Friday, April 25, 2014

Affirmative Action — When Helping Ends Up Hurting

Abraham Miller thinks that federally-mandated affirmative action policies almost inevitably lead to despair and radicalized students. It’s a notorious fact that college professors have not only lowered grading standards, some have even rewritten (i.e., done “heavy editing” of) minority pupils’ dissertations to match those lowered standards:

Ask yourself this: if you could imagine yourself black for one minute and lived through this process, would it not radicalize you? Would you not seek to embrace a different cultural reality, one that did not define you as incompetent? — Abraham H. Miller, “Affirmative Action and Radical Politics”, PJ Media, March 22, 2012.

When such things occur, is it “a misguided act of sympathy”? Miller doesn’t think so:

At some level, I wish that as deplorable as the act is, it was out of compassion. My own observations revealed anything but compassion.

Universities operate under quotas masquerading as goals and government audits of racial outcomes known as cultural audits. Consequently, university administrators have numbers to produce because the government wants to see numbers. The reality is that the faculty that push black students through aren’t compassionate at all. They’re part of a bureaucracy that needs a certain statistical outcome. The black student is a means to an end. That end is a check in a box.

The professor who devised heavy editing was not concerned about the students he pushed through. He was concerned about the administrative tallies. He wanted to be able to say to the administration, look what we’ve done for our black graduate students. Look how many of them have received doctorates.

Perhaps if he hadn’t been so quick to push them through, to write what they should have been writing, they would have written their own dissertations. After all, social science is not rocket science. Writing a dissertation in the social sciences is more about perspiration than inspiration.

The real racists are not the professors who quit such committees or voice objections to them, but those who create a normative structure that begins with the assumption that black students can’t do their own work. — Ibid.

Is this America's first affirmative action president?

So here’s yet another instance of Liberal-Progressive “good intentions” — which are used to justify greater governmental involvement in things not properly its concern — leading to bad results.

Read Miller’s entire article here.

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