I wanted to provide my thoughts on the Supreme Court weighing in on the Fisher versus University of Texas affirmative action case, whereby Abigail Fisher is challenging the university on using race as a criteria in evaluating a candidate’s entry. She was denied.
I know my lawyer friends are going to be all over this. If I mis-state the facts please feel free to comment.
Diversity is extremely important in school and in the work place as we are all citizens of a multiethnic, multicultural community. Ideally where you go to school or where you work would naturally reflect the same exact diversity that you are a part of locally.
Taking a step back, it was not easy seeing some unqualified Latinos from my high school class get into Berkeley. When you think Berkeley, you think prestigious. You think, cut-throat. But with two Latino classmates in particular, they were unremarkable. So unremarkable that those who didn’t get in, would scream, ‘That’s so unfair!’ I get that. I have been there. I can sincerely imagine the unfairness Miss Fisher must feel, having been a talented, accomplished student, and not gotten into her top choice college. Or worse, watching less qualified classmates of color get in.
From a different perspective, there were a few times during my college career when white people have bluntly told me that I must have gotten in as a result of affirmative action. Ouch, that hurt. My retort was always, “Asians aren’t on the affirmative action list, you retard.” But you know what, their jabs made me study harder because I wanted to prove that I deserved to be there. And I used to tell myself, “I am so going to make more money than that asshole/bitch. Just watch.”
Here’s the deal. It didn’t matter how you got in, whether it was through affirmative action or your own merit. You know what mattered? Whether or not you graduated. Those who got in through affirmative action and couldn’t stand the pressure, yeah, they failed. Bye-bye. There were also valedictorians who, once they got to Cal, had meltdowns when they realized they weren’t so smart anymore. They also dropped out. So my message to Miss Fisher is to move forward. I see why she’s bringing up this case, that she feels wronged, but girlfriend, you are so going to be more successful than all those UT chaps. The world is your oyster and you’re going to come out ahead.
There’s no doubt that affirmative action needs to be reformed, but I believe using race as a factor is an important tool that should not be taken away. Cmon, do you really want to go to a school that’s practically all Asian? That’s what Berkeley is. It’s 43% Asian. That percentage has drastically increased from the time I went to Cal. I don’t want to go to school with that kind of makeup. Why? So I can participate in a class where everyone wears glasses, plays ping pong, and your parents do your laundry? SHOOT ME. I swear that a diverse school is beneficial for everyone involved.
When is enough enough? It’s not hard. Look at the composition of the local community. When those percentages are reflected in the composition of a school or work place, then we will no longer need affirmative action.