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article imageOp-Ed: Supreme Court to rule on affirmative action — again

By Emma Burge     Jul 13, 2012 in Politics
As we deal with the aftermath of the Supreme Court’s ruling on health care, we now have to prepare ourselves for a decision on an equally controversial topic.
In 2003, the Supreme Court decided to allow public universities and colleges to factor in the subject of race during the admissions process. The new affirmative action case, called Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, will be ruled on next term. This case involves a young woman named Abigail Fisher who claims that she was not accepted into the University of Texas at Austin, because the evaluation criteria is not set up to treat each race equally. There is no doubt that this case will stir up many a debate as the issue hits close to home for many Americans.
When first growing up in the state of Florida school system (which is laughable to begin with), I found myself being tested for advanced or gifted classes. After taking these extensive tests I was told that even though I had by far one of the highest scores, that I could not be placed into the program because I was Caucasian. According to the affirmative action laws in Florida, because I was not a minority a Hispanic boy who tested lower than me was given the spot instead. It wasn’t until I had moved to Virginia that I was finally placed in a gifted education program. This, ladies and gentlemen, is one of the reasons affirmative action is detrimental to our society.
Now in theory, affirmative action doesn’t seem so bad. By enacting it we are being “fair” to people of all backgrounds and helping to “diversify” and “right past wrongs” done to certain minorities. The problem is as lovely as that may sound, that is not what happens. With affirmative action comes discrimination to Caucasians. I know, god forbid white people say they feel discriminated against because we have it all. You know what? We don’t have it all. I am a Caucasian female living in a lower-middle class family who is struggling to pay our mortgage. I do not live in a fancy house or go yachting over the weekend. Actually, most of my African American friends are better off than I am. What is so frustrating is that our current generation of Caucasians gets blamed all the time for crimes that our ancestors committed, and quite frankly I’m tired of it. It was not us that shipped in Africans to enslave them and it was not this generation of African Americans that were enslaved. Now whether it is certain African-American groups or Native American groups (by the way my great grandfather was 100% Cherokee) that still hold a grudge against many of us Caucasians for things we did not do, I say we all need to move along and put the past behind us.
Affirmative action does not just discriminate against Caucasians, but it is also discriminatory to those that “benefit” from it as well. By letting those minorities get jobs and be placed in prestigious programs just because of their skin color and not merit, is basically saying “I know you aren’t good enough to get this because of your intelligence or hard work, so here’s this program that will get you in anyway”. People should be able to earn their way into positions through hard work and determination, not because of his or her ethnic background. As someone who has been personally affected by affirmative action and most likely will be in the future, I say that it needs to be stopped right here and right now. Affirmative action helps no one. Let those who excel, excel, and those who fail, fail.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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