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.
Affirmative action is an attempt by the United States to amend a long history of racial and sexual discrimination. But these days it seems to incite, not ease, the nations internal divisions. Opponents of affirmative action say that the battle for equal rights is over, and that requiring quotas that favor one group over another is un-American. The people that defend it say that the playing field is not level, and that providing advantages for minorities and women is fair considering the discrimination those groups tolerated for years. This paper will discuss the history of affirmative action, how it is implemented in society today, and evaluate the arguments that it presents.
Affirmative action in our education system it an unjust practice that we can do without if we can learn to live in a color-blind society. Affirmative action was first established in 1961 in order to ensure that minorities could secure a job based on their race and nationality. By doing this, the government hoped to make up for past discriminations by giving minorities an equal chance in the world of employment. In later years, the Supreme Court decided to incorporate affirmative action in universities requiring them to pick a set amount of minorities to attend their school. This has caused many problems and harsh feelings of unfairness and thoughts of reverse discrimination ever sense.
Affirmative Action is defined by Webster's New World College Dictionary as " a policy or program for correcting the effects of discrimination in the employment or education of members of certain groups." The phrase "affirmative action" was coined by President John F. Kennedy in 1961 when he issued Executive Order 10925, initiating the President's Committee on Equal Employment Opportunity. In 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson issued Executive Order 11246. This order required federal contractors to take "affirmative action" to increase the number of minorities that they employed. Thus affirmative action was born.
Affirmative action was implemented with the idea and hope that America would finally become truly equal. The tension of the 1960's civil rights movement had made it very clear, that the nations minority and female population was not receiving equal and social economic opportunity. The implementation of affirmative action was America's first honest attempt at solving a problem it had previously chose to ignore. The history of affirmative action has its roots in the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and stems from the United States Supreme case of Brown vs. Board of Education of Topeka Kansas. In 1969, the department of Labor exposed widespread racial discrimination of the Construction Department so President Nixon decided to incorporate a system of "goals and timetables" that provided guidelines for companies to follow and comply with affirmative action regulations.
Affirmative action policies were instituted not only to ensure diversity, but to right the wrong of decades of discrimination and to help minorities by giving them extra opportunities (Messerli). The policies were created after the Civil War when slavery was finally abolished. The term was first mentioned by President Kenne... ... middle of paper ... ...prejudice when it’s truly all in their head and the only ones stopping them are themselves. Racial prejudice is not what’s stopping blacks from thriving, it’s a multitude of things that African Americans bring on themselves. According to Charles Canady, crime, substandard academic performance, and out-of-wedlock births stand in the way of progress.
Affirmative action was a good jump start to get our nation to where it is today. However, affirmative action should not be continued because it is a form of discrimination, it is more harmful than helpful, and it supplements race or gender for one’s qualification. The government thinks that implementing affirmative action will repair inequality, but it cannot. In the midst of tying to promote equality, they are promoting discrimination. Discrimination is the violation of one’s human rights based on gender, sex, race, ethnicity and/or relation.
I say yes, affirmative action was and is needed to help prevent unfairness caused by discrimination in America. I believe the doors of opportunity have just peaked opened for women and minorities and the United States should continue to use affirmative action as an appropriate instrument for achieving racial and gen... ... middle of paper ... ...men and minorities by providing them opportunities for advancement. In conclusion, affirmative action has been criticized as a shallow solution that does not reach deeper economic problems in the United States. However, when understanding its purpose, affirmative action was never designed to solve the economic inequalities in America. Instead, it was intended only to rectify discrimination in hiring and academic admissions.
The institution of affirmative action would not remedy past evils, yet it would at least create opportunity for future generations. However, affirmative action immediately generated negative reactions—and nowhere so fiercely than in college admissions. Why? Admissions are limited to number and are viewed as extremely important—opening the doors to life’s successes. If affirmative actions benefit minorities, then members of the majority will be discriminated against.
Minorities can be accepted into a college on merit, but fellow students will look down on them, thinking they have received preferential treatment. The same thing occurs in the workforce, antagonism builds toward minorities, and race relations worsen. Affirmative action contradicts the Constitution and the American dream. The Constitution says everyone has equal privileges, and the American dream drives us to use those privileges to success.