Stories
Slash Boxes
Comments

SoylentNews is people

posted by janrinok on Wednesday April 23 2014, @09:39PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]

CNN reports that the Supreme Court of the US (SCOTUS) by a vote of 6 - 2 has upheld a Michigan law banning the use of racial criteria in college admissions, finding that a lower court did not have the authority to set aside the measure approved in a 2006 referendum supported by 58% of voters. "This case is not about how the debate about racial preferences should be resolved. It is about who may resolve it," wrote Justice Anthony Kennedy. "Michigan voters used the initiative system to bypass public officials who were deemed not responsive to the concerns of a majority of the voters with respect to a policy of granting race-based preferences that raises difficult and delicate issues." Kennedy's core opinion in the Michigan case seems to exalt referenda as a kind of direct democracy that the courts should be particularly reluctant to disturb. This might be a problem for same-sex marriage opponents if a future Supreme Court challenge involves a state law or constitutional amendment enacted by voters. Justice Sonia Sotomayor reacted sharply in disagreeing with the decision in a 58 page dissent. "For members of historically marginalized groups, which rely on the federal courts to protect their constitutional rights, the decision can hardly bolster hope for a vision of democracy (PDF) that preserves for all the right to participate meaningfully and equally in self-government."

The decision was the latest step in a legal and political battle over whether state colleges can use race and gender as a factor in choosing what students to admit. Michigan has said minority enrollment at its flagship university, the University of Michigan, has not gone down since the measure was passed. Civil rights groups dispute those figures and say other states have seen fewer African-American and Hispanic students attending highly competitive schools, especially in graduate level fields like law, medicine, and science. "Today's decision turns back our nation's commitment to racial equality and equal treatment under the law by sanctioning separate and unequal political processes that put undue burdens on students," National Education Association President Dennis Van Roekel said in a statement. "The Supreme Court has made it harder to advocate and, ultimately, achieve equal educational opportunity."

This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.
Display Options Threshold/Breakthrough Mark All as Read Mark All as Unread
The Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not responsible for them in any way.
  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by The Mighty Buzzard on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:02PM

    College admission should be based on absolutely nothing but merit and we fought a hell of a long time to dis-equate skin color with merit.
    --
    My rights don't end where your fear begins.
    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by RobotLove on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:40PM

      by RobotLove (3304) on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:40PM (#35194)

      But it has been scientifically proven that we subconsciously discriminate. So while we may think we are admitting based on "nothing but merit", we are not. This is what affirmative action fixes. Affirmative action says, "Left to your own devices you will not choose based on merit but will subconsciously prefer some group. However, by forcing your admissions to reflect actual demographics, we actually ensuring you are choosing based on merit."

      Anyone who actually believes on basing admissions on merit alone must support affirmative action.

      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by The Mighty Buzzard on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:42PM

        Affirmative action says your skin color makes you more worthy than someone with different skin color. You cannot remove inequality by introducing further inequality; you do it by removing those perpetrating unequal treatment.
        --
        My rights don't end where your fear begins.
        • (Score: 2, Interesting) by RobotLove on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:49PM

          by RobotLove (3304) on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:49PM (#35206)

          No, it doesn't. It says that no particular color is more special than another. It does this by ensuring that the demographic of the people you pick matches the demographic of the population at large. It does this because your mind cannot be trusted.

          I used to think affirmative action was just reverse discrimination, but then I had it explained to me that we always discriminate, without knowing it, even when we think we aren't. Affirmative action ensures we cannot, even if we want to.

          • (Score: 5, Insightful) by The Mighty Buzzard on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:55PM

            Yes, it most certainly does if being black/hispanic/martian will get you admitted where you wouldn't be if you were white. There is no "good" racism. When you discriminate based on race for any reason, you are racist and you are wrong.
            --
            My rights don't end where your fear begins.
          • (Score: 3, Insightful) by GeminiDomino on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:31AM

            by GeminiDomino (661) on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:31AM (#35269)

            It does this by ensuring that the demographic of the people you pick matches the demographic of the population at large. It does this because your mind cannot be trusted.

            It's not PC to point it out, but that's reasoning from the conclusion. The assumption that inequality of demographics is indicative of discrimination/bias rather than relative ability requires the assumption that there is, in fact, no difference in abilities between demographics. Which tends not to be tested, because it's discriminatory.

            --
            "We've been attacked by the intelligent, educated segment of our culture"
            • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Thursday April 24 2014, @11:54AM

              by Angry Jesus (182) on Thursday April 24 2014, @11:54AM (#35475)

              > It's not PC to point it out, but that's reasoning from the conclusion.

              Ah yes, if it weren't for a conspiracy by the evil, lying political correctness police to silence anyone with the the facts, we'd all know that <insert minority social group in your country> is genetically inferior.

              • (Score: 1) by GeminiDomino on Friday April 25 2014, @08:53PM

                by GeminiDomino (661) on Friday April 25 2014, @08:53PM (#36339)

                Your frothing and pointless strawman doesn't change the fact that the error in logic I pointed is, in fact, an error in logic.

                --
                "We've been attacked by the intelligent, educated segment of our culture"
                • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Friday April 25 2014, @08:58PM

                  by Angry Jesus (182) on Friday April 25 2014, @08:58PM (#36345)

                  > Your frothing

                  Lol, project much?

                  > and pointless strawman doesn't change the fact that the error in logic I pointed is, in fact, an error in logic.

                  No, the error in logic is yours. It's conspiracy theory bullshit where the proof is in the lack of proof.

                  • (Score: 1) by GeminiDomino on Friday April 25 2014, @09:41PM

                    by GeminiDomino (661) on Friday April 25 2014, @09:41PM (#36367)

                    Except I made no assertions about results, only about methodology. So that's where your strawman comes in. Apparently, you can't handle your dogma being exposed for what it is.

                    --
                    "We've been attacked by the intelligent, educated segment of our culture"
                    • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Friday April 25 2014, @10:44PM

                      by Angry Jesus (182) on Friday April 25 2014, @10:44PM (#36390)

                      > Except I made no assertions about results, only about methodology.

                      Lol, the old "just saying" defense. Hey, it is possible you are a murderer, but it isn't PC to say that so it tends not to be investigated. Just saying.

                      The actual fact is that there has been PLENTY of investigation into "racial" differences in ability and the only guys who claim to have found positive results just also happen to hang with neo-nazi types. [wikipedia.org]

                      • (Score: 1) by GeminiDomino on Friday April 25 2014, @11:29PM

                        by GeminiDomino (661) on Friday April 25 2014, @11:29PM (#36412)

                        That's not true at all. There was also that one (can't find a cite now, but I'm sure you're familiar with it) that found the disparity in the results of standardized testing (I believe it was the SAT), and drew the conclusion that the test was "culturally biased."

                        The fact that you continue to try to attribute racist leanings to me based on nothing more than my objection to "facts" which are nothing near, though, makes it obvious that talking to you is pointless tail-chasing.

                        --
                        "We've been attacked by the intelligent, educated segment of our culture"
                        • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Saturday April 26 2014, @01:47AM

                          by Angry Jesus (182) on Saturday April 26 2014, @01:47AM (#36452)

                          > That's not true at all.

                          That's just wishful thinking on your part. You've done nothing to back up your claims.

                          > There was also that one (can't find a cite now, but I'm sure you're familiar with it) that found the disparity
                          > in the results of standardized testing (I believe it was the SAT), and drew the conclusion that the test was "culturally biased."

                          So wait, you are citing something that contradicts your premise - that unbiased studies showed that there were racial differences in intelligence - and you think that proves your point? WTF?

                          > The fact that you continue to try to attribute racist leanings to me based on nothing more
                          > than my objection to "facts"

                          Yeah your objection to facts, facts that you yourself have now cited, is pretty much the problem here.

                          • (Score: 1) by GeminiDomino on Saturday April 26 2014, @03:28AM

                            by GeminiDomino (661) on Saturday April 26 2014, @03:28AM (#36478)

                            So wait, you are citing something that contradicts your premise - that unbiased studies showed that there were racial differences in intelligence - and you think that proves your point? WTF?

                            It doesn't contradict my premise. The study showed a statistical difference, and the conclusion was that the problem was with the test, not with the assumption. That's a methodology problem.

                            At this point, I can't tell if you're being deliberately obtuse or not.

                            --
                            "We've been attacked by the intelligent, educated segment of our culture"
                            • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Saturday April 26 2014, @03:49AM

                              by Angry Jesus (182) on Saturday April 26 2014, @03:49AM (#36489)

                              > It doesn't contradict my premise. The study showed a statistical difference, and the conclusion
                              > was that the problem was with the test, not with the assumption. That's a methodology problem.

                              So what? How does that have any bearing on anything relevant here? A study that, by your own words, did not show one way or the other has absolutely no bearing on the fact that all the studies that have shown a difference were associated with neo-nazis.

                              > At this point, I can't tell if you're being deliberately obtuse or not.

                              Right back at you.

          • (Score: 1) by Daiv on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:36PM

            by Daiv (3940) on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:36PM (#35518)

            Please tell me WHY the demographics of the people picked HAS to match the population at large. According to that logic, whichever demographic reproduces the most SHOULD be the most picked. That's quite the slippery slope you're setting up.

            • (Score: 1) by RobotLove on Thursday April 24 2014, @02:54PM

              by RobotLove (3304) on Thursday April 24 2014, @02:54PM (#35570)

              Because it's the simplest way to reduce subconscious discrimination. There may be other, more accurate, ways of reducing this bias, but a simple rule of "We will ensure our employee demographic matches the cultural demographic" is the easiest to follow, the simplest to implement, the one everyone can understand.

              I (and the rule) don't care who reproduces the fastest. I (and the rule) only care about what the current demographics are.

              • (Score: 1) by Daiv on Thursday April 24 2014, @08:38PM

                by Daiv (3940) on Thursday April 24 2014, @08:38PM (#35776)

                Your explanation in no way makes sense. It doesn't appeal to any sort of correctness. You seem to have the most shallow thoughts on the subject and can't possibly understand the real-world implications of what you're spewing. You haven't established at ALL _why_ what you're selling is the right answer. How is your answer the best one? And best for WHO?

                As someone who has a degree in Ethics, I could probably go on for paragraphs on how absurd your answer appears to be, but I'll leave it at this:

                I reject your explanation completely.

                • (Score: 1) by RobotLove on Thursday April 24 2014, @11:11PM

                  by RobotLove (3304) on Thursday April 24 2014, @11:11PM (#35836)

                  Let's go back to the problem. We have subconscious cognitive biases that discriminate against certain demographics within our society. So when we think that we are selecting on merit alone, we are not. This is fact.

                  What is a simple, cost-effective, measurable way to combat this?

                  Smarter people than I, whose reasoning I (think I) understand have suggested Affirmative Action as a solution. It accomplishes the goals we set for ourselves (eliminate the subconscious bias against certain demographics) in a simple, cost-effective and measurable way.

                  If you know a better one, I'm sure there's a ton of people who would be very interested in your solution.

        • (Score: 4, Insightful) by Angry Jesus on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:09AM

          by Angry Jesus (182) on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:09AM (#35263)

          > Affirmative action says your skin color makes you more worthy than someone with different skin color.

          No, AA acknowledges that is how the system has always worked and tries to change the weighting it to make it more equitable.

          If you think the system ought to be different, then at a minimum there needs to be a plan in place to change the system before you throw out AA's weighting. Otherwise all we are left with is the same system we've always had with the same lopsided weighting in favor of whites that we've always had.

          • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:43AM

            Already is. Throw the bastiches in jail when you can prove they've done something wrong. Is a good plan.
            --
            My rights don't end where your fear begins.
            • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:58AM

              by Angry Jesus (182) on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:58AM (#35282)

              > Already is. Throw the bastiches in jail when you can prove they've done something wrong. Is a good plan.

              The day being a legacy is illegal you'll have a point.

              • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:25AM

                Eh, that'd be a whole lot more valid if it weren't an extremely small portion of students. They let a hell of a lot more than legacies can account for in even when I went to school. Lately it seems like they let anyone who can beg, borrow, or steal the tuition in. Crowding and ability to learn the material be damned.
                --
                My rights don't end where your fear begins.
              • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:31AM

                Double comment on account of someone was distracting me and I gave up.

                Legacies aren't really a white issue. More an 'entitled twats who also happen to mostly be white' issue. That they flatten the diversity curve is the least of their sins.

                --
                My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:40AM

                  by Angry Jesus (182) on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:40AM (#35304)

                  > Legacies aren't really a white issue. More an 'entitled twats who also happen to mostly be white' issue.
                  > That they flatten the diversity curve is the least of their sins.

                  Oh yeah, I forgot you are the guy who thinks that not only do we not have a problem with structural racism, but that it is impossible for structural racism to exist. An analysis slightly above the level of object permanence.

                  • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:58AM

                    More or less correct; institutional racism is just a term that gets flung around to get all the benefits of playing the race card yet avoid having to prove actual racism. But what I meant is legacies don't have the numbers to make much of a difference.
                    --
                    My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                    • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Thursday April 24 2014, @03:21AM

                      by Angry Jesus (182) on Thursday April 24 2014, @03:21AM (#35340)

                      > institutional racism is just a term that gets flung around to get all the benefits of playing the race card yet avoid having to prove actual racism.

                      The proof is the simple and undisputed fact that actual representation is not anywhere near proportional to demographics.

                      > But what I meant is legacies don't have the numbers to make much of a difference.

                      So, not only does poof have to be simple enough for a 5-year old to recognize, it also must be large-scale in order to qualify.

                      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by The Mighty Buzzard on Thursday April 24 2014, @11:29AM

                        The proof is the simple and undisputed fact that actual representation is not anywhere near proportional to demographics.

                        Logic FAIL. Demographics are not and should not be used or you neglect actual qualification. Last I looked, minorities disproportionately lived in poor neighborhoods with shit schools and thus had less of an opportunity to become qualified. Not their fault. Not my fault. Not any university's fault. Just the truth.

                        Is that a shit position to be in? Sure. Does it mean unqualified people should get admitted? Nope. Racism cannot be balanced out with more racism. More racism only increases the hate and prolongs the underlying problem.

                        So, not only does poof have to be simple enough for a 5-year old to recognize, it also must be large-scale in order to qualify.

                        Oh, come on. You had a halfway decent argument going with the first one. Don't fuck it up by trolling in the second half when you knew damned well what I meant.

                        --
                        My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                        • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:03PM

                          by Angry Jesus (182) on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:03PM (#35477)

                          > More racism only increases the hate and prolongs the underlying problem.

                          AA is an acknowledgement that the current situation is shit and that wholesale change of the system can not happen until there is adequate representation among the people with the power to do something about it. You know what actually prolongs the underlying problem? Throwing up your hands and saying that it's "just the truth" and expecting the situation to sort itself out.

                          > Oh, come on. You had a halfway decent argument going with the first one.
                          > Don't fuck it up by trolling in the second half when you knew damned well what I meant.

                          So, pointing out the logical conclusion of your argument is trolling? How convenient for you.

                          • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:03PM

                            AA is an acknowledgement that the current situation is shit and that wholesale change of the system can not happen until there is adequate representation among the people with the power to do something about it. You know what actually prolongs the underlying problem? Throwing up your hands and saying that it's "just the truth" and expecting the situation to sort itself out.

                            Oh, I'll grant you it's good-hearted but it's counterproductive. It only increases racial hatred when someone gets a spot they don't deserve because of their skin color. Witness my very much non-racist ass being pissed off about it and consider how people of a less enlightened disposition are taking getting fucked out of admittance. There is not a damned pro-active thing that can be done to solve the issue, only reactive. By that I mean throwing anyone you have evidence of racial discrimination in a position of power from in federal butt-pounding prison.

                            So, pointing out the logical conclusion of your argument is trolling? How convenient for you.

                            Putting words in my mouth is. I've no issue with, and would even be in favor of, getting rid of the practice but I don't see it as much of a problem due to the fairly small effect it has; efforts are better spent where they will do more good more quickly. But you seem to want a flamewar today, as usual, rather than rational discussion.

                            --
                            My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                            • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:13PM

                              by Angry Jesus (182) on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:13PM (#35506)

                              > It only increases racial hatred when someone gets a spot they don't deserve because of their skin color.

                              Wah, wah, wah. Loss of unearned privilege is sooo unfair! All those people who have to live lives of repression because they were born with the wrong skin color, its just better that they get to be the repository of all the hatred in the country. So much better that way.

                              Answer this - what is wrong with racism? Really, what is the problem with racism?

                              > Putting words in my mouth is.

                              Oh bullshit. Your rebuttal was juvenile and I spelled out exactly why it was juvenile. There was no words put in your mouth, only a description of why your argument was so weak.

                              • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:20PM

                                Ooooh, you used the privilege buzzword. You lose.

                                And now since you want so badly to make a flamewar of this...

                                All the old paintings on the tombs,
                                They do the sand dance,
                                Don't you know?

                                --
                                My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                                • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:39PM

                                  by Angry Jesus (182) on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:39PM (#35520)

                                  > Ooooh, you used the privilege buzzword. You lose.

                                  How convenient for you to pick unstated arbitrary lines that other people are not permitted to cross in a discussion.

                                  Answer the question:

                                  Why is racism bad?

                                  Failure to answer will be yet another example of you running away because you've been argued into a corner of your own illogic.

                                  • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Thursday April 24 2014, @02:08PM

                                    I'll answer something else instead since you don't see why using the privilege buzzword was so absurd and argument-stopping.

                                    Privilege comes from the Latin for "private law", meaning one set of rules for one group and one for another. This means you lose because that is exactly what anyone using it is advocating, special treatment under the law or rules for <popular group of the day>. You are saying one group who advocates against any private law is the beneficiary of private law that you cannot point to and thus you must institute private law against them to correct it.

                                    Okay, it's a stupid question but I've an answer I'm rather fond of, so WTF. Most people can rarely go five minutes without taking an affirmative action towards being some flavor of asshole, which is quite sufficient and logical to hate them for. Hating them for something they had no say in like skin color shows that you're too much of a moron to realize this and are just spewing unearned hate indiscriminately.

                                    --
                                    My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                                    • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Thursday April 24 2014, @02:33PM

                                      by Angry Jesus (182) on Thursday April 24 2014, @02:33PM (#35552)

                                      > Privilege comes from the Latin for "private law",

                                      So you are a dictionary pedant. Of course, like all such pedants, the only definition that counts is the one that is most convenient for you.

                                      See the first (and therefore most common usage) in the oxford english dictionary: [oxforddictionaries.com]

                                      A special right, advantage, or immunity granted or available only to a particular person or group.

                                      Therefore the advantage of not growing up in a ghetto, not getting substandard education, of not being looked at as an outsider and all the other stuff that comes with being a member of the dominant social group is indeed privilege.

                                      The problem with being a dictionary pedant is that when your entire argument is based on that kind of over-simplification, then it all falls apart once that definition shown to be incomplete.

                                      Answer the question:

                                      Why is racism bad?

                                      Failure to answer will be yet another example of you running away because you've been argued into a corner of your own illogic.

                                      • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Thursday April 24 2014, @02:54PM

                                        Therefore the advantage of not growing up in a ghetto, not getting substandard education, of not being looked at as an outsider and all the other stuff that comes with being a member of the dominant social group is indeed privilege.

                                        Nope, that's simple luck of the draw. Equal opportunity and equal rights means nobody gets to hold you down and that you can be assured equal treatment under the law, not that you get given a leg up if you happen to get born into a shitty situation. I got dealt an extremely shit hand by birth but you don't hear me bitching about it or asking for handouts I haven't earned.

                                        I did give an answer, see above. It's not the answer because it's a big question with many answers, but it's one of the ones I'm most fond of.

                                        --
                                        My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                                        • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Thursday April 24 2014, @03:23PM

                                          by Angry Jesus (182) on Thursday April 24 2014, @03:23PM (#35602)

                                          > Nope, that's simple luck of the draw.

                                          Yeah, luck of the draw to be born into an oppressed social group. That's not racism at all, just random luck.

                                          > I got dealt an extremely shit hand by birth

                                          Yeah? So you were born into a group that society has singled out for oppression? I don't think so.

                                          > you don't hear me bitching about it or asking for handouts I haven't earned.

                                          That's the very definition of unearned privilege -- you don't have to ask for it, it just comes to you without you even noticing. Your position is like those people who say, "How come there isn't a white history month? Why do blacks get a whole month and whites don't get any?" When in practice every month in the USA is white history month.

                                          > I did give an answer, see above.

                                          Oh, I thought that was just random babble. You think racism is a bad thing for society because some people get mad when they don't get to fully enjoy the historical privilege of their social group? Great analysis, for a 5 year old.

                                          The correct answer is that racism is bad because it causes unequal opportunity. That's it, all the other problems with racism like the ugliness of hatred are ants next to the behemoth of unequal opportunity. AA attempts to equalize opportunity, so that no racial group is privileged with more opportunity than any other with the end goal of racial egalitarianism eventually becoming self-sustaining.

                                          You are all hung up on the specifics without paying attention to the end result. Classic forest and trees thinking.

                                          • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Thursday April 24 2014, @03:35PM

                                            Depressed not oppressed. Anyone still oppressing is breaking the law and can be dealt with.

                                            Yes, though they mostly just exterminated us, and damned poor to boot.

                                            You seem to think I'm white and have bunches of this magical privilege while I look down on the poor colored help and say get a job. You are mistaken.

                                            You asked why it was bad, not bad for society. Be specific if you want a specific question answered. You seem to already be sure of an answer though, so I won't bother disabusing you of your holy writ.

                                            --
                                            My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                                            • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Thursday April 24 2014, @03:51PM

                                              by Angry Jesus (182) on Thursday April 24 2014, @03:51PM (#35623)

                                              > Depressed not oppressed

                                              Really? You want to try that dictionary pedant shit again?

                                              > Anyone still oppressing is breaking the law and can be dealt with.

                                              That's more five year old thinking. If it isn't single-hop, point-A to point-B, then it isn't happening despite the end result being very clear.

                                              > Yes, though they mostly just exterminated us, and damned poor to boot.

                                              ooooh you have a secret and are so special because of it.

                                              > You seem to think I'm white

                                              I think you are not a member of a social group that is particularly oppressed in the USA and thus enjoy the privileges of not being any of those groups. But even if you are an uncle tom type that wouldn't make your argument any more true.

                                              > You asked why it was bad, not bad for society. Be specific

                                              Hah. Oh yeah, lets try to direct the discussion away from the point and that you can't dispute. Run away from facing your own illogic again. Tell you what, just leave the word "society" out of the answer, it is still just as true.

                                              • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Thursday April 24 2014, @04:03PM

                                                Oh you did not just call me an Uncle Tom. We're done, you just lost your favorite playmate, racist boy.

                                                --
                                                My rights don't end where your fear begins.
                                                • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Thursday April 24 2014, @04:35PM

                                                  by Angry Jesus (182) on Thursday April 24 2014, @04:35PM (#35644)

                                                  > Oh you did not just call me an Uncle Tom. We're done, you just lost your favorite playmate, racist boy.

                                                  Oooh, fauxrage FTL! You don't get to claim secret membership of an oppressed group as giving you authority on the topic and then argue that oppression doesn't exist without being called out for hypocrisy.

                                                  What you are is running away from the arguments that you can't dispute. As is usual for you.

                                                  Let's recap from the beginning:

                                                  TPM> Jailing people for acts of racism is the way to correct racism in the USA.
                                                  ME> Gives example of how college legacies legally perpetuate racial privilege
                                                  TPM> That doesn't count because it doesn't directly effect enough people.

                                                  TPM> Being born into a socially oppressed group is just "the luck of the draw" like being born to a poor family.
                                                  ME> That would only be true if poverty were not so strongly correlated with oppressed groups.

                                                  TPM> You can't use the word "privilege" because the dictionary says it only means "legal" privilege
                                                  ME> OED says your definition is ridiculously incomplete, that "privilege" is the correct term.

                                                  TPM> Racism is bad because people used to being on the winning side get all hateful when they don't get that benefit anymore.

                                                  I don't think you are consciously racist, but hardly anyone ever is. I think you just choose to be willfully ignorant as to how modern racism works. Your "luck of the draw" comment really makes that clear. That is naked privilege talking or the shallow thinking of a five year old.

      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by frojack on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:53PM

        by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:53PM (#35209) Journal

        That is a bogus argument that throws out the baby with the bath water.

        And it would be easily solved by removing name, gender and even address from admission forms and replace it with
        a unique, but randomly assigned number.

        Nobody would know who they were reviewing, and the only place you have to watch is the number assignment system.

        Instead, you champion a system that destroys merit, and substitutes gender or color in its place.
        And you justify it by saying "all the other kids are doing it". Unbelievable!

        --
        No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:46AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:46AM (#35275)

          Even if you removed name, gender, and address, the admissions board would know by the high school attended.

          • (Score: 2) by frojack on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:57AM

            by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:57AM (#35281) Journal

            Probably not.
            All they need to know is the grades, and the standing of the high-school as a whole.

            Besides, there are almost no all single gender or all single race schools in the US any more,
            so even knowing the high school won't get you labeled.

            --
            No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
            • (Score: 1) by urza9814 on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:35AM

              by urza9814 (3954) on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:35AM (#35302) Journal

              Colleges also look at extracurricular activities. Like what sports you did (sprinter vs. mile runner for example, though that's certainly no more definitive than school) or what clubs you were involved with (president of the NAACP chapter perhaps?)

              Of course, there's also factors against affirmative action to consider here. Like the people you'll always have saying 'they only got in because of their race'. People who actually did get in on merit have their achievements cheapened because everyone assumes they only got in because of their skin color.

        • (Score: 1) by RobotLove on Friday April 25 2014, @01:32AM

          by RobotLove (3304) on Friday April 25 2014, @01:32AM (#35889)

          And it would be easily solved by removing name, gender and even address from admission forms and replace it with a unique, but randomly assigned number.

          Sure, unless there's some sort of interview portion. What then?

          And you justify it by saying "all the other kids are doing it".

          I'm pretty sure I didn't say that. If that's what you got, I'm sorry. What I intended was to say, "If you actually cared about selecting on merit, you would advocate for Affirmative Action."

          Sorry if this is a double-post.

      • (Score: 2) by starcraftsicko on Wednesday April 23 2014, @11:25PM

        by starcraftsicko (2821) on Wednesday April 23 2014, @11:25PM (#35236) Journal

        But it has been scientifically proven that we subconsciously discriminate.

        Technically, [citation needed]. But I'll agree anyway.

        So while we may think we are admitting based on "nothing but merit", we are not.

        Depends on how you do it. If you don't see the student until the admission decision, it'd be hard for skin color to be a factor. Other key identifiers could be covered until the initial decision is made. The opportunity for 'ism's creep in when we try to 'take everything into account'.

        However, by forcing your admissions to reflect actual demographics, we actually ensuring you are choosing based on ACTUAL DEMOGRAPHICS.

        I fixed that for you. And once corrected, I can't help but to agree. ;)

        I don't know what merit is... but once I define it as something other than "proper demographic ratio", affirmative action and other demography based programs start to look suspect.

        Anyone who actually believes on basing admissions on merit alone must support merit alone.

        There. Helped again. Obligatory xkcd [xkcd.com].

        --
        This post was created with recycled electrons.
        • (Score: 1, Troll) by The Mighty Buzzard on Wednesday April 23 2014, @11:32PM

          Proper demographic ratio has nothing to do with whether you would make a good college student. Judging by the quality of education in poor neighborhoods and the overrepresentation of minorities in them, we should see less minorities than raw national/state population would indicate. It is not the job of a university to make up for your lack of preparedness based on skin color, or any other factor for that matter. Ability to pay and ability to learn are all that should matter. Full stop.
          --
          My rights don't end where your fear begins.
  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by shortscreen on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:19PM

    by shortscreen (2252) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:19PM (#35172) Journal

    VOTERS passed a law banning specific forms of racial discrimination. And when the law is upheld by SCOTUS, Sotomayor laments the "right to participate [...] in self-government." Ballot initiatives passed by majority vote aren't self-governance?

    • (Score: 4, Informative) by velex on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:40PM

      by velex (2068) on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:40PM (#35193) Journal

      I think what she's getting at is that ballot initiatives are ultimately 3 wolves and a sheep deciding what to have for dinner. Disclaimer: iirc I believe I voted "yes" for this particular initiative, although my views on affirmative action have changed a little since then as I've pondered women and minorities in IT careers. In this case, if I understand what was presented in TFS without reading the entire opinion, the argument is that level of education is proportional to one's influence in self-governance.

      Is it racism? Yes, absolutely. Further questions: Do the ends justify the means when the means is the same wrong as the problem and the ends is elimination of both the problem and the means? Furthermore, if the means cannot possibly achieve the ends, does that leave means that are justified by the ends unjustified? If the means merely fail to achieve the ends but had a decent chance of working, does that make them retroactively unjustified if they were previously justified by the ends?

      tl;dr Can two wrongs ever possibly make a right?

      • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Wednesday April 23 2014, @11:00PM

        re tl;dr: Nope. AA does nothing but put people in positions they do not deserve and increase inter-racial hatred. Me, I finally started putting the hatred where it belongs a couple decades ago, on the people championing AA instead of the ones benefiting.
        --
        My rights don't end where your fear begins.
        • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Hairyfeet on Wednesday April 23 2014, @11:43PM

          by Hairyfeet (75) <{bassbeast1968} {at} {gmail.com}> on Wednesday April 23 2014, @11:43PM (#35252) Journal

          I would just add that it ADDS racism all the way down the line. I have dealt with many guys in IT that the first thing out of others mouths were along the lines of "if it weren't for AA he wouldn't be here" and the simple fact is I really had to wonder if that were true or not. Sure we've seen plenty in every color that are great at taking tests but suck balls in real world practice but adding AA always leaves a cloud of doubt hanging over that person.

          But what ultimately turned me completely against AA was how many black coworkers HATED any form of AA, as they found it frankly insulting and demeaning, like they were being given extra treatment because they were too stupid or incapable of getting ahead without being given a free pass. When it was explained to me in that context? Yeah its more than a little, its a LOT condescending, and to leave that kind of cloud hanging over some of the guys that I have worked with who got where they are because they busted ass and really knew their fu? its wrong.

          --
          ACs are never seen so don't bother. Always ready to show SJWs for the racists they are.
          • (Score: 2) by tibman on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:33AM

            by tibman (134) Subscriber Badge on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:33AM (#35300)

            I agree and my experience is similar. For a time in the US Army i worked a desk and processed all kinds of things. This issue came up often so we invented a very fun fix. There is always an "other" field when selecting race. We would mark "other" and write in "Cavalry". We did this for everyone.

            Didn't take but a month before the squadron commander walked in and asked why. We explained why and he laughed. He said it would screw up their statistics (and an implied quota?) but he didn't care. Sadly it did not catch on. Would have been great to see a graph with a made up race edge out an extreme minority like pacific islander or something.

            --
            SN won't survive on lurkers alone. Write comments.
    • (Score: 3, Insightful) by MrGuy on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:59PM

      by MrGuy (1007) on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:59PM (#35217)

      Yes, something that's done democractically by a majority of voters absolutely can reduce some individuals ability to participate in government. It's called Tyrrany of the majority. [wikipedia.org] A majority group can absolutely oppress a minority group.

      One of the reasons for strong constitutional democracy is to prevent this, by protecting the rights of all citizens, not just a current majority group. It's why some people (me included) are disappointed by this decision.

      There are a significant group of children in America that are at a significant disadvantage in a supposedly "merit based" system of college admissions, through no fault of their own. Students who grow up in the suburbs in affulent homes, attend good schools, don't need to work to support their families, and can't afford private tutoring tend to score higher on standardized tests than students from the inner city, attending public school, who have to pitch in with the food bill and certainly can't afford tutoring. Calling the first group "more deserving" of subsidized education because they "deserve it" based on test scores is problematic.

      And that's, frankly, the problem. Arguing for a "merit based" system, when "merit" can be bought perpetuates the problem. "Deserving" students get better jobs and grow up to have more "deserving" kids. "Not Deserving" students don't.

      Does "poor and in the inner city" equate nicely to "race"? Not perfectly, certainly. But there's a strong correlation. It's not like U of M was letting in kids off the street with zero education just because they were black back when race was allowed to be considered in admissions. It was an admissions that, within groups of students on the edges with similar qualifications, the ones who were minorities probably had to work a little harder to get to even on the other factors. So maybe they're the ones that deserve the chance a little more, and maybe society is better off if they get it in the long run.

      • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 23 2014, @11:13PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday April 23 2014, @11:13PM (#35228)

        Students who grow up in the suburbs in affulent homes, attend good schools, don't need to work to support their families, and can't afford private tutoring tend to score higher on standardized tests than students from the inner city, attending public school, who have to pitch in with the food bill and certainly can't afford tutoring. Calling the first group "more deserving" of subsidized education because they "deserve it" based on test scores is problematic.

        I am a person that did not have many opportunities. Through my late teens and all through my twenties I had to work at two or more jobs to support my disabled father. Due to a lack of higher education my intelligence and self-taught abilities have gone to waste while many have barred me from demonstrating my worth. I have been downtrodden, ignored, and looked down upon. My life has been tough and full of struggle.

        Oh yeah, I'm also white.

        Because of this relenting of 'equal opportunity' mandates in Michigan I have had the ability to get through two years of school, get an associates, have two others just a couple classes away, and have set myself up for getting a double major. My gpa is a 3.987 and my IQ is higher than 97% of the world. Hard work and ability wasn't enough to give me an opportunity. The only thing was the death of 'equal opportunity'.

        If you want to be racist and give disproportionate scholarships, admissions, and opportunities to your preferred race, then just say it. Don't hide behind doublespeak.

        • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Wednesday April 23 2014, @11:20PM

          Hard work and ability wasn't enough to give me an opportunity.

          Yes, it was. You can tell by how as soon as the artificial racist fuckholery stopped, you did well by yourself. Don't let a few asshats make you think that the government help is ever the answer to a problem. As specifically shown by this, they are the problem.

          --
          My rights don't end where your fear begins.
        • (Score: -1, Flamebait) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:39AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:39AM (#35272)

          I notice that your narrative doesn't include 4 centuries of oppression suffered by people of your pigmentation, practices ingrained in local laws (which Federal courts had to declare unconstitutional AFTER a constitutional amendment specifically forbidding them), establishing an ongoing pattern of prejudice in American society.

          When you have been subjected to Jim Whitebird laws [wikipedia.org]--even after [wikipedia.org] they have been declared illegal--then you will have a case to make.

          I suggest that you report back after you have done the Black Like Me [google.com] thing and have seen the other side of the coin.
          Until "driving while white" is a common "offense", you're just a whiner.

          -- gewg_

          • (Score: 1) by urza9814 on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:56AM

            by urza9814 (3954) on Thursday April 24 2014, @01:56AM (#35308) Journal

            Man. Normally I specifically look for your sig, gewg_, because normally you say exactly what I would have said, but generally with a much stronger argument :) But in this case I've gotta disagree.

            I mean, race can be a decent proxy for these problems, but I don't think it's the defining characteristic at least when we're talking about educational opportunities. Do you REALLY think Obama's kids need a boost more than some of the white kids living in the trailer park by my apartment?

            The real problem is one of socio-economic status. Race can proxy for that, but we can better measure it more directly. I think something similar to affirmative action but based on income (or much better, wealth) would be fantastic. In fact, many colleges are going the opposite direction -- in the past few years, financial aid has been going more and more to draw wealthier students rather than to help those who truly need it. That needs to be reversed -- HARD.

            If you hit that 4.0, but only after your parents hired a private tutor, you sure as shit don't deserve it as much as someone who hit that 4.0 whose single parent works minimum wage. I see no real need to bring race into this -- the truly disadvantaged minorities would already be over-represented in impoverished populations, and as they advance out of that the whole system will adjust itself automatically to whatever population happens to be most disadvantaged at the time.

            • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 24 2014, @11:34PM

              by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 24 2014, @11:34PM (#35849)

              For the illiterate|incurious person|racist|whatever who modded the GP post Flamebait:
              The non-fiction book "Black Like Me", [wikipedia.org] written in 1959,
              is the account of a white man who turns his skin dark by taking a drug.
              He also shaves off his (non-kinky) hair.
              He then travels around the segregated South.
              He has the same intellect and morals that he had before he started his transformation; the only difference is his outward appearance, yet now (white) people treat him like something they need to scrape off their shoe.

              race[...]I don't think it's the defining characteristic
              My point was that if the GGP had done the Black Like Me thing, he would have added yet another impediment to his progress in life AND IT IS *STILL* A **HUGE** IMPEDIMENT--in many places even **larger** than any of the other things working against him.
              The fact that a post that points to Black Like Me got modded Flamebait clearly shows that blind racism and ignorance is still rampant--and it's WORLDWIDE. [google.com]

              Obama's kids
              There are numerous places in the USA where they could dress as nicely as they do and be perfectly groomed and have impeccable manners and have the most awesome curriculum vitae--and it wouldn't matter a bit; without the possibility of Federal legal sanctions, their paperwork would immediately go into the trash.
              The fact that you and the down-modder don't realize that / couldn't care less is a big part of the problem.

              Maybe Mae Jemison [wikipedia.org] or Clarence Thomas[1] would have achieved all they did before laws forbidding institutionalized racism, but I wouldn't bet on that.

              It doesn't matter if you're a PhD college professor, [wikipedia.org] if you are black, you're still getting rousted by some white guy [wikipedia.org] who barely made it out of high school.

              ...and $DIETY help you if you're a person of color and you live in NYC.
              You have NO rights and you are guilty on sight.
              How are you going to succeed with a conviction on your record?
              ..and NYC's racist cops *will* keep hounding you [google.com] until they *do* find some reason to charge you.

              Additionally, people think that e.g. Indiana, being a northern state, is a bastion of racial tolerance--but it's as racist as any place in the Deep South. (For starters, find demographics maps for the last few elections.)

              For the illiterate down-modder, who, apparently needs video to "get" it, here's a guy (played by Eddie Murphy) who does a takeoff on Black Like Me. [google.com]
              He puts on a nice suit and "goes white" and (white) people immediately start treating him like a prince.

              At this point, I'm reminded of the First Nation prayer
              "Great Spirit, help me never to judge another until I have walked in his moccasins"
              and the anecdote, "I complained that I had no shoes until I met a man who had no feet".[2]
              In summary, urza, your naivety and limited social circles are in evidence.

              [1] Talk about a Sambo[3] who was the recipient of racially-based assistance, then, as soon as he had fully benefited from that, claims it is unneeded.
              Clarence Thomas couldn't even hold the jock of the guy whom he succeeded. [wikipedia.org]

              [2] Hmmm. I never realized I was so into feet.

              [3] Most people (ignorantly) say "Uncle Tom". WRONG.
              Uncle Tom allowed himself to be beaten to death rather than betray his own people.
              The brutal black capo was called Sambo.

              -- gewg_

          • (Score: 1) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 24 2014, @09:49AM

            by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 24 2014, @09:49AM (#35432)

            4 centuries of oppression suffered by people of your pigmentation

            White guy here.

            You know what?

            Fuck you. For all you know, my and the previous AC's ancestors were enslaved by the Ottomans. But I guess being horribly beaten and forced to row is easystreet.

      • (Score: 1) by shortscreen on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:28AM

        by shortscreen (2252) Subscriber Badge on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:28AM (#35268) Journal

        Do you think that the Michigan Civil Rights Initiative could accurately be described as tyrrany of the majority? Equating a disagreement over the effectiveness and value of affirmative action with oppressing minorities seems like quite a stretch.

        Your point about disadvantaged students reminds me of the Seinfeld episode where George (successfully IIRC) argued that he had endured more hardships in life than an old man who had escaped the sinking Titanic. Anyone can be dealt a bad hand, not just poor people and minorities. If you try to account for this methodically, you will help some at the expense of others. If you handle it on a case-by-case basis then the biases of the decision makers may creep in. Maybe you have a better idea?

        I am not strongly opposed to affirmative action, but I am not entirely clear on how to measure whether it has been working so far or what the goal even is. If the goal is merely to enforce certain proportions of certain groups (11% left-handed people, 5% people with red hair, 3% breast-cancer survivors, 1% guys named Joe, etc.) until the end of time, then that doesn't strike me as a worthwhile goal.

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by Covalent on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:26PM

    by Covalent (43) on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:26PM (#35181) Journal

    I've been a chemistry teacher for 15 years. About 10 years ago, I had an amazing student who had just emigrated to America from west Africa. He wasn't aware of what affirmative action was and asked me to explain it to him. His response to my explanation?

    "How insulting! You assume I need extra help because I'm black?"

    I couldn't agree more. Is there racism? Absolutely. Should we try and fight it? Without question. How do we do that? Invest in poverty reduction, early childhood education, wage disparity, any number of possible routes...but not college admission. It just smacks of discrimination to those groups who don't get a bonus and insults the ones who do by assuming they need it.

    --
    You can't rationally argue somebody out of a position they didn't rationally get into.
    • (Score: 1) by kwerle on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:34PM

      by kwerle (746) on Wednesday April 23 2014, @10:34PM (#35187) Homepage

      Yeah. On the other hand, kids tend to emulate grown-ups similar to themselves. Have admission rates improved? Yup. Is there still a big disparity? Yup.

      I'm not hell-bent either way, but I don't think it's as black and white as some folks think. (sorry - couldn't resist)

    • (Score: 1) by urza9814 on Thursday April 24 2014, @02:02AM

      by urza9814 (3954) on Thursday April 24 2014, @02:02AM (#35311) Journal

      Well, I don't personally support race-based affirmative action (though I DEFINITELY would support a similar system based on income)...but affirmative action isn't really about some kid whose family was at least well-off enough to voluntarily move halfway across the world. It's more about those who were brought here in chains and denied any opportunity to better their own lives for so long due to slavery and institutionalized racism. ...which is a big part of why I say I would prefer it be based on income. Seems a better way to measure it that neither pretends this legacy doesn't exist, nor pretends that Obama's kids are heavily disadvantaged because of it.

    • (Score: 2) by Angry Jesus on Thursday April 24 2014, @02:03AM

      by Angry Jesus (182) on Thursday April 24 2014, @02:03AM (#35312)

      > I couldn't agree more. Is there racism? Absolutely. Should we try and fight it? Without question. How do we do that?
      > Invest in poverty reduction, early childhood education, wage disparity, any number of possible routes...

      The problem with that attitude is that it leads to the "white man's burden" effect - that the people in charge of those programs think they know best what is needed. But because the system is out of balance, relatively few of the people making the decisions have any direct knowledge of the problems and so the program don't work. One of the primary goals of AA is to fix that, to make sure that there are actual representatives of the repressed groups in power so that the people making the decisions on how to go about poverty reduction are the ones with first hand experience of the problems.

  • (Score: 2, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:49AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 24 2014, @12:49AM (#35276)

    According to the data from the U.S. Department of Education cited by Justice Sotomayor, the proportion of African-American freshmen at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor dropped by about one-third after the ban on race-conscious admissions went into effect.

    In the four years before the ban, black students made up 6.1 percent of first-year students, on average. In the four years after the ban, they composed 4.5 percent of first-time, full-time students.

    http://chronicle.com/blogs/data/2014/04/23/how-has -mich-s-ban-on-affirmative-action-affected-minorit y-enrollment/ [chronicle.com]

    Who thinks this is an acceptable trend?

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 24 2014, @02:15AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 24 2014, @02:15AM (#35316)

      It depends.

      I spent high school hearing about all of the things I needed to do to get accepted to college and I was told that if I didn't do them I would lose out to other people who had done them. These were things my parents had learned from their parents and their social peers for the sake of propagating their social status to me. These are memes.

      I believe that a large part of why disadvantaged people are disadvantaged, is that these memes haven't propagated to them yet. They're actually being tested fairly when people like me are investing in a facade to inflate our scores.

      Affirmative action can compensate for this but it also adds to the arms race element. With affirmative action ending in Michigan, minority applicants have lost a key advantage in the arms race. So there are some questions about what happens now:

      With the loss of affirmative action, will minority applicants exhibit more advantageous-meme-seeking behavior to close the gap?
      Will white applicants be less aggressive in their application of their memes following a reduction in the weaponry they face?

      Both of these possible effects should take time to develop. There may not be enough data to decide if this change has permanently altered the equilibrium in an adverse fashion.

      • (Score: 1) by cybro on Thursday April 24 2014, @03:33AM

        by cybro (1144) on Thursday April 24 2014, @03:33AM (#35343)

        Will white applicants be less aggressive in their application of their memes following a reduction in the weaponry they face?

        Give us an example of these memes.

    • (Score: 1) by FakeBeldin on Thursday April 24 2014, @08:25AM

      by FakeBeldin (3360) on Thursday April 24 2014, @08:25AM (#35405) Journal

      Math Nazi: percentages are relative values, not absolutes.
      Case in point: the minority admissions might well have doubled in that period, but still give these figures if even more other students enrolled.

      The balance was affected, but given these numbers (not made clear in the linked article either) it's not clear whether that is because less minority students are enrolling, or because more majority students are enrolling. Maybe 100s of majority freshmen thought "no affirmative action = greater chances for me to get in".

      tl;dr: lower percentage is not equivalent to less.