Law School Discussion

ITT we discuss intermediate steps between current situation, AA-free world

7S

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whoa now....we're threading into spots and quotas...

No we aren't. Only mentioned to discuss the topic at hand, and heavens how could it not be related?

But the "whoa now" gives me pause. Familiar diction ...


lol. I'm a Texan. Guns a blazin.

racial and gender equality are utopian.


In other words unattainable?

yep and so is the American Dream. Just because it's utopian doesn't mean it shouldn't be attempted.


Except, of course, that most Americans appear to be living the American Deam (high standard of living, personal freedom, etc.).  Which is presumably why millions of immigrants from around the planet strive to come here. 

If you believe the other thing, however, is unattainable, it's stupid to waste time pursuing it.

What might be worth pursuing (and is far more attainable), however, is a general equality of opportunity.  Maybe we should therefore strive for that.

Outside of your gated community it's a slightly different world. I mean, our poor comparatively aren't at the same level as many African or Latin American communities, but that doesn't mean they're still "living the American dream."

I'm glad you support equality of opportunity, though. It's too bad the rest of your rhetoric doesn't quite gel with that.

7S

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To me that's not "equality of opportunity," not if "diversity" is among your criteria. That would be "diversity of opportunity," for lack of a better word.


If you'll look at my proposal on the other thread, I proposed 1) controlling for educational opportuity, and then 2) giving a slight tipping point to the minority candidate for diversity purposes.

The first part reflects equality of opportunity, the 2nd part reflects the desire to increase minority presence when everything else is equal.  (That's why I qualified the above statement by mentioning the diversity aspect.) 

But it's mainly about equality of opportunity.  I'm still looking to see if others can explain what other factors may directly impact GPA/LSAT, so those can perhaps be controlled for.



Maybe we better start by defining "equality." Getting in to one particular law school is equally likely for all humans who possess equal LSAT and GPA numbers? Or, getting in to that same school is equally likely for all humans who are born with (all other things being equal) identical skill at law? Or, for all humans who are born with identical IQs? Or, for all humans who are equally likely to succeed at law? Or ... ?

I'm not sure what your point is here.  My analysis would control for educational opportunity, and then focus primarily on objective numbers among similiarly-situated individuals.  That to me would appear to create a general equality of opportunity.

of course it would to you.

7S

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To me that's not "equality of opportunity," not if "diversity" is among your criteria. That would be "diversity of opportunity," for lack of a better word.


If you'll look at my proposal on the other thread, I proposed 1) controlling for educational opportuity, and then 2) giving a slight tipping point to the minority candidate for diversity purposes.

The first part reflects equality of opportunity, the 2nd part reflects the desire to increase minority presence when everything else is equal.  (That's why I qualified the above statement by mentioning the diversity aspect.) 

But it's mainly about equality of opportunity.  I'm still looking to see if others can explain what other factors may directly impact GPA/LSAT, so those can perhaps be controlled for.



Maybe we better start by defining "equality." Getting in to one particular law school is equally likely for all humans who possess equal LSAT and GPA numbers? Or, getting in to that same school is equally likely for all humans who are born with (all other things being equal) identical skill at law? Or, for all humans who are born with identical IQs? Or, for all humans who are equally likely to succeed at law? Or ... ?

I'm not sure what your point is here.  My analysis would control for educational opportunity, and then focus primarily on objective numbers among similiarly-situated individuals.  That to me would appear to create a general equality of opportunity.

of course it would to you.

That's true, I'm a relatively rational person.

What would create general equality of opportunity for you?

relative to what?  :D  ;)

Narrowly-tailored race, gender and class concious affirmative action programs. Race and gender will always play a part in our decision-making.

7S

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relative to most.

to most what? people? I doubt it.

Narrowly-tailored race, gender and class concious affirmative action programs.


Okay.  Do you feel they should be race/gender conscious beyond a tipping point?  If so, why?  Do you believe race and gender inherenetly affect academic performance?  If so, how? If not, how/why should it be relevant in admissions decisions?  (Assuming we're seeking equality of opportunity, and not an opportunity of results.)


I think race and gender inherently affect access to opportunity.

Race and gender will always play a part in our decision-making.

Why?  Isn't that a choice?  Should it? 

Sounds like an awfully negative attitude.  Where did you learn that?
[/quote]

It's not a negative view, it's realistic. Human bias is just natural.

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I too think people are not necessarily racist or sexist. What would happen if all admissions were done anonymously, for example? Using an assigned number, all candidates would simply keep their names off their applications. Other safeguards in place, eventually, after a few generations of working out the kinks, couldn't we have a "fair" system of admissions to law schools? Color-blind? Is this even a remote possibility?

The thing that irks me in ALL situations regarding affirmative-action, color-blindness, etc., is that a vested interest on the part of one minority party prevents that party from dealing in across-the-board changes. If the Jews want more Jews in Harlem Law School, then the rule can't be "more racially blind admissions," it has to be, "More Jews admitted." Then if someone tweaks that to change it to, "More whites, less blacks, admitted," suddenly the Jews are angry that "their" slots are taken by Italians. When were they "their" slots in the first place?

I'm mostly a rabid left winger. I liked Howard Dean's big ol' yelp a coupl'a years back. But I can't seem to reconcile affirmative action with the whole "I have a dream" thing about "not by the color of his skin." I keep wanting to say to the politically correct types, "I thought you were all proud of being the supposedly more tolerant side."


Racially blind admissions would be great if we lived in a racially blind society.

t...

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Explain "general equality of opportunity" in full. I'm still unclear what that means.

 

7S

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I too think people are not necessarily racist or sexist. What would happen if all admissions were done anonymously, for example? Using an assigned number, all candidates would simply keep their names off their applications. Other safeguards in place, eventually, after a few generations of working out the kinks, couldn't we have a "fair" system of admissions to law schools? Color-blind? Is this even a remote possibility?

The thing that irks me in ALL situations regarding affirmative-action, color-blindness, etc., is that a vested interest on the part of one minority party prevents that party from dealing in across-the-board changes. If the Jews want more Jews in Harlem Law School, then the rule can't be "more racially blind admissions," it has to be, "More Jews admitted." Then if someone tweaks that to change it to, "More whites, less blacks, admitted," suddenly the Jews are angry that "their" slots are taken by Italians. When were they "their" slots in the first place?

I'm mostly a rabid left winger. I liked Howard Dean's big ol' yelp a coupl'a years back. But I can't seem to reconcile affirmative action with the whole "I have a dream" thing about "not by the color of his skin." I keep wanting to say to the politically correct types, "I thought you were all proud of being the supposedly more tolerant side."


Racially blind admissions would be great if we lived in a racially blind society.


Racism in society may affect the kinds of schools minorities end up attending, the amount of parental resources available to support them, and (potenially) how much time a student can devote to his studies if he also has to work.  That's why I support taking such factors into account in admissions.

My questions:  1)  Why not extend the same consideration to all applicants, who are also impacted by those factors?  2)  Why extend additional preferences after those factors are controlled for?

Because of the bolded. Those other things are already taken into account for everyone, but "some" in society will never experience racism in its institutionalized form.

t...

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Look outside "this context", though. If you're talking "general equality of opportunity," you're talking life in general (and you've discussed that selectively already, anyway).

So, again, what does "general equality of opportunity" mean?

7S

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Re: ITT we discuss intermediate steps between current situation, AA-free world
« Reply #19 on: September 01, 2007, 06:52:27 AM »
Racially blind admissions would be great if we lived in a racially blind society.

But wait! X would be great if Y? But we have not-Y? Doesn't mean we have not-X! I note your faulty contra-positive. :) Racially blind admissions might be great even despite the fact that we live in a racially blind society (which, in itself, is an assumption I might address).

Ah, I get ya. I don't mean to nit-pick. And with a subject such as the law, which is so intrinsically (is that redundant) related to further societal structures, restrictions, and the establishment and protection of rights and privileges, there's bound to be some necessary tinkering if we're going to have anything functional in the future. I mean, it's not like we're talking about making admissions to cheerleading camp more fair on the basis of race or something. The law actually will have bearing on each participant's opportunity to impact his own group and secure their rights in the future.

Then again he or she could just learn, "VEE eye cee tee OH arr wye yeah THAT'S the tribal VIC t'ry cry! Rah rah."

Not having Y, but having X creates an unfair advantage to some and disadvantage to others.

I think you are dead on @ the bolded.