I have a short essay called “The Misuse of Asian Americans in the Affirmative Action Depate” just out in the UCLA Law Review Discourse — the online companion to the UCLA Law Review — about the way opponents of affirmative action have attempted to leverage Asian American identity and experience in support of their position. Of course, some Asian Americans do oppose affirmative action, as is to be expected in a large and very heterogeneous community, but the larger point of my essay is that the claim that “Asian Americans” are “harmed” by affirmative action is not supported.
The RightsCast is back! I’m thrilled to present Part One of an episode featuring Osamudia James (Miami Law) discussing her recent NYU Law Review article “White Like Me: The Negative Impact of the Diversity Rationale on White Identity Formation.” The article is a fascinating look at the way that the diversity rationale for affirmative action — as opposed to some other possible rationales — actually inhibits the formation of anti-racist white identity. Part Two of the episode will be available next week.
After a brief hiatus, The RightsCast is back! Listen to Professor Khiara Bridges (Boston University Law) explain why class-based affirmative action is a poor substitute for race-based affirmative action. Particularly interesting is the discussion of why class-based affirmative action suffers from the same supposed infirmities as race-based affirmative action. That is, the arguments people make against race-based affirmative action are equally true of class-based affirmative action.
Please note that the piece was published in Chinese before SCA5 was temporarily removed from the California legislature’s agenda, while the English version on my blog was published after SCA5 was removed. There are some minor phrasing discrepancies as a result, but the substance of the piece is the same.
Affirmative action in higher education remains one of the most contentious issues in America today. The U.S. Supreme Court considered affirmative action last term and will do so again this term. California’s legislature recently considered a bill, SCA5, that would have paved the way for voters to overturn Proposition 209, the state’s existing ban on race-conscious admissions in higher education. Although the California Senate passed the bill, members of the House recently announced that the bill would not move forward in time for voters to consider it in 2015. But the issue remains very much alive in California and will likely be reconsidered for 2016.
The debate over affirmative action raises unique considerations for Asian Americans. While research has shown that a substantial majority of Asian Americans support affirmative action, some vocal opponents of SCA5 have claimed the bill would have dramatic negative consequences for Asian Americans applicants. These claims are unfounded. Speaking both as a law professor who has taught in the UC school system and as a proud Asian American, I believe that Asian Americans should support SCA5 in the California legislature and affirmative action in higher education nationwide. Here are ten reasons: Continue reading