet racist. no offense.
This made me laugh...probably cause it rings true..lol

Yeah, I sort of thought it was considered a universal joke these days to say things like, "I'm not racist; some of my best friends are black."

Also, I think it's interesting that in Horsley's description of his drinking buddies, only the whites are referred to as "guys." The others are reduced to their color or their nationality (which I believe is being used to represent color -- I dount he's referring to actual citizens of Mexico).

Perhaps I'm being a bit harsh/picky -- but I think the way we use language reveals (at least a little) the way we think....

You can check these folks and others out in the "You know what I love" thread...the one that's  within two slots of this one



Grrr...

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Miss P

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #48 on: March 21, 2006, 03:21:25 PM »
Excellent, thoughtful post, Archival.
I would expect nothing less from an MLS.
That's cool how you referenced a case.

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ScoopNY

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Re: Morality of AA
« Reply #49 on: March 21, 2006, 03:25:14 PM »
Quote
There does seem to be some resentment against applicants who are lucky enough to do so well on the LSAT that it mediates years of poor undergrad performance....  Still, I guess I am uncomfortable with the argument that AA is bad because it 'makes people feel like some who don't *deserve* a spot are getting into school'; that it promotes resentment against minority students and insecurity in minority students.  I'm willing to keep an open mind about this; it's apparently an argument that Sowell makes.  But I'll repeat an argument: I do not see the same vehement kind of resentment against other 'diversity' admits, or against 'legacy' admits, and my suspicion is that this resentment reveals latent racial bias as much, if not more, than it reveals a general consensus of injustice.  Do you disagree?  If so, would you care to elaborate?

I understand that, in saying that claims (especially on this board) of the injustice of AA primarily reveal prejudice, I am putting AA critics in an untenable position by implying their criticism is not worthy of consideration because it stems from racism.  I suppose one way to work around that is to explore the differences we may have in how we view the goals of AA currently, and of how/whether we view the ideal-world purpose of maintaining 'diversity' in a law school student body?

That is the credited response. Good work, tough questions, we should post this at the top of every new AA thread.
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