Reverse discrimination is defined as “discrimination in hiring, college admissions, etc. directed against members of certain social or racial groups, as white males, thought of as being dominant or having benefited from past discrimination against minority groups who are now favored, often as a result of affirmative action” (yourdictionary. com) Affirmative action was created as a remedy for racial discrimination. Its intent was to help people who were victims of discrimination (i. e. : family heritage that were succumbed to slavery) without creating hardships on new victims (whites).
In this plan for affirmative action, there were several packages used to create this idea of affirmative action. The first package is called the remedial action package. This package stated that a change needed to be made to overcome the effects of racial discrimination. Another package that was created was the no preferential treatment which called for an emphasis on equal opportunity. Under the no preferential treatment package, there were sub-packages that included, reverse discrimination, the undeserving advantage, and the black hurt.
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The undeserving advantage argued that affirmative action gives minorities opportunities that they did not earn. The black hurt argued that recipients of affirmative action are stigmatized. Then you have reverse discrimination which argued that affirmative action violates the rights of whites. The basic agenda of affirmative action is equal opportunity. However, the majority believe that affirmative action causes reverse discrimination. Affirmative action can be used as an inspiring device for the American spirit in every race.
Adrienne Williams a community college student in Portland filed a reverse discrimination complaint with the U. S. Department of Education’s office of civil rights. Williams’ complaint starts out like many typical college student, she was looking for ways to get financial help for going to school. While looking into different grants she came across one called the Portland Teachers Program, which offers tuition to minorities who apply and qualify. Students start at the two-year school and then go on to earn a bachelor’s degree and a graduate teaching certificate at Portland State University.
They pay no tuition, but they are committed to working at least two years in Portland schools. The idea of having a diverse teaching force in theory is a wonderful idea, but why should it come at the expense of a hard working qualified student. Williams goes on to say that she understands the reason for the Portland Teachers Program, but that something like this should be equal for all students in this field. One of the most controversial issues in the affirmative action debate is its perceived negative impact on large numbers of whites, especially white males.
Polls show that about half of the white race believes that they are being discriminated against. A poll commissioned by the Seattle Times states that 75% of white males believe that unqualified minorities get hired over qualified white. Two-thirds of those white males say the same about college admission (Seattle Times, 1999; Steeh & Krysan, 1996). The issue here is the impact affirmative action has on reverse discrimination. Reverse discrimination is a negative affect of affirmative action. Affirmative action can be a positive guideline to create equal opportunity in education and in the workplace.
Though, in some cases it has taken away what it was originally in place for, equal opportunity. When a qualified white male is passed over for a job by an un- qualified minority, this creates a double standard. Affirmative action was put in place to prevent discrimination, but in cases like this, it is just reversing it. The hiring process has changed a great deal over the years. Businesses are now being forced to fill quotas with minority hiring. Whether these minorities are qualified or not, these quotas are being filled.
In fact businesses are being compensated for filling these positions with minorities, and in some cases women. Businesses that are being funded by government agencies have more of a criterion to meet which leads to compromising the hiring of qualified applicants. The NFL has been scrutinized for not having enough minorities coaching in their league, especially African Americans. The league put in place a rule to help this problem the rule is called the “Rooney Rule. ” The rule calls for each team that had vacant coaching positions is required to interview one minority for the job.
If the team failed to do so, there would be a monetary penalty. However, no team is required to hire a minority as their coach. The requirement is that they must give the opportunity with an interview. This is a great solution to the reverse discrimination problems that are happening. Instead of forcing minority hiring or rewarding it, businesses are forced to give an opportunity, an equal opportunity to all races. If a minority is hired for the job, it’s because he/she was the most qualified for that job. This is a solution that could work not just in professional ports, but in other work places as well. If we were interviewed based on merit not on quotas wouldn’t we strive harder as citizens to improve ourselves individually and in turn a greater more productive impact on our economy. In the field of education, especially admissions, students who work hard throughout high school do not realize that the most important thing on their college application may not be their grades but their race. Universities have a race ratio which must be met in order to receive government funding.
Unfortunately, this means that students, some of which are majorities, who qualify for admission into these universities are denied because of numerical quotas. An example of reverse discrimination as it affects the education system is the Allan Bakke case. In 1973, a thirty-three year-old Caucasian male named Allan Bakke applied to and was denied admission to the University of California Medical School at Davis. In 1974, he filed another application and was once again rejected, even though his test scores were considerably higher than various minorities that were admitted under a special program.
This special program specified that 16 out of 100 possible spaces for the students in the medical program were set aside solely for minorities, while the other 84 slots were for anyone who qualified, including minorities (University Press of Kansas). Bakke believed that his rejections from the university were in violations of the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th amendment, so he took the University of California Regents to the Superior Court of California. The court ruled that the admissions program violated his rights under the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment.
This clause states… “No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor without due process of the law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws (Legal Information Institute). ” Basically, the clause grants all people “equal protection of the laws,” which means that the states must apply the law equally and cannot give preference to one person or class of persons over another. The court ruled that race could not be a factor in admissions.
However, they did not force the admittance of Bakke because the court did not know if he would have been admitted if the special admissions program for minorities did not exist. Bakke disagreed with the court on this issue and he brought it before the California Supreme Court. The California Supreme Court held that it was the university’s responsibility to prove that Bakke would not have been admitted if the special program did not exist. The school could not prove this, and Bakke was admitted by court order. I agree with the Supreme Courts decision, Bakke rights were violated.
However, if they were, than any quota based on race is unconstitutional also. If there is an actual number for a quota to be filled at an education institution, then someone’s opportunities are being hindered because they are white. This is reverse discrimination, and it should not be practiced. Race should not be considered at all in any admissions program that is federally funded. We are trying to right past wrongs on minorities by doing wrong to the majority today, this is not right. It will start a cycle that will, in the worst case, be never ending.
For example, if yesterday an African-American could not get into a college because of discrimination, then today we’ll let him in because we want to try to right the wrong of yesterday. But in doing so, we must not admit a white because he is white. And then tomorrow do we have to keep out a black to let the white in? It is an endless cycle that is wrong and unconstitutional. Race should be overlooked all together, and only academic achievements and community involvement should be considered in any federally funded institution. This story is relevant to the continuing problems our country is having with choice education.
For example, the Pinellas County, Fl. board of education has been force to review their student assignment method. The school district had a system in place that required them to meet a certain ratio of majorities to minorities in order to receive state school funding. This is a forced choice program instilled by the state. Living in Pinellas County school district does not mean your child will be going to that a neighboring school, but in fact they could be forced to go to a school outside their zoning area. Even though there are seats available in that school.
The ratio quota that has to be met designates those seats to minorities. Why is the amount of funding a school gets have to be based on their majority to minority ratio? Schools that need funds deserve it. To tell a child they have to take a bus ride an hour away because they have don’t have the right skin color is wrong. Reverse discrimination has affected scholarship funding as well. Scholarships and school grants are widely accessible it seems, only to the minorities. There is college funding and grant opportunities for all races, but some cholarships have a prerequisite to have a certain skin color, and that is not right. If there were to be a scholarship for the majority race only, then that would be considered discrimination. Every scholarship should be available to all who want to get an education, and should not be biased to race. While researching this paper I realized how serious reverse discrimination is. To explain it to someone who completely disagreed with the idea of it would be difficult if you were to discuss past cases and statistics with them. I found the perfect analogy to explain how feel about reverse discrimination.
Consider a basketball season in which certain teams play by all the familiar rules and others are compelled to play with each player having one arm tied behind his back. Of course, no one would consider such games fair. Now suppose someone proposed that for the next several seasons those teams whose players had been untied, were now to play all their games with an arm tied behind their backs, while those who had been tied up, now had both arms free. Would turnabout be fair play? Let’s improve the analogy. Let’s observe that there has been a complete turnover of players. All those who played in the first set of games have retired.
The current players, therefore, are newcomers none of whom were involved with the original practice. Now let’s ask again: would turnabout be fair play? (Affirmative Action: Another Side to the Story? ) Reverse discrimination has been a growing problem in our society, a society in which people of all races work and live together. Our country is a melting pot and there is no place in it for discrimination, of any kind. I do believe that all people should be given a fair advantage to get ahead in life, but I do not believe that someone should be hired based on anything other than there ability to perform the work.
The same is true for college admissions the only people that should be accepted are those that have the scores and the ability to achieve scholastically. With the many problems affecting our society today this is one that is going overlooked, but we should all be aware of the implications reverse discrimination has on our society. Works Cited Page Internet Sources Definition: http://www. yourdictionary. com/reverse-discrimination Cox, Matthews & Associates “Adrienne Williams Case” 2000 http://findarticles. com/p/articles/mi_m0DXK/is_13_17/ai_65229400 Ball, Howard. “The Bakke Case. ” November 2000. http://www. ansaspress. ku. edu/balbak. html Cohen, Lynda. “Pleasantville school official alleges reverse racism. ” 30 January 2007. http://www. pressofatlanticcity. com/news/education/story/7158829p-7013722c. html Garber, Greg. “Thanks to Rooney Rule, doors opened. ” 9 February 2007. http://sports. espn. go. com/nfl/playoffs06/news/story? id=2750645 Legal Information Institute. “United States Constitution: Amendment 14th. ” http://www. law. cornell. edu/constitution/constitution. amendmentxiv. html Pincus, Fred L. “The Social Construction of Reverse Discrimination: The Impact of Affirmative Action on Whites. 15 August 2002. http://www. adversity. net/Pro_AA/docs/Pincus_JIR. htm Madden, James Jr. “Unitary Status Update. ” http://www. pinellas. k12. fl. us/USI/files/E11E3BBAE2854FD9AD4B018D5F7599E2. pdf Article Sources Seattle Times. (1999) Affirmative Action National Opinion Survey. Seattle, WA. Elway Research Associates. Book Sources Gross, Barry R, ed. Reverse Discrimination. Buffalo, New York: Prometheus, 1977. Reverse Discrimination Outline – Intro *Definition *Adrienne Williams Case – Issue *Poll surveys on how white people feel about reverse discrimination. *How affirmative action has effected the majority community. Packages that create affirmative action. > “Remedial Action” >”No Preferential Treatment” > “Reverse Discrimination” > “Undeserving Advantage” > “Black Hurt” -Reverse Discrimination and Employment *National Football League on the radar for not having enough minorities as head football coaches *National Football League’s new hiring process, “Rooney Rule” -Reverse Discrimination and Education *Allan Bakke case *14th Amendment: Equal Protection Clause *Pinellas County’s choice education program *Scholarship funding for minority races only -Closing *Final thoughts *Reverse discrimination analogy