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Supreme Court punts on affirmative action case

Hatuey

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Supreme Court punts on affirmative action case

Abigail Noel Fisher brought suit against the University of Texas after she was denied admission in 2008. UT automatically admits Texans who graduate in the top 10 percent of their high school classes, but fills its remaining seats by judging applicants on a combination of grade point average, test scores, race, and other factors. Fisher claimed she was discriminated against because she is white when she was denied admission. The college argued that Fisher's grade point average and standardized test scores made her inadmissible regardless of her race, and that using race as one factor in admission helps them maintain a diverse student body.

Fisher v. University of Texas - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

On October 10, 2012, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in the case. Bert Rein represented the petitioner, Gregory Garre represented the respondent university, and Solicitor General Donald Verrilli argued in support of the respondent.


During the beginning of the petitioner’s argument, Justices Sotomayor and Ginsburg asked questions about whether the case was moot. Specifically, they were concerned with the university's arguments that Fisher would not have earned admission regardless of her race, that she had already graduated from college, and that she only named the $100 application fee as real damages. Scalia commented that the harm of racial discrimination alone created an active controversy under the Court’s previous Equal Protection jurisprudence.[SUP][17][/SUP]

Justices Scalia, Alito, and Roberts asked many questions about the definition of a “critical mass,” which Grutter named as the central measure of diversity. Scalia started calling it a “critical cloud” after the university’s lawyer failed, upon multiple requests, to define the central measure of diversity.[SUP][17][/SUP] Chief Justice Roberts asked whether an applicant who was one quarter or one eighth Latino would be permitted by the University to check the “Latino” box.[SUP][17][/SUP] Mr Garre responded that the applicant is entitled to self-identify any race and the University did not ever question that determination.[SUP][17][/SUP]

Legal analysts concurred that the process of oral argument indicated that a majority of the justices disliked the university's position.[SUP][18][/SUP]

Fisher had a grade point average of 3.59 (adjusted to 4.0 scale)[SUP][8][/SUP] and was in the top 12% of her class at Stephen F. Austin High School.[SUP][8][/SUP] She scored 1180 on her SAT (measured on the old 1600 point scale, because UT Austin did not consider the writing section in its undergraduate admissions decision for the 2008 incoming freshman class).[SUP][8][/SUP] The 25th and 75th percentiles of the incoming class at UT-Austin were 1120 and 1370.[SUP][8][/SUP] She was involved in the orchestra and math competitions and volunteered at Habitat for Humanity.[SUP][8][/SUP]

Kid graduates with crappy SAT score, average GPA,fails to get into a program which favors Texans, and then complains about being discriminated against.

View attachment 67149350
 

danarhea

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Deuce

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The decision was surprising. What makes it more surprising is the 7-1 vote to send it back.

Just saw an interesting speculation:

The votes to gut affirmative action are there, but the more senior judges didn't want to overturn it with an 8-court vote when one of the votes to keep affirmative action is recused, as that would undermine the apparent legitimacy of the decision.

Ginsburg's dissent, by the way, is awesome:

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said:
Petitioner urges that Texas’ Top Ten Percent Law and race-blind holistic review of each application achieve significant diversity, so the University must be content with those alternatives. I have said before and reiterate here that only an ostrich could regard the supposedly neutral alternatives as race unconscious.
Abigail Fisher was not a well-chosen plaintiff. She had mediocre grades and SAT score, but no, it must be because she was white. :roll:
 

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The SCOTUS, to its credit, didn't think that enough was heard to justify a decision either way .. so they sent it back down for a re-hearing.

Regardless, in America, appeal to race for any reason is simply wrong.

Hiring, admitting, politicking, etc. because of preference or aversion to a race(s) is simply wrong and should not be employed in any sense or for any reason.

I look forward to the end of both biased glass ceilings and compensatory mandates.

Hopefully the re-hearing and return to the SCOTUS will lead to that end.
 

Deuce

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The SCOTUS, to its credit, didn't think that enough was heard to justify a decision either way .. so they sent it back down for a re-hearing.

Regardless, in America, appeal to race for any reason is simply wrong.

Hiring, admitting, politicking, etc. because of preference or aversion to a race(s) is simply wrong and should not be employed in any sense or for any reason.

I look forward to the end of both biased glass ceilings and compensatory mandates.

But if you remove the "compensatory mandates" while the glass ceiling is still in place, you're just back to unopposed discrimination.
 
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The SCOTUS, to its credit, didn't think that enough was heard to justify a decision either way .. so they sent it back down for a re-hearing.

Regardless, in America, appeal to race for any reason is simply wrong.

Hiring, admitting, politicking, etc. because of preference or aversion to a race(s) is simply wrong and should not be employed in any sense or for any reason.

I look forward to the end of both biased glass ceilings and compensatory mandates.

Yes it is wrong.

The reason is to battle the long term effects of institutional racism that were built into our laws and culture after hundreds if years of slavery then Jim Crow.
 

Napoleon

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Abigail Fisher was not a well-chosen plaintiff. She had mediocre grades and SAT score, but no, it must be because she was white. :roll:

At issue here is whether or not minorities with equal or lesser grades and scores were admitted because of their race while Mrs. Fisher was removed from consideration for applying while white. The only good to come out of this decision is that a University's say-so is no longer good enough to establish an intent to create diversity through these policies. As if that justifies racism.
 
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At issue here is whether or not minorities with equal or lesser grades and scores were admitted because of their race while Mrs. Fisher was removed from consideration for applying while white. The only good to come out of this decision is that a University's say-so is no longer good enough to establish an intent to create diversity through these policies. As if that justifies racism.

White people dont get special admission to UT anymore. Used to be only whites got into UT. They are making up for decades of racism.

Her grades and scores were not great. No good extra curriculars either.
 

Fisher

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The decision was surprising. What makes it more surprising is the 7-1 vote to send it back. I was certain that this case was going to be decided.

Yeah, doesn't surprise me at all. They are not going to strike down affirmative action on a bad judgment call by a school and the girl was apparently solid enough of a student as to where she should have been admitted. Arguing that a 3.6 GPA is bad is pretty weak position taken by the school. the top 10% things is a little weird--if you go to a really bad school, you could get automatically admitted with a 2.5 GPA but if you went to a really good school, you could not get the same slot with a 3.7
 

Hatuey

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The decision was surprising. What makes it more surprising is the 7-1 vote to send it back. I was certain that this case was going to be decided.

I think they sent it back because both sides failed to make a case of any sort. UT based itself on diversity, when they should have argued that she failed to get into programs that would have automatically admitted her AND those which wouldn't.
 

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But if you remove the "compensatory mandates" while the glass ceiling is still in place, you're just back to unopposed discrimination.
Which is why we do everyone in our country a disservice by electing people who wish to sustain either.

If we attack hard the glass ceilings in the court of public opinion we will eliminate the need for compensatory mandates.

But if we don't address the glass ceilings in the court of public opinion, we perpetuate the dualism via compensatory mandates.

I don't know what the solution is, short or long term, but I know it doesn't involve electing the same ol' liberals one term and conservatives the next, back and forth, back and forth.

The great majority of Americans decry the dualism that perpetuates racism.

A centrist approach of effective denouncing of glass ceilings coupled with a corresponding phase out of compensatory mandates will help to end racism.

But as long as liberals are appealing to race in their politicking, and conservatives are appealing to race in their corporate managings, we have little hope of ending racism as long as these two polarized dualistic extremes retain pendulum-swing power.
 
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Yeah, doesn't surprise me at all. They are not going to strike down affirmative action on a bad judgment call by a school and the girl was apparently solid enough of a student as to where she should have been admitted. Arguing that a 3.6 GPA is bad is pretty weak position taken by the school. the top 10% things is a little weird--if you go to a really bad school, you could get automatically admitted with a 2.5 GPA but if you went to a really good school, you could not get the same slot with a 3.7

The top 10 percent thing is state law and benefits white rural students.

UT is TX most sought after school. It is hard to get in. 3.6 is ok not great. Her SAT was mediocre.
 
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As I'm looking to get a post-graduate degree, I'm genuinely curious if my "white" appearance would be taken into account upon meeting in person, and how that would affect my application, if I actually checked a "minority" box on the application. This article claims that I would be "entitled to self-identify any race and the University [would] not ever question that determination". But do we really think that's true? If that is the case, then what is the point of even considering race, and what is preventing everyone from self-identifying as a minority in order to get the URM bump?
 
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As I'm looking to get a post-graduate degree, I'm genuinely curious if my "white" appearance would be taken into account upon meeting in person, and how that would affect my application, if I actually checked a "minority" box on the application. This article claims that I would be "entitled to self-identify any race and the University [would] not ever question that determination". But do we really think that's true? If that is the case, then what is the point of even considering race, and what is preventing everyone from self-identifying as a minority in order to get the URM bump?

You can check any box and will have no problem.
 
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Isn't that essentially lying on an application?

Well, that's the whole problem, isn't it? If I'm allowed to select the box where I self-identify, then in order to prove that I'm lying, they would need to prove that I am claiming that I self-identify as something that I really don't. And how would anyone ever prove that?

I suppose they could look at my tax forms or something, but then again, so far as I know, there isn't any rule or law against changing how you self-identify, so even that wouldn't be conclusive proof.
 
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Only if you are indeed lying. They must prove it. A white person shouldn't claim to be black but latino is easy.

Actually, a white person could easily self-identify as black without problem. Someone who is 1/16 or even 1/4 black could "look" very white.

Then again, who determines what "white" looks like?
 

Hatuey

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Well, that's the whole problem, isn't it? If I'm allowed to select the box where I self-identify, then in order to prove that I'm lying, they would need to prove that I am claiming that I self-identify as something that I really don't. And how would anyone ever prove that?

I suppose they could look at my tax forms or something, but then again, so far as I know, there isn't any rule or law against changing how you self-identify, so even that wouldn't be conclusive proof.

I don't think that's what they mean as self-indentifying. I think the question has more to do with at what point can you continue to identify with a certain lineage? That's why they asked about the 1/4th or 1/8th thing.
 
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I don't think that's what they mean as self-indentifying. I think the question has more to do with at what point can you continue to identify with a certain lineage? That's why they asked about the 1/4th or 1/8th thing.

I can buy that, but even so, they don't ask for documentation at any stage. And even if they did, at what point is it not enough? Does the one drop rule apply? I'm 1/16 Persian, can I claim minority status? That's not a rhetorical question, btw.
 
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Actually, a white person could easily self-identify as black without problem. Someone who is 1/16 or even 1/4 black could "look" very white.

Then again, who determines what "white" looks like?

We do ourselves. That is why we check the box rather than an official doing it.
 

ttwtt78640

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Too much "trickery" is being used to help ensure that the "correct" proportion of non-whites (mostly latinos) get into the University of Teaxs (UT). After getting slammed for using direct racial/ethnic quotas in 1996, UT invented the (extremely clever) "automatic" acceptance of the top 10% of graduates from each Texas HS, regrdless of their citzenship, GPA or SAT scores. That boosted latino acceptance rate from 14% to 24% by magically eliminating 75% of all UT freshmen admissions from any competition outside of their own HS peers. "Diversity" was achieved by simply making where you live count way more than what your scholastic aptitude for UT admission. This has since been reduced to the top 8% and will likely go down to 7% soon. The idea of exempting 75% of all UT freshmen admissions from academic competition (outside of their HS peers) and then using self-declaring racial/ethnic minority status as a "boost" factor for the remaining 25% of "fair" academic admissions surely makes it more difficult for those that are not getting that "boost" to get into UT.
 
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Too much "trickery" is being used to help ensure that the "correct" proportion of non-whites (mostly latinos) get into the University of Teaxs (UT). After getting slammed for using direct racial/ethnic quotas in 1996, UT invented the (extremely clever) "automatic" acceptance of the top 10% of graduates from each Texas HS, regrdless of their citzenship, GPA or SAT scores. That boosted latino acceptance rate from 14% to 24% by magically eliminating 75% of all UT freshmen admissions from any competition outside of their own HS peers. "Diversity" was achieved by simply making where you live count way more than what your scholastic aptitude for UT admission. This has since been reduced to the top 8% and will likely go down to 7% soon. The idea of exempting 75% of all UT freshmen admissions from academic competition (outside of their HS peers) and then using self-declaring racial/ethnic minority status as a "boost" factor for the remaining 25% of "fair" academic admissions surely makes it more difficult for those that are not getting that "boost" to get into UT.

Please rural whites get into UT with less than stellar scores all the time because of the 10 percent rule.
 

Hatuey

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I can buy that, but even so, they don't ask for documentation at any stage. And even if they did, at what point is it not enough? Does the one drop rule apply? I'm 1/16 Persian, can I claim minority status? That's not a rhetorical question, btw.

I don't think it applies further than 1/4th for most people. Only natives get to claim the 1/16th thing. However, this is all moot. This Fisher person had an average GPA, with an average SAT, and tried to get into an university that only accepts 50% of the people who apply. She failed to get into a program which would have automatically admitted her and then she blamed the darkies for it. It's just another case of a white person being unable to compete in the 21st century and chalking it up to 'reverse racism'.
 

ttwtt78640

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The top 10 percent thing is state law and benefits white rural students.

UT is TX most sought after school. It is hard to get in. 3.6 is ok not great. Her SAT was mediocre.

That may be true but, under the 10% scheme, latino admissions to the University of Texas went from 14% to 24% (a nearly 60% increase) of the total - that was the goal of "diversity", not to allow the some of the rural minority to jump the urban/suburban majority in gaining UT admission.
 
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