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Thread: Affirmative acton lawsuit

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    Senior Member JD77's Avatar
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    Affirmative acton lawsuit

    I'd have to say I'm strongly opposed to affirmative action. I see some (very few) benefits that could come from it, but I just think any form of favoritism is unfair. Anyway, I'm sure most of you have heard of the lawsuit being heard by the Supreme Court right now charging the University of Michigan's selection process is unconstitutional and discriminatory. The link below details it some. It has caused an awful lot of heated debate and the decision, either way, is going to have strong effects. I'm curious to see this one unfold.


    http://www.dailyillini.com/jan03/jan..._story02.shtml
    Last edited by JD77; 04-02-2003 at 01:43 PM.
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    I agree with you...affirmative action imo has outlived its usefulness, and using minority status as the determining factor is ridiculous when it comes to considering candidates for graduate school, in michigan if you are white, a male, and not dirt poor, you have as much chance of getting into UofM law or medical school as you have of being a baptist pope.
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    Senior Member Fightin Irish's Avatar
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    No issue has been more saturated with dishonesty than the issue of racial quotas and preferences, which is now being examined by the Supreme Court of the United States. Many defenders of affirmative action are not even honest enough to admit that they are talking about quotas and preferences, even though everyone knows that that is what affirmative action amounts to in practice.
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    Baby Seal Clubber ElPietro's Avatar
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    I think when applying to university, you should be represented by a coded number, instead of name, or picture, or racial background. The fact that minority status is almost doubly as valuable as actual grades is absolutely ludicrous. How the f*ck do these brain dead individuals that make up these policies think this is levelling the playing field. Or are they saying every white male born in today's society owes something to women and all other minority groups, and thus should be handicapped accordingly? Complete and utter BS with no rational foundation if you ask me.
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    As far as the Univ. of Michigan case goes, race was ONE of many factors that were used to assess applicants and there were no quotas or "set-asides," despite all the misinformation in the media.

    Most big universities rank applicants on a total points scale with x many points awarded for things such as test scores, GPA, activities, awards, in-state/out-of-state, intended major, race, ethnicity, and a whole lot of other things. For example, if the school is trying to build up their public health program, they may award extra points for someone who is intending to major in public health.

    When I applied to U of Michigan, applicants from the Upper Peninsula got 10 points b/c they were making an effort to recruit and attract more students from that under-represented area in the state. U of Minnesota does something similar. So the "affirmative action" goes around to a lot of groups, not just the classic racial minorities that immediately get blamed. And no one gets accepted or rejected solely on the basis of race or ethnicity...it's a combination of many, many factors.
    Last edited by IceRgrrl; 04-02-2003 at 01:55 PM.

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    Senior Member Fightin Irish's Avatar
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    Despite all the gushing about the mystical benefits of "diversity" in higher education, a recent study by respected academic scholars found that "college diversity programs fail to raise standards" and that "a majority of faculty members and administrators recognize this when speaking anonymously."

    This study by Stanley Rothman, Seymour Martin Lipset, and Neil Nevitte found that "of those who think that preferences have some impact on academic standards those believing it negative exceed those believing it positive by 15 to 1."

    Poll after poll over the years has shown that most faculty members and most students are opposed to double standards in college admissions. Yet professors who will come out publicly and say what they say privately in these polls are as rare as hen's teeth.
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    Senior Member Fightin Irish's Avatar
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    Originally posted by IceRgrrl
    So the "affirmative action" goes around to a lot of groups, not just the classic racial minorities that immediately get blamed. And no one gets accepted or rejected solely on the basis of race or ethnicity...it's a combination of many, many factors.
    They add something like 2500 pts to applicants of a minority ethnic background. Depending on the amount of minorities applying, that added up could knock quite a few more qualified applicants.

    I'm Irish and catholic, my family doesn't have a ton of money, it would get me pissed if I got put on stand by because they had to give my spot to someone that didn't work as hard as I did and got a gimme.

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    But on the other extreme, don't you want your future lawyers, judges, and lawmakers to all from a whole host of different social, economic, ethnic, racial, religious, gender backgrounds? Or do you trust a lot of spoiled rich kids of spoiled rich parents who contribute donations and have legacies to be molding your future?

    I'm sure that being a Bush, being a legacy, and a whole host of other "affirmative factors" got mediocre student George W. into Yale It seems a bit hypocritical that he and his cronies are criticizing the admissions systems at universities, when they themselves have had every advantage since birth.

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    Senior Member Fightin Irish's Avatar
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    But I didn't, and if it should be allowed anywhere it should only be for undergrad work. They got the same tools as everyone else in undergrad, from there on out it should be whoever uses them best. It should definitley not be in grad programs.

    Speaking of which, one of my good friends is trying to apply to law school, he has a 3.89 GPA and did pretty good on his LSATs and the only school he could get admitted to was Temple Law.
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    Originally posted by Fightin Irish


    They add something like 2500 pts to applicants of a minority ethnic background. Depending on the amount of minorities applying, that added up could knock quite a few more qualified applicants.

    I think you may be exaggerating just a bit...as I stated, any ONE category is not enough to get a person in.

    I'm Irish and catholic, my family doesn't have a ton of money, it would get me pissed if I got put on stand by because they had to give my spot to someone that didn't work as hard as I did and got a gimme.
    I'm Lithuanian/Finnish and catholic and my family couldn't afford to send me to college either. But I found a way to put myself through and other people can too. There are thousands of colleges in the US...not getting into one or two doesn't ruin your future or your life. I was limited to in-state public institutions and was happy that the U of Michigan was in my state.

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    Senior Member JD77's Avatar
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    Originally posted by IceRgrrl
    As far as the Univ. of Michigan case goes, race was ONE of many factors that were used to assess applicants and there were no quotas or "set-asides," despite all the misinformation in the media.

    Most big universities rank applicants on a total points scale with x many points awarded for things such as test scores, GPA, activities, awards, in-state/out-of-state, intended major, race, ethnicity, and a whole lot of other things. For example, if the school is trying to build up their public health program, they may award extra points for someone who is intending to major in public health.

    When I applied to U of Michigan, applicants from the Upper Peninsula got 10 points b/c they were making an effort to recruit and attract more students from that under-represented area in the state. U of Minnesota does something similar. So the "affirmative action" goes around to a lot of groups, not just the classic racial minorities that immediately get blamed. And no one gets accepted or rejected solely on the basis of race or ethnicity...it's a combination of many, many factors.

    The link I posted above says the University of Michigan allows 20 points for being a minority while only 12 are granted for a perfect SAT score. That's insane. A person of minority can sleep through their SAT's and ACT's and have the same selection score, or better, than another person who did well on both, simply because they are a minority.

    I agree with ElP. A code given to each applicant would remove all favoritism and truly level the field for everyone. I don't know how they would do the interviews though.
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    Originally posted by Fightin Irish
    Speaking of which, one of my good friends is trying to apply to law school, he has a 3.89 GPA and did pretty good on his LSATs and the only school he could get admitted to was Temple Law.
    It's the same thing in vet schools and many physical therapy programs...applicants basically have to have a 4.0 average and lots of lab/research/volunteer experienceto be considered...lots of people want into those programs.

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    Senior Member Fightin Irish's Avatar
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    Originally posted by IceRgrrl


    It's the same thing in vet schools and many physical therapy programs...applicants basically have to have a 4.0 average and lots of lab/research/volunteer experienceto be considered...lots of people want into those programs.
    Right, so why give it away to someone with less qualifications just because of their race???

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    First of all, let me clarify my position a little: I'm not saying that the system is correct or not without fault, my point is that it is a wider and more inclusive process that deals with a complex issue and I take exception to it being erroneously boiled down to a simple "minorities automatically get it while white males get rejected" or that "race trumps everything else"...that is oversimplification and is appealing emotionally but still incorrect.

    Originally posted by JD77
    [B]
    The link I posted above says the University of Michigan allows 20 points for being a minority while only 12 are granted for a perfect SAT score. That's insane. A person of minority can sleep through their SAT's and ACT's and have the same selection score, or better, than another person who did well on both, simply because they are a minority.
    I'm not saying I agree with the numbers, but playing devil's advocate, some people just test really well and other's do not. Tests/test scores are not absolute measures of intelligence or ability and tend to be overused and more faith put into them than is prudent. I tend to test well and will have that advantage in any test, whereas someone more skilled than me who doesn't test well will be at a disaadvantage if we go heavily by test scores. That's why there is a variety of factors, not JUST test scores and race.

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    Baby Seal Clubber ElPietro's Avatar
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    Originally posted by JD77


    I agree with ElP. A code given to each applicant would remove all favoritism and truly level the field for everyone. I don't know how they would do the interviews though.
    They could do it on MSN.

    I agree with a lot of what Icer says, but disagree with her regarding affirmative action, and diversity. Having rich kids getting in on their families laurels is not good either, but that doesn't mean every white kid with a decent income should be handicapped either. I don't think economic background should be a factor for admittance, and I don't think race should either. If a certain profession is appealing then it should appeal to everyone of every race. So if your admittance policies are based on ability, and not on factors outside that persons control, such as race, religion or culture then you should wind up with an excellent mix, of the most capable and most qualified individuals. If you use Bush as an example, then you are basically saying we should give others the same type of benefit, within the grading scale, then it's basically just repeating the problem with another demographic, and only creates a further mess, instead of a solution. At no point, in my opinion, should race be pertinent, or even a line on an application. That's why I think coded numbers would be best, so that you would avoid gender issues, and race issues, which could still be derived by the applicant's name. Correspondence could be done eletronically in order to assure this if need be.

    I'm sure this is not practical in any way shape, or form, but to me seems like the only impartial system that I can think of right now.
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    Senior Member Fightin Irish's Avatar
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    But the whole issue with Affirmitive action is a race or gender issue...
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    Originally posted by Fightin Irish


    Right, so why give it away to someone with less qualifications just because of their race???
    No. See my clarification above...

    That is NOT what I am saying and not what happens in the process. Race is ONE out of many factors that is considered; with many, many factors being weighed, the probability of it coming down to "Gee these two candidates have exactly the same score out of all these categories...we'll take the black kid" is very, very small, let alone the scenario of "Gee this kid has 89 total points but he's white so let's take the Hispanic kid with 62."

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    Baby Seal Clubber ElPietro's Avatar
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    Originally posted by IceRgrrl


    No. See my clarification above...

    That is NOT what I am saying and not what happens in the process. Race is ONE out of many factors that is considered; with many, many factors being weighed, the probability of it coming down to "Gee these two candidates have exactly the same score out of all these categories...we'll take the black kid" is very, very small, let alone the scenario of "Gee this kid has 89 total points but he's white so let's take the Hispanic kid with 62."
    I disagree with this because I think that is exactly how you have to look at it. If two people are equally qualified, or one person is slightly more qualified, and loses out, because the race of the minority has now tipped the scales, this is where things break down. If you are arguing that there are so many factors, and not any one factor makes a difference, that's like saying why should I vote, since I can't make a difference. If it's not a factor, then it should not be included at all right?

    I would think you would be on the side of "earning" your spot in life, not in being handicapped, or given an advantage over others, that may not be the same gender, race, or culture.
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    Originally posted by ElPietro
    [B]

    I agree with a lot of what Icer says, but disagree with her regarding affirmative action, and diversity. Having rich kids getting in on their families laurels is not good either, but that doesn't mean every white kid with a decent income should be handicapped either.
    I don't think I ever said that. I think that it's hard for a middle income family to afford college educations and that should be dealt with.

    If you use Bush as an example, then you are basically saying we should give others the same type of benefit, within the grading scale, then it's basically just repeating the problem with another demographic, and only creates a further mess, instead of a solution.
    No, I'm saying that advantages to certain groups exist whether we like to think about them or not and until those are no longer a factor, some sort of balancing mechanism is a flawed but necessary solution. Yeah, it'd be nice if the system was totally democratic and everyone was evaluated the same way, but until that utopian time...
    Last edited by IceRgrrl; 04-02-2003 at 02:24 PM.

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    Cardio bunny Alex.V's Avatar
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    Originally posted by IceRgrrl



    No, I'm saying that advantages to certain groups exist whether we like to think about them or not and until those are no longer a factor, some sort of balancing mechanism is a flawed but necessary solution. Yeah, it'd be nice if the system was totally democratic and everyone was evaluated the same way, but until that utopian time...
    So a deeply flawed solution is better than none?
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    Originally posted by ElPietro

    I disagree with this because I think that is exactly how you have to look at it. If two people are equally qualified, or one person is slightly more qualified, and loses out, because the race of the minority has now tipped the scales, this is where things break down. If you are arguing that there are so many factors, and not any one factor makes a difference, that's like saying why should I vote, since I can't make a difference. If it's not a factor, then it should not be included at all right?

    As I stated before, considering ALL the factors involved in the weighting, the probability of a scenario coming down to being tipped solely by race is very, very small. It's the sum total or the collective score that matters. The probability of my one vote tipping an election either way is also very, very small, but the collective vote is what makes the difference.

    I would think you would be on the side of "earning" your spot in life, not in being handicapped, or given an advantage over others, that may not be the same gender, race, or culture.
    I don't see it as handicapping anyone or giving anyone a huge advantage. I see it as a flawed but necessary balancing mechanism for advantages that other people have by virtue of things that they certainly have not "earned".

    And someone who wants to go to law school will find a way and a school. I have no sympathy for someone who whines that because they didn't get into School A, their life is ruined.
    Last edited by IceRgrrl; 04-02-2003 at 02:33 PM.

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    the biggest hypocrisy in all this is that these officials wish to eliminate race as a factor in students' decision-making (which is commendable), but they refuse to consider eliminating it as a factor in their own.

    I think its time for college leaders to start basing affirmative action programs on socioeconomic disadvantage rather than ethnicity.

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    Originally posted by Belial

    So a deeply flawed solution is better than none?
    I believe so...that's my opinion. Just as it's my opinion that the system is not as "deeply flawed" as it is made out to be.

    I haven't benefited from the system, being white and getting no aid for my studies, though I *did* get those 10 points from being from a frozen wasteland part of my state.

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    Senior Member Fightin Irish's Avatar
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    I agree, the advantages should be given to those from a lower socioeconomic bracket. That's where the disadvantages come in.
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    I wonder if they do enough background check to know if you really are "hispanic" or another diluted American culture. I say diluted because Christina Aguilera sure as **** doesn't look Latino to me.

    Next application I get, I will fill in the hispanic oval with my handy #2 pencil and if anyone questions me, I'll just say it was "human error."

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