Posts Tagged ‘University of Texas’

Court punts but affirmative action on the ropes

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

(USAToday) The Supreme Court, by a 7-1 vote, correctly slapped down the lower court for deferring to the University of Texas regarding the use of race in college admissions. It punted, however, on the larger question of whether that use of race is constitutional, instead instructing the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit to reconsider the issue under a less deferential standard of review.

That is, the lower court accepted the Supreme Court's 2003 ruling that using race as one factor, but not if race is tied to a set number of points or quotas, could be justified in the name of diversity. But it erred, the Supreme Court said, in not subjecting UT-Austin's admissions process to what lawyers call "strict scrutiny."

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The White Student Suing to Overthrow Affirmative Action Was Too Dumb to Get Into Her Chosen College

Friday, March 22nd, 2013

 

(Gawker.com) Life is tough for white people in America. A few hundred years of presumed superiority have left many of them psychologically unable to deal with failure, trapped in a cycle of victimhood where their own shortcomings can only be understood as evidence of persecution against them. So we have Abigail Fisher, 23 years old, and the plaintiff in Fisher v. University of Texas, which is currently being weighed by the Supreme Court.

Fisher, who is white, is suing the university because—well, because the full-time crusaders against affirmative action asked her to. But her ostensible complaint is that she applied to go to the University of Texas at Austin but didn't get in, while some students who are not white did get in, under the university's system of weighing "personal circumstances," including poverty and race, in some of its admissions. Ergo, under the logic of anti-reverse racism, some undeserving minority student took her spot.

But this week, Pro Publica published a look into the actual circumstances surrounding University of Texas admissions when Fisher applied. And that the reason Fisher didn't get in was that she wasn't qualified.

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The Leading Liberal Against Affirmative Action

Monday, March 18th, 2013

 

(Economix) My Capital Ideas column this week looks at liberals who would see some upsides if the Supreme Court made substantial changes to affirmative-action programs. The justices heard arguments in such a case in October — Fisher v. the University of Texas — and are expected to issue their decision between March 18 and late June.

Perhaps the most prominent self-described progressive with doubts about the current version of affirmative action is Richard D. Kahlenberg, of the Century Foundation. Mr. Kahlenberg argues that a race-focused version of affirmative action can be unfair, is inconsistent with many of the program’s original goals and has lost the support of the public. Today’s affirmative action, he says, helps perpetuate privilege, by helping to fill elite-college campuses with an ethnically diverse mix of affluent students.

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Colleges’ Plan B for Diversity

Saturday, October 13th, 2012

 

(National Journal) Many colleges and universities appear to be preparing for alternative methods of increasing racial diversity on their campuses by adopting admissions policies that place more emphasis on class and income.

survey by Inside Higher Ed, which asked admissions directors about likely steps they would take if the Supreme Court prohibits them from using affirmative action in colleges and universities, showed that many favor changes to admissions policy that are race-neutral.

(RELATED: As High Court Prepares to Hear Affirmative-Action Case, Issues of Race Equality Remain.)

About 30 percent administrators said they would consider placing greater weight on first-generation status, while 20 percent said they would focus on applicants’ socioeconomic status. Another 10 percent of directors at public, four-year institutions said they favored dropping standardized test scores.

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Why the high court should back race-based college admissions

Thursday, October 11th, 2012

(Washington Post) THE SUPREME COURT will consider Wednesday its biggest affirmative action case in a decade when the justices examine the suit of Abigail Fisher, a woman denied admission to the University of Texas (UT) at Austin in 2008. Lawyers for Ms. Fisher, who is white, claim that she suffered unjustly by having to compete against African American and Hispanic applicants in a system that considers race. Ms. Fisher wants the court to deem the university’s inclusion of race in its admissions process unlawful, a request the justices should deny. The worry is that the court will use Ms. Fisher’s case to rewrite decades of precedent, with implications for nearly every campus in the country, public and private.

Nobody should be comfortable with any system that uses race as a criterion to distribute scarce opportunities, such as admission to Texas’s flagship public university. Yet, as Justice Lewis Powell wrote in 1978, the country’s future depends on exposing prospective leaders “to ideas and mores of students as diverse as this nation of many peoples.” So does the legitimacy of institutions such as UT.

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New data on affirmative action in college

Sunday, October 7th, 2012

 

(SFgate) As the Supreme Court revisits the use of race in college admissions next week, critics of affirmative action are hopeful the justices will roll back the practice – and a new report Wednesday offers a big reason for their optimism.

Evidence from at least some of the nine states that don't use affirmative action shows that leading public universities can bring meaningful diversity to their campuses through race-neutral means.

That conclusion is vigorously disputed by supporters of race-based affirmative action, including universities in states like California that cannot under state law factor race into admissions decisions.

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The Supreme Court Could Strike Down Laws Said To Discriminate Against White People

Monday, October 1st, 2012

(Business Insider) The U.S. Supreme Court resumes work on Monday, confronting a caseload that could prove every bit as contentious as the legal battle over healthcare reform.

 

Among the most bitterly fought cases are expected to be a number aimed at overturning longstanding civil rights laws by a clutch of Republican-run states who claim they are outdated and unjustly discriminatory against white people.

The cases have the potential to strike at the heart of more than half a century of civil rights legislation by potentially abolishing central government oversight of elections in states with a history of systematic racism and dealing a fatal blow to affirmative action in higher education.

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Asian-American rift over Supreme Court affirmative action case

Wednesday, August 22nd, 2012

(Chicago Tribune) On Monday, dozens of Asian-American organizations filed amicus briefs at the U.S. Supreme Court arguing that universities should be allowed to consider race in admissions decisions. Five Asian-American groups were not among them.

That's because those groups already filed their briefs in the closely watched University of Texas case — on the other side. They argued in May that the school's race-conscious admissions policies hurt Asian-Americans by giving less qualified candidates a leg up on admissions.

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Will Affirmative Action Disappear?

Wednesday, July 18th, 2012

 

(AlterNet) The most conservative Supreme Court in the past four decades is poised to overturn the already limited affirmative action provisions in the latter part of this year (after October 1) unless good sense visits one or two of them and they vote in favor of student body diversity instead of against it. Since Bush-appointed justices John Roberts and Samuel Alito have joined the court as chief justice and associate justice, respectively, the court has voiced hostility to government uses of race.

The case, Fisher v. University of Texas, was brought by one Abigail Noel Fisher, a white student who did not qualify for the Texas Top Ten Percent plan, which automatically admits the top 10 percent of every high school class in Texas to the University of Texas.

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Affirmative Action — Could Justice Alito’s Vote Change the Game?

Wednesday, February 22nd, 2012

(ABC News) The Supreme Court could decide this week whether to delve into yet another hot-button social issue: affirmative action.

At issue is a lawsuit brought by Abigail Fisher, a white student, who said she was denied admission to the University of Texas because of the color of her skin. If the justices vote to hear the case, it could mean a majority of the court is willing to curtail or further restrict race-conscious admissions policies  at public universities.

The court is set to discuss the case in its closed-door conference this week and could announce as early as Friday whether it will add the case to next term’s docket.

Full story…

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