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March 31st, 2010
06:00 PM ET

Race-based admissions a good idea at public colleges?

 Two students say the admissions policy at the University of Texas at Austin violated the federal civil rights law.
Two students say the admissions policy at the University of Texas at Austin violated the federal civil rights law.

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

The White House is backing a race-based admissions policy at one public university.

The Wall Street Journal reports that the Obama administration has asked a federal appeals court to uphold the system at the University of Texas at Austin.

The case was brought by two white students who were rejected for admission at the Austin campus. 75 percent of students are admitted on academic grounds if they rank in the top 10% of their high school class... but the rest are admitted through a so-called "holistic" evaluation that takes factors like race or ethnic identity into account.

These white students say the admissions policy violated the federal civil rights law. So far, a district judge has rejected their claim... but it's possible this thing could wind up before the Supreme Court.

You see, this case actually tests a 2003 high court ruling that upheld a similar policy at the University of Michigan law school. At the time, the court said the school had a "compelling interest in attaining a diverse student body." It prohibited "outright racial balancing"... but said race could be a "plus" factor in order to build a "critical mass" of minority students.

But since then, the Supreme Court has become more conservative and critics of race-based admissions are hoping that the Texas case could be the way to change the policy.

For its part, the university insists its policy is critical in achieving the "diverse institution" its looking for.

Here’s my question to you: Are race-based admissions a good idea at public colleges and universities?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Jack in Niceville, Florida
Questions regarding an applicant's race or ethnic identity should be removed from all college application forms (and the census form, for that matter!). If you want to give the disadvantaged a leg up, then base it on income, not race. Believe it or not, there are poor white people and rich black people in this country!

Conor in Chicago
I guess the real question is: Would this college still have a decent amount of racial diversity if we only looked at the 75% admitted based on merit alone? If it had none or almost none, then I would argue that this raced-based system would be needed to combat racial discrimination anywhere in the U.S. If it was diverse, then I'd argue that the plaintiffs in this case have a valid point.

Lene
Absolutely NOT! If a kid works hard in school to be in the top 10 percent then they should be rewarded not punished because they were born with white skin. Skin color and ethnicity shouldn't even be a factor. These colleges should be more concerned with getting the best and brightest and uphold their requirements regardless of race, ethnicity or gender.

Steve in Virginia
"To build a 'critical mass' of minority students."? What?!?! White and Asian students don't need to have a critical mass built for them. They build it for themselves by accepting the education that's offered to them and working hard to learn. There's a 50% K-12 dropout rate among Black and Hispanic students. Minorities should be expected to build their own critical mass by addressing their dropout crisis.

John in Salem, Oregon
I am not a lawyer but I'll play one here: the Gutter case in Michigan dealt with law school not undergraduate admissions. I do not think the Supreme Court has ever ruled in favor of race being used at the undergraduate level. I would venture to guess Pres. Obama will lose this one, as he should.


Filed under: Education
soundoff (164 Responses)
  1. Conor in Chicago

    I don't know Jack. I went to UIC and I will be the first to tell you that white folks were almost a minority there. It was pretty evenly split between latinos, blacks, whites, and foreign students that were usually from India and China. At my college there was no need for a race-based admissions system-Chicago is a plethora of races. In other places who knows what's best-I'd just leave it to them.

    March 31, 2010 at 2:31 pm |
  2. Patrick from Florida

    No, race-based admissions is reverse discrimination. If a person can be accepted to a public college based on merit, they have earned their entrance. Besides, a close examination of "race" is appalling. We should not categorized people based on race or skin color or gender or gender preference. It's just plain wrong.

    March 31, 2010 at 2:32 pm |
  3. Chris in Philadelphia

    Using race as the basis for a decision is never a good idea. It happens all the time since colleges love to tout gender, ethnic and racial diversity. If one race is selected to benefit someone else will suffer due to their racial status. Who wins then?

    March 31, 2010 at 2:36 pm |
  4. Mike in New Orleans

    I think they should use the entire 256 color full spectrum chart to select college students. It's not just black and white anymore. Pretty soon we'll see lawsuits from the Chartruese minority.

    March 31, 2010 at 2:39 pm |
  5. bill, fresno, california

    Racism is never a good idea, regardless of who's being discriminated for, and who's being discriminated against.

    March 31, 2010 at 2:43 pm |
  6. John from Alabama

    Jack: Normally I would say"no", but the words public universities means public tax dollars; therefore, yes, race based admissions to public universities is fine. Everyone pays taxes for universities and colleges to pay the light bill and salaries,and race based admissions is a good idea. Some minorities would not try to get into a college unless they thought they might get a break in admissions.

    March 31, 2010 at 2:46 pm |
  7. Steve

    Hi Jack,

    Do you think it might depend on what race you are?

    Steve,
    Laguna Niguel, CA

    March 31, 2010 at 2:46 pm |
  8. txkboy

    How can a school be considered "public", if you imply race-based admissions?

    March 31, 2010 at 2:47 pm |
  9. Bruce in Bend OR

    In general a big "NOPE." The race card served a purpose (getting a foot in doors) at one time, but sooner or later its got to get down to colorblind academic qualifications. Race preferences can be as demeaning as helpful to all students, no matter what their particular race may be.

    March 31, 2010 at 2:49 pm |
  10. Russ in PA

    What bloody nonsense. More absolute bloody nonsense. Pull out all the public funding for colleges and universities, and make them compete. Then people will be able to afford them.

    And the other point, who needs them anyway?

    March 31, 2010 at 2:52 pm |
  11. Eloise, MN

    If the country wasn't racist in the first place, then why have the race question on the admission application. Was the race question put on their to discriminate against people in the first place long time ago? I think it was, Jack. Take race off the admissions applications and you
    might be surprised who gets in.

    March 31, 2010 at 2:52 pm |
  12. art l, rutland, vt

    If people wish to lose identities on the census, then I'm sure they're all for losing identity status on college admissions as well. I am.

    March 31, 2010 at 2:57 pm |
  13. John

    Anything based on race redarding admissions to colleges and universities is not a good idea.
    John
    Pampa, TX

    March 31, 2010 at 2:58 pm |
  14. kent, nj

    No! School admissions should be based on scholastic achievement and community service not the color of your skin. I thought this issue has already been resolved in the courts?

    March 31, 2010 at 2:59 pm |
  15. Peter

    No.

    My experience with college education is that opportunities are there for eveyone. Whether it be a community college or a major university. The only real thing keeping one from getting an education is their desire to want it and there effort to get it.

    Money is readily available through grants, loans, and scholarships. What has race got to do with it?

    Jack, what's coming next? Quotas of who gets an education versus those who don't? Sounds a bit like socialism to me.

    March 31, 2010 at 3:01 pm |
  16. Michael Alexandria, VA

    Success based admissions should be the standard. College graduation statistics for each high school in the state should be correlated with High School GPAs and test scores. For each high school, there should be three standards: sure to graduate, may graduate, no chance of graduating. Admit the sure to graduates as they apply, reject the no chances and put the may graduates into a pool with all the may graduates from every school. Have a lottery for open positions among all the maybes – which will assure a good and fair demographic mix.

    March 31, 2010 at 3:05 pm |
  17. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    This is nonsense. We have lowered the standards in all schools and now we want to allow admissions based on race. Whatever happened to earning our way into college, like good grades.

    March 31, 2010 at 3:06 pm |
  18. Tom in Desoto, Tx

    No. The same yard stick for everyone. What's next? politicians rated on a curve? (As if they already aren't)

    March 31, 2010 at 3:07 pm |
  19. Hans

    No. Admissions and scholarships should be based on academic qualifications and income (need based) only. We need educated individuals of all races that have these qualifications.

    Hermann, MO

    March 31, 2010 at 3:09 pm |
  20. Sandra in Temecula, CA

    Absolutely not. The world is supposed to be equal, not special treatment based on race when it suits ones needs and cry racism when it doesn't.

    March 31, 2010 at 3:17 pm |
  21. Bob McKenna

    No! This would bring us back to the 50's. Whites in the front of the bus
    and blaacks in the rear. Or no blacks allowed in restaurants.

    March 31, 2010 at 3:18 pm |
  22. Tony from Southport

    That would be racist, wouldn't it Jack?

    March 31, 2010 at 3:19 pm |
  23. JENNA

    Are race-based admissions a good idea at public colleges and universities?

    My public university had.has a great mixture of many races already. I thought that this was decided long ago..

    If we need to go that route because some public colleges and universities are favoring one race over another than maybe it needs to be based on the percentage of the population. If our population is 46% white, 30% hispanic, 14% black, 8% asian, 2% other – than this is how all college/university campuses should be.. It should reflect society..

    Jenna
    Roseville CA

    March 31, 2010 at 3:19 pm |
  24. Mr. D

    Are you kidding me? Haven't we gone beyond that BS. Let everyone apply and go from there based on their ability. Lowering standards does not do anyone any good, especially the country as a whole. Let's admit that we will never make everyone happy, but to place any kind of admission penalty on deserving people is non productive and just plain wrong.

    March 31, 2010 at 3:22 pm |
  25. Banned in Hartwell GA

    I wouldn't say that race-based admissions is a good idea, but I think someone should be keeping an eye on how admissions stack up to the demographics of the area. If they swing too much one way or the other there could be an underlying cause.
    Allen
    Hartwell GA

    March 31, 2010 at 3:24 pm |
  26. Rick Medina,OH

    Jack,

    As a liberal-leaning Democrat, I applauded the court decisions and investments that led to student busing, and racial preferences in admissions. Culture, long-time segregation and prejudice, and huge differences in education investments among cities versus suburbs were compelling arguments. After nearly two generations, one wonders if the need remains. Let's focus on primary and secondary education, and let these kids know early on that they need to compete equally at the collegiate level.

    Rick,
    Medina,OH

    March 31, 2010 at 3:26 pm |
  27. Doris Lauter

    Race based admissions should not be a factor. we are all created equal and to deny admissions on other than achievement should be avoided.

    The best achievers should be able to continue their education for the betterment of the country.
    Doris
    Ojai, California

    March 31, 2010 at 3:28 pm |
  28. Jim Z..Ft. Worth...Texas

    Until the day that racial bias finally dies in this country...which by my calculations will be the 5th of NEVER...

    March 31, 2010 at 3:30 pm |
  29. Jeff (Sarasota, FL)

    Jack,

    It just amazes me we still have the race issue after all these years... What part of PUBLIC do they not understand... I realize the right to refuse service to anyone applies, but there is a BIG difference between singling out a troublemaker and singling out a whole race...

    March 31, 2010 at 3:32 pm |
  30. Ezra

    race based anything is a bad idea Jack...we're all Americans and although there are surely advantages and disadvantages for various races, there is no one size fits all. you can't apply these types of generalizations to a population as a whole so it's a bad idea.

    SF

    March 31, 2010 at 3:33 pm |
  31. Minesh -Troy, MI

    As long as race-based anything is around, race-baiters and opportunists like Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson will keep milking the system. Right now there is more racism in black community than any other community – at least 80% of blacks voted for Obama in the Democrat primary in 2008.

    Mike, Troy, MI

    March 31, 2010 at 3:36 pm |
  32. george charles paree

    Grades are the only admission and can be the only test . chuck paree anderson in

    March 31, 2010 at 3:38 pm |
  33. Michael, Lorton, Virginia

    Jack: I think that race-based admissions at [any] college is "bad business practices." Now we both know that it happens-–however--we should measure with the academic yard stick of qualifications-without regard to race-–does it measure evenlying-–maybe not-but it surely levels the playing field for all those who are applying.

    March 31, 2010 at 3:38 pm |
  34. gordon

    That depends on whether you are referring to foot or bike races.

    I'm in favor of the former and against the latter.

    Almost everyone has running shoes, but not everyone has a bike.

    Las Cruces, NM where manna is too soon.

    March 31, 2010 at 3:43 pm |
  35. Dennis North Carolina

    we are all equal so race should play no part for a person to get a college education

    March 31, 2010 at 3:43 pm |
  36. Steve, Clifton, VA

    Absolutely!! Race based exclusions were the law of the land, which was publicly funded and enforced, for many many years in this country. Today, while the law does not support race based exclusions, anyone paying attention knows that there are unwritten laws which exclude minorities and women and handicapped. So in answer to your questions, yes race based admissions to public schools is a good idea primarily because "all"
    U S citizens pay taxes and have every right and equal rights to attend a public school as anyone else. Since we can find perennial evidence that discrimination still exist in housing, employment , private or exclusive clubs, restaurants, schools, churches, it is imperative that the Government, with use of public funds, ensure that our Colleges and and Universities reflect the racial demographic that makes up the tax paying public.

    March 31, 2010 at 3:44 pm |
  37. Mike M

    While it is admirable to strive to have a diverse student body, race should not be a deciding factor in whether or not a student gets admitted. Rather, colleges and universities should look at the socio-economic profile of the applicants. A white student from inner-city Chicago is likely to have had less privilege than a minority student from a posh suburb, and it would be wrong to give that minority preferential treatment. If you use socio-economic criteria rather than race, you'll more properly capture the barriers the student has faced. Given the discrepancies in economic status between races, you'll have much the same effect as you currently have, just more fairly applied and naturally phasing out as achievement gaps narrow.

    March 31, 2010 at 3:53 pm |
  38. Simon/Orlando

    Don't race based admissions just reinforce they notion that there is a gap between the ability of different races to compete just based on race? I thought that equality was based on ability and not some perceived intelligence difference. Why don't we just admit the best and the brightest regardless of what color or ethnicity they are?

    March 31, 2010 at 3:53 pm |
  39. Zach - DC

    Race-based admissions devalue those individuals whom they hope to serve. They say "we're letting you in because you're _____". Basically, if you weren't _____ you might not get in. You are judged by the color of your skin, rather than the value of yourself as an individual. The irony is that it is racism at its finest, aimed directly at those it hopes to serve.

    March 31, 2010 at 3:57 pm |
  40. Mike North Port, FL

    Race based admissions the way to go? No way. Merit based only. Take the race entry off the application entirlely. Race should be a non factor. Get the grades and SAT scores required and your in. Universities don't need to know your race because it is irrelevant.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:02 pm |
  41. Terrence Cain

    No it's not Jack. It's not fair to any race to have any college say they can only select so many from each race. It should be based on your smarts, not your skin color.

    Terrence Cain
    Big Spring, TX.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:05 pm |
  42. Eric - Houston

    No, discrimination is discrimination and what benefits one group today can hurt it tomorrow. UT's acceptance of the top 10 percent of each high school in the state already makes sure that high achieving high schools are not over represented at UT. This was designed to help create and maintain a diverse student body. While this is laudable, it would be more laudable to reward and therefore encourage academic achievement. That said there should be a balance, I think if the top 10 percent of each high school rule is maintained then the rest should be solely merit based.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:15 pm |
  43. Gerry Erman

    In a word, "No". Investing in a low achiever just to fill a quota is not the return on educational investment we need. Race shouldn't even be a consideration in college admissions. Grades. conduct and ability should be the prime considerations.

    Gerry
    Arizona

    March 31, 2010 at 4:19 pm |
  44. Lance, Ridgecrest, Ca

    Jack, the answer is NO! If they are using anything besides academic based admissions they are discriminating against the very people that they are supposed to be there supporting, the students. It is absolutely criminal that a highly qualified student could be denied entry because of a racial quota to meet some obscure racial diversity requirement. You want in, work for it!

    March 31, 2010 at 4:21 pm |
  45. Paulette in Dallas,PA

    I'm against race based priority. My own son has been looking for a summer job with a Law Firm. He has been told mant times that they must hire minorities. Great! A smart kid that does well in school gets turned away so some minority kid can get hired. I believe the best qualified should get hired and admitted to schools. No more priority for any minority.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:25 pm |
  46. Lori - PA

    Jack,

    My belief had always been that admission to a college should be based on how a person did in high school. The exception being someone going back to school to update, or learn new, skills.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:26 pm |
  47. Adam Simi Valley, CA

    Jack, I can see both sides. I believe it is important for collegians to be exposed to a diverse group of people, and therefore would agree that taking someone from Kenya vs an equally qualified American may be justified, however, I do not believe Americans should be divided in such a way. It is pure discrimination in a society that preaches merit over circumstance. A society that asks people to be color blind, without religious preferences, and without gender bias, should not be hypocritically using those metrics as tiebreakers. It undermines the very purpose for which they were put in place.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:26 pm |
  48. Kevin in Dallas

    Anything other than merit based is unacceptable. Admit those who are most likely to succeed, because every place given to a student who drops out is a place denied to someone else.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:26 pm |
  49. Rory Murray

    Jack,
    Admissions should be based on Merit and Academic Excellence, period. Regardless of ethnicity, financial or social status.
    That being said, this is a Privilege, not a Right. And should be granted to American students and those who are here LEGALLY first!

    Rory Murray
    San Bernardino, CA

    March 31, 2010 at 4:28 pm |
  50. steve- virginia beach

    Hell no. It's racist and doesn't solve the underlying problems. Whites and Asians don't need affirmative action in admissions because these cultures emphasize the importance of education and the notion of working for what we want. There is peer pressure among black and hispanic students to reject education and it shows in their nearly 50% k-12 dropout rate. Affirmative action in college admissions is not an acceptable substitute for equally expecting everyone to pull up their pants and accept the education that everyone is offered. Nor is affirmative action an acceptable substitute for effective parenting.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:30 pm |
  51. Rich McKinney, Texas

    I don't think so Jack. I think students should be placed based on their academic level and achievements not their income, race, sex or lack there of. I would argue that the court is biased by letting a particular color or ethnic background decide the placement at any level of higher education. If all men and women are created equal then let us treat them as so. Plain and simple really jack.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:30 pm |
  52. honestjohn in Vermont

    No Jack I think now is a good time to end race-based admissions. Race should not be a criteria for college acceptence anymore although it may have been a good idea in the 60's.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:30 pm |
  53. SCOTT ROSE --- PANAMA CITY, FL

    Jack, Race based admissions by it's very name is racism. If a person regarless of race doesn't have the brains to get into college on his or her own merit, then their race absolutly should not be the deciding factor. NAACP, UNITED NEGRO COLLEGE FUND ,JET, EBONY BLACK CAUCUS, EXCLUSIVLY BLACK UNIVERSITIES - If anything like these were to open for whites only, there would be race riots in the streets of every city in the country. College admission by merit only. that should be the only factor.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:31 pm |
  54. Gary H. Boyd

    Look at it this way Jack. White's are fast becoming the minority in America so I think race-based admissions would be a great idea. Once whites achieve numerical minority status they'll get head of the line admission privileges and universities, liberals and the courts won't be able to say a thing about it. .After all, - what goes around, comes around. Is this a great country or what?

    Gary Boyd in Scottsdale, Arizona

    March 31, 2010 at 4:32 pm |
  55. Jack - Lancaster, Ohio

    Thank you for asking Jack, as the people that will make the decision surely will not ask my opinion. We are just taxpayers, voters and the not yet prosecuted, we are as Ohio would classify us, non-partisans and therefore non....whatever. But to answer the question, why not, there are so many bad ideas out there in force, this one will hardly be noticed.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:34 pm |
  56. tom Trapani,

    It's time has passed. Now it's all about money namely affordability for those who really want to get a good education.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:36 pm |
  57. Mark, Oklahoma City

    Here's a novel idea, Jack, how about admissions to the Nation's top colleges being based on test scores, grades and Lack of a criminal history. In my book, setting aside a certain number of seats at a college based on one's minority status implies that white kids are just smarter and we have to make room for some of the dumb kids. We know it ain't so, so why do we keep doing it?

    March 31, 2010 at 4:37 pm |
  58. Ray in Nashville

    Jack, I'm a white man, born and bred in the south, trust me when I say that we need to keep this policy in place. Conservatives point to the "remarkable" progress this country has made in civil rights and voting, but believe me, it's ony because the Federal government has forced the issue that we have made such progress. Take the Federal government out of the equation and watch us backslide.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:37 pm |
  59. Tom, Avon, Me, The Heart of Democracy

    Absolutely, too many social and societal constructs already work to divide us. Let's not let eduction spit out plastic people with a cloistered view of the world.

    If we have any hope of competing in the global economy, we must start with a multi-cultural education.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:37 pm |
  60. Lisa N.J.

    If we truly want the best and the brightest students should be judged strickly on their merits. That said they should not be judged only on test scores but on the whole human being.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:37 pm |
  61. Terry, Chandler AZ

    Perhaps so Jack, but competency should be a major consideration. For example, the person who failed to use capital letters in the words University of Michigan Law School in paragraph five of this question should not be admitted to any college or university regardless of race.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:38 pm |
  62. Mark, Oklahoma City

    Setting aside a certain number of seats in a college for kids of "color" implies that white kids are smarter, so we need to make some room for the dumb kids. We know it isn't so, so why are we still doing it? What's wrong with looking at a kid's test scores, grades and LACK of a criminal history to determine who gets in?

    March 31, 2010 at 4:39 pm |
  63. pat in michigan

    No sir. Grade based admissions are the way to go. If you did not achieve in High School you will be taking up space in College.I was not admitted to a four year university until I got off my lazy butt and got the grades to qualify for admission in my junior year.I'm White and I didn't challenge their rules why should anyone else.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:41 pm |
  64. joe m

    absolutely not. in graduate school i felt that my admission to my program had a lot to do with my name and ethnicity. it helped the program, which was primarily dominated by caucasians, add a little color to their dept. it irritated me that i always felt that slight under current, and despite the fact that i felt i was actually qualified to be part fo the student body, i would have rather that i simply got accepted on my own merits. it also bothered me that i may have taken a spot that a student with better credentials, but was slightly melanin deficient actually deserved more. call me old fashioned or stupid, but i actually want to make it through my own hard work, instead of satisfying some 'holistic' standard.

    NC

    March 31, 2010 at 4:43 pm |
  65. steve- virginia beach

    No, Jack. Not unless the goal is to be a racist society. We'll never achieve equality through inequality or any other form of racism. Equality has already been created through our civil rights laws. Any member of any minority can have the equality they've been offered simply by pulling up their pants, working hard to get the education offered to them, working hard in their careers, and otherwise becoming a part of our self-sufficient society.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:44 pm |
  66. Conor in Chicago

    I guess the real question is would this college still have a decent amount of racial diversity if we only looked at the 75% admitted based on merit alone. If it had none or almost none than I would argue that this raced-based system would be needed to combat racial discrimination anywhere in the US. If it was diverse then I'd argue that the Plantiffs in this case have a valid point.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:52 pm |
  67. Dave, Brooklyn, NY

    Ever since people started screwing with all the logical methods of advancement, such as merit based raises and promotions and admissions, this country has gone to hell. The time to deal with race is early, that means giving everyone a good basic education while young. If you wait until they can only get into higher education because of race, it’s too late – they will fail. And because they took up space that a more qualified individual should have had they both fail. Do the math. Then fix up the schools in the inner city or whatever you want to call it. That way is fair to everyone and everyone can compete on a level playing field.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:53 pm |
  68. Mikey

    How about every race needs to compete to enroll in college. Lets all be equal Americans. If you were born in the U.S. then you are an American.
    Twin Lake,
    Michigan

    March 31, 2010 at 4:53 pm |
  69. John in Salem, Oregon

    I am not a lawyer but I'll play one on here: the Gutter case in Michigan dealt with law school not undergraduate admissions. I do not think the Supreme Court has ever ruled in favor of race being used at the undergraduate level.I would venture to guess Pres. Obama will lose this one,as he should.I generally support our President's policies, but I would think he might want to steer clear of this one for obvious reasons.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:54 pm |
  70. Lene'

    Absolutely NOT! If a kid works hard in school to be in the top 10 percent than they should be rewarded not punished because they were born with white skin. Skin color and ethnicity shouldn't even be a factor. These colleges should be more concerned with getting the best and brightest and uphold their requirements regardless of race, ethnicity or gender. All I can say is Reverse discrimination!

    March 31, 2010 at 4:55 pm |
  71. Rick McDaniel

    The time is past, for providing advantages to anyone based on race. College entrance should be based on qualifications, exclusively, and have no bearing whatsoever, on race.

    The race card no longer applies, in today's world. All have ample opportunity to compete, for entrance to colleges, today.

    Assuming that any single institution should apply special consideration, is also improper, as there are many institutions, to choose from, to apply to.

    Strongly disagree that their is any longer, any justification, for giving minorities special consideration, especially since one of those minorities is poised to become the new majority.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:55 pm |
  72. steve- virginia beach

    "to build a "critical mass" of minority students."? What?!?! White and Asian students don't need to have a critical mass built for them. They build it for themselves by accepting the education that's offered to them and working hard to learn. There's a 50% k-12 dropout rate among black and hispanic students. Minorities should be expected to build their own critical mass by addressing their dropout crisis. Penalizing hard-working students instead is just another way of asking for an unneeded handout and will do nothing to motivate.

    March 31, 2010 at 4:55 pm |
  73. Greg H - Minneapolis

    Jack, the argument being used today with respect to college admission would NEVER be accepted, were we to be talking about the ethnic makeup of pro sports teams. If it were, one could argue that there are not enough white players on basketball teams, or enough black players on hockey teams. And yet these organizations are allowed to recruit the BEST people, where colleges & universitys must have a quota system so that "enough" (fill in the blank) students are admitted. Something is wrong with that picture, and hopefully the Supreme Court will finally get it RIGHT, rather than continue down the road of "social engineering" that should have by now shown whether or not it really works!

    March 31, 2010 at 5:01 pm |
  74. Kim Smith, Dodge City, Kansas

    I would think a "intelligence based" admissions policy is the only way to go. Anything other than that is tantamount to having a "no child left behind" policy for college students, and we can all see what a failure that ended up being in our primary school systems. Brains trump race every time.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:02 pm |
  75. steve- virginia beach

    Yeah, right. Tell hard-working students they can't go to college because black and hispanic students have a 50% high school dropout rate. This has got to be the stupidest way to address the dropout crisis so of course Obama supports it. And I guess the 25% who are denied college admission are the ones who are racist if they don't like it?

    March 31, 2010 at 5:03 pm |
  76. Jack H, Niceville, FL

    Questions regarding an applicant's race or ethnic identity should be removed from all college application forms (and the census form, for that matter!). If you want to give the disadvantaged a leg up, then base it on income, not race. Believe it or not, there are poor white people and rich black people in this country!

    March 31, 2010 at 5:03 pm |
  77. Paul Ernest Show, Nashville, TN

    Jack, I blame society, that we are talking about race -based admissions in 2010. The consequences of our past attitude with discrimination have made it imperative that we now should encourage a ethnic diversity in schools, workplaces and all economic, social and political environments. If all they races have had equal plain-field from the start, I will question the use of race-based policies. America still has a long way to go in ensuring that we all have access to all opportunity. When that is achieved, we can then discard policies that are race-based.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:03 pm |
  78. Alice NEWYORK

    Let them all go! Make it affordable so no one can say "how did they get there?" Maybe we should have kids go to school for 16 years, isn;t that how its done in europe? I have a question jack, is teaching a profession? I have my doubts now, even though i gave teaher friends.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:04 pm |
  79. jay

    Hell yea Jack!! Its about damn time too!

    March 31, 2010 at 5:04 pm |
  80. Maria

    Ethnic based admissions are still essential in this country's universities.
    Diversity is far from acheived and until we all realize that diversity is the way to connect with others and learn experiences different than our own we have to make the effort based on ethnic-based admissions.

    Maria

    Brunswick,MD

    March 31, 2010 at 5:06 pm |
  81. Joe CE

    Yime to drop race as a special credit toward abything. Still necessary to monitor to prevent racial discrimination. The time for some to be more equal than others has passed.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:06 pm |
  82. Annie, Atlanta

    Of course they are. The alternative is not giving these young, bright, eager-to-learn kids every opportunity. The better educated the population the better for us all. We’ve sadly seen, since the town halls last summer, where ignorance leads. If I could have just one wish, a college education would be mandatory and free.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:11 pm |
  83. Layne Alleman

    Jack, I would hope that the majority of public colleges and universities look at students qualifications and abilities over what the heck their skin color is. To me, you're either ready for college when you apply, or your not. It should be based on your desire to learn, not just the ability to get in and warm a seat, or play "Animal House" for four years. There are plenty of private colleges to go to to "contemplate why "blue is blue" or why American Idol is so popular. Bottom line: I understand why these quotas were instituted when they were needed, but I haven't seen any data on how well they're working; are they(the "minorities"), graduating in numbers to show it effective. Layne A. Antioch, Il.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:12 pm |
  84. Doug - Dallas

    The problem is that they have no way to control it properly and it's detrimental to all sides. The school should accept all students who qualify with their admission standards regardless of race.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:14 pm |
  85. Agro in West Coast

    Race-based admissions can be fair only and only if the financial support comes from well-regulated agency. I should call it U.S. Dept. of Equal Admissions.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:16 pm |
  86. Michael

    Jack, no less than Gerald Ford thought so.

    In fact, Mr. Ford supported the University of Michigan School of Law in an amicus brief before the Supreme Court in the suit you mentioned.

    Why?

    If only for reasons of national security: if we want minorities to fight the nation's battles, we have to make room for them in every level of leadership.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:17 pm |
  87. Kevin

    This is one of the many reasons why the rest of the world laughs at us.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:17 pm |
  88. Marcus

    It's a good idea Jack, and I went to a private HBCU and am now at a private majority law school. The standing policy is the result of a half-century of developing intergration law. If we want opportunity, fairness, and true education in our country, we have to accept the idea that diversity is a benefit in and of itself, especially in higher learning.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:18 pm |
  89. Stephanie

    I believe that race-based admissions makes it harder for students who are part of the "majority" to attend college. Does it really matter what race a student it is, rather than being a good student? I will be attending a college in two years, and I believe that universities should not be allowed to admit students based on race.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:18 pm |
  90. Dave from New Orleans

    Why can't we have 'blind' admissions and look solely at the students qualifications? Since when is race a qualifier for excellence? Until you can tell me how one's race makes them a better candidate, it has no place in the admissions process.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:19 pm |
  91. Taylor Torre

    I'm a high school senior in the college admissions process so this question has a direct impact on me. I think it is ridiculous to base admissions on the race or gender of a applicant. Racial diversity is important for a college setting and universities usually prize their diversity statistics, and that is a good thing. But I do not think its okay to base acceptance on anything accept a person's academic abilities and what is provided on their application. Spots at colleges should be given to those that deserve them, no matter what.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:19 pm |
  92. Jason Roche

    Race-based admissions are racism, plain and simple. Students should be judged and admitted based on their credentials, to make it fair for everybody race should not be taken into consideration.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:19 pm |
  93. Ralph Spyer

    Black make up 10% of our population, Browns make up 10% of our population but their are more yellow or asian in heighter education with only 2% of the population then the total of blacks and browns , Why ? They are achieving at colleges and universities with out lowering standards,they are a credit to their race.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:19 pm |
  94. Weldon from Canada

    I don't think that ANYTHING should be based on race. We as caucasians make these stupid decisions by supposedly basing everything on our race. What makes us so special??? Everybody is a human being and everybody should have the same priveleges as everybody else. We have had more than enough idiots in our race even after they have supposedly had an education.

    ISN'T IT TIME THAT EVERYBODY GOT ALONG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

    March 31, 2010 at 5:20 pm |
  95. Steven

    Race-based admissions are wrong, whether they work for or against white people. the same type of arguments were used for segregation type policies, i.e. "they are necessary to maintain the type of racial balance this university holds as vital to its effectiveness" the fact that its now working against white people DOES NOT MAKE IT OK. it is not justified to punish white kids as a way of balancing against the sins of long dead white men.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:20 pm |
  96. Joan S

    Look at the results....if past experience has shown that the 25% have had a sucessful college experience,then it should be continued......as we all know, there are high schools that are substandard, and if students from these schools show promise, by all means,continue admitting them

    March 31, 2010 at 5:20 pm |
  97. Mary

    Since public colleges and universities are supported by tax dollars coming from all residents of a state, many of who are non-white, it is important to also have non-white students benefit from receiving education in these institutions. A much higher percentage of non-white students than whites face factors that make attaining a college degree difficult: economic disparity, poor local schools, parents who never went to college, etc. Having diversity be a factor in college admissions is just a small start to correcting these inequalities.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:20 pm |
  98. steve- virginia beach

    Has anyone explained why this is a better idea than addressing the 50% dropout rate among these same minorities? The best way to help the affected minorities in the long run is to hold parents acountable for parenting, repeal affirmative action and all other forms of race-based preferences, and proactively teach students that if they reject the education that's offered to them they'll be working the worst jobs, likely without healthcare insurance or benefits.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:20 pm |
  99. spencer in nj

    As long as it mirrors the population at large I think it's a good idea.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:20 pm |
  100. mark

    only if your not white

    March 31, 2010 at 5:21 pm |
  101. Kim Miraldi

    As a mother of a high school senior that has just completed the college application process - race-based admissions is not fair. I would be OK with minorities getting some help - if they are stellar students AND have no parental financial support. But the way the system is set up now - if you are only 25% minority, regardless of your parents financial situation, you get in to the college and in some cases, for free! Our dear friends, whose daughter is 25% Hispanic, has got a free ride to Ohio State - even though they are wealthy, living in a multi-million dollar home. How is that fair??????

    March 31, 2010 at 5:21 pm |
  102. Bob (currently in Toronto)

    Absolutely NOT. Admission should be based on ability-Period!

    March 31, 2010 at 5:21 pm |
  103. Mark from Louisiana

    Those silly white college kids, don't they know that only blacks and hispanics have civil rights these days?

    March 31, 2010 at 5:21 pm |
  104. Maggie in Sacramento, CA

    Jack, I am White. My daughter is half White, half Latina. Her best friends are White. High school seniors in CA are in the midst of the most competitive university admissions process in history. My daughter worked her butt off to do internships, leadership programs, community service, etc., in addition to working hard in school to have a competitive GPA and SAT. Now she got accepted into more UCs than her White best friends who are privileged and who did nothing extra. They now are telling my daughter she got in because of her race. Give me a break! It is not that black and white - sorry for the pun. My daughter deserves what she got, but all you have to do is look at the demographics at the prestigious universities - still predominately White and Asian. So now that we are becoming a quasi-privatized university system in CA with only the privileged being able to afford tuition, we will see more and more segregation if something isn't done. I think it is about equity and why we need inclusion in the universities. Ask that question.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:21 pm |
  105. TC Mowatt

    If all that has been stated about achievement gaps and the failure of education for lower income, african americans and hispanics is true then we need to find ways to not only fix education in the lower grades. But we also need to ensure that there are kids from these groups that get into and through college.

    Otherwise the taxpayer is going to end up paying for generations of young people that are locked out of opportunity and reliant on the future good will of government. We have to FIX education and this is just one tragic way to do that. Maybe now we will admit how discriminating the education system has been all along.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:21 pm |
  106. Jay

    Individuals that have never been discriminated against can't understand. Universities across the country should strive to diversify its student body. It is to the benefit of its academic community that the demographics are representative of our country. I think processes like this should remain in practice until such demographics are attainable.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:21 pm |
  107. Ed

    No I don't think they are necessary if the things are fair and even. The problem is, they aren't . My wife when she was trying to get into nursing school years ago was constantly turned down in the process although she made straight A's, while her white counterparts who were not were allowed to go through. We finally had to enlist the help of a board member of the school to get her approved. So you tell me if its needed.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:21 pm |
  108. Charles Timko

    As a student in college, I have always thought it was ridiculous from the beginning to have admissions based on race. "Racism" is "prejudice or animosity against people who belong to other races" (Bing Definition 1) and doing admissions this way is thus Racist. It's not fair for students who have tried really hard to get into college and can't because someone else took their spot to fill a quota. If you want into college, it should be based on your academic record, NOT your skin color.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:22 pm |
  109. Larnee Bonslater

    What is sad is that you actually have to ask this question. In a perfect world race, or gender would not matter, but to "keep them honest", this unfortunately is a necessary evil. It is not fool proof but does at least give those that really do deserve a small edge and cushion to lean on if necessary. When if EVER will we get past race, orientation, etc, and understand we are all GOD'S children and deserve Equal Rights and Respect. Larnee Bonslater Bullhead City, Az.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:22 pm |
  110. nelson

    Of course, from my experience I being a black honestly only had maybe one or two blacks in my college classes. At times I was the only one. Now tell me who really is being disadvantaged.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:22 pm |
  111. Dave D

    No, it shows favoritism and bias toward visible minorities. How about everybody earns their spot the old fashioned way by hard work and performance instead of what "race" they are!

    March 31, 2010 at 5:22 pm |
  112. David P Vernon

    Tucson, AZ – Yes, as long as purely academic criteria serve to discriminate against disadvantaged minorities. As a Jew, my people were once excluded from the Ivy League for our religion, despite superior academic performance, so this is a sensitive issue for me. White people claiming they have been discriiminated against is pure malarkey – they have been getting the opposite, a racial advantage, for generations, and to level the field for them by taking that advantage away is not discrimination against them. Once admissions at public universities reflect the general population, race based criteria become invalid, but until then we have two centuries of discrimination against people of color to make up for. By the way, new judges are not grounds for a new case – if there are no new issues, the Supremes should refuse to even hear this one!

    March 31, 2010 at 5:22 pm |
  113. Homeless D in Atlanta

    On one handm yes. Otherwise some minority students may be denied the opportunity to go to college at all.

    On the other hand, perhaps high school performance might be a better way to admit kids to college. That would without a doubt SAVE the public colleges money, as i think it is pretty widespread among public institutions, that incoming freshmen are requiring a LOT of pre-college level classes just to get to the point they SHOULD have been in the first place.

    And, that then makes it imperative that students who GRADUATE high school MUST perform at high school graduate level. Gee, that would require that the public school system turn out students who actually have completed the curriculum!

    What a new idea!

    And finally, maybe some kids do not need to waste their time in college! Some kids just cannot do the work, and some kids should instead be learning a TRADE, some thing this country is sadly in need of!

    March 31, 2010 at 5:22 pm |
  114. Bobby

    One thing many people forget is that Whites also benefit from race-based admissions. All other things equal, Asian students need higher GPA and test scores than Whites to be considered on the same level. If this is not racism or affirmative action, I don't what is.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:22 pm |
  115. Mark

    What ever happened to academic qualifications?

    March 31, 2010 at 5:22 pm |
  116. Patricia

    Race-based admissions, when the majority race benefited was rarely challenged by the benefiting majority. I don't have a problem with race based admissions to reflect the "Real America" without compromising academic standards but all too often the minority student is used so the university can gain funding and once the funds are in, the minority student is out.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:23 pm |
  117. Pied Type

    Racism, quotas, "attaining a diverse student body" - they're all the same. Academic merit should be the only qualification for admission to a public academic institution.

    Sarah
    Denver, CO

    March 31, 2010 at 5:23 pm |
  118. Amy

    Race-based admissions policies, as long as they hold all students to the same academic standards, are an unfortunate necessity in America today. Unless or until racism and discrimination are successfully addressed, these policies, at least theoretically, guarantee equal access to education for minorities. However, it must be stressed that all academic standards be applied equally to all applicants, criteria satisfied, etc. It would not be in anyone's best interest for race alone to guarantee college admission.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:23 pm |
  119. Barbara

    When minorities get the SAME educational opportunities as Whites in this country, we will not have to have this discussion. Of course those who have for centuries benefitted from a superior education structure, exposure and finances, will rank higher on tests geared toward that culture. To then try to ignore those issues and say that those whose scores rank higher should be allowed in above all else–is a biased view in itself.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:23 pm |
  120. Steve

    Yes, race-based admissions is a good idea because it counteracts the intangible 'white privilege' that exists in the US in college placement, job opportunity, ect. as a result of largely superior economic status. Our playing field is not even. When the majority of college students are white across the board, something is wrong with our whole system, and some balance needs to be made.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:23 pm |
  121. Bob In Florida

    Yes Jack, absolutely! After more than 300 years of slavery, oppression and denying education to minorities (blacks), the LEAST we can do is give them some sort of "edge up" to make up for our horrific acts against them, When a society oppresses a group for so many generations, it is similar to a severe genetic mutation within that group. This results in an unbelieveable disadvantage that can only be overcome by direct and intense intervention.

    I am one of those "whites" that has seen how terribly affected the blacks in this country have been for the 60 years of my life. Many "whites" would NOT have made it, had they had to endure the same oppression.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:24 pm |
  122. BJ Zamora

    As a UT grad, I am all for the efforts that the University is taking to assure that its students reflect the demographics of the state. I wonder whether these latest student law suits are funded by the same group opposing the top 10% rule too. In that, wealthy white, privileges students who went to really good schools and who then didn't quite make the top 10% sued to get in because they felt so much better prepared than students from poorer and often rural or inner city high schools. Life isn't fair, but a public instituion has an obligation to serve ALL of its citizens and not just the ones who have always had all the breaks. When I attended UT in the 1960's, no black students played on our championship teams either! Fair is fair and Hook'em Horns! Continue to provide a great education to all our students!

    March 31, 2010 at 5:24 pm |
  123. Rich

    Absolutely not. Race should not play a roll in any type of admissions, hiring guildlines, or anything. I am white and have two children of my own and six black arfican sons. I think school admissions, jobs etc should be based on capability, anything less would be discriminatory against the other race. If I can live in a raceless home where my relationship with my sons and daughter is based on love and respect then we as an educated society should do the same. I'd expect no less that from schools and companies.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:24 pm |
  124. JIM FALLBROOK CA

    Of course it is a good idea. If President Obama is for it. it has to be. He is one of the greatest presidents in history.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:24 pm |
  125. Steph

    I'd also like to add that students whose grades and scores weren't sufficient to place them among the 75% of admissions chosen based on academic history should be grateful that UT Austin gives them another shot to get in through the school's "holistic" evaluation. White students can and do gain admissions through that process, too.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:24 pm |
  126. Dave

    Jack, this year I applied to colleges and universities, public and private. I would have been devastated if I wasn't admitted somewhere because though I met all the standards, I had to be rejected because my race wasn't a minority. In some cases, race based admissions, can have a positive effect because still today, in our world, sadly, your race can close doors on opportunities. There is however a very "fine line" between race based admissions and "reverse discrimination". Race could be a factor but not "the" factor.

    Dave L, PA

    March 31, 2010 at 5:24 pm |
  127. Steve

    Yes race based admissions are a good idea, this is because most things in this country is not equal for all. Many of the privileged try to use the civil rights movement against the very people it was created to protect. Do American know their history? Clearly there are those among us who have received unfair and unjust treatment which lead to the disproportionate amount of wealth in one community. Yes I understand this was a long time ago but it still follows us around like stink on a dead body, especially when people in positions to hire are more than likely to hire someone who looks like them.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:25 pm |
  128. Lauren

    Personally I believe students should be admitted on merit and academics rather than race. Race-based admissions were necessary in t he 60s but are now no longer needed. How fair is it to admit one student over another based on race and not academic achievement? What if the rejected student had superior academic qualifications to the admitted student but was rejected because he/she didn't fit the race quota? Not fair

    Writing from Houston, TX...and a proud UT Alum

    March 31, 2010 at 5:25 pm |
  129. Ed from California

    I thought that the admissions office was "blind" and that your GPA and your written admissions letter is the benchmark for acceptance to college. Not the color of your skin.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:25 pm |
  130. Will Ash, Las Cruces, NM

    Why are we continuously promoting policies which judge people, not on the content of their character, but by the color of their skin? Why should any person be treated differently because of how they were born? Why is it that I live in a college town where European-Americans make up 47% of the population to 49% Hispanic, and yet no minority scholarship for whites, if their is such a thing as "white?" Are we punishing this generation for sins of their grandparents? Just go ahead, tell your kids, "You can do anything you want in life, so long as you're not white."

    March 31, 2010 at 5:25 pm |
  131. Taronba

    It's ok if the acceptance rate is consistent with the community that the college or organization resides in. You also must jail people who are convicted of trying to affect the outcome of population surveys. Ten years minimum and have their names listed and public.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:25 pm |
  132. Melissa Townsend, Indiana

    Hmm, now if these were a couple of African-American students, do you even remotely suppose that there would be a snowball's chance in Hades that they wouldn't be admitted? Of course not.

    This is racism, clear and simple. America will never move past the sorts of racial prejudices and tensions that exist in our country now, until race becomes as unimportant as eye or hair color.

    I am all in favor of removing race from any questionnaire or application that individually identifies the respondent or applicant.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:26 pm |
  133. Andrew Beulen

    Absolutely not. As a white student at the Univerisity of Wisconsin–Madison, I would be very upset if I knew I was granted or not granted admission due to the color of my skin. I am all for equality in education and that's the way it should stay: the individuals who exibit the most potential to succeed should be admitted. I earned my spot because of what was IN my head, not by what color the packaging was.

    Andrew
    Oshksoh, Wisconsin

    March 31, 2010 at 5:26 pm |
  134. Gary - Woodhaven, Michigan

    There must come a day when we do not base any decision upon what race, religion, or gender anyone is. It is when we do this, whether with good intentions or not, we remain a discriminatory and biased society.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:26 pm |
  135. Femi in NY

    Yes it's a good Idea and it will be even more popular as the demographics shift to whites being in the minority.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:26 pm |
  136. Greg Parker

    None less than MLK wanted a "color blind" society. How can we achieve this end if race is continually interjected into the discussion?

    March 31, 2010 at 5:26 pm |
  137. Tyler

    Jack,
    I graduated from the University of Michigan in 2007. I think it is a good idea for a public university to take race into consideration. Because a public university's mission should be to produce excellent citizens not accept excellent students. I grew up in an all-white community; during my experience at Michigan I was exposed me to many things intellectually and culturally that I think made me a better person.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:27 pm |
  138. rc

    Equal rights should mean equal rights-nothing less, but nothing more. What could possibly be more insulting to someone than being either accepted or rejected based on their race or gender and not their qualifications?

    March 31, 2010 at 5:27 pm |
  139. Tony

    I think it depends on whether you think students benefit (academically, socially, etc.) from having a diverse group of peers. If that's the case, then policy's like this may help to improve college quality. As a student, I know that interacting with people from different states, countries, religions, races, economic backgrounds, etc. has been very important to my personal and academic development. I think the real question isn't whether making exceptions for minorities is a good idea, but how much is too much. It's all about balance.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:27 pm |
  140. Sharon

    Race most certainly not be a consideration. A person’s economic situation should be more of an issue than race. Equal opportunity should be the rule. A person’s race, religion, gender, or any other such factor should never be considered. Hopefully we, as a nation, have moved beyond such issues.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:28 pm |
  141. Givonna, New Orleans

    As an African American, I feel like I learned a lot by being in college with so many racial/cultural groups. It added to my educational experience and helped prepare me for the work world. I think race can be a factor in creating a multicultural educational environment that allows us to learn from each other's perspective. IT SHOULD NOT be a reason to admit someone who is not qualified- either black or white. Just as an unqualified student be admitted because the parent is rich!

    March 31, 2010 at 5:28 pm |
  142. Geoff

    While I understand the reason that quotas were instituted, I am not sure if they are still necessary. Further, I believe that if we truly desire to be a color-blind society, then we should simply look to the admissions criteria to determine who is accepted to certain schools and who is not. After all, was it not the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King who proclaimed that men should be judged by the content of their character, not the color of their skin?

    March 31, 2010 at 5:28 pm |
  143. Harv - Uniontown,PA

    Yes I do Jack. For too long there has been an injustice to minorities in this country, including the right to equal education. We have been omitted from equality for so many years and for so many opportunities, now it's a big deal when a very small part of inequality affects the majority in this country. Suck it up!

    March 31, 2010 at 5:28 pm |
  144. Shawn L

    Only qualifications that can be applied to all applicants (GPA, standardized test scores, activities & hobbies, and professional and voluteer work experiences) should be used in college admission processes. If we strip physical appearance, race, and gender from the process, we ensure that there is no bias. As long as decisions, whether beneficial or detrimental, are being made based on a human being's skin color, we, as a society, are participating in racism. When we all truly decided that race no longer matters, monitoring and quotas will be eliminated as evidence of our new paradigm.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:28 pm |
  145. Dr Howard Luttrell

    I am a University of Texas graduate and I think that it is racist to base any part of admission on race.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:28 pm |
  146. Steve Anton

    While I feel it is imperative that diversity exists at all of our universities, I question the means to get to that end. Too many times, we "shuffle" students out the school door just to satisfy some stupid quota then the college beats it's chest and says "I did my humanitarian part in the higher education process"! What purpose does that serve? You either have the test scores for admittance or you don't. If you don't, keep on trying and apply again and again!

    March 31, 2010 at 5:28 pm |
  147. Gus

    Jack,
    Should the ability to pay be a factor for admission?
    Should the fact that your grandma attended the school be a factor for admission? How is it that these qustions which focuses on the "plus" admission variables seem to only be concerned woith the race variable. Out of the 14 (plus) variables that are used in the admission process, race seems to be getting all the attention. I guess its ok to have the money and not the grades huh?

    March 31, 2010 at 5:36 pm |
  148. mike

    If the 2 white boys were black,this wouldnt happen,reverse prejudice !!
    Of course Obama endorses this,no surprise there !!

    March 31, 2010 at 5:36 pm |
  149. George A

    When an Asian colleague suggested that my kids will get an easy admission into college because they are black, I found it offensive and demeaning. I did not waste time in letting her know that my kids could go up against any kid of any race of their age. And I meant that. Race based admissions are longer necessary. Parents of minority kids should strive like White/Asian parents to give their children the background they need to compete.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:36 pm |
  150. Russ Patterson

    This is just plain difficult – the attempt to right an imbalance brought on from 200 years of evil. To deny a high acheieving white student based on race is discrimination too and 2 wrongs don't make a right. But how to get the pendulum closer to dead center i don't know.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:37 pm |
  151. dc888

    ...on the other hand, the University of California system has put caps on the percentage of Asians admitted because they kept scoring higher than other applicants...

    March 31, 2010 at 5:37 pm |
  152. Alex NJ

    No way should race be a factor. Constitutionally how can it? This also brings about the larger problem of race in this country as seen through the eyes of the left. For too long the political left in this nation has had this divide and conquer approach to politics. They pit Americans against each other. Whether its rich vs poor, white vs black or whatever they pick any given week their entire strategy is make American fearful of each other under the guise of "multi-culturalism." I say to hell with multi-culturalism. We are on country, one people, with one culture. Yes our culture is born out of those of our ancestors but we have made it our own and we have made it American. When you go over seas those in other nations do not see us as Irish-American or Anglo-American or African-American or whatever. They see us all as Americans and thats what we need to start seeing ourselves as.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:38 pm |
  153. Tom Luten

    Why do people get their underwear in a knot when any decision involving the word "race" is used?!? Why are so many people simply fooling themselves by becoming emotional? Admissions offices (just like hiriing/personnel offices) have always used "special" factors – child of alumni, a "recommendation " call from the state legislator who controls the budget, a call from a senator or the governor's office (get the picture?), the child of a faculty member, a relative of a "significant" donor....etc. Face it – all kinds of special "other" facors affect a student's admission. So, why shouldn't race? We live in a diverse society. Learning to live with, interact with, learn with, work with ...just enjoy being with a person of another race, ethnicity, culture, background, is simply..... priceless.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:38 pm |
  154. No_way

    If so, then we must end the funding of "black colleges". In Texas we have many state funded black colleges set up when it was seperate but equal. That is over and so should they be!

    March 31, 2010 at 5:38 pm |
  155. Bennet in Texas

    I went to UT undergrad and My wife went to UT law school and it was a running joke on race based admissions for law school. It was given if you were black with 75% of the LSAT of any other race (asian, white, or hispanic) you would get in. And believe me other law students definitely did not appreciate that fact.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:39 pm |
  156. Brian - Illinois

    Like Italian dressing once shaken, the cohesiveness of the "diverse" group quickly separates anyways, regardless of whether a critical mass of minority students has been achieved or not. No one can force students to put appreciate this diversity, which, inevitably, they will not do.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:39 pm |
  157. Aisha K.

    I wonder how my son will be treated if this holds – my son is blonde haired, grey eyed and for the most part, looks white but I, his mother, am black. Will he be rejected because of the color of his skin? Or does his African American background means he gets in?

    Either way, I do not support race based admission. I agree that a diverse college community is great, but to deny a qualified student based on their race is wrong.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:39 pm |
  158. George A

    When an Asian colleague suggested that my kids will get an easy admission into college because they are black, I found it offensive and demeaning. I did not waste time in letting her know that my kids could go up against any kid of any race of their age. And I meant that. Race based admissions are no longer necessary. Parents of minority kids should strive like White/Asian parents to give their children the background they need to compete.
    Houston, TX

    March 31, 2010 at 5:39 pm |
  159. David Bebeau,Springfield Missouri

    NOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Jack,for heavens sake we have moved past that.
    David

    March 31, 2010 at 5:40 pm |
  160. db

    Its funny that the basketball team, and football teams aren't being questioned with their large african american numbers or the amount of money the school makes off these guys some 120 million a year.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:40 pm |
  161. Gigi Oregon

    The America I grew up was the melting pot of the world. It should be first come first served. If we don't we are not serving the needs of the world. Any one can improve their learning skills. Color or grade status should never be an issue.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:40 pm |
  162. J M Spearman

    As a nation of equal opportunity and one that needs its best minds to help guide us in this intense and complex world, Universities should be following admission guidelines that include hard work, intelligence and merit, but not color, sex or nationality of origin. What has happened to encouraging someone to actually work for what they get? If we continue to loosen the requirements for minorities, we continue to take away the incentive to strive for better grades in school.

    I have seen first hand the waste of promising minds that is going on in some schools because children are automatically promoted. These children never HAVE to put out the effort necessary to do well in school and that carries over into their adult lives.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:41 pm |
  163. Thomas J. Cook

    There may well have been a time this was necessary. And although we still have steps to make in the direction of equality, I believe if we take only the overachieving High School students then equality and the smartest students will have been met. Someone posted earlier that this leads to further racism when we block out the smartest for color of skin or race....I would agree that this would lead to further problems. Removing this stigma will move this country, and make those that are border line (and work harder) in the right direction.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:42 pm |
  164. Michael Smith

    Why not. GW Bush got into Yale, and later into Harvard, albeit private univ's, via their so-called 'legacy' admissions process, which are de facto affirmative action programs for the wealthy and the well-connected. These programs are less on meritocracy and more on autocracy.

    March 31, 2010 at 5:42 pm |