Black privilege in college admissions

A two-year investigation by the Justice Department found that Asian and White applicants have only one-tenth to one-fourth the chance of being admitted to Yale University as Black applicants with comparable academic credentials (“Yale Accused by Justice Department of Discriminating Against Asian American and White Applicants,” Time, Aug. 14). Although Yale denies claims of discrimination, the evidence to the contrary is clear.

As a private institution, Yale can admit whomever it wants.  But it can’t have it both ways.  Since it accepts millions of taxpayer dollars each year, Yale has to comply with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act.  Although the Supreme Court has ruled that universities can consider race as one factor in admissions, what Yale has done goes way beyond that.

The Supreme Court needs to finally clarify the issue.  Reverse discrimination is as unacceptable as traditional discrimination.

(To post a comment, click on the title of this blog.)

2 Replies to “Black privilege in college admissions”

  1. Agree that colleges should not be allowed to discriminate on the basis of race.

    Also agree that Yale is giving extra admission points to black applicants just because they are black.

    However, at least some of that better-chance-of-being-admitted statistic is no doubt due to factors that correlate with being black but are not themselves race-based. For example, Yale probably gives admission preference to star athletes (the Ivies do not give athletic scholarships but do give athletic admission preference) and blacks are probably over-represented among star athletes. Yale might also give admission preference to applicants from low-income families and blacks will be over-represented among low-income families. Yale might also give an admission preference to applicants from geographical areas that are under-represented at Yale relative to their percentage of the US population; inner-cities and the rural South are probably under-represented at Yale relative to their percentage of the US population and these areas are disproportionately black.

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  2. Labor Lawyer: You make a good point. But the Justice Department found that blacks were given preference over Asian and White applicants with comparable credentials. By the latter, I assume that means academic credentials, which are supposed to be the reason that universities exist in the first place. I acknowledge academics have not been the No. 1 factor in admissions, but I think reinforcing the non-academic entry is wrong.

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