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Letter: Affirmative Action runs contrary to our values

Posted on 03 July 2011 by Wm. van Nostrand

Please note that letters are contributed by non-permanent members of the staff, and do not reflect the opinions of Riding the Tiger as a whole.

Dear Sirs,

We read recently in the New York Times, regarding the overturning by the US Federal Appeals Court of a ban on racial and gender preferences in Michigan’s Universities.  We find this not only shocking, but an affront of the very priviliges under the law that our parents came here to America to enjoy – which are, specifically, equal opportunities under the law, and the right to succeed under your own merits.

As you are aware, a 2006 law made illegal the then-current scheme, which awarded points 20 points on a 150-point scale to those of African-American heritage – without consideration for any other factor.  On the same scale, a person who scored perfectly on the SAT, recieved only 12 points.  This, in our opinion was a racist practice, and was rightly denounced by the judges at that time.

With the overturning of the ban on racial preferences, people in certain quarters are overjoyed at this supposedly new equality.  This is nothing but political doublespeak.  After all, it was not too long ago that African-Americans, no matter how intelligent or fastidious, were barred from attending higher education.  As people of East Indian descent, we feel that it is no less immoral for laws to be enacted in reverse, no matter how well-intentioned the legislation may be.

Respectfully yours,
G. Dhananjay and R. Venkataraman

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