Sarkonak: Why Canadian universities are blocking able-bodied white men from some positions

Affirmative action debates, Canadian version. From softer preference to hard requirement. Not a fan of hard quotas as softer approaches can be effective without raising concerns, valid or not, about qualifications and merit.

And will the government move to hard quotas in public service hiring and the employment equity act?

People should not be barred from jobs because of their skin colour, or their gender. We call that “discrimination” — and it’s generally considered a bad thing. It’s also bad that universities across Canada are refusing to hire white men for various research positions, simply because they’re white, male and don’t claim to have any disabilities.

That’s right: the federally funded Canada Research Chair program, which doles out roughly $300 million every year to 2,000 academics, adheres to an identity quota system. Universities risk losing funding for positions if they haven’t hired the designated number of research chairs by 2029 in each “identity category” (women, visible minorities, Indigenous people and people with disabilities). As a result, some resumes are going straight into the trash.

I wish I was exaggerating. Being not white, male or able-bodied was a requirement for the University of British Columbia’s 2022 research chair job postings in food science and quantum computing. A mathematics department job posting for a research chair in computational cell biology specifically says that the “selection will be restricted to members of the following designated groups: women, visible minorities (members of groups that are racially categorized), persons with disabilities and Indigenous peoples.” 

Similar requirements were listed for the University of Toronto’s positions in managementeducationdentistryengineering and medicine. Queen’s University only wants women for geotechnical engineeringnuclear waste storage and applied artificial intelligenceWestern University doesn’t care about the researcher’s area of study in one opening, but requires that the candidate have a disability. A McGill posting prefers those who say they have a disability or are Indigenous. 

There are 78 schools in the Canada Research Chair program. Just Google “CRC” and any university’s name to look for more.

The Canada Research Chair program is doing this because of a Federal Court order that requires research appointments to reflect the Canadian population by 2029. It’s just following the law. Personally, I don’t think equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) should require exclusion, but alas. 

There’s a bigger picture to all this. The Canada Research Chair program is one of many under the nation’s three federal research funding agencies, which spend a combined $3 billion every year to advance our knowledge in health, science and the humanities.

They support numerous research positions, student jobs, academic awards and grants. Per their “Tri-Agency EDI Action Plan,” they’ve been tasked since 2018 with making students and researchers “representative of the Canadian population.” Universities, in their agreements to receive federal funding, must agree to promote “equitable practices.” 

At a glance, you’d think this means simply making sure that procedures are fair to everyone, regardless of background. But the Canada Research Chair program shows this can mean dismissing applicants outright if the quotas (or “equity targets”) haven’t been met. Good intentions appear to have paved the way to mandated discrimination.

Values attestations are making their way into job applications as well. A University of Ottawa job posting for a research chair in green chemistry — that is, the study of chemical reactions — requires a demonstrated history of incorporating EDI and a statement about doing so. Researchers should be free to talk about their values, including those who don’t agree with EDI. Academic freedom is supposed to allow for diverse ideas. Yet in this case, only one way of thinking is eligible. 

You might wonder if any professors oppose this kind of thing. Perhaps, but if promotions, funding and teaching positions are increasingly tied to their embrace of EDI, there’s a pretty big incentive to say nothing. Professors have families to feed, after all.

Those who have publicly dared to question these openly discriminatory practices haven’t been answered. During question period in the House of Commons on March 29, Bloc Québécois MP Martin Champoux raised concernsover the Canada Research Chair hiring exclusions at Laval University, and asked if the government agreed that exclusion is “not the way to go.” 

Reading from prepared notes, Andy Fillmore, the Liberal parliamentary secretary to the minister of democratic institutions, blamed former prime minister Stephen Harper’s government and assured the member that the current government is “committed to providing the resources and tools our scientists need to bring tangible benefits to Canadians’ health, environment, communities and economy,” which “will make Canada a leader in innovation.”

Although Fillmore refused to answer the question, it’s quite possible we’re headed for more mandatory diversity. The government used similar language in its bill to change the Broadcasting Act, Bill C-11, which would require media to “reflect” the viewpoints of the population. 

The problem isn’t that these ideas exist; the problem is that they’re being used to deny opportunities to people because of the body they were born in. When inclusion turns into active exclusion, it isn’t inclusion anymore.

Source: Sarkonak: Why Canadian universities are blocking able-bodied white men from some positions

Nicolas: Cohérence recherchée [on affirmative action], Lisée: Les mauvais génies de l’égalité

Appears to be a strong rebuttal to Lisée’s column, reprinted below:

Qu’est-ce que c’est, au fond, la discrimination positive ? Il s’agit de favoriser, dans certains cadres, un ou des groupes de personnes qui subissent de la discrimination ou des désavantages systémiques afin de rétablir une égalité des chances.

Parfois, ça peut se faire sous forme d’encouragements, d’incitatifs à offrir des postes à certaines personnes issues de groupes qui risqueraient d’être autrement sous-représentés. Parfois, on va plus loin et on exige un seuil minimum de représentation.

La Loi sur la Cour suprême du Canada, par exemple, stipule que trois des neuf juges en poste doivent venir du Québec. Cette loi a été écrite par des gens qui ne croyaient pas que tous les gouvernements fédéraux, peu importe leur inclination idéologique et la provenance de leurs députés, s’assureraient d’une représentation des experts en droit civil québécois à la Cour suprême, simplement par bonne volonté et par reconnaissance de leurs compétences. Par crainte de biais systémiques qui nuiraient aux candidatures québécoises, notamment, on leur a réservé des postes.

La Loi sur la radiodiffusion, qui donne entre autres son mandat au CRTC et à CBC/Radio-Canada, a aussi abondamment recours à des mesures de discrimination positive. Partout au Canada, on craint — depuis l’invention des médias de masse, essentiellement — que le contenu américain noie les ondes et empêche notre industrie radiophonique et télévisuelle de se développer. Face à Goliath, on a armé David de quotas. Nos médias généralistes ont l’obligation de produire ou de diffuser de 40 % à 60 % de contenu canadien pour conserver leur permis du CRTC.

Pour protéger la culture francophone, on va encore plus loin. La loi exige que les stations de radio de langue française consacrent au moins 65 % de leur programmation hebdomadaire de musique populaire à de la musique en français. Ces quotas donnent nécessairement un bon coup de pouce à la visibilité des artistes francophones, et ont joué un rôle important dans le développement de l’industrie culturelle québécoise. Malgré ces mesures, on ne remet pas en question la « compétence » des musiciens dont les œuvres passent constamment à la radio. On comprend que, pour répondre aux avantages injustes (notamment financiers) qui propulsent la carrière des artistes anglo-américains, la discrimination positive a un rôle à jouer.

La loi 101, elle aussi, carbure largement à la discrimination positive. Dans un contexte de discrimination systémique importante contre les francophones dans un ensemble de secteurs d’emploi, le gouvernement du Québec a adopté des mesures musclées. Depuis, une grande partie des emplois offerts au Québec sont réservés aux candidats qui maîtrisent le français. Il est indéniable que la loi a joué un rôle majeur dans l’amélioration des perspectives économiques des Franco-Québécois ces dernières décennies.

Au fédéral, la Loi sur les langues officielles permet aussi d’exiger le bilinguisme dans plusieurs postes de la fonction publique. Et puisque les francophones sont plus nombreux que les anglophones à être bilingues, la mesure peut largement être assimilée à une forme de discrimination positive. Cette législation arrive-t-elle à complètement corriger le déséquilibre des forces entre le français et l’anglais à Ottawa ? Non, pas du tout. Le collègue Boris Proulx fait notamment un travail important pour mettre en lumière le désavantage systémique qui subsiste malgré la loi. Il a d’ailleurs montré que le problème semble particulièrement criant à Affaires mondiales, où les francophones demeurent pratiquement absents de la haute direction.

Cette situation illustre bien que la discrimination positive en emploi peut être contournée assez facilement par des élites déterminées à se reproduire entre elles, surtout si on fonctionne par encouragements et incitatifs à l’embauche plutôt que par exigence réglementaire. Elle montre aussi qu’elle ne mène certainement pas à un « régime de domination inversé » du groupe historiquement discriminé. Au mieux, la discrimination positive limite une partie des « dommages » à l’égalité des chances causés par les inégalités structurelles.

Les commentateurs qui montent aux barricades contre la discrimination positive depuis quelques jours ont certes bâti leur carrière en faisant face à beaucoup moins d’obstacles que bien des femmes et que bien des personnes racisées, autochtones ou handicapées qui ont pourtant autant de talent et de compétences qu’eux, sinon plus. Ils ont aussi tiré profit (directement ou indirectement) de cette infrastructure légale complexe de discrimination positive échafaudée au siècle dernier pour corriger une partie des inégalités systémiques entre francophones et anglophones. Sans les exigences du CRTC, sans la loi 101, sans bien d’autres réglementations encore, la vie culturelle, médiatique, politique et économique du Québec et du Canada serait méconnaissable.

Cette réalité indéniable, on la passe sous silence : c’est bien plus commode. Des chroniqueurs réclament donc que les unilingues anglophones soient exclus d’emblée de certains postes (comme celui de p.-d.g. d’Air Canada), d’une part, puis disent toute leur horreur du principe même d’exclure les plus privilégiés de certains concours (en parlant d’une chaire de recherche à l’Université Laval), d’autre part. Leur crédibilité repose sur l’espoir qu’on ne se rende pas compte de ce manque flagrant de cohérence.

La seule issue possible d’un débat aussi mal posé, c’est l’hypocrisie et le deux poids, deux mesures. On peut tout à fait discuter de la pertinence des mesures de discrimination positive les plus contraignantes selon le contexte. Mais il est difficile de le faire avec des gens qui, après avoir utilisé une échelle pour que leur propre groupe social accède aux sommets, cherchent à en interdire la construction de nouvelles pour ceux qui sont encore en bas. 

Source: Cohérence recherchée

And the original article that likely provoked Nicolas:

Les nouvelles sont un peu moches pour les jeunes universitaires en histoire de la région de Québec. S’ils souhaitaient parfaire leur parcours, à la maîtrise ou au doctorat, avec l’appui d’un enseignant de pointe et des budgets qu’offre une chaire du Canada, l’occasion leur a filé entre les doigts à 16 heures le lundi 8 novembre dernier. À ce moment, aucun candidat acceptable n’avait postulé pour diriger à l’Université Laval les chaires d’histoire de l’Amérique latine, d’histoire romaine, d’histoire du Canada-Québec et d’histoire de l’art du Québec et du Canada.

Comme chacun le sait désormais, les hommes blancs non handicapés ne pouvaient pas aspirer à occuper la direction de ces chaires, comme celle de biologie dont on parle depuis la semaine dernière. Toutes les facultés montent des projets et tentent de trouver des porteurs non blancs pour atteindre la cible et figurer, en juin, parmi les finalistes. Beaucoup tombent au combat dès la première étape.

Pour comprendre pourquoi l’Université Laval se trouve dans ce pétrin, procédons à une vérification statistique simple. Pour avoir droit à la manne fédérale, les universités doivent atteindre des seuils stricts en matière de diversité. Pour les femmes et les handicapés, leur proportion est répartie équitablement dans le pays. Mais la cible que l’université doit atteindre pour ce qui est des « minorités racisées » est de 22,3 %. C’est la moyenne canadienne. Quelle proportion occupent ces minorités à Québec ? Statistique Canada est précis : 6,5 %. (Et c’est exactement la proportion présente au sein du corps professoral de l’Université Laval.) Et quelle est-elle à Toronto ? 51,5 %.

Bref, les universités torontoises peuvent combler leurs chaires du Canada en n’affichant que la moitié de la diversité présente sur leur territoire et n’ont qu’à se pencher pour trouver, localement, des professeurs répondant au portrait-robot. Québec (ou Rimouski, Sherbrooke ou Chicoutimi) doit recruter loin, très loin, et s’adonner à de grandes séductions.

Pour bien savourer la situation, supposons qu’un apôtre de l’accession à l’égalité ait déterminé qu’historiquement, les Canadiens français ont souffert de discrimination dans les études supérieures. J’invente, je sais, mais on jase, là. Pour redresser ce tort, il sommerait toutes les universités du pays d’embaucher leur juste part de profs canadiens-français, soit 23 %, la moyenne canadienne, sous peine de perdre leur financement. On gage que l’Université Laval n’aurait aucune peine à recruter, mais que la chose serait pénible à Toronto et à Edmonton ?

Voilà des subtilités qui ont échappé à ceux qui ont pris la décision de mettre nos universités dans cet entonnoir. Répondant à des plaintes d’universitaires mécontents de la sous-représentation des minorités dans le Programme des chaires de recherche du Canada, la Commission canadienne des droits de la personne a accepté d’emblée qu’il fût juste et bon que les titulaires de ces chaires soient dans un délai assez court représentatifs de l’arc-en-ciel des différences qu’on retrouve, en moyenne, dans la société canadienne, concluant que les retardataires seraient privés de financement, point à la ligne. La Cour fédérale a estampillé ces accords et leur a donné force de loi.

On voit un peu partout une mobilisation forte pour l’augmentation de la présence de membres des minorités en emploi, dans des postes de décision et de grande visibilité. J’applaudis. Il est indéfendable qu’on trouve encore trop peu de minorités visibles dans les corps policiers, chez Hydro et à la SAQ dans la région montréalaise, où la peau de 34 % de nos concitoyens n’a pas la pigmentation qui dominait jadis en Normandie. Mais à Rimouski, où ils sont moins de 2 % ?

La question est : jusqu’où doit-on aller, comment et à quelle vitesse ? Les pédagogues nous enseignent par exemple que la sous-représentation masculine au primaire et au préscolaire est un déterminant de la sous-performance des garçons, en manque de modèles. Utilisons la méthode des chaires et retirons en 10 ans le financement des garderies et des écoles primaires qui ne comptent pas 50 % d’éducateurs et de professeurs mâles ! C’est raide, mais c’est pour la bonne cause. N’êtes-vous pas scandalisés par les taux d’échec et de décrochage des garçons (seuls 68 % obtiennent un diplôme d’études secondaires à temps) ?

Penchons-nous avec la même méthode déterminée sur l’industrie de la construction. La paie est excellente, l’emploi abondant, mais on n’y trouve pas 3 % de femmes, et cela ne progresse qu’à pas de tortue. Annonçons que, d’ici 2029, les seuls entrepreneurs pouvant postuler pour des travaux publics devront démontrer que la moitié de leurs travailleurs sont des travailleuses !

Si ces propositions vous semblent excessives, ou du moins précipitées, le cas des chaires est, à mon avis, pire encore. Car lorsqu’on réfléchit à la pyramide des compétences, n’est-il pas curieux que le lieu où on exige désormais une représentation stricte soit sur la pointe, là où il s’agit de faire franchir, par les meilleurs cerveaux, les frontières actuelles de la connaissance humaine ? Les chercheurs ont trouvé une façon pour éliminer les préjugés dans la distribution de subventions de recherche. Ils déposent leurs dossiers « à l’aveugle », c’est-à-dire sans inscrire leur nom ou celui de leur établissement. Les candidats pour ces chaires ne devraient-ils pas être aussi choisis ainsi ? Et tant mieux si l’excellence est incarnée par une Autochtone handicapée ?

Comme il y a, dans les filières universitaires, une sous-représentation des étudiants venant de certains milieux, n’est-ce pas là qu’il faut multiplier les passerelles pour les attirer ? Sachant que le Québec fait déjà mieux que le reste de l’Amérique pour tous les revenus modestes, avec les droits de scolarité les plus bas et les prêts et bourses les plus généreux.

Nous sommes donc aux prises avec des apprentis sorciers de l’égalité. Ils nuisent à la fois à la science, à l’éducation et à la cause qu’ils estiment servir.

Source: Les mauvais génies de l’égalité

It’s Time for an Honest Conversation About Affirmative Action

Needed reference to income diversity or class:

On Monday, the Supreme Court announced it would hear arguments in Students for Fair Admissions v. President and Fellows of Harvard College. In 2014, the group sued the university, accusing it of discriminating against Asian students during its admissions process. After years of court filings and an actual trial, S.F.F.A. ultimately lost its case but immediately appealed to the Supreme Court.

I spent much of 2018 and 2019 covering that trial and getting to know its main players. Edward Blum, the conservative legal activist pushing the lawsuit, was behind Fisher v. University of Texas, the last college admissions affirmative action case to reach the Supreme Court. In the 2010s, he also spearheaded Shelby County v. Holder, which effectively gutted the 1965 Voting Rights Act. He is a tireless activist who will now have his hearing in front of a 6-3 conservative majority on the Supreme Court. If the justices find in S.F.F.A.’s favor, Blum will have had a hand in both disenfranchising thousands of voters and ending affirmative action as we know it.

This work has turned Blum into a villain in progressive circles, and some have denounced the whole package as a right-wing program to end racial preferences and remediations in every corner of American life. I generally agree with this assessment and fear the world Blum might bring about.

But it’s also important to assess the specifics of the Harvard case. When excised from the context of Blum’s crusade, they reveal a profoundly broken system that relies on obfuscation and misdirection, especially when it comes to the treatment of Asian applicants.

Did Harvard discriminate against Asian students?

This is a question with a both complicated and simple answer. On the one hand, proving that Harvard violated the legal standards set by earlier Supreme Court rulings on affirmative action is difficult, given both the amorphous nature of the admissions process and the intricacy and various contradictions in the law. As it stands now, colleges are allowed to consider the race of an applicant, but only to a limited extent and not in a way that resembles a quota system.

But when you apply the normative definition of discrimination, in which race hinders an applicant’s acceptance into an institution, the case becomes much clearer. The evidence against Harvard on that front is, frankly, overwhelming. Asian applicants to Harvard routinely scored significantly lower than students of other races on their “personal scores,” a metric cobbled together from alumni interviews, essays and teacher recommendations. During the trial, Harvard’s attorneys did not really explain why this disparity existed, but only tried to prove that it did not come out of intentional or even implicit bias from anyone inside the admissions office. What seemed to be happening was that the people writing the appraisals were routinely downgrading Asian students, judgments that Harvard apparently accepted without any further investigation.

I don’t really know why Asians got low personal scores, but I do know that if Harvard drapes itself in the mantle of diversity, inclusion and equity, it should probably also take a look at the way it uses evaluations that seem to reflect bias. Harvard continues to use recommendations today.

One of the clearest examples of Harvard’s history of anti-Asian discrimination that was presented at the trial centered around “sparse country,” a term Harvard uses to describe geographic regions that generally do not send a lot of students to the Ivy League. Sparse country students generally get a bump in the admissions process because the university seeks to have a student body that’s geographically as well as racially diverse.

In the past, Harvard recruited students from sparse country after they took the Preliminary SAT exams. To receive an invitation to apply to Harvard — yes, some students receive invitations to apply to Harvard — a Black student in sparse country needed to score above 1100 on the exams, a white student needed 1310, an Asian female student needed 1350 and an Asian male student needed 1380.

This, by itself, seems like enough to prove that Harvard created a system for recruitment that certainly preferences one race over the other. The testimony given by William Fitzsimmons, the longtime dean of Harvard admissions, only made his office look worse. When asked to explain why Asian students from sparse country needed to score so much higher than white students, Fitzsimmons said, “There are people who, let’s say, for example, have only lived in the sparse-country state for a year or two.”

What he seems to be saying is that Harvard believes Asian students from sparse country are Asian before they are Arkansan or Nevadan or Alaskan and that whatever diversity benefit they might bring to the school will be based on their ethnicity, not from the state where they may have spent their whole lives. To Fitzsimmons, evidently, and by extension, the Harvard admissions office, Asian applicants are not citizens with legitimate ties to a community but are instead newcomers who should be thought of by their race.

Evidence of this type of reductive racial thinking could be found throughout the trial. Past documents brought to light showed that Harvard would consider your “ethnicity” a “plus” only if you wrote your personal essay about its significance in your life or if it led to extracurricular involvement in ethnic community groups. If you were a minority student who did not belong to an affinity group in high school and you did not share a moment of trauma or triumph with strangers on the admissions committee for the most prestigious university in the world, Harvard would withhold the “plus” on your application.

Does anyone really believe in a version of “equity” and “diversity” that forces minority students to, in essence, perform their ethnicity for Harvard, of all places?Sign up for the Jay Caspian Kang newsletter, for Times subscribers only.  A wide-ranging cultural critic and magazine writer tackles thorny questions in politics and culture. Get it in your inbox.

So, if all this is done in the name of diversity, what exactly does it look like at places like Harvard?

I am an alumni of Bowdoin College, which at the time I attended, in the late ’90s and early 2000s, had a very small percentage of Black, Latino and Asian students. The school has changed quite a bit since then, thanks to strong diversity initiatives. On the occasions I’ve returned to campus, I’ve come across students of all sorts of ethnic backgrounds who simply would not have been at Bowdoin in my era. This more inclusive atmosphere made me feel excited to be on campus, even as an adult, and undoubtedly would have improved my undergraduate experience. When you read the case law of affirmative action cases or diversity statements from exclusive colleges, they largely speak of the need to make all students feel comfortable and represented on campus. I do not dispute the importance of this.

But while the percentage of “students of color” at Bowdoin has gone up to 35.1 percent in 2021 from an abysmal 7.5 percent in 1988, there has been little meaningful change in socio-economic backgrounds. Twenty percent of Bowdoin students come from families who make $630,000 or more a year. Sixty-nine percent come from families in the top 20 percent of income earners in the country. Only 3.8 percent come from the bottom 20 percent. Increased racial diversity has not changed the fact that exclusive schools cater almost entirely to a wealthy population.

Bowdoin is far from being an outlier. A full 15 percent of Harvardstudents come from families who make $630,000 or more a year, and only 4.5 percent from the bottom fifth of income earners. Elite state institutions aren’t much better. Two-thirds of students at the University of Virginia, for example, hail from the top fifth; only 2.8 percent come from the bottom 20 percent.

What do “diversity” and “equity” really mean, then, at an institution that has more than three times as many kids from the top 1 percent as from the bottom 20?

The browning of these elite institutions should be seen as progress on its own, and it would be harmful if these trends were suddenly reversed. But to what extent is all this just window dressing? Elite schools in liberal cities, whether they are private elementary schools or the Ivy League schools, do not populate their websites with all kinds of faces out of some heartfelt desire to contribute to an equitable society. Rather, they push diversity because they know their customers — the students and their parents — want it. Plus, they couldn’t get away with being majority white or even white and Asian without attracting a great deal of scrutiny.

The impending Supreme Court decision will change none of this. Schools like Harvard that can fill their incoming freshman class many times over with top-tier applicants of every race are likely to maintain their diversity levels, more or less.

Over the past two decades, there’s also been a quiet but fierce argument over who, exactly, constitutes the Black and Latino student populations at elite colleges. At a Harvard Black alumni gathering in 2004, Henry Louis Gates Jr. and the late Lani Guinier, professors at the school, noted that perhaps as many as two-thirds of Harvard’s Black students were first- or second-generation immigrants from Africa or the Caribbean or the children of biracial couples.

This is an extremely fraught conversation to have because it asks a person to rank Black people in terms of oppression and could encourage schools to enact an even more specific and potentially xenophobic set of hierarchies. Black immigrants appear to be overrepresented at elite colleges when compared with African Americans who have descended from slavery. This, of course, is not the fault of Black immigrants who attend these schools, but rather the schools themselves, who have turned college admissions into a brutal, zero-sum game in which each minority applicant must also double as a racial statistic.

“I just want people to be honest enough to talk about it,” Gates said in 2004. “What are the implications of this?”

For me, the implications are as follows: At elite schools, affirmative action mostly serves an increasingly ethnically varied group of wealthy students and their families. As a result, the narrative around diversity in these places has been reduced to pure racial representation, which, while important enough, does not exactly fulfill the social mission that most people think is inherent to any affirmative action program — helping students whose families have suffered under generations of white supremacy. Anti-Asian discrimination, which I believe to be as clear as day, is one of the byproducts of all this balancing and weighting and obfuscation.

Schools like Harvard have no one to blame but themselves. Their flimsy approach to “diversity” and their desire to stay as academically exclusive as possible have created an indefensible system of racial nonsense that demeans not only its Asian and Black applicants, but everyone else who has to play this absurd game.

This, I believe, would be the honest starting point for conversations about affirmative action at elite schools.

On Monday, I will write about what an alternative might look like.

Source: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/27/opinion/affirmative-action-harvard.html

Appeals Court Rules Harvard Doesn’t Discriminate Against Asian American Applicants

Of note (will be appealed to SCOTUS where, given Trump appointments, may be overturned):

A federal appeals court in Boston has ruled Harvard doesn’t intentionally discriminate against Asian American applicants in its admissions process.

The panel of judges upheld a federal district court’s decision from last year, teeing up a possible case in front of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Circuit Judge Sandra Lynch, who wrote Thursday’s decision, agreed with the lower court that “the statistical evidence did not show that Harvard intentionally discriminated against Asian Americans.”

Students for Fair Admissions, an advocacy group, first filed its lawsuit in 2014, saying that Harvard’s race-based considerations for applicants discriminated against Asian American students in process.

“Today’s decision once again finds that Harvard’s admissions policies are consistent with Supreme Court precedent, and lawfully and appropriately pursue Harvard’s efforts to create a diverse campus that promotes learning and encourages mutual respect and understanding in our community,” a spokeswoman for Harvard told NPR.”As we have said time and time again, now is not the time to turn back the clock on diversity and opportunity.”

Proponents of ending race-based considerations at U.S. universities were unfazed by Thursday’s decision and plan to bring the case to the Supreme Court, according to Edward Blum, the conservative strategist behind SFFA.

Blum said in a statement to NPR member station GBH that he plans to ask the Supreme Court to end the consideration of race in admissions at Harvard and all other universities.

The question of how much race should be a factor in college applicants is a hotly contested one. President Trump’s administration has challenged colleges on using race in admissions policies, claiming such practices violate federal law. Last month, the Department of Justice filed a lawsuit against Yale University, saying its policies violate the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Yale has said the lawsuit is “baseless.”

Wen Fa, an attorney with the Pacific Legal Foundation, which filed an amicus brief in the Harvard case, said Asian Americans are harmed by the school’s admissions rules.

“The Supreme Court’s intervention is needed so that universities comport with” federal law, Fa said.

Stella Flores, an associate professor of higher education at New York University, said she hopes the court will rely on decades of research and data that show the benefits of such policies. Race is but one factor within the broad and “holistic admissions policy” at Harvard and other schools, she said.

Flores and Fa say the new conservative majority of the Supreme Court makes predicting whether the justices will take up the case difficult.

The court has previously decided on similar questions. It upheld race-based admissions policies in the 2003 case Grutter v. Bollinger, as well as the 2013 and 2016 Fisher v. Univ. of Texas at Austin decisions.

In Grutter, the justices were asked to determine whether the University of Michigan Law School’s use of racial preferences in student admissions violates the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment or Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

In the 5-4 Grutter opinion, Justice Sandra Day O’Connor said race-based admissions policies should be for a limited time only, Fa said.

That phrasing may be enough for the current court to take up the case, he said.

Source: Appeals Court Rules Harvard Doesn’t Discriminate Against Asian American Applicants

Californians to vote on racial, gender preference programs

Will be interesting to see how the demographic shifts affect the vote:

A California with vastly different political preferences and demographics is voting on whether to allow affirmative action in public hiring, contracting and college admissions — nearly a quarter century after voters outlawed programs that give preference based on race and gender.

If approved, Proposition 16 would repeal a 1996 initiative that made it unlawful for California’s state and local governments to discriminate against or grant preferential treatment to people based on race, ethnicity, national origin or sex. Then-Gov. Pete Wilson, a Republican, championed the measure as part of his conservative bid for the presidency.

The California of 2020 is less Republican and more diverse than it was 24 years ago, with Latinos making up 39% of the population in a state where no group holds a majority.

Still, the repeal might not have made the ballot if not for the Memorial Day police killing of George Floyd while handcuffed by police in Minneapolis. Voters’ decision will test support for the Black Lives Matter movement.

Assemblywoman Shirley Weber, a San Diego Democrat and chairwoman of the California Legislative Black Caucus, is the lead author of the legislation that put the question to voters, which required two-thirds support in both houses of the state Legislature.

“I think the death of George Floyd made racism very real for people; they could see it. And now what I was asking them to do was to act on it, stop telling me how horrible it is, stop telling me that you really didn’t know that, stop telling me that this is such a revelation for you,” Weber said.

She added: “Now the question becomes, what are you going to do about it?”

Early voting begins Monday for the Nov. 3 election.

The U.S. Supreme Court has long outlawed racial quotas, but it has ruled that universities may use tailored programs to promote diversity.

Last year, a federal judge in Boston rejected claims that Harvard’s admissions policies discriminated against Asian American applicants to keep their numbers artificially low. The plaintiff, the Students for Fair Admissions group, is appealing.

Supporters of Proposition 16 include U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris of California, the Democratic nominee for U.S. , Black Lives Matter movement co-founders, professional sports teams and politically liberal groups of all types. They argue that some programs are needed to help level a systemically racist playing field. The campaign has raised $14 million, far more than the $1 million raised by opponents.

Opponents include Ward Connerly, an African American businessman and former University of California regent who pushed for the 1996 ban.

They say government should never discriminate by race or gender, and the only way to stop discrimination is to end it. Joining Connerly are more recent Chinese immigrants who say the United States shouldn’t play based on skin .

In 2014, activists scuttled an attempt to restore racial preferences in higher education and successfully voted out some Asian American legislators they called traitors to their race.

Assemblyman Evan Low, who is Chinese American, voted in June to put the issue before voters despite emails and phone calls running 37-to-1 against it. He rebuked proponents for failing to reach out to him and the broader Asian American community at a time when all minorities have reason to feel under attack.

“Yes, we have a moral compass, but we must have conversations, difficult ones, even with those communities in opposition, because we’re all in this together, right?” said Low, a Silicon Valley Democrat, in June.

Supporters say minority- and women-owned businesses have missed out on public contracting dollars. Because of the ban, culturally specific programs aimed at improving high school graduation rates for African American boys and Latinas were discontinued, deepening divides.

And while some Asian Americans are admitted to elite universities in large numbers, affirmative action proponents say they too hit a “bamboo ceiling” that prevents them from landing executive-level positions.

On the other side, Tom Campbell, a former dean of the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley, said the college recruited minority applicants through strong outreach to high school students in nearby Oakland.

The legacy of slavery and Jim Crow segregation laws exists, he said, but, “I just will not engage in this method of correcting that, because it is wrong to the individual kept out because of her or his race.”

Kali Fontanilla teaches English as a second language in Salinas, California and before that, tutored African American students. She identifies as Black and biracial, and said students of don’t need their standards lowered.

“That’s insulting to me to say that there’s certain groups that because of the of your skin you’re not meeting the standard, you can’t meet the standard (so) we’re going to help you, we’re going to give you this crutch to get in,” she said.

Higher education has long been a flash point in the debate and both sides point to admissions statistics at the University of California and its nine undergraduate campuses to make their case.

Opponents of affirmative action say Latinos have made significant progress without preferential treatment, making up 25% of undergraduates last year, double their share two decades ago.

Supporters of affirmative action note that Latinos make up more than half of California’s high school seniors, with a graduation rate above 80 .

The population of California has also changed dramatically since 1996. The numbers of Latino and Asian American residents — and voters — have grown, although likely voters are still disproportionately white. Democrats still make up nearly half of registered voters, but the percentage of Republicans in the state has dropped from 36% to 24%.

Dan Schnur, who teaches political communications at UC Berkeley and the University of Southern California, noted that young white Californians also are much more liberal on issues of immigration, same-sex marriage and equity, having “grown up in much more diverse and multicultural environments than their parents and grandparents.”

But recent polls by the Public Policy Institute of California and the Institute of Governmental Studies at the University of California, Berkeley showed the measure trailing. Last year, voters in Washington narrowly upheld that state’s ban.

Thomas Saenz, president of the Mexican American Legal and Education Fund, said claims that a quarter of college students are Latino are “not something to be celebrated,” given that more than half of all public school students are Latino.

“That’s a disparity that needs to be aggressively addressed, and Proposition 16 would allow us to do that,” he said.

Source: Californians to vote on racial, gender preference programs

The Worst Form of Affirmative Action: Sullivan on legacy admissions

Hard to argue:

The Worst Form of Affirmative Action

I’ve long believed that affirmative action is unjust, immoral, and racist. Open discrimination with racial bias is always poisonous and when it comes to access to critical institutions of higher learning, it’s a piece of social engineering that has been extended way past its expiration date.

I’m talking, of course, about legacy admissions: the open discrimination that favors the dumb rich over the bright poor and wealthy whites over the brown and black poor, as well as the permanently assaulted Asian-Americans. It’s how Jared Kushner — the dimmest of dim bulbs — walks around with a Harvard degree, thereby devaluing everyone else’s. Because his dad went there first and threw in what was effectively a bribe of an alleged $2.5 million.

ProPublica reports: “Overall, across six years, Harvard accepted 33.6 percent of legacy applicants, versus 5.9 percent of non-legacies, according to Duke economist Peter Arcidiacono, an expert witness for Students for Fair Admissions, the plaintiff challenging Harvard’s affirmative action policies.” This is therefore not a minor injustice; it’s a major scandal. And it has a manifest racial tilt: over a fifth of accepted white candidates are legacy admissions, recipients of a de facto white affirmative action program. In the 2019 class, 11.6 percent of incoming students are white legacy, more than the entire 11 percent who are African-American. It’s a boost that exceeds that given to Hispanics, Native Americans, and the poor. It’s giving the actual super-privileged more privilege, while narrowing the spaces available for truly deserving applicants.

Of course, I take the terribly naïve view that those most gifted intellectually should get into the best colleges, and that test scores are the most objective measure, with some credit for extracurriculars and personality. But if you hold this view, and oppose the use of race as an admissions tool, you simply have to concede that using money and family is just as noxious. I’d go further and make any abolition of racial affirmative action contingent upon the simultaneous abolition of legacy admissions. And I have no doubt that the places freed up could well increase minority representation in a way that requires no engineering, condescension, or left-racism.

If race-based affirmative action is to be abandoned — and it sure might with the new shape of the Supreme Court — it seems to me that conservatives, liberals, and even the left should unite, for once, against actual, tangible privilege and injustice. The Ivy League can take the financial hit, it seems to me. And a small effort to weaken our increasingly deep caste system in America in favor of meritocracy would be a huge benefit for us all. Plus: no more Kushners. What’s not to like?

via Did Trump Just Help Stop Brexit?

Harvard Accused Of ‘Racial Balancing’: Lawsuit Says Asian- Americans Treated Unfairly

Ongoing issue and debate in the US, which provokes the usual spill over in Canada:

In an intense legal battle over the role of race in Harvard University’s admissions policies, a group that is suing the school says Harvard lowers the rankings of Asian-American applicants in a way that is unconstitutional.

Harvard says that its admissions process is legal — and it notes that the plaintiff group, the Students for Fair Admissions, is backed by the same activist who previously challenged the University of Texas’ affirmative action policy.

The SFFA says Harvard uses “racial balancing” as part of its formula for admitting students and that the practice is illegal. In response, Harvard says the group is misinterpreting data that the highly competitive school shared about how it chooses students.

Citing a 2013 analysis by Harvard’s Office of Institutional Research, the SFFA said in a federal court filing on Friday that if academics were the only criterion, Asian-American students would have made up more than 43 percent of students who were admitted, rather than the actual 18.7 percent.

Even if other criteria — such as legacy students, athletic recruiting and extracurricular and personal attributes — are included, the plaintiffs say, the number of Asian-Americans at Harvard would still have risen to more than 26 percent.

Saying that the admission rate for whites outpaced that of Asian-Americans over a 10-year period — despite outperforming them in only the “personal” ratings — the plaintiffs allege that “being Asian American actually decreases the chances of admissions.”

In a statement, Harvard said on Friday that a full analysis of the data shows the school “does not discriminate against applicants from any group, including Asian-Americans, whose rate of admission has grown 29 percent over the last decade.”

Harvard says the OIR analysis was preliminary and that it will defend its approach to achieving a diverse school body and campus community.

Harvard told the court in Boston that the plaintiffs’ analysis paints “a dangerously inaccurate picture of Harvard College’s whole-person admissions process by omitting critical data and information factors, such as personal essays and teacher recommendations.”

The competing accusations are the latest salvos in more than 400 legal filings over the case, which pits Harvard against plaintiffs backed by Edward Blum, a former investment broker who has for decades challenged how institutions and governments incorporate race into their decision-making processes.

“We allege that Harvard has a hard, fast quota limiting the number of Asians it will admit,” Blum told NPR in 2014, when he first sued the school. “In addition to that, Harvard has a racial balancing policy that balances the percentages of African-Americans, Hispanics, whites and Asians.”

On Friday, the two sides put out a flurry of motions, memoranda and declarations, seeking summary judgments and showing how they intend to argue the case — which goes to trial in mid-October.

Citing “the undisputed evidence,” the SFFA said that Harvard intentionally discriminates against Asian-Americans and “engages in racial balancing.”

It also said, “Harvard neither gave serious, good faith consideration to nor took advantage of workable race-neutral alternatives.”

The university’s filings stated, “Harvard’s admissions process reviews each applicant as a whole person, using race flexibly and as only one factor among many.”

The school also said Blum’s group lacks the standing to pursue its case, saying, “SFFA is not a true membership organization that can sue on behalf of its members; it is a litigation vehicle designed to further the ideological objectives” of its founder.

To find plaintiffs for his case against Harvard (and a separate suit against the University of North Carolina), Blum’s organization put up the HarvardNotFair website, which asked, “Were You Denied Admission to Harvard? It may be because you’re the wrong race.”

Spurred by the SFFA case, Harvard has also drawn the scrutiny of the U.S. Justice Department, which opened a probe into the role of race in its admissions policies last November. The federal agency said it wanted to ensure the school was complying with the 1964 Civil Rights Act. In doing so, the Trump administration showed it was willing to explore a potential case over a complaint that the Obama administration had dismissed.

At least two of Blum’s earlier suits have reached the Supreme Court, including the Texas admissions case (which was referred back to lower courts) and a challenge to part of the 1965 Voting Rights Act (which successfully argued that the law’s coverage formula was outdated).

Source: Harvard Accused Of ‘Racial Balancing’: Lawsuit Says Asian- Americans Treated Unfairly

For Affirmative Action, Brazil Sets Up Controversial Boards To Determine Race: NPR

Orwellian. Self-identification is the only way, even if it risks some “gaming:”

Siqueira considers himself to be mixed race, known in Brazil as pardo, or brown.

“I consider myself to be a very typical Brazilian and I’ve always been very proud of it. In my dad’s family, my grandfather is black, my grandmother has Indian and white roots. And on my mother’s side they are mostly white, mostly Portuguese,” he said.

How he defines himself matters because he was required to self-identify on his application. In 2014, the government introduced a quota system for federal jobs. The affirmative action regulations require that 20 percent of all government positions be filled by people of color – either black or mixed race.

The problem came once the announcement of the appointments was made public.

People started investigating the background of who had gotten the slots. They got into Siqueira’s Instagram, his Facebook feed and they sent his personal photos to the government.

“A lot of people sent pictures saying, ‘Oh, this dude is white, he’s a fraud,'” Siqueira says.

Job Offer Put On Hold

People basically said he was gaming the system, lying about who and what he is to get one of the jobs. The backlash shocked him. He said he hadn’t even considered the quota system. He just put down what he considered himself to be.

But the controversy wouldn’t go away. The government was getting so much flack that it put Siqueira’s offer on hold.

And then the government went a step further.

In response to the outcry, they set up a kind of race committee to review his case, and a few others.

He was asked to present himself to a panel of seven diplomats in a room who would decide if he was really Afro-Brazilian, as he claimed.

They asked him a bunch of questions such as, “Since when do you consider yourself to be a person of this color?”

And then it was over.

What they decided was that he was not pardo, or mixed race. No explanation. No discussion. So he decided to sue.

And that’s when this story gets even more complicated. Because in order to “prove” that he was Afro-Brazilian, his lawyers needed to find some criteria. He went to seven dermatologists who used something called the Fitzpatrick scale that grades skin tone from one to seven, or whitest to darkest. The last doctor even had a special machine.

“Apparently on my face I’m a type four. Which would be like Jennifer Lopez or Dev Patel, Frida Pinto or John Stamos. On my limbs I would be type five, which is Halle Berry, Will Smith, Beyonce and Tiger Woods,” he said.

Like most people he has different skin tones on different parts of his body. But in none of these tests did he come out as lighter skinned.

He says the whole thing struck him as completely bizarre because identity, he says, is made up of more than just physical characteristics.

But this wasn’t just an isolated incident.

Mandatory For All Government Jobs

A few weeks ago, these race tribunals were made mandatory for all government jobs. In one state, they even issued guidelines about how to measure lip size, hair texture and nose width, something that for some has uncomfortable echoes of racist philosophies in the 19th century.

Source: For Affirmative Action, Brazil Sets Up Controversial Boards To Determine Race : Parallels : NPR

Don’t Blame Diversity for Distrust – NYTimes.com

Good piece by Maria Abascal and Delia Baldassarri on disadvantage and unequal opportunities being more important to trust than diversity:

For his own part, Professor Putnam filed an amicus brief in the Fisher case objecting to the use of his findings in arguments against affirmative action. In the brief, he states his belief that diversity can be beneficial in the long term, despite its short-term drawbacks.

Our research reveals that even in the short term, diversity is not to blame. We independently analyzed the same data set Professor Putnam used, and we demonstrate that disadvantage, not diversity, is responsible for distrust.

At first glance, our results resemble those of previous studies: People in more diverse communities report lower levels of trust. Scholars and columnists alike have taken this to mean that diversity reduces trust, but we argue that this interpretation is flawed.

A thought experiment sheds light on what is going on. Imagine two schools: a homogeneous school with all Dutch students and a diverse school with half Dutch students and half Bolivian students. If we are studying student height, we would most likely find that students in the diverse school are shorter, on average, than students in the homogeneous school. Hardly anyone would then argue that attending a diverse school makes students shorter. Dutch people are taller than Bolivians, on average, and this explains the difference between the schools. Substitute trust for height and communities for schools, and, based on a similar association between diversity and trust, scholars have concluded that living in a diverse community makes people less trusting.

The analogy isn’t perfect, but it draws attention to an important possibility: Trust, like height, might be determined by pre-existing differences between groups, rather than exposure to diversity. In the United States, blacks and Latinos report lower levels of trust than whites, regardless of the communities where they live. The average homogeneous community (defined as a census tract) in the United States is 84 percent white, whereas the average diverse community is 54 percent white. Together, these patterns indicate that diverse communities do not make people less trusting. Rather, distrust is higher in diverse communities because blacks and Latinos, who are more likely than whites to live in one, are less trusting to begin with.

If diversity doesn’t reduce trust, what does? According to our analysis, disadvantage accounts for lower levels of trust. If you have a low income, or less schooling, or are unemployed or experiencing housing instability, you are likely to report lower trust. To make matters worse, if your neighbors experience similar disadvantages, this compounds your distrust. Taken together, this suggests that it is not the diversity of a community that undermines trust, but rather the disadvantages that people in diverse communities face.

This is why blacks and Latinos report lower trust than whites: Socioeconomic and neighborhood disadvantages are more common among these groups. We suspect that blacks and Latinos also report lower trust for other reasons, including continuing discrimination, victimization by the police and hostile political rhetoric.

Finally, our only finding related to diversity confirms a familiar story about white intolerance toward minorities. Whites who live among more blacks and Latinos report slightly lower trust than those who live in predominately white communities. This is a far cry from the claim that the minorities who are diversifying the nation are responsible for declining levels of trust.

This distinction has important implications for the affirmative action debate and social policy in general: If diversity is the problem, then policies should aim to protect or even promote homogeneity. If, instead, whites’ bias against blacks and Latinos is partly to blame, then policies should aim to allay these biases and their consequences for targeted groups. This was part of President John F. Kennedy’s original rationale for affirmative action: to address unequal opportunities across “race, creed, color.” Many of the conditions that motivated Kennedy’s directive persist today. Blacks, Latinos and members of other disadvantaged groups still face unequal treatment across a range of arenas, from the labor market to housing to education.

The current debate on affirmative action is playing out in the context of widespread anxieties about the changing face of the nation. Research that links diversity to negative outcomes legitimizes these anxieties. And it doesn’t help that this research has found its way into arguments against affirmative action. But disadvantage and unequal opportunities, rather than diversity, present the biggest obstacles to our getting along. By doing away with affirmative action and limiting access to higher education for blacks and Latinos, we will aggravate the disadvantages these groups face, while accommodating the intolerance of whites toward minorities.

Source: Don’t Blame Diversity for Distrust – NYTimes.com

Fewer Asians Need Apply by Dennis Saffran, City Journal Winter 2016

While I tend to favour some degree of affirmative action to foster diversity and inclusion, this piece makes valid comparisons between previous discrimination of American Jews and current measures to restrict Asian Americans:

“Asians are typecast in college admissions offices as quasi-robots programmed by their parents to ace math and science tests,” Golden observes. A Yale student commenting on the Princeton OCR complaint put it more bluntly: “[T]here can be good reasons for the disproportionately low acceptance rates for many Asians. . . . Top-tier schools . . . look not only for good grades but for an interesting student who will bring something of value to the community.” A Boston Globe columnist noted that the comment “sounds a lot like what admissions officers say, but there’s a whiff of something else, too.”

The something else smells a lot like the attitude toward Jews 90 years ago. Now, as then, an upstart, achievement-oriented minority group has proved too successful under objective academic standards. And so, as Jews were in the 1920s, Asians today are deemed deficient in the highly subjective and discretionary “personal estimate of character” favored long ago by Harvard president Lowell. But while anti-Semitic elites of the 1920s were forthrightly reactionary, their grandchildren’s anti-Asian bigotry is concealed under a veneer of modern progressivism. This is not merely because it rechristens Lowell’s arbitrary criteria with the New Agey term “holistic” but more fundamentally because it is based on a stereotypical view of Asians as out of sync with liberal culture. The image of Asian students as one-dimensional test-taking robots, short on creative thinking, all too often resonates with modern liberal educators, with their disdain for testing and “rote” learning, which they see as inimical to a “frolic in the fields” concept of creativity. As former neoconservative-turned-leftist culture warrior Diane Ravitch articulated this philosophy: “I don’t care if my two grandsons . . . have higher or lower scores than children their age in . . . Japan [or] Korea. . . . [I] care that [they] are . . . curious about the world; are loved; learn to love learning; [and] are kind to their friends and to animals; . . . Let’s all read Walden, read poetry, listen to good music, visit a museum, look at the stars.”

The bias against a group seen as having a learning approach that rebukes this romantic idyll is reflected in the concern of liberal college administrators that their institutions not become majority Asian. As Golden told the New York Times, “The schools semiconsciously say to themselves, ‘We can’t have all Asians.’ ” It may be more than semiconscious. A former admissions officer at Wesleyan, Brown, and Columbia warns ominously in the same Times article that “if affirmative action is overthrown . . . our elite campuses will look like U.C.L.A. and Berkeley.” Golden recounts the experience of Princeton professor Uwe Reinhardt in raising the discrimination issue with university officials: “They would say . . . ‘You wouldn’t want half the campus to be Chinese.’ ” Reinhardt had a good answer: “Well, why not?” As the director of Asian-American studies at Northwestern put it, “In the 1920s, people asked: will Harvard still be Harvard with so many Jews? Today we ask: will Harvard still be Harvard with so many Asians? Yale’s student population is 58 percent white and 18 percent Asian. Would it be such a calamity if those numbers were reversed?” It’s ironic that the same progressives who exult at the prospect of the United States becoming a majority-minority country fret at the far less disruptive prospect of Harvard or Yale becoming majority Asian.

Liberal discomfort with Asians can shade into outright hostility. Browbeating affirmative-action opponent Abigail Thernstrom in the wake of the passage of Prop. 209, Crossfire cohost Bob Beckel asked angrily, “Would you like to see . . . UCLA Law School 80 percent Asian? . . . . Will that make you happy?” The hostility is exacerbated by the unavoidable reality that affirmative action puts Asians in competition with African-Americans and Hispanics. Another study by Espenshade found that racial preferences for blacks and Latinos at elite colleges come almost entirely at the expense of Asian-Americans rather than whites. He and a colleague determined that if affirmative action were eliminated, “[n]early four out of every five places . . . not taken by African-American and Hispanic students would be filled by Asians.”

Racial-preference supporters argue that Asian students are harmed just as much by admissions preferences for legacies and athletes, which disproportionately benefit whites. Indeed, OCR dismissed the 1988 Harvard complaint based on a finding that any discrimination against Asians was explained by such preferences. The current Harvard lawsuit also attacks legacy preferences but for a different reason, arguing that their elimination would be a “race-neutral alternative” that would allow Harvard to admit more blacks and Latinos without resorting to race-based selection. I think that the plaintiffs are right, as a matter of fairness, to oppose legacy preferences (even though my daughter and I are both Harvard graduates, so our family may have benefited from them). However, Espenshade’s data show that their abolition would do little to benefit blacks, Latinos—or Asians.

Thus, this case necessarily brings into stark relief the ironic impact of race-based admissions preferences in today’s multiracial society. Whatever the justification for racial favoritism in the essentially biracial era of 1978, when Bakke was decided, the burden now falls largely on another historically marginalized racial minority—a group that is heavily foreign-born and that, while generally prosperous, still has large pockets of immigrant poverty. (See “The Plot Against Merit,” Summer 2014.) Affirmative action, the flagship policy of multiculturalists, has foundered on multiculturalism itself—and it’s time to pull the plug on it. The Harvard lawsuit provides the courts with a good opportunity to do so.

Source: Fewer Asians Need Apply by Dennis Saffran, City Journal Winter 2016