Opponents charge that affirmative action places unskilled minorities in positions they are not qualified for and violates the Fourteenth Amendment. Since its inception, the definition of affirmative action has been ever-changing. Prohibiting discrimination in hiring, expanding the applicant pool to include more minorities, compensating for past grievances, and setting quotas have all been part of the definition. In theory affirmative action helps integrate minorities better into society and puts them on equal footing with whites; however, in reality affirmative action is widening the racial gap in America and therefore should be discontinued. When the Civil Rights Law passed, minorities, especially African-Americans, believed that they should receive retribution for the years of discrimination that they endured.
This case went to the Supreme Court, where it was ruled that Scott could not sue because he was not a citizen (Berman 508). Slavery was abolished by the Thirteenth Amendment in 1865, but blacks, other minorities, and women continued to be deprived of the right of citizenship. The Fourteenth Amendment was passed in 1868, making blacks citizens and promised them the "equal protectio... ... middle of paper ... ... admissions although many people do support it and use it as an advantage. Although affirmative action is used to give people a greater opportunity, it has been seen that it has been used in unjust ways. This is what the government hopes to omit.
Affirmative action is a term used to describe rules and regulations that were established to protect minorities and women from being discriminated against (Simmons 1982). Affirmative action has changed the way people were treated since it was first brought into order in 1961 by president John F. Kennedy through executive order 10925(Alexander 1999). It helped established more opportunities for minorities and women in education, employment and housing (Dietz 2001). Nevertheless, affirmative action has caused much controversy in our society and whether it has benefited America (Altschiller 1991). As a result, there are those who believe minorities have benefited, yet the dominant group has suffered.
New policies and laws were established to help reverse the detriment to ethnic groups through years of injustice and prejudice. But is it right to limit other races to advance another? Are we using racism to stop racism? Although equal rights policies were established through what became known as “affirmative action” and have assisted in the advancement of many minority groups, affirmative action today is wrong and should be revised or stopped altogether. Affirmative action is an instituted list of policies to make up for past discrimination against groups based on race, religion, national origin, and gender.
It has been said to result in both “opportunity” and “frustration” (Monroe, 1991). Affirmative action has had varying effects over its history, and the lessons learned from its successes and failures can be applied to the current society and culture in order to work towards a more peaceful world. Affirmative action was the child of Executive Order 10925. It declared that “WHEREAS discrimination because of race, creed, color, or national origin is contrary to the Constitutional principles and policies of the United States,” (Executive Order 10925, 1961). Those people being affected by these new laws believed in a “fair share of the crumbs from a shrinking economic pie, blacks should concentrate their energy on making the pie big enough to guarantee a slice for everyone (Monroe, 1991).
Two hundred years ago in America, being born of a certain race or gender predetermined one’s opportunities in life. African Americans were subjected to slavery and discrimination and women had very little liberty. In the present, the United States is much closer to equality, yet gender and race still play a role in life’s opportunities given the high frequency of affirmative action programs; they attempt to increase the representation of minorities on college campuses and in the office, regardless of virtue. Programs of affirmative action arouse controversy because some groups view affirmative action as a catalyst for reverse discrimination whilst other groups support affirmative action as a way to diversify society and compensate for past exclusions. Affirmative action describes the “positive steps taken to increase the representation of women and minorities in areas of employment, education, and business from which they have been historically excluded” (Fullinwinder).
Affirmative Action Affirmation Action In Today Society: Myths and Facts As America nears the end of the twentieth century, we still face many lingering problems that stand unresolved. One of the most pressing and difficult problems is that of human relations, or to many, the trigger word race relations. For over 225 years America has been trying to fulfill the promise of the founders of this nation that “All Men Are Created Equal”, yet we still see institutionalized injustices and discrimination. Therefore, this paper attempts to look at one controversial issue that was implemented to correct previous human relation injustices of our nations. This issue is Affirmative Action.
These minority groups are entitled to special considerations, typically viewed as payments made by the government to settle past discrimination. The effects of affirmative action have been well seen in economic and educational systems where educators and employers have long been pressured into giving preference to minorities even if they lesser qualifications, to help write off past discrimination. Affirmative action was established on the basis that because of the past discrimination of races, our nation was unable to flourish into what it should have become- a nation which provided equal opportunity regardless of a person’s race. It is in my opinion that had our country never oppressed colored people to such a great exten... ... middle of paper ... ...nathan. Long Way to Go: Black and White in America.
Affirmative Action as Racial Discrimination The controversy over affirmative action is growing to embody most all selective decisions in American society. From public protection to college admissions, people are becoming resentful of such affirmative action programs. The applicability of these programs in today's American society has been challenged by people ranging from the everyday "Joe", who is finding reverse discrimination in the workplace, to college applicants, who are finding that it takes more than good grades to get admitted, to the Supreme Court, who is finding that some college admissions policies are unconstitutional and promote diversity through unfair means. In California, for example, Gov. Pete Wilson has already pushed an initiative ending affirmative action practices in colleges and universities.
Affirmative action has its affects in collegiate admissions and employment, however, remains more controversial in college admissions. Many groups protest the abolishment of affirmative action for sake of higher minority student admissions into prestigious universities; however, protesters fail to view that minority drop-out Rates are nearly fifty percent higher than whites. In employment many unqualified applicants are hired solely in the fact that they are members of a minority group. The Women’s Movement as well as the Civil Rights movement has been negatively affected by affirmative action, all that Martin Luther King Jr. worked and fought for is being denied by affirmative action. I intend to show that affirmative action and any similar programs must not have any place in today’s society, this program and any like it should remain out use.