Affirmative Action is past its Prime
It’s been nearly a quarter of a century since Executive Order 11246 was signed, putting affirmative action into effect. And most would agree, that the program’s time is running out. Signed by President Johnson in 1965, Affirmative Action demands that minorities have an equal opportunity and advantages in the hiring process. Given that the program was created to combat years of minority discrimination and repression during the onset of the United States, many of these attitudes have changed with the times. Affirmative Action can no longer be justified because more often than not, America is thought of as a “color blind society.” In addition, Affirmative Action violates the 14th Amendment in the Constitution, and the Civil Rights Act of 1964 by basing admissions and/or employment opportunities decisions on a person’s race. By allowing Affirmative Action to continue essentially allows reverse discrimination to continue. In a poll done by USA Today, nearly 49% of people living in the United States oppose Affirmative Action. Affirmative Action is no longer needed in a modern society and should be eliminated from governmental policies.
In essence, Affirmative action gives preferential treatment to minorities in admission to universities or employment opportunities. Originally, affirmative action was implemented to reverse centuries of wrongdoings to minorities and to give them a “boost” in society. In a famous speech delivered by President Johnson, he argued that civil rights laws were not enough, “...not just equality as a right and theory, but equality as a fact and as a result.” Comparatively, the faces of the American society have changed, further indicating that Affirmative Action programs have been successful. Due to the diverse nature and rich culture of a more modern society, affirmative action policies are no longer needed.
There have been many landmark Supreme Court Cases that have provided further limitations and reasoning on the status of affirmative action. In 1978, perhaps the most famous court case, Regents of the University of California v. Bakke defined the true restrictions on affirmative action for years to come. Allan Bakke, a white applicant was rejected twice from the UC school system, despite the fact that minority applicants were admitted with lower scores. The Supreme Court ruled that although race is a major factor in school admissions, the usage of quotas as the medical school had done was not. Although the Supreme Court was split in it’s decision, Justice Powell broke the decision: “Imposed limitations on affirmative action to ensure that providing greater opportunities for minorities did not come at the expense of the rights of the majority.”
Since 1978, there have been two other major court cases dealing with affirmative action. Despite the verdicts, they are often paired together. After being denied admission to the University of Michigan, Jennifer Gratz sued the school...