Conservative Political Action

The issue of affirmative action or employment equity is a very polarized debate. It is possible to plot the schools of thought on a spectrum. On the far left you have those who believe it should be abolished, on the right you have the opposite side with those who wish to increase it's presence in more aspects of out lives. California Assembly Speaker Willie Brown said, "I think at every stage of any governmental program designed to level the playing field it should be constantly reviewed. "1 A Newsweek poll in February found three-quarters of whites believe that blacks should not get special treatment2.

At the Conservative Political Action Conference on February 10, Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole declared: "Government too often says that the most important thing about you is the color of your skin or the country of your forefathers. That's wrong. "3 Mojab Shahrazad defined inclusivity in a paper that was presented at the Canadian Studies Conference on "The Canadian University in the Twenty-first Century" at St. John's College, in Manitoba as the incorporation of alternative knowledge capable of transforming the status quo4.

For example an inclusive agricultural school would conduct research and train students to engage in sustainable organic farming. Inclusive departments of economics would conduct research on alternative forms of economic organization such as non-profit, cooperative, mixed, socialist or self-sufficient production and distribution systems5. According to the cover story in the February 13, 1995 edition of U. S. News & World Report, "two out of three Americans, including half of those who voted for President Clinton in 1992 oppose affirmative action6.

Even in liberal California, 73% of voters say they will support a repeal of state affirmative action policies when the issue is put before them in a referendum7. A liberal democratic Congressman told U. S. News "I'll be goddamned why the son of a wealthy black businessman should have a slot reserved for him at college because of his race when the son of a white auto-assembly worker is excluded. "8 According to studies summarized in Stephan and Abigail Thernstrom's book, America in Black and White, the average combined SAT score for entering freshmen in the nation's top 25 institutions is about 1300.

White applicants generally need to score a minimum of 600 on the verbal portion of the test, a score obtained by eight percent of the test-takers in 1995. At least 650 on the mathematics section–a score obtained by seven percent of the test-takers in 1995. In contrast, only 1. 7 percent of black students scored over 600 on the verbal section in 1995, and only two percent scored over 650 on the math9. The New Republic Magazine wrote an article called "Affirmative action is bad. Banning it is worse. It found that "two or three times as many African American students as white students drop out before graduation.

"10 Refuting this is William Bowen and Derek Bok, former presidents of Princeton and Harvard, respectively, they undertook a comprehensive review of college admissions at the most selective institutions throughout the country over the course of more than a generation. Both teams of scholars concluded that affirmative action was responsible for the positive transformations of the institutions they examined. They have refuted stereotypes of affirmative action as counterproductive. The beneficiaries themselves have demonstrated, with their accomplishments, that what counts is the content of their character rather than the color of their skin.

They have been able to do so only with an opportunity that would not otherwise be available11. Sharon Brooks Hodge, a black journalist, argues that affirmative action taints its beneficiaries. People who get jobs through affirmative action are thought by their co-workers to be less qualified; she goes on to state that "White skepticism leads to black' defensiveness. Combined they make toxic race relations. "12 Davis believes that affirmative action has fallen from grace because it is impossible to show why it is still needed.  

Allan Kunigis specializes in work force diversity he states that diversity is inclusive. He believes that you must make it clear that everyone can contribute to and gain from diversity; if this is done properly the whole organization can be strengthened14. Lani Guinier's and Derrick Bell's writings on critical race theory is that the legal process, through confusing the means for justice (procedures) with the ends (consequences), has become a principal contributor to the very problems for which it was intended to be the recourse15.

Edward Renner agrees with this by saying "The current debate on affirmative action appears to be based on the same logic. It begins with a political belief in "non-preference" – as a technical procedure, not as an outcome as the higher-order criterion of what is right" affirmative action, we should concentrate on the realities of racial discrimination, and work at abolishing it. "16 Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray announced in The Bell Curve that African Americans are genetically inferior with respect to intelligence, and that intelligence determines socioeconomic status17.

Dinesh D'Souza responded to them in The End of Racism, responding to their claim with his own pronouncement that African Americans are culturally pathological, thus dooming themselves by their own behaviour18. They urge people to practice "rational discrimination," by which it is common sense to assume that African American men are dangerous, criminal, or violent-regard less of the overall consequences of such assumptions. Currently, 86% of available jobs are not advertised, they are filled by word-of-mouth19.

Since white men still own and manage most US businesses, they tend to know and hire other white male applicants. As Lance W. Roberts explains, affirmative action is an "illegitimate means for equality in the workplace because it places emphasis on achieving proportional representation and not merit, " . . . In an attempt to eliminate discrimination based on illegitimate selection, government regulation has made it practically impossible to employ selection criteria based on merit.

This is a clear sacrifice of rationality and realism in a doomed quest for a perfect solution. "20 The hiring and promotion process of affirmative action policies are often carried out by certain "quotas or timetables. " President Lyndon Johnson in 1965 required federal contractors to set "goals and timetables" in hiring minorities and women21. Their implementation can be seen as irrational policy making. Walter Block and Michael A.

Walker explain that, affirmative action is precisely nothing more than a synonym for quotas or timetables22. While Jane Allan expresses that "employment equity requires both goals and timetables both to put the plan in place and to measure its success" the utilization of these timetables should be looked upon as a form of "reverse discrimination. "23 Which groups received how much unwarranted discrimination? As well as "who are the members of groups that have received unwarranted discrimination? "