Many states right now are repealing their affirmative action laws under the interesting names on ballots such as the “civil rights initiative” in Michigan. People stated that they voted for these initiatives because they wanted to end preferential treatment laws. I agree with ending preferential treatment as much as the next guy but am wondering why there is no initiatives to end white affirmative action.
It is funny that when talking about preferential treatment we constantly look at affirmative action as if it is the quintessential poster child for preferential treatment. If affirmative action resulted in minorities getting so much preference then how is it that white people are disproportionately over represented in all aspects of life? Of course white people are the majority and will be the majority in almost all situations take employment as an example. According to the U.S. census unemployment for blacks is more than double that for whites.
Why are these blacks not in jobs since they have such great preferential treatment? Shouldn’t the majority of blacks be employed since with the preferential treatment they would have first pick of all jobs they applied for? Yet, of course blacks are the most unemployed group in the nation all the while being perceived as the beneficiary of some phantom preference which seems not to work very well. But one preferential treatment that seems to work every time and hasn’t ever been questioned nor had its own initiative on any ballot is white affirmative action.
Of course even approaching white affirmative action will net you an earful of insults as many white people as well as black will slither out of the woodwork to contest that this even exists. If it doesn’t exist then I guess they will be able to explain why whites are so prevalently over represented in most areas of life. I know that they will undoubtedly spew the same old rhetoric of “well blacks don’t have the education to compete”, “blacks don’t want to work” and “blacks just need to go to school.” Yet the people who ARE applying for these jobs ARE qualified, do have educations and experience.
It is funny that a lot of the people backing the repeal of affirmative action such as Ward Connerly who seems to have made it his mission to make sure the laws are repealed in every state. Connerly and others have said that affirmative action hurts minorities because it tells them that “we know you can’t make it so we will enact laws to do it for you.” Now the problem I see is that affirmative action doesn’t tell people they can’t make it, in fact it is the same old discrimination when they are the most qualified and still get passed over that tells them they can’t make it. How about we have a look at that practice?
According to the most recent reports, the states which have repealed affirmative action, have seen some of the lowest numbers of minorities getting a higher education and in professional employment since segregation. If affirmative action holds minorities back why then aren’t they succeeding at break neck speeds now that it has been repealed in those states. How come businesses in those states are becoming increasingly whiter? Is this an accident? Somehow the companies and colleges don’t understand that the repeal of affirmative action was because they (the schools and businesses) were going to bring blacks in without being told they had to? Well obviously they didn’t get that memo.
It seems that people are assuming that we need nothing in the realm of affirmative action at least for minorities anymore because people are NOT being discriminated against. And even if they are, that is not the reason for their lack of education or employment. Somehow the disparity that we have blazing brightly like a house burning out of control doesn’t matter.
Let’s pretend that everything is equal and that these disparities don’t exist because hey they aren’t burning down the house of the dominant culture so it doesn’t matter to America. When the burning house of the minorities who are being left out of the arenas of education and employment ignites the house of white America I guess we will see some change and probably not for the better. The affirmative action that hurts people have not been repealed, changed or looked at, instead they have ensured that it will continue unabated all the while repealing blacks from having any fighting chance in this race biased nation.