More Affirmative Action NOW !

United States
August 26, 2007 2:35pm CST
We all know to where the road paved with good intentions leads. On its way there it surely passes through the valley of unintended consequences. Here's an article concerning how affirmative action programs have helped to reduce the number of black lawyers there otherwise would have been in the USA. http://opinionjournal.com/editorial/feature.html?id=110010522 So, what's your opinion concerning this article and affirmative action? Could the thesis of this article be correct? Has affirmative action reduced the number of black lawyers?
1 person likes this
5 responses
@suspenseful (40326)
• Canada
27 Aug 07
Well if I were a law firm recruiting lawyers, I would be suspicious of anyone who was giving preferential treatment because he was Black. I always thought there would be so many black lawyers, that the white ones would be begging for jobs, what is usually portrayed on TV, but I guess what you are saying is that when the Black students get into these prestigious colleges at the expense of others who are white, they feel so assured of their position, that they fail to get down to the books and study. Whereas if affirmative action was abolished, then they would be admitted according to merit, and therefore in order to get a position in the best law school, they would have to buckle down and work. Am I correct/
• United States
27 Aug 07
Affirmative action is a slander upon every competent black person. They are the first to speak out against it.
• United States
31 Aug 07
Yes, you are correct. I even suggested way back when I was in college that race not even be allowed on admission forms. Afterall, the college does not know who you are. They only know your race if you tell them. Don't let them ask and let the chips fall where they may. I was called a racist for this suggestion!
@estherlou (5026)
• United States
27 Aug 07
I had to go and do some research on affirmative action. It is one of those things we've heard about for years but if asked for a definition, might be hard-pressed to give it. I didn't know for example, that it was first introduced by JFK in 1961. The idea of equal opportunity is a good one, but it seems as if it has caused problems ever since. Perhaps that's where reverse discrimination began. The idea of allowing a certain percentage of minorities into schools or jobs is a good one...I just think lowering the standards to make it happen is reprehensible. That must be where the idea of a "token" minority came from...if they were not qualified and were there anyway...what good is it, or what prize is it for the minority? And refusing more qualified white applicants because they had to put in their percentage of minorities and were full? What a big mess. I was surprised to learn it still went on. I've never been involved in big business or elite schools, so never paid attention. After so many years of so-called racial equality, I am really surprised to see that some places still look at color instead of qualifications. I must be naive. Very interesting discussion.
1 person likes this
• United States
27 Aug 07
Looking at color instead of qualifications is one of the things hurting American business in the international market place. No company can do their best and expect to compete in this world by not hiring whoever is smartest, fastest, and most efficient. Things are so competitive that no one today can afford to not hire the best available. Imagine the NBA or the NFL if they hired based on quotas instead of who played the best. Would not the quality of play suffer? So, does the quality of American business also suffer when they hire based on quotas.
1 person likes this
@estherlou (5026)
• United States
27 Aug 07
Exactly! Since we are used to seeing talented basketball and football players of all colors and used to seeing movie celebrities of all colors...it is an eye-opening thing to realize we are still seeing color elsewhere.
• United States
27 Aug 07
Sounds like this will still continue 100 years after the I love Lucy show began.
@Destiny007 (5820)
• United States
27 Aug 07
Anytime you use something such as Affirmative Action as a basis for education or employment then you are guarantied to get people who are not qualified. Affirmative Action is a discrimatory prctice that is doomed to failure, and I think that this article points that out very well. Of course there are those who would say the article is wrong, just as the article itself pointed out. Affirmative action, reverse discrimination, quotas and the like are recipes for failure, and it shouldn't take an article for people to see that. Any time you use anything other than the actual qualifications in order to hire or promote, or as a basis for education or anything else, then you are guaranteeing substandard results. If you don't use the best qualified, then less than the best is what you results will be, every time.
@MntlWard (880)
• United States
27 Aug 07
The writer assumes two things: That college admission would be "colorblind" if there was no affirmative action, and that black students who are admitted with any help from affirmative action are not at all qualified to attend the law school that admitted them. (OK, I didn't read the whole article because it's very very long, but that seems to be his argument based on what I did read.) I don't believe that either of those things are universally true. At the time affirmative action was implemented, college admission was certainly not colorblind. I know times have changed since then, but there's still a lot of racism out there. It may be a kinder, gentler racism, but so many people make judgments based on race without even realizing it that I couldn't say for sure that it would never happen in college admissions offices anymore. I also don't think a slight advantage from affirmative action would land a black student an admission in a university for which he's staggeringly underqualified. I know different schools have different methods of doing this, but if they're just trying to meet some quota and they enroll any black student who applies with no regard to qualifications, then I think they're not following the spirit of the law. I think we'd have even fewer black lawyers if affirmative action had never been started, though I think it could do with a tune-up since it's been benefitting some people who didn't really need help.