Affirmative Action Gets Gutted by High Court

Lafe Tolliver

By Lafe Tolliver, Esq
Guest Column

Christmas came early for conservative White America when the Supreme Court voted 6-3 to ban colleges and professional schools from using race as a factor for admissions.

Yes, you heard me correctly. Now when qualified minority applicants apply to certain “prestigious” institutions, they will not have a chance to even the playing field by noting their ethnic background.

The ripple effect of this disastrous ruling will be felt for decades to come when higher education returns to its usual composition of practically an all-White student body ruling the roost and a few minority applicants squeezing in the door.

Sadly, in America, racial hostilities and racial belligerence against people of color in higher education have again received the stamp of judicial approval, even couched under legal gibberish that the high court used to cover their behinds.

From the seat of this author, White America has not found the moral will and sustained intent to rid itself of the stain of slavery from the year of 1619 to present date. Race is seemingly embedded in the corporate DNA of this country, even to the point of not allowing the playing field to be somewhat equaled by allowing minority students access to colleges and universities when they clearly show that race was a factor that KEPT them out of these places of higher education.

Of course, the decision does not mean that all minority students will be denied entry but it will mean that when all factors are considered for admissions, the issue of race and class will not be consulted as a factor for admission.

As you may know, certain colleges and universities due to their power, image, money or reputation are the gateways to certain career choices that are life transforming and being in such positions, the minority person would have a chance to wield considerable influences on policy and laws regarding their fellow citizens.

The 6-3 decision included a long concurring opinion by Uncle Tom Clarence Thomas who never misses a chance to kick Black people in the butt whenever the chance arises. And this malevolent act of Thomas is in spite of the fact that Thomas was a DIRECT beneficiary of Affirmative Action when he was admitted to Yale Law School.

Now, of course to cover his self-loathing decision, Thomas states that he felt upon his graduation from Yale Law that his degree was worthless because he gained entry by using Affirmative Action on his behalf.

Note: Did anyone see Thomas return his law degree to Yale? Didn’t think so!

To be sure, there will be celebrations by GOP Maga and others who will exult in this decision as being “fair.”

But yet, as graphically described in the book, When Affirmative Action Was White by Ira Katznelson, White America has suckled at the breast of affirmative action for hundreds of years and to the economic exclusion of Black people.

The book describes the plethora of programs, including land grants given to White homesteaders, federal housing programs, bank lending policies, neighborhood restrictive covenants, police actions, hiring practices, military discrimination and others that solely benefited White Americans for hundreds of years.

All the above-mentioned programs were given to White Americans for their benefit and prosperity and nary did one Supreme Court decision balk at such unequal allocation of governmental largesse and fortune and tax breaks.

But yet. When an issue of minority students trying to gain access to certain higher education opportunities, White America goes ballistic and thinks the sky is falling because some DeMarcus or a Lakisha has the gall to want to sit next to them at Columbia, NYU, Berkeley or Harvard Law.

For some in White America, any seat that is occupied by a person of color in certain colleges and universities, is a seat that has been denied to a “qualified” Asian American or a White student.

Far too many White Americans see people of color who are in colleges and universities as not being qualified or deserving and believe that Affirmative Action has “cheated” their Suzy or Johnny out of a coveted seat of higher learning.

American higher education has always begrudgingly permitted Black students’ entry into their hallowed doors and, in the alternative, has seen such students as undeserving and without educational merit.

Have no illusions about this draconian decision. It’s intent and purpose and effect will be to drastically reduce the number of minority applicants getting into certain institutions on the grounds that such admissions are “replacing white people” in getting favorable jobs and positions of influence.

Can the affected institutions possibly craft other methods and means by which they can “legally” bypass this biased decision? Possibly, but when they attempt to do so, the unseen eyes of “white grievance” will be watching and waiting to pose other legal challenges to such attempts.

Unless you are able to comprehend that White America never had any true designs to share its economic and political goodies with its former slave population, you will miss the larger picture that’s White America had and will continue to have an uneasy truce with Black America being part of America.

You would think that since White America has had hundreds of years of being on the receiving end of affirmative action that they could now play fairly in the sandbox with others, but no, power does not relinquish without a demand or a struggle.

With this outrageous decision, the declared “wisdom” of the all-white majority (including Uncle Tom Clarence Thomas who, by his voting record, considers himself an honorary white person), says to Black America and their aspiring college students, “If you are White… you are right, if you are Brown…stick around, but if you are Black, get back!”

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