Affirmative Action and Racial Preference: A Debate by Carl Cohen

By Carl Cohen

Racial personal tastes are one of the such a lot contentious concerns in our society, pertaining to primary questions of equity and the right kind position of racial different types in govt motion. Now modern philosophers, in a full of life debate, lay out the arguments on both sides.
Carl Cohen, a key determine within the collage of Michigan excellent lawsuits, argues that racial personal tastes are morally wrong--forbidden through the 14th modification to the structure, and explicitly banned by means of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. He additionally contends that such personal tastes damage society commonly, harm the schools that use them, and undermine the minorities they have been meant to serve. James P. Sterba counters that, faraway from being banned by way of the structure and the civil rights acts, affirmative motion is really mandated via legislations within the pursuit of a society that's racially and sexually simply. an identical Congress that followed the 14th modification, he notes, handed race-specific legislation that prolonged reduction to blacks. certainly, there are numerous forms of affirmative action--compensation for previous discrimination, remedial measures aimed toward present discrimination, the warrantly of diversity--and Sterba experiences the best proceedings that construct a constitutional origin for every. Affirmative motion, he argues, favors certified minority applicants, now not unqualified ones. either authors supply concluding touch upon the collage of Michigan circumstances made up our minds in 2003.
part a century after Brown v. Board of Education, concerns touching on racial discrimination proceed to grip American society. perfect for classes in political, social, moral, and criminal philosophy, this penetrating debate explores the philosophical and criminal arguments on each side of affirmative motion, but additionally finds the passions that force the problem to the leading edge of public life.

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Additional resources for Affirmative Action and Racial Preference: A Debate (Point/Counterpoint)

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These are the persons who pay the price of the preferences. They do not pay it just a tiny bit. There is no dilution of the burden for them; they lose 100 percent of what would otherwise have been theirs, because they are not to be admitted. They are rejected—although, by hypothesis, they would have been admitted had there been no racial considerations introduced. It is an inescapable fact that, with 24The University of Michigan law school uses race in its admissions very heavily, and has become respondent in a federal case—Grutter v.

What is today loosely called “affirmative action” sticks in our craw because it fails to respect that plain lesson. It uses categories that must not be used to distinguish among persons with respect to their entitlements in the community. Blacks and whites are equals, as blondes and brunettes are equals, as Catholics and Jews are equals, as Americans of every ancestry are equal. No matter who the beneficiaries may be or who the victims, preference on the basis of race is morally wrong. It was wrong in the distant past and in the recent past; it is wrong now; and it will always be wrong.

Of Destiny (New York: Macmillan, 1927), p. 50. 26 Why Race Preference Is Wrong and Bad (2) Race Preference Is not Justified as Compensation What about people who have been hurt because of their race, damaged or deprived because they were black or brown? Do they not deserve some redress? Of course they do. But it is the injury for which compensation is given in such cases, not the skin color. But (some will respond) it is precisely the injuries so long done to minorities that justify special consideration for minorities now.

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