Repeal of race preference programs: Effects on Asians and
7barksda at jmls.edu
Mon Nov 27 17:52:10 PST 2006
Rick Duncan writes:
"I think all opponents of AA desire is an equal opportunity to compete for some scarce resource without regard to race."
Hi Rick -
In your view, at which point does the "equal opportunity without regard to race" part of this equation kick in?
At the point at which people apply for a job or university admission?
Or does it kick in earlier when educational and other opportunities to acquire the specialized knowledge and skills needed to run the "credential chase" , i.e. 1) standardized tests scores, 2) top ranked educational institutions, 3) sterling letters of recommendation from hot shots, and other such hurdles to truly equal opportunity, is grossly unequally distributed with respect to race and economic class, which is strongly correlated with race?
And, is there any doubt, that this reality is overwhelmingly the consequence of our society's three and one/half century legacy of racial exploitation and oppression?
With all due respect - anyone who continues to dispute this point, is either disingenuous, disconnected, or delusional.
I suppose I always seem to be beating a dead horse on this point. But, I don't understand how anyone can even begin imagine that opportunity in this society is somehow race-neutral
By now, it should be a no-brainer that "equal opportunity" is not distributed in this country "without regard to race." If people genuinely wanted "equal opportunity without regard to race" they would favor attempts, to quote a dog-eared cliché "level the playing field" between disadvantaged and advantaged groups in our society.
If people think that what I am repeatedly saying here is incorrect, please explain to me how.
I really hope I don't have to get back on this soapbox again any time soon. (How does that go - the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, and expecting a different result.)
This also plays out with respect to Asians. There are significant differences between standardized test scores and educational attainment of East Asian populations (ex. Japanese, to some extent Chinese) who tend to be the children of upper class, very well educated immigrants who were often recruited or transferred here by businesses, and other Asian immigrant groups such as Vietnamese, Filipino and other South Asian immigrants. The latter groups tend to be much poorer, and have standardized test scores and other credentials which are significantly lower because of economic and language barriers.
As to Ward Connerly - the reason he is so important is simple. His presence allows whites to think what you are saying - that they are fighting for principle, not the continuation of the racial perks that have flowed consistently to whites (particularly upper and upper middle class whites) in this society. As to Ward Connerly himself, I read several years ago, a newspaper biography of him. He was the product of a strain of upper class black Louisiana society which, historically, was in many ways was as racist toward other African-Americans, as whites were. One of the characteristics of that group was that they were vehemently opposed to being identified as "black or negro" - since their identity depended upon separateness - they considered themselves "better than" just about everyone (Black or white - certainly than lower and middle socioeconomic class whites).
I have no idea how much, if any, of this baggage Ward Connerly carries with him. But, his currency is that his role of poster boy for the anti-affirmative action movement puts a black face on what would otherwise be perceived as just another reactionary power grab by whites.
Professor Yvette M. Barksdale
The John Marshall Law School
315 S. Plymouth Ct.
Chicago, IL 60604
(312) 427-2737 (phone)
(312) 427-9974 (fax)
From: conlawprof-bounces at lists.ucla.edu [mailto:conlawprof-bounces at lists.ucla.edu] On Behalf Of Rick Duncan
Sent: Monday, November 27, 2006 5:42 PM
To: conlawprof at lists.ucla.edu
Subject: Re: Repeal of race preference programs: Effects on Asians andpublic reactions
There is no more reason to think that white opponents of affirmative action oppose it out of self interest than to think that black supporters of affirmative action support it out of self interest.
I think all opponents of AA desire is an equal opportunity to compete for some scarce resource without regard to race. So, if Asian Americans benefit the most from a color-blind process, God bless them! They deserve what they win on the merits.
Welpton Professor of Law
University of Nebraska College of Law
Lincoln, NE 68583-0902
"It's a funny thing about us human beings: not many of us doubt God's existence and then start sinning. Most of us sin and then start doubting His existence." --J. Budziszewski (The Revenge of Conscience)
"Once again the ancient maxim is vindicated, that the perversion of the best is the worst." -- Id.
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