Race discussion may crowd out scandals in wake of Supreme Court affirmative action decision

Thomas Lifson
Get set for a Supreme Court decision that could alter or even end affirmative action. Or not. Predicting SCOTUS decisions is hazardous, but Fisher v University of Texas could plunge the nation into heated discussion of the role of racial preferences in education and beyond.

Oddly enough, a decision that would please conservatives, an outright rejection, would also serve the interest of President Obama, firing up his base and diverting attention from his mushrooming scandals and the corruption of federal bureaucracies.

It looks as though the Court is saving Fisher for last, as it often does with potentially controversial decisions. The justices can adjourn and get out of town.  Liz Goodwin of Yahoo News covers the intense speculation over why it is taking so long:

Lyle Denniston, who has covered the Supreme Court for more than 50 years and now works for the legal website SCOTUSblog, said he couldn't remember another case that had been argued in the fall yet still undecided by mid-June. (snip)

"It's really surprising that it's taken this long for the court to issue an opinion," said Adam Winkler, a constitutional law professor at UCLA School of Law. "It's almost unheard of for the court to take the entire term to decide what really is a straightforward case."

Experts argue for every possible outcome being the reason it is taking so long. It's a good read, but in the end, my vote is that they just want to head for the hills asap after rendering a decision that will anger somebody, no matter how it turns out.

But in the meantime, pundits on both sides are gearing up and laying out grounds for making commentary. An interesting take comes from Mark Baeurlein, a professor of English at Emory University, in a challenge to white male diversity supporters to resign, so as to open up opportunities for persons of diversity (PODs) to bring their bounteous blessings to the seats of power now held by older white men:

...the Board of Directors of the American Council on Education issued a firm statement entitled "On the Importance of Diversity in Higher Education" that justifies affirmative action on the grounds that it "enriches the educational experience" and "challenges stereotyped preconceptions" before concluding, "the diversity we seek and the future of the nation do require that colleges and universities continue to be able to reach out and make a conscious effort to build healthy and diverse learning environments that are appropriate for their missions." (snip)

 History has shown that reasoned arguments against affirmative action make no difference to people who support it.  They are committed to it for reasons that often go beyond empirical and logical grounds, including liberal guilt and white guilt, and guilt that searches for expiation through policy is never going to be satisfied.

The overheated condition of race matters in the U.S. calls for a different approach.  When white male President Mills pledges to press for race-based affirmative action, the right reply is this: "Well, then, sir, you must resign your post immediately and call for Bowdoin to hire a racial or ethnic minority in your place."  Keep it simple and direct.  Every white male board member of the ACE should receive a message to step down. Let's ask white male campus leaders to stand up for their own principles and do the thing they want everybody else to do.  When white women acquire a disproportionate number of jobs in campus leadership, yet still call for more diversity, they, too, should be asked to withdraw.

This is the logic of affirmative action, and if diversity proponents who are white follow it to its conclusion, they should relinquish their positions as soon as possible.

If a decision in Fisher regarded as unfavorable by the left emerges, this argument lays the groundwork for calling out tenured and administrative critics in the educational establishment. Their actions always disadvantage people remote from them.  Saul Alinsky's Rule number 4 knows no ideology:

"Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules."


Get set for a Supreme Court decision that could alter or even end affirmative action. Or not. Predicting SCOTUS decisions is hazardous, but Fisher v University of Texas could plunge the nation into heated discussion of the role of racial preferences in education and beyond.

Oddly enough, a decision that would please conservatives, an outright rejection, would also serve the interest of President Obama, firing up his base and diverting attention from his mushrooming scandals and the corruption of federal bureaucracies.

It looks as though the Court is saving Fisher for last, as it often does with potentially controversial decisions. The justices can adjourn and get out of town.  Liz Goodwin of Yahoo News covers the intense speculation over why it is taking so long:

Lyle Denniston, who has covered the Supreme Court for more than 50 years and now works for the legal website SCOTUSblog, said he couldn't remember another case that had been argued in the fall yet still undecided by mid-June. (snip)

"It's really surprising that it's taken this long for the court to issue an opinion," said Adam Winkler, a constitutional law professor at UCLA School of Law. "It's almost unheard of for the court to take the entire term to decide what really is a straightforward case."

Experts argue for every possible outcome being the reason it is taking so long. It's a good read, but in the end, my vote is that they just want to head for the hills asap after rendering a decision that will anger somebody, no matter how it turns out.

But in the meantime, pundits on both sides are gearing up and laying out grounds for making commentary. An interesting take comes from Mark Baeurlein, a professor of English at Emory University, in a challenge to white male diversity supporters to resign, so as to open up opportunities for persons of diversity (PODs) to bring their bounteous blessings to the seats of power now held by older white men:

...the Board of Directors of the American Council on Education issued a firm statement entitled "On the Importance of Diversity in Higher Education" that justifies affirmative action on the grounds that it "enriches the educational experience" and "challenges stereotyped preconceptions" before concluding, "the diversity we seek and the future of the nation do require that colleges and universities continue to be able to reach out and make a conscious effort to build healthy and diverse learning environments that are appropriate for their missions." (snip)

 History has shown that reasoned arguments against affirmative action make no difference to people who support it.  They are committed to it for reasons that often go beyond empirical and logical grounds, including liberal guilt and white guilt, and guilt that searches for expiation through policy is never going to be satisfied.

The overheated condition of race matters in the U.S. calls for a different approach.  When white male President Mills pledges to press for race-based affirmative action, the right reply is this: "Well, then, sir, you must resign your post immediately and call for Bowdoin to hire a racial or ethnic minority in your place."  Keep it simple and direct.  Every white male board member of the ACE should receive a message to step down. Let's ask white male campus leaders to stand up for their own principles and do the thing they want everybody else to do.  When white women acquire a disproportionate number of jobs in campus leadership, yet still call for more diversity, they, too, should be asked to withdraw.

This is the logic of affirmative action, and if diversity proponents who are white follow it to its conclusion, they should relinquish their positions as soon as possible.

If a decision in Fisher regarded as unfavorable by the left emerges, this argument lays the groundwork for calling out tenured and administrative critics in the educational establishment. Their actions always disadvantage people remote from them.  Saul Alinsky's Rule number 4 knows no ideology:

"Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules."