Why does AA need justification? Because any law needs justification. Aside from that, I also think lawmakers need to show that AA is the best solution to the problem. Saying that a law needs no justification is a step I'm not willing to take, and those of you who agreed with the OP might want to question what would become of society if this was a policy we all adopted.
Quote from: Towelie on July 29, 2006, 12:50:00 AMWhy does AA need justification? Because any law needs justification. Aside from that, I also think lawmakers need to show that AA is the best solution to the problem. Saying that a law needs no justification is a step I'm not willing to take, and those of you who agreed with the OP might want to question what would become of society if this was a policy we all adopted.I think the OP is referring to the context in red.'s thread, about justifying it to bitter white kids who feel like they were denied in order to let in AA kids. Not legal justification in the eyes of the courts (or are you referring to the legislature?).
It is not valid to claim AA admits are the reason a non-minority did not get admitted. Why not blame the rich kid who took a year off on daddy's dime to study the LSAT with prep courses and private tutors for having an inflated LSAT even though he does not have more ability? Why not just suck it up and think, "Hey, the class must have had some really amazing candidates who were simply better than I am."Instead there is a lot of talk about how AA kids are taking spots unfairly. How many AA admits do people think there really are? Why focus on the minority kids over all the other "unfair" admits? At the heart of it, I can't help but think that focus is indicative of a certain degree of racism.
While I think that Towlie and others who oppose AA because it doesn't address the larger problem are making a good point, at the same time I think they are asking a question AA was never meant to answer. Restructuring society and the educational system to be free of racial bias is a wonderful idea; AA is one solution to what you do in the meantime, especially since on some level I think that simply time and incremental steps forward are going to accomplish the larger goal. Seeing minority students in the classroom at all levels of education, including grad school, are one way to reduce racism. It is not the only way. It probably isn't the best way. But it is a step forward, however flawed that step is.If there is something better, propose it. But advocating that the American educational system should be free of racial bias is more of a wish than a plan.
I think the argument was that if, instead of being admitted to schools where the majority of students were better qualified, whatever that may mean, students admitted via affirmative action went to insitituions they were better able to compete, the number that either faired poorly or failed out would be less than the number failing out of top institutions.
LSAC conducted a bar passage rate study in the late 1990s (published in 98) that most seem to agree is reliable(www.lsacnet.org/Research/LSAC-National-Longituinal-Bar-Passage-Study.pdf). The study showed that African-American students with the same UGPA and LSAT scores as similarly situated (same-tier LS) white students earned lower grades in LS. This implies that something else, aside from the UGPA and LSAT scores of the applicants, led to differences in LS performance. (The same was true for Latino/a, Asian-American, and older students.) The reigning hypothesis (I think) is that environmental features of the average law school (such as professors' lowered expectations of, classmates' hostility toward, and feelings of alienation among students in underrepresented groups) are to blame for the lower grades. Ironically, this suggests that increased efforts to recruit and enroll URM students would be the best way to "help" URM students who have a hard time in law school.
That's cool how you referenced a case.
I'm so far from the end of my tether right now that I reckon I could knit myself some socks with the slack.
The study showed that African-American students with the same UGPA and LSAT scores as similarly situated (same-tier LS) white students earned lower grades in LS.
Of course flunking out of any school or failing to pass the bar will screw you out of almost any opportunity (A 2001 Duke JD applied for my cruddy legal assistant job last month and this really freaked me out), but merely having a lower rank in your class may not.
I'm not show-offy.
Quote from: Miss P on July 29, 2006, 10:00:05 PMThe study showed that African-American students with the same UGPA and LSAT scores as similarly situated (same-tier LS) white students earned lower grades in LS.This sounds like it might have a few problems, the biggest one being that affective action makes this pretty rare. Can you elaborate a bit more upon it?