The Pros And Cons Of Affirmative Action

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Affirmative Action -- Reform is Necessary
The college application process no longer analyzes students based on their GPA and standardized test scores alone. Colleges conduct a holistic review of a student and consider both life experiences and quantifiable qualifications. Within a holistic review, many American schools consider race in application processes; they hope racial affirmative action will prioritize diversity and the influx of diverse ideas on a college campus. However, these race-based policies have been the subject of numerous controversies and court cases, as people question the ethics behind considering physical appearance in an application process. Due to proposed discrimination, affirmative action is under the spotlight -- with …show more content…

Although this will not happen tomorrow, we need to remove race-based affirmative action from the college application process; race-based affirmative action fuels discrimination on college campuses, harms the learning of minority students, and doesn’t reach the primary source of disparity in college admissions -- socioeconomic status.
Racial affirmative action should have no place in admissions because it fuels discrimination on college campuses. A former first lady, Michelle Obama, experienced negative implications of racial affirmative action firsthand. In her book, "Becoming," Obama discusses how she felt the "shadow of affirmative action" throughout her time at Princeton University. Obama claims she could feel scrutiny from her peers and teachers, as if they were thinking, "I know why you're here." Moreover, affirmative action delegitimizes the hard work minority students put in throughout high school, and causes their peers to view them as unworthy counterparts. Whether or not affirmative action truly benefitted an accepted student doesn’t matter. Students and staff will likely treat minority students if they are simply a result of affirmative action -- which is demorilizing to minority students. …show more content…

For example, before UC schools implemented Prop. 209 in 1998 -- which abolished affirmative action policies -- more than 10% of minority students at UC schools were at risk of failing as opposed to only 4% of white students (“Is it Time for Affirmative Action to End”). Affirmative action places minority students in academic climates where they cannot thrive. Students deserve a post-secondary education environment where they can be successful; affirmative action can strip minority students of the success every student deserves at a collegiate educational level. In a similar vein, affirmative action is detrimental to student learning because it fails to incentivize the most fruitful exchange of individual beliefs and ideas. In his dissenting opinion of the Bakke court case regarding the legitimacy of affirmative action, Lewis Powell explained that the affirmative action process is detrimental to all students at an institution; colleges should select students who will contribute to the most “robust exchange of ideas” to fulfill their primary purpose (“Promoting Racial Diversity in College Admissions”). Rather than focusing on diversity, colleges must create an environment where the largest exchange of diverse ideas can occur. Affirmative action directly defies this idea -- and discriminates against students who have the merit to engage in

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