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Divided We Stand

Divided We Stand
New book about the 2020 election.

Saturday, October 15, 2022

The Politics of Affirmative Action

 As we note in Divided We Stand, the defeat of California's Proposition 16 was the most underreported political story of 2020.

John Ellis at WSJ:
What nobody realized was that the entire country had become increasingly hostile to the use of race in such decisions. A 2022 Pew Research Center poll found that 74% of Americans oppose the use of race in college admissions. Even more surprising, 68% of Hispanics, 63% of Asians and 59% of blacks also opposed it. The same applied to both political parties, with 87% of Republicans and 62% of Democrats objecting.

But as the public attempted to slam the door shut on racial preferences, the universities were busy trying to open it wide. The stealthy end-runs around the law gave way to support for “equity”: the desire for racial proportionality in all things—never mind that the Supreme Court has held that quotas in college admissions are unlawful. Accordingly, many colleges have begun to abandon the use of test scores in applications.

In line with this hardening of campus attitudes, increasingly powerful diversity, equity and inclusion bureaucracies arose to achieve these aims. Consider The University of California, Berkeley, which now has a Division of Equity and Inclusion, a title that gives it a standing on campus equivalent to its Division of Mathematical and Physical Sciences. The university’s division has an array of highly paid managers. Eight have the title “director,” one of which is for “diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging,” and there are several assistant vice chancellors. Similar offices abound on campuses across the country, where they are major actors in promoting all manner of progressive causes, from social justice to critical race theory and anticapitalism.