President Barack Obama recently restated his administration’s dedication to using race-based admissions to increase campus diversity.
The Department of Education and the Department of Justice wrote a letter to all college and university presidents letting them know that the agencies will continue to support them in pursuing an ethnically and racially diverse student body in a lawful manner.
This letter was written in the wake of the Fisher vs. University of Texas case.
Abigail Fisher, a Caucasian woman decided to take her case to the Supreme Court when she was denied admission to the University of Texas at Austin in 2008.
Fisher argued whether the school had abused the racial standards in making the decision to reject her admittance.
The Supreme Court reached a 7-1 decision to continue to use race as an aspect in the admissions process “as long as the race-based policies were necessary to achieve diversity,” according to the decision.
Affirmative action is one of the many issues that have divided Americans since it’s implication in the 1970s.
People in favor of the policy say it gives students of color the possibility to rise above the effects of long-term discrimination. Others feel that this is racial preference. Despite numerous Civil Rights policies, racism has not been eradicated.
A Gallup Poll in July discovered that 67-percent of U.S. adults are against race-based college admissions. That means that the majority of Americans believe admissions should be merit based. However, a break down of those number show that 75-percent of whites are for admission solely based on merit, while only 44 percent of African Americans and 59 percent of Hispanics polled responded the same.
Conversely, 28 percent of whites say race should be a factor. The number goes up for Mexicans at 31 percent. The African Americans polled reported that 48 percent believed race should be a determining factor in college admissions.
Residential racial segregation remains a problem today.
According to an article in the New York Times, Columbia University President Lee Bollinger said “about 40 percent of African Americans and Latinos children attend K-12 schools where less than 10% of their classmates are Caucasian.”
The Obama Administration’s main focus is to bring educational opportunities to all minorities.