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Author Topic: This is why affirmative should remain in tact  (Read 26514 times)

HtownsFinest

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Re: This is why affirmative should remain in tact
« Reply #10 on: July 20, 2007, 05:58:30 PM »
Discrediting an arguably racist tract in no way justifies AA. Off-topic flame wars detract from the real issue.

UNAS

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Re: This is why affirmative should remain in tact
« Reply #11 on: July 21, 2007, 03:46:42 AM »
Discrediting an arguably racist tract in no way justifies AA. Off-topic flame wars detract from the real issue.

I AGREE WITH you whole-heartedly

It was just something I felt obligated to do.

But the question I have for you my formidable friendly foe is how do you combat hundreds of years of systemic and institutionalized racism. What method would you suggest beit a quick fix or shot in the dark? I would appreciate any dialogue you can give in respect to remedying AA and racial and gender discrimination?

gillesthegreat

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Re: This is why affirmative should remain in tact
« Reply #12 on: July 21, 2007, 10:28:37 AM »
Quote
People get over discrimination.  Blacks do not.

Yes, the interned Japanese certainly got over it; they got over it so much that they never asked for and received a formal apology and reparations. Wait ... what? Oh.

And the South has certainly 'gotten over' the civil war. Just visit the really rural parts of Alabama. Or heck, just mention the name Sherman in Georgia. Yeah, these people certainly got over it.

You're very right. Why can Blacks in this country not just 'get over' the fact that they were disenfranchised as a group for roughly 200 years of systeatic and organized oppression. Why can they not also get over the still pervasive racism and discrimination, the same kind that requried a special federal intervention in the 60s to double-garantee the really silly rights they were supposed to already have, like voting. Or the discrimination that makes them more likely to be arrested, and more likely to get convicted, and receive longer sentences for similar crimes. Adn really, really now, why can they just not get over and forget the discrimination that will happen to them in the future. Really, that would just make it much easier for everyone. Well, except them, but who cares. Come on people. I'll oppress you tomorrow, but you should really have gotten over it by now.

Jacka$$.
Penn (2007)

TinaTina

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Re: This is why affirmative should remain in tact
« Reply #13 on: July 22, 2007, 09:09:51 PM »

I realize there was a systematic demoralization and abuse of certain people in early America.  I realize it was NOT fair.  But show me one person who descends from a slave family and I will support his admission over he who was from a slaveholding family.  Aside from that, I find it hard to swallow a pill that makes me - whose family was not here until 1934 (and whose family faced "Italians Need Not Apply" signs when they got here) - "responsible" for enslaving people in eighteenth and nineteenth century Georgia.

You can't be serious.  But if you are, can you tell me which of the following beliefs is driving your thought process?
1)most of the 30+ million black people in America are immigrants of recent vintage
or
2)some black people came on a party cruise in the 1800s and liked the place so much that they decided to stay.

Leo

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Re: This is why affirmative should remain in tact
« Reply #14 on: July 22, 2007, 09:52:42 PM »
My response is somewhat "too simple."  My family was not here during slavery.  My family came in the 1930s as poor Sicilian immigrants who had nothing and wanted just a small bit of something.  They never stepped on anyone or prevented anyone from doing anything because they had nothing - they were the downtrodden.

Why should I, then, have to bare the burden of rectifying some large scale racism of which I - and my family - was never a part?   Why must I constantly hear only that one justification to AA: that it rectifies past discrimination?  Even people who think AA is a great thing need to realize that not all of our families were here to hurt yours at that time.  Mine was making wine in Sicily - they didn't have slaves, they didn;t even have a house as one would recognize one.

I realize there was a systematic demoralization and abuse of certain people in early America.  I realize it was NOT fair.  But show me one person who descends from a slave family and I will support his admission over he who was from a slaveholding family.  Aside from that, I find it hard to swallow a pill that makes me - whose family was not here until 1934 (and whose family faced "Italians Need Not Apply" signs when they got here) - "responsible" for enslaving people in eighteenth and nineteenth century Georgia.

You seem sincere, and I'm bored at work, so here goes.

Neither you nor your family are responsible for anything. You also don't bear any burden. In fact, if AA were eliminated today, your chances of admission at any given school would be virtually the same. So the question you and others are really asking is, why can a (probably black) URM be accepted with numbers that would mean rejection for me?

There will never be an answer to that question that you'll find acceptable. Affirmative Action is a flawed social policy that attempts to make up for America's past and present caste system by creating equality of outcome, when all that political energy would be better spent creating real equality of opportunity. Many people see AA as a form of reverse discrimination (which it is). Many people, like the OP, would rather have a flawed policy than none at all.

I hope you and others might some day realize that AA is a policy concerned with groups, not indiviuals, and that it should be assessed at the aggregate level, not the anecdotal. I'm sure no one in your family has ever discriminated on the basis of race or gender, but America as a whole has and still does. AA is an attempt to address that. I didn't say it was a perfect attempt, but it is an attempt nonetheless.

Of course, for years to come you'll have people pointing out some unqualified URM on LSN who supposedly got into harvard with a 155 as proof that AA is the greatest threat facing America. Or the hypotheticals of some undeserving rich black kid, or some poor, starving white kid. Or my favorite, [insert ethnic group here] overcame discrimination so why can't you people.

While all this is going on, we'll continue to ignore the real question: how much value should this country, as a whole, place on diversity? Maybe you should start thinking about that instead

That's just my 2 cents, anyway

UNAS

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Re: This is why affirmative should remain in tact
« Reply #15 on: August 01, 2007, 10:06:31 AM »

I realize there was a systematic demoralization and abuse of certain people in early America.  I realize it was NOT fair.  But show me one person who descends from a slave family and I will support his admission over he who was from a slaveholding family.  Aside from that, I find it hard to swallow a pill that makes me - whose family was not here until 1934 (and whose family faced "Italians Need Not Apply" signs when they got here) - "responsible" for enslaving people in eighteenth and nineteenth century Georgia.

You can't be serious.  But if you are, can you tell me which of the following beliefs is driving your thought process?
1)most of the 30+ million black people in America are immigrants of recent vintage
or
2)some black people came on a party cruise in the 1800s and liked the place so much that they decided to stay.

What I was trying to illustrate with my point is that many people choose to justify AA by citing a long history of racism in the US going back to slavery.  THAT is a justification with which I cannot live.

Now, the point that Leo makes is a valid one and one to which I want to respond.  I do not think MY personal chances of admission at any given program would be changed if AA was abandoned, and it is not for that reason that I want it disolved.  I simply think that, on a whole, if we are to REALLY ever become a society that is free from all forms of racial prejudice, AA needs to go away.  It is - for better or worse - one more system that classifies people based on something they CANNOT help: who they were born.

Also, AA is less an issue with admission to larger programs, such as Law or Med schools, than with small programs (PhD, for example).  If dept X at school Y only has 4 open PhD slots for a given year and they utilize AA, there is a greater chance that the overall effect on the applicants will be greater.  I have experienced this firsthand in my own graduate fellowship applications.  It is not that these students are not deserving, nor is it that I am blind to the greater societal concerns.

Will I EVER understand what it is to be a URM in the US?  No.  And that is my point.  Responses such as Leo's serve to foster actual debate without frivolity while those of TinaTina seem flippant in the context of this important issue.

I just feel - with all my sincerity and heart and mind - that if we are EVER to be free from prejudice we need to eliminate ALL vehicles for that prejudice.  AA is a policy of racial prejudice, and it is one of the few institutions that actively fosters a distinction by race.  For us to all be equal, we need to ALL be equal.  And it may be idealistic, but I think that things such as AA hurt this end more than help it.

Naive Naive Naive. Why must the first step in removing all vehicles for prejudice involve the extirpation of AA, a program that by and large does not affect a material portion of whites? It’s almost like white folks have never even “casually” examined the demographic breakdown of law schools, let alone top law schools. Which by the way are typically less than 8% Black. As I said in my earlier post, it takes almost no kilocalories of brain energy to cite the removal of AA as a means to deal with all discrimination. The challenge lies in creating an effective strategy to deal with discrimination, racism and other forms of prejudice that exceeds the performance of what we have done in the past. Easier said then done. First step to combating discrimination…level the playing field. Come on guys that’s a softball. Give me a couple ideas we can theoretically employ to level the playing field.

Don’t mind me I will just grab a chair and rest these old bones in the meanwhile so I don’t interfere with the great meeting of the minds
Quick hint…it starts on an individual level.

UNAS

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Re: This is why affirmative should remain in tact
« Reply #16 on: August 01, 2007, 11:59:51 AM »

I realize there was a systematic demoralization and abuse of certain people in early America.  I realize it was NOT fair.  But show me one person who descends from a slave family and I will support his admission over he who was from a slaveholding family.  Aside from that, I find it hard to swallow a pill that makes me - whose family was not here until 1934 (and whose family faced "Italians Need Not Apply" signs when they got here) - "responsible" for enslaving people in eighteenth and nineteenth century Georgia.

You can't be serious.  But if you are, can you tell me which of the following beliefs is driving your thought process?
1)most of the 30+ million black people in America are immigrants of recent vintage
or
2)some black people came on a party cruise in the 1800s and liked the place so much that they decided to stay.

What I was trying to illustrate with my point is that many people choose to justify AA by citing a long history of racism in the US going back to slavery.  THAT is a justification with which I cannot live.

Now, the point that Leo makes is a valid one and one to which I want to respond.  I do not think MY personal chances of admission at any given program would be changed if AA was abandoned, and it is not for that reason that I want it disolved.  I simply think that, on a whole, if we are to REALLY ever become a society that is free from all forms of racial prejudice, AA needs to go away.  It is - for better or worse - one more system that classifies people based on something they CANNOT help: who they were born.

Also, AA is less an issue with admission to larger programs, such as Law or Med schools, than with small programs (PhD, for example).  If dept X at school Y only has 4 open PhD slots for a given year and they utilize AA, there is a greater chance that the overall effect on the applicants will be greater.  I have experienced this firsthand in my own graduate fellowship applications.  It is not that these students are not deserving, nor is it that I am blind to the greater societal concerns.

Will I EVER understand what it is to be a URM in the US?  No.  And that is my point.  Responses such as Leo's serve to foster actual debate without frivolity while those of TinaTina seem flippant in the context of this important issue.

I just feel - with all my sincerity and heart and mind - that if we are EVER to be free from prejudice we need to eliminate ALL vehicles for that prejudice.  AA is a policy of racial prejudice, and it is one of the few institutions that actively fosters a distinction by race.  For us to all be equal, we need to ALL be equal.  And it may be idealistic, but I think that things such as AA hurt this end more than help it.

Naive Naive Naive. Why must the first step in removing all vehicles for prejudice involve the extirpation of AA, a program that by and large does not affect a material portion of whites? It’s almost like white folks have never even “casually” examined the demographic breakdown of law schools, let alone top law schools. Which by the way are typically less than 8% Black. As I said in my earlier post, it takes almost no kilocalories of brain energy to cite the removal of AA as a means to deal with all discrimination. The challenge lies in creating an effective strategy to deal with discrimination, racism and other forms of prejudice that exceeds the performance of what we have done in the past. Easier said then done. First step to combating discrimination…level the playing field. Come on guys that’s a softball. Give me a couple ideas we can theoretically employ to level the playing field.

Don’t mind me I will just grab a chair and rest these old bones in the meanwhile so I don’t interfere with the great meeting of the minds
Quick hint…it starts on an individual level.


She didn't say it would be the first step.  And I think her point is not how AA affects whites (even though I disagree with you that it affects an immaterial number of whites), but just the principle of it.  For me, AA just seems wrong.  Like Tina, it just seems to me so inherently awrong to discriminate on the basis of race that there better be a pretty good justification for it, which there very well may be.

For example, UNAS, if I'm thinking of the right person, (if not, sorry) you did pretty well on the LSATs (mid 160s or so?), but had a sub 3.0 GPA because you partied a lot in college, and you were talking about your chances for T14 or T25 schools - this just strikes me as so wrong, that you have a legitimate chance at these schools, just because you get to check a box, whereas a white person with your stats would not even dream of these schools.  I don't have any jealousy toward you, nor anger, and I don't think I was rejected from any schools because of AA, but the principle that a slacker can accomplish the same thing by checking a box that someone else achieved by 4 years of hard work, just seems really wrong.  It just seems to me to undermine the whole academic process.

I'm still on the fence about AA, and of course there are so many benefits of it that people have already mentioned a million times, but I guess I still need more convincing that the benefits outweigh the negative aspects.  I agree with your main point though, that it's easy to say that eliminating AA is a way to deal with discrimination, but much harder to actually think of a way to deal with discrimination.  As far as trying to lessen discrimination, I suppose AA is a decent attempt.

You are correct I am the same UNAS. A MBA and 5 years of job experience should be able to offset a 4 year social excursion for anybody black white or otherwise, but I know Adcoms don't always look at it that way.

leostrauss

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Re: This is why affirmative should remain in tact
« Reply #17 on: August 01, 2007, 12:11:12 PM »
I have an idea to eliminate discrimination that I believe will work better than AA. Now, I am an ardent conservative, and I admittedly have trouble being comfortable with the idea of social programs. I don't see it as the govt's job to solve these sorts of problems. However, if reform programs are the flavor of the day, I'll give one a shot.

Why not just promote interracial dating? If everybody dated everybody else, it would ease tensions among the races (though we would probably take two steps back before we started taking steps forward), and we would eventually have no way of telling who is "black", "white", etc.

Another idea, while the govt is fixing all of our problems, why not have the govt. control adoption in such a way as to assign babies blindly and randomly to couples. So, white couples might have an Indian baby, a black couple might have a white baby, a white couple a black baby etc. This, would balance out the socio-economic differences that are correlated with race . . .

I don't know, I'm half joking, but I'm half serioius. I don't like ANY of these policies, AA included, not because I don't think they're good ideas, but because I think govt. oughtn't be involved in this stuff.

The real solution is for ppl to get over it in general. We all need to recognize these disparities and the WASP ceo needs to hire a young black woman; the Black CEO needs to hire an asian guy; the republican senator needs to demand inner-city black interns (be he/she white or black - the senator I mean). We just need to get together in our neighborhoods, churches, etc and talk about all of this. We need to encourage our kids to - or at least not discourage them from - dating across race etc.

It's about changing our mindset. No government policy can change ppls minds. Racists don't suddenly become less racist because of AA or anything else - in fact, these policies likely make them more hostile in their racism. I don't know . . . now I'm rambling. Let's fix this problem though. Hopefully our generation will make a difference. I think the best arg for AA is stereotype threat. done
…no bloody or unbloody change of society can eradicate the evil in man: as long as there will be men, there will be malice, envy and hatred, and hence there cannot be a society which does not have to employ coercive restraint.

– Leo Strauss, The City and Man, page 5

UNAS

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Re: This is why affirmative should remain in tact
« Reply #18 on: August 01, 2007, 12:34:29 PM »
One of my best friends growing up was and still is a staunch republican. He only really cares about the right to bear arms though. I appreciate your thoughts.
One of the biggest issues we face with discrimination, racism, prejudice and the other isms is our refusal as Americans to engage in dialogue. My hope gets stronger with every generation, but there needs to be a substantial amount of top-down leadership taking place. Diversity needs to be encouraged on the grandest scale possible. Commingling of races and religions will breakdown mental obstructions that have been erect for 400+ years.

Leo

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Re: This is why affirmative should remain in tact
« Reply #19 on: August 03, 2007, 09:37:18 PM »
For example, UNAS, if I'm thinking of the right person, (if not, sorry) you did pretty well on the LSATs (mid 160s or so?), but had a sub 3.0 GPA because you partied a lot in college, and you were talking about your chances for T14 or T25 schools - this just strikes me as so wrong, that you have a legitimate chance at these schools, just because you get to check a box, whereas a white person with your stats would not even dream of these schools.  I don't have any jealousy toward you, nor anger, and I don't think I was rejected from any schools because of AA, but the principle that a slacker can accomplish the same thing by checking a box that someone else achieved by 4 years of hard work, just seems really wrong.  It just seems to me to undermine the whole academic process.

What bothers me is that you don't get why this paragraph is irrelevant