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Old 11-22-2017, 12:35 PM
Damuri Ajashi Damuri Ajashi is offline
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Why do so many people believe that Affirmative Action hurts Asians

https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-...m_content=2049

Judging from the comments from both sides of the aisle, the alleged cap on Asian admissions seems to be inextricably tied to affirmative action as if Affirmative action only takes away from Asian admissions.

Affirmative Action only takes away from whites at these sort of schools because the Asian population has been pegged at about the same percentage for over 3 decades, almost the entire time that affirmative action has been implemented at these schools.

I see way too many otherwise liberal Asians nodding their heads at what Sessions is doing and they realize that they are just using the alleged anti-asian policies at these schools to try to undermine affirmative action but they are just tired of everyone's issues but theirs being taken seriously. If the Trump administration manages to eliminate the bias against Asians, the Republicans will have earned some Asian votes. Maybe not Trump but down ticket and whoever comes after Trump.
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Old 11-22-2017, 12:43 PM
zimaane zimaane is offline
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In a very real sense, college admissions are a zero sum game. Offering more places to Latino and African American students may be a desirable thing to do, but this means that Asian and white students will not get those places. While it could be argued that society as a whole benefits from AA, at least some individual Asian students are harmed by it, in the sense that they are not able to attend the college of their choice.

Last edited by zimaane; 11-22-2017 at 12:44 PM.
  #3  
Old 11-22-2017, 04:16 PM
ITR champion ITR champion is offline
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Originally Posted by Damuri Ajashi View Post
Affirmative Action only takes away from whites at these sort of schools because the Asian population has been pegged at about the same percentage for over 3 decades, almost the entire time that affirmative action has been implemented at these schools.
This statement is a bit difficult to parse, but the fact that the percentage of Asians at Harvard and similar schools has stayed the same is evidence that affirmative action hurts Asians quite a bit.
Since the nineteen-nineties, the share of Asians in Harvardís freshman class has remained stable, at between sixteen and nineteen per cent, while the percentage of Asians in the U.S. population more than doubled. A 2009 Princeton study showed that Asians had to score a hundred and forty points higher on the S.A.T. than whites to have the same chance of admission to top universities.
As further evidence, there is one top university that has never had affirmative action in admissions: Caltech. The percentage of Asians admitted in some years at Caltech has been over 40%. It's reasonable to assume that if other top universities didn't have affirmative action, they'd get a similar figure. So if we see those universities admitting a much smaller number of Asians, it's reasonable to conclude that affirmative action hurts Asians.

Even further evidence: when California abolished affirmative action in 1996, the percentage of Asians at the top public universities in the state went up.
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Old 11-22-2017, 04:32 PM
Chronos Chronos is offline
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Be careful concluding anything about CalTech: There are more Asian immigrants on the West Coast than the East, and so even absent any racial admissions criteria, one would expect more Asians at CalTech than at Harvard.
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Old 11-22-2017, 04:37 PM
Velocity Velocity is online now
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To answer the OP: Well, because it does.

As zimaane pointed out, it's a zero-sum game. More room for white legacy admissions or black and Latino students = fewer seats for Asians. Given the disparity in standardized testing between Asians and many other applicants, getting more applicants of other races into the door means fewer Asians, which also generally means Asians have to score significantly higher on tests than other races in order to get in.

That being said, I am sympathetic to the university-admissions argument that having a student body that is, say, 50% Asian, wouldn't be ideal, nor would it be ideal to have too fewer people of some other races. But the fact that AA in general hurts Asians in admissions is a pretty sound argument; the cause and effect is clearly linked.
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Old 11-22-2017, 08:37 PM
POSTTOWN1978 POSTTOWN1978 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Damuri Ajashi View Post
https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-...m_content=2049

Judging from the comments from both sides of the aisle, the alleged cap on Asian admissions seems to be inextricably tied to affirmative action as if Affirmative action only takes away from Asian admissions.

Affirmative Action only takes away from whites at these sort of schools because the Asian population has been pegged at about the same percentage for over 3 decades, almost the entire time that affirmative action has been implemented at these schools.

I see way too many otherwise liberal Asians nodding their heads at what Sessions is doing and they realize that they are just using the alleged anti-asian policies at these schools to try to undermine affirmative action but they are just tired of everyone's issues but theirs being taken seriously. If the Trump administration manages to eliminate the bias against Asians, the Republicans will have earned some Asian votes. Maybe not Trump but down ticket and whoever comes after Trump.

they have to do this because not all races have same average intelligence if honest.
And asians get penalized for this.
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Old 11-22-2017, 09:55 PM
Lickety_Split Lickety_Split is offline
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I am STILL waiting--have been for over a decade now when I initially posed this question--to explain to me how AA is NOT simply reverse racism. So....since I believe it is and always has been, I think it harms more than it helps. And this dynamic is not limited to any one ethnic group.
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Old 11-23-2017, 03:37 AM
MrDibble MrDibble is offline
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Is it a zero-sum game, though? I don't see a real reason unis can't expand to cope with demand. There are logistic hurdles, but nothing insurmountable.
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Old 11-23-2017, 03:39 AM
MrDibble MrDibble is offline
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Originally Posted by Lickety_Split View Post
I am STILL waiting--have been for over a decade now when I initially posed this question--to explain to me how AA is NOT simply reverse racism.
Something done to counter or reverser the effects of pre-existing racism isn't "reverse racism".
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Old 11-23-2017, 07:59 AM
AK84 AK84 is offline
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Is it a zero-sum game, though? I don't see a real reason unis can't expand to cope with demand. There are logistic hurdles, but nothing insurmountable.
Yes Unis places can be expanded. In theory. In practice this typically means a mushrooming of "institutions" of dubious quality.
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Old 11-23-2017, 09:59 AM
asahi asahi is online now
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The intent of destroying AA is to allow white college administrators the freedom to discriminate. I can understand how Asians believe that they're victims of discrimination, but America has never been a color-blind society and probably won't be anytime soon. One of the justifications for AA was to correct past institutionalized racism, but doing so also protects against future racism. AA is an institutionally-sanctioned way of making sure that institutions respect the value of diversity. Removing that safeguard makes institutions like education more susceptible to institutionalized racism. Removing AA will at first seem like an adverse measure that affects African Americans, Latinos, and Southeast Asian immigrants. But the dynamics of racism can change. The Western United States in particular has been witness to horrific racism against Asians, particularly when they were competing with whites for mining and maritime commerce.
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Old 11-23-2017, 10:19 AM
MrDibble MrDibble is offline
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Yes Unis places can be expanded. In theory. In practice this typically means a mushrooming of "institutions" of dubious quality.
I don't know about that - my alma mater just expanded class sizes and built new lecture venues. Courses that had ten students when I was in undergrad now have 50. And they did that without dropping from being the best uni in the country.
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Old 11-23-2017, 10:23 AM
Darren Garrison Darren Garrison is offline
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Originally Posted by Lickety_Split View Post
I am STILL waiting--have been for over a decade now when I initially posed this question--to explain to me how AA is NOT simply reverse racism.
Because people have (successfully, in some circles) redefined racism so that only white people can be racist. So anything that benefits non-whites over whites (or asians) by their definition can't be racist, only things that help whites. No, I'm not making a straw man. When confronted with a dictionary, they will reply that dictionaries are racist for not agreeing with them.
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Old 11-23-2017, 10:36 AM
AK84 AK84 is offline
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I don't know about that - my alma mater just expanded class sizes and built new lecture venues. Courses that had ten students when I was in undergrad now have 50. And they did that without dropping from being the best uni in the country.
(University of Cape Town?)
Existing Unis can only grow so much. After a while, you need to make new ones. Or you need to make satellite campuses.

I am a big fan of expanding University access, as someone who has been a part time Lecturer on and off for nearly 10 years. But quality always goes down. It takes while to get back up. Done properly within 10 years or so. Done poorly, well we are fucked up good.

The Uni I go teach in these days expanded exponentially in 15 years from a small Lib Arts College to a full-fledged University. It has an excellently regarded Sciences Departments, mainly due to the presence of Federally funded research labs. Its Law School is first rate, since its received good financial support from backers. Everything else is, junk.
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Old 11-23-2017, 10:44 AM
MrDibble MrDibble is offline
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Originally Posted by AK84 View Post
(University of Cape Town?)
Yep
Quote:

Existing Unis can only grow so much. After a while, you need to make new ones. Or you need to make satellite campuses.
UCT's coped by pushing some faculties that were on the main campus (like Commerce) onto new satellite campuses, but then it always had a couple of satellites (Art, Medicine) even in the 80s. It really spreads through a large area.

I think you left out "Go online" as another avenue for expansion.
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Old 11-23-2017, 11:02 AM
The Other Waldo Pepper The Other Waldo Pepper is offline
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Originally Posted by asahi View Post
The intent of destroying AA is to allow white college administrators the freedom to discriminate.
The intent of AA is to allow discrimination.

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I can understand how Asians believe that they're victims of discrimination,
Of course you can understand it; they are.

Quote:
Removing that safeguard makes institutions like education more susceptible to institutionalized racism.
That safeguard is institutionalized racism.
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Old 11-23-2017, 11:27 AM
Corry El Corry El is offline
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The intent of destroying AA is to allow white college administrators the freedom to discriminate. I can understand how Asians believe that they're victims of discrimination, but America has never been a color-blind society and probably won't be anytime soon. One of the justifications for AA was to correct past institutionalized racism, but doing so also protects against future racism. AA is an institutionally-sanctioned way of making sure that institutions respect the value of diversity. Removing that safeguard makes institutions like education more susceptible to institutionalized racism. Removing AA will at first seem like an adverse measure that affects African Americans, Latinos, and Southeast Asian immigrants. But the dynamics of racism can change. The Western United States in particular has been witness to horrific racism against Asians, particularly when they were competing with whites for mining and maritime commerce.
That's a perhaps plausible argument for the benefits of race preferences for society as a whole, not that I agree necessarily. However from the POV of Asian applicants who don't get admitted at prestigious universities when non-Asians with systematically lower objective qualifications do, it's seems a stretch.

Asians would have to believe that outlawing a system of race preferences in pursuit of 'diversity' which clearly discriminates against them, relative to objective qualifications, would result in another system even more biased against them. Nobody knows the future, but in general it's a stretch to tell people to pipe down about discrimination against them because if the system which produces it were changed to eliminate it, that would just result in more discrimination against them, and besides, the current discrimination against them is driven by good motives.

Personally I think for race preferences to survive, and have any real argument in their favor, they have to be curtailed to apply only to two groups the victims of very longstanding discrimination flowing through the family trees so to speak for many generations on average: the descendants of people held as slaves in the US, and Natives. If it's 'icky' to make people prove their 'blood quantum'* to belong to one of those two narrow groups, well the whole thing is icky, human existence is. Giving preferences to a highly diverse group of mainly recent** comers like Latinos, but effectively doing the reverse to another diverse group of mainly recent comers like Asians, makes it hard IMO to argue that race preferences are really about remedying past racism rather than just enforcing equal outcome by group. And beneficiaries must also be limited to those from relatively poor families in the current generation. Race preferences for the kids of the black elite strike too many people as rank injustice, with good reason IMO.

However with or without (or with reduced) race preferences for non white/Asians, there will be still tension in any admission system nominally largely based on objective academic qualifications if relatively small but not tiny groups tend to outperform on objective academic qualifications. That applies to some Asian groups, but isn't necessarily limited to them. Ending the de facto limits on Asians at prestige schools isn't exactly the same issue as eliminating or curtailing black/Latino race preferences.

*IOW what Native tribes have done to judge eligibility of claimed members for benefits arising from status as a Native tribe.
**again society is messy. Yes there are American Asians and Latinos with very long roots in the country, some of whose family history was seriously affected, sometimes even in recent generations by discrimination (Japanese American internees etc). But by and large it's not comparable to the descendants of American slaves or Natives, and African and Afro-Caribbean immigrants are almost all recent comers.

Last edited by Corry El; 11-23-2017 at 11:30 AM.
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Old 11-23-2017, 11:56 AM
asahi asahi is online now
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Originally Posted by The Other Waldo Pepper View Post
The intent of AA is to allow discrimination.



Of course you can understand it; they are.



That safeguard is institutionalized racism.
I don't necessarily disagree that it's discrimination; I think the broader question is, in the absence of anything else, how harmful is it? And without it, what safeguards exist to prevent a backslide into an era when there was much greater latitude to discriminate against anyone? I can't really make great arguments for AA other than my vague concern that this will somehow end up having unintended consequences, just like AA itself has unintended consequences.
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Old 11-23-2017, 12:08 PM
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Something done to counter or reverser the effects of pre-existing racism isn't "reverse racism".
What pre-existing racism was there that favored Asians over whites, that we now have to "counter" with institutionalized anti-Asian discrimination?
  #20  
Old 11-23-2017, 12:20 PM
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Do whites get affirmative action? I know they have legacy and other advantages I'm talking specifically about policies which give them points in favor on their applications just for being white. I ask because something doesn't make sense to me. If Asian students outperform white students then they should replace the whites in the part of the student body not allocated on the basis of legacies or affirmative action. If the percentage of asian students remains the same despite their superior qualifications doesn't that mean they are being discriminated against for the general spots? Why should we assume the percentage of asians would increase if more general spots are created by eliminating AA?

What am I missing?
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Old 11-23-2017, 06:27 PM
Lickety_Split Lickety_Split is offline
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Originally Posted by MrDibble View Post
Something done to counter or reverser the effects of pre-existing racism isn't "reverse racism".
Giving a job to the most quialified applicant is not racism, amigo.

However...............giving a job to somebody who is NOT the most qualfied but meets pre-set AA-ordained demographic quotas IS racism. Since it is, irrefutably, admitting that the person is getting the job becasue of his or her ethnicity.

What part of this equation do you not understand? There is no "pre-existing racism" to reverse (or, in your words, to reverser) if jobs and academic appointments go to the most qualified applicant.

AA = using race as a criteria to award jobs or appointments.

Thus, AA = using race as a determinant factor.

Thus, AA = Racism.


I think maybe you are not wholly familiar with all that AA entails. Or are confusing it with "Equal Opportunity." (which I am fully in favor of, btw.)

Hope this helps.

Last edited by Lickety_Split; 11-23-2017 at 06:28 PM.
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Old 11-23-2017, 09:22 PM
Mijin Mijin is offline
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Do whites get affirmative action? I know they have legacy and other advantages I'm talking specifically about policies which give them points in favor on their applications just for being white.
Well I know in at least some senses where that's true. For example, it can be very beneficial to an application if you have a parent who went to that college (a family with two or more generations going to the same college is much more likely to donate at some future time).
This is something that disproportionately benefits whites.

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Because people have (successfully, in some circles) redefined racism so that only white people can be racist.
Well no-one here is saying that. If your point is that some people are wrong about some things, I agree.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lickety_Split
I think maybe you are not wholly familiar with all that AA entails. Or are confusing it with "Equal Opportunity." (which I am fully in favor of, btw.)
I think any country should either be Equal Opportunity or trying to become that way as soon as possible. The goal should always be a meritocracy.
But here's why the US has AA, and hear me out:

The United States is a special case: slavery was legal for longer than most of the developed world, then blacks were still treated appallingly following the civil war (as they bore much of the brunt of the resentment for the war). They only fully achieved civil rights in the second half of the 20th century.
And this is all in a country with extremely low social mobility.

So we would expect blacks to be underperforming right now, relative to whatever their potential is. What I mean by that is, if you want to believe blacks have a lower IQ on average and can only reach X level in society on average, well we'd expect them to be lower than X right now due to the inherent disadvantage of being the descendents of an impoverished and uneducated populace, in a country with low social mobility.

Now, one response to this is we just shrug. We set up society to be as close as we can to a meritocracy and just accept the fact that blacks will underperform for a long time. Eventually it should all even out, right?

But generally it's not good for societies to live with imbalances like that. It can lead to social unrest. Hastening that process is an attempt to avert such problems.

Last edited by Mijin; 11-23-2017 at 09:25 PM.
  #23  
Old 11-23-2017, 10:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Lickety_Split View Post
What part of this equation do you not understand? There is no "pre-existing racism" to reverse (or, in your words, to reverser) if jobs and academic appointments go to the most qualified applicant.
But how to determine who is the most qualified applicant? Is a 4.0 student from a wealthy intensely academically-oriented family in a private school with multiple private tutors better qualified than a 3.8 student from an inner city public school with no father and a working mother without a high school education? The numbers themselves don't tell the whole story.

And that's just past racism built into the American experience. There is also current racism. People who make hiring decisions are people. People are influenced by unconscious biases. If 40% of the qualified applicants to your company are black and latino but only 10% of new hires are from those groups then it's very likely bias is causing your company to overlook some of the best candidates.
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Old 11-23-2017, 10:41 PM
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Well I know in at least some senses where that's true. For example, it can be very beneficial to an application if you have a parent who went to that college (a family with two or more generations going to the same college is much more likely to donate at some future time).
This is something that disproportionately benefits whites.
You are talking about a legacy advantage. Yes many spots are filled by those students but I was specifically talking about the rest of the spots.
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Old 11-23-2017, 10:46 PM
Mijin Mijin is offline
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You are talking about a legacy advantage. Yes many spots are filled by those students but I was specifically talking about the rest of the spots.
OK, but I think it's worth at least mentioning things like legacy advantage, as the perception many have, like in this thread, is white people get to college "for reals" but black people have some unfair advantage.

Last edited by Mijin; 11-23-2017 at 10:46 PM.
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Old 11-23-2017, 10:57 PM
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I hear you. I wasn't talking in general but wondering specifically why asians feel disadvantaged by affirmative action policies since it looks to me like they are facing discrimination for the spots where they are competing against whites. If that's true then why should they expect their chances of gaining admission will improve if spots are not reserved for disadvantaged students? But I'm no expert so most likely there is an explanation.
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Old 11-23-2017, 11:00 PM
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I hear you. I wasn't talking in general but wondering specifically why asians feel disadvantaged by affirmative action policies since it looks to me like they are facing discrimination for the spots where they are competing against whites. If that's true then why should they expect their chances of gaining admission will improve if spots are not reserved for disadvantaged students? But I'm no expert so most likely there is an explanation.
Every applicant is competing against every other applicant. It's not just Asians vs. whites; Asians and whites are jostling betwixt themselves and every other applying racial group.
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Old 11-23-2017, 11:04 PM
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Something done to counter or reverse the effects of pre-existing racism isn't "reverse racism".
Except that if the "thing done to counter or reverse the effects of pre-existing racism" has the effect of making one racial minority that has endured its own history of discrimination have to score higher than every other racial group, including the white-majority group, then it's indeed creating a new racist policy effect/impact.
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Old 11-23-2017, 11:05 PM
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Is it a zero-sum game, though? I don't see a real reason unis can't expand to cope with demand. There are logistic hurdles, but nothing insurmountable.
You can't expand forever. Is Harvard supposed to expand to 25,000, then 30,000, then 35,000 every year, until it has a student body of 1 million?
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Old 11-23-2017, 11:10 PM
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The intent of destroying AA is to allow white college administrators the freedom to discriminate.
Quite to the contrary, the purpose of AA is to discriminate, just in a different way. An administrator who says, "Let's raise black/Hispanic/Native American representation in our student body from 17% to 25% by admitting more such students and less of other students" is practicing discrimination, by definition.

I think "discrimination," like "racism," has taken on such deathly tones that people are not willing to acknowledge that something is "discriminatory" unless it's truly a worst-case example of such. Which allows a lot of lesser discrimination to slide by unaddressed.

Last edited by Velocity; 11-23-2017 at 11:10 PM.
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Old 11-23-2017, 11:18 PM
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You can't expand forever. Is Harvard supposed to expand to 25,000, then 30,000, then 35,000 every year, until it has a student body of 1 million?
Sure, why not?

I think the reason they don't do this is not because of some inherent limitation but because a degree of exclusivity is part of the brand. If a million Harvard degrees are awarded this year, maybe a Harvard degree doesn't seem so special next year (even if nothing was changed about the entrance requirements). Then next year you have trouble filling all those spots.

This kind of prestige is a big part of the college business model. I can download a lot of the course material from Harvard, Yale, MIT etc and sit exams to prove I understood it. But I wouldn't belong to the Harvard alumnus tribe, which is something a lot of businesses select for.
So instead we pay to go college.

Last edited by Mijin; 11-23-2017 at 11:20 PM.
  #32  
Old 11-24-2017, 01:27 AM
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Every applicant is competing against every other applicant. It's not just Asians vs. whites; Asians and whites are jostling betwixt themselves and every other applying racial group.
I'm not sure how affirmative action works for higher education. I'm assuming they don't have quotas and are giving black and latino applicants "extra credit" somehow to bring in enough of those students to reach the school's diversity goals. So students from those groups aren't really competing with white and asian students. They are competing among themselves. If the school starts getting more accomplished applications from blacks and latinos they won't need to give each as much extra credit to maintain their goals. Thus the percentage of those groups in the freshman class remains approximately the same.

I am asking about the rest of the students and my question is this: if there are a lot of more highly qualified asian students being denied admission to colleges then how come they aren't pushing out the white students? Yes, I know there are legacy advantages for a lot of white students but if the problem is as bad as people are saying then why aren't asian students increasing their representation on campuses by displacing whites without legacy advantages?

My point being that if asians are being discriminated against for these open spots now then why should they expect to increase their representation in colleges if affirmative action for blacks and latinos is curtailed?

And again, I'm not claiming to have uncovered some profound wisdom here. I expect that there is an answer to my question but I'm not informed enough to know.
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Old 11-24-2017, 08:34 AM
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Be careful concluding anything about CalTech: There are more Asian immigrants on the West Coast than the East, and so even absent any racial admissions criteria, one would expect more Asians at CalTech than at Harvard.
No. Harvard is the most prestigious University in the nation. Geographical location means nothing in relation to student application.
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Old 11-24-2017, 08:54 AM
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No. Harvard is the most prestigious University in the nation. Geographical location means nothing in relation to student application.
Not so much for hard sciences, its right up there of course, but CalTech is probably the best in those disciplines. Bit like Imperial College is is in the UK vis a via Oxbridge.
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Old 11-24-2017, 09:48 AM
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That's a perhaps plausible argument for the benefits of race preferences for society as a whole, not that I agree necessarily. However from the POV of Asian applicants who don't get admitted at prestigious universities when non-Asians with systematically lower objective qualifications do, it's seems a stretch.
Is this what happens though?

The impression I get is that the kids getting into these top tier schools (Harvard, MIT, Yale, Stanford, etc.) are all top tier kids (with the exception of legacy kids, who tend to still be pretty darn good). Harvard isn't letting in black kids with a 29 ACT and a 3.5 and rejecting white and Asian kids with a 32 ACT and a 3.7. At the point where you reject 90% of your applicants, it often comes down to "we have six ranked violinist, and seven state Science fair winners, but here is a kid who had a set of unique experiences to bring to the school." i.e. no one has objectively lower qualifications - except perhaps the legacy kids. Some kids might have subjectively lower qualifications.

Even the objectively low qualifications is interesting - because objective measures aren't all objective. We know there is a racial bias to testing - which is some of the most objective measures we have. But high school grades are also highly subjective - some schools just grade a lot harder than other schools. Some schools offer a lot of weighted coursework, other schools offer none.
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  #36  
Old 11-24-2017, 06:24 PM
treis treis is offline
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Originally Posted by Dangerosa View Post
Is this what happens though?

The impression I get is that the kids getting into these top tier schools (Harvard, MIT, Yale, Stanford, etc.) are all top tier kids (with the exception of legacy kids, who tend to still be pretty darn good). Harvard isn't letting in black kids with a 29 ACT and a 3.5 and rejecting white and Asian kids with a 32 ACT and a 3.7. At the point where you reject 90% of your applicants, it often comes down to "we have six ranked violinist, and seven state Science fair winners, but here is a kid who had a set of unique experiences to bring to the school." i.e. no one has objectively lower qualifications - except perhaps the legacy kids. Some kids might have subjectively lower qualifications.

Even the objectively low qualifications is interesting - because objective measures aren't all objective. We know there is a racial bias to testing - which is some of the most objective measures we have. But high school grades are also highly subjective - some schools just grade a lot harder than other schools. Some schools offer a lot of weighted coursework, other schools offer none.
This site has some data for "10 highly selective universities", but it's 20 years out of date:

https://www.insidehighered.com/admis...missions-elite

They used the white ACT/SAT scores as the base and found that Blacks were -3.8/-310 and Asians were +3.4/+140 on the ACT/SAT. That's a huge swing somewhere in the neighborhood of one or two orders of magnitude. I'm guesstimating here, but I'd put the average Asian score somewhere in the 99th percentile while the Black one would be more like 60-70th percentile.

If you accept that, like most human attributes, academic excellence is a normal distribution you will always be able to select the cream from the milk. Take basketball ability, for example. NBA HOFs are an order of magnitude better than NBA all-stars who are an order of magnitude better than NBA players. That pattern repeats all the way down to the kid who couldn't make the middle school team vs the one who did. It's never going to the be the case where you can draw a line and say everyone above this line is effectively the same.

Last edited by treis; 11-24-2017 at 06:24 PM.
  #37  
Old 11-25-2017, 11:52 PM
Damuri Ajashi Damuri Ajashi is offline
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This statement is a bit difficult to parse, but the fact that the percentage of Asians at Harvard and similar schools has stayed the same is evidence that affirmative action hurts Asians quite a bit.
Since the nineteen-nineties, the share of Asians in Harvardís freshman class has remained stable, at between sixteen and nineteen per cent, while the percentage of Asians in the U.S. population more than doubled. A 2009 Princeton study showed that Asians had to score a hundred and forty points higher on the S.A.T. than whites to have the same chance of admission to top universities.
As further evidence, there is one top university that has never had affirmative action in admissions: Caltech. The percentage of Asians admitted in some years at Caltech has been over 40%. It's reasonable to assume that if other top universities didn't have affirmative action, they'd get a similar figure. So if we see those universities admitting a much smaller number of Asians, it's reasonable to conclude that affirmative action hurts Asians.

Even further evidence: when California abolished affirmative action in 1996, the percentage of Asians at the top public universities in the state went up.
I see it differently. I don't think you need affirmative action for there to be discrimination against Asians. Harvard capped the number of Jews it admitted for a long time without any affirmative action driving that discrimination against the Jews. All that was required was an aversion to having too many of the wrong kind of people attending.
  #38  
Old 11-25-2017, 11:58 PM
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That being said, I am sympathetic to the university-admissions argument that having a student body that is, say, 50% Asian, wouldn't be ideal, nor would it be ideal to have too fewer people of some other races. But the fact that AA in general hurts Asians in admissions is a pretty sound argument; the cause and effect is clearly linked.
What, if you don't mind me asking, would be less than ideal about it?
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  #39  
Old 11-26-2017, 12:08 AM
Damuri Ajashi Damuri Ajashi is offline
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To answer the OP: Well, because it does.

As zimaane pointed out, it's a zero-sum game. More room for white legacy admissions or black and Latino students = fewer seats for Asians. Given the disparity in standardized testing between Asians and many other applicants, getting more applicants of other races into the door means fewer Asians, which also generally means Asians have to score significantly higher on tests than other races in order to get in.

That being said, I am sympathetic to the university-admissions argument that having a student body that is, say, 50% Asian, wouldn't be ideal,
If they are the best applicants, why not? There are 50% whites, why isn't that not ideal?

Quote:
nor would it be ideal to have too fewer people of some other races. But the fact that AA in general hurts Asians in admissions is a pretty sound argument; the cause and effect is clearly linked.
I don't see how that is the case. How does affirmative action peg the asian admission population at 20%? As the Hispanic population grew over the last 20 or 30 years, their cohort in the freshman class at top colleges grew in tandem (more or less). The Asian population grew even faster and yet their percentage of the entering class at top schools remained flat. Those extra Hispanic students didn't eat into the Asian cohort, it ate into the white cohort. Asians were capped at 20% and that pool was competitive enough that Asians hit the cap every year. If there was no cap on Asians then we might see some marginal effect on Asian admissions but right now affirmative action has almost no effect on that 20% number for Asians.
  #40  
Old 11-26-2017, 12:12 AM
Damuri Ajashi Damuri Ajashi is offline
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I am STILL waiting--have been for over a decade now when I initially posed this question--to explain to me how AA is NOT simply reverse racism. So....since I believe it is and always has been, I think it harms more than it helps. And this dynamic is not limited to any one ethnic group.
Affirmative action purely for the sake of racial diversity is in fact racial discrimination. I think people have said this several times over the last decade.

But some forms of affirmative action are not racism. For example, I think there is a benefit to having more black cops and judges and doctors serving their community. We had centuries of white cops and judges and doctors serving black communities and we got some bad results so we are intentionally tilting the playing field to create more black cops, judges and doctors.

There's also that whole slavery and segregation thing for blacks and genocide for American Indians that I think could justify racial preferences.
  #41  
Old 11-26-2017, 12:15 AM
Damuri Ajashi Damuri Ajashi is offline
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Is it a zero-sum game, though? I don't see a real reason unis can't expand to cope with demand. There are logistic hurdles, but nothing insurmountable.
Its pretty close to zero sum.

If Harvard said tomorrow that they would expand their freshman class by 100 students and would reserve those seats for blacks, that would be 100 seats that others would not have access to. As long as only one person can sit in a seat its pretty close to zero sum.
  #42  
Old 11-26-2017, 12:19 AM
Damuri Ajashi Damuri Ajashi is offline
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The intent of destroying AA is to allow white college administrators the freedom to discriminate.
Wait. WHAT!?!?! You think Affirmative Action is being FORCED on white college administrators? They're the ones trying to protect Affirmative Action!

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I can understand how Asians believe that they're victims of discrimination, but America has never been a color-blind society and probably won't be anytime soon. One of the justifications for AA was to correct past institutionalized racism, but doing so also protects against future racism.
By being racist against Asians?

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AA is an institutionally-sanctioned way of making sure that institutions respect the value of diversity. Removing that safeguard makes institutions like education more susceptible to institutionalized racism. Removing AA will at first seem like an adverse measure that affects African Americans, Latinos, and Southeast Asian immigrants. But the dynamics of racism can change. The Western United States in particular has been witness to horrific racism against Asians, particularly when they were competing with whites for mining and maritime commerce.
So tell me about all the racism we are seeing in the University of California system after they made AA illegal in the UC system. Its been a few decades so the racism has had plenty of time to creep in and yet we see the administrators trying to sneak in AA under various guises on an almost annual basis.
  #43  
Old 11-26-2017, 12:34 AM
Sage Rat Sage Rat is offline
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Originally Posted by Lickety_Split View Post
I am STILL waiting--have been for over a decade now when I initially posed this question--to explain to me how AA is NOT simply reverse racism. So....since I believe it is and always has been, I think it harms more than it helps. And this dynamic is not limited to any one ethnic group.
I won't argue that the people who conceived of and launched affirmative action were doing so for racist/ reverse racist reasons.

But in a practical sense, society is improved by things like this. It saves lives, reduces crime, reduces intolerance, etc.

If the world was left alone, the children of the poor would receive parenting that included mostly poor financial advice (given that their parents are poor), they would go to the worst schools, all of their friends would be the poorest kids, all of the contacts and connections that they would have would be only for the worst jobs. Kids who grow up believing that they have no real prospects in life tend to exhibit fatalist behavior, engage in crime, and create poor babies out of sheer boredom and nihilism.

On the whole, no good comes of this.

Contrariwise, if you level the playing field for everyone, e.g. create a true socialist state, then you end up with everyone being poor, except those who embrace an economy of "favors" and "fixing".

But, between those two lines in the sand, you gas free the opportunity to retain value in working hard and honestly, while giving opportunities to those who otherwise wouldn't have any.

That all said, the sort of thing I'm talking about shouldn't be linked to race, but it probably serves as some form of proxy.
  #44  
Old 11-26-2017, 12:34 AM
Damuri Ajashi Damuri Ajashi is offline
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If it's 'icky' to make people prove their 'blood quantum'* to belong to one of those two narrow groups, well the whole thing is icky
Here is a thought experiment:

If we said:

"instead of this 1.5 trillion dollar tax cut, we are going to put this race thing to bed once and for all and put the 1.5 trillion in a pool and to be shared equally by anyone that is entitled to a share"

Would we put recent Nigerian immigrants in that pool and say "well they were subject to racism too by virtue of the color of their skin so..." Probably not. it is only because there is no actual cost (from the perspective of those in favor of AA) to letting in the Nigerian immigrant.

Would we let Hispanics into the pool? Probably not.

Would we let the wealthy descendants of slaves with 100% slave ancestry into the pool? Probably so? I mean why wouldn't you. This is reparations not needs tested welfare.

So why does AA apply to all these people? Because the proponents of AA think its costing them nothing, but in fact it is. Those Hispanics and Nigerian immigrants are taking a portion of a pool of benefit that should be reserved for the descendants of slaves.

Anything else is merely a melanin test for admissions.
  #45  
Old 11-26-2017, 12:36 AM
Damuri Ajashi Damuri Ajashi is offline
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Do whites get affirmative action? I know they have legacy and other advantages I'm talking specifically about policies which give them points in favor on their applications just for being white. I ask because something doesn't make sense to me. If Asian students outperform white students then they should replace the whites in the part of the student body not allocated on the basis of legacies or affirmative action. If the percentage of asian students remains the same despite their superior qualifications doesn't that mean they are being discriminated against for the general spots? Why should we assume the percentage of asians would increase if more general spots are created by eliminating AA?

What am I missing?
Asians generally have to be better applicants than white applicants to get in. Some people think that there is basically a cap on Asian admissions and Asians compete among themselves for those 20% seats. Whites don't have to compete against Asians.
  #46  
Old 11-26-2017, 12:44 AM
Damuri Ajashi Damuri Ajashi is offline
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I'm not sure how affirmative action works for higher education. I'm assuming they don't have quotas and are giving black and latino applicants "extra credit" somehow to bring in enough of those students to reach the school's diversity goals. So students from those groups aren't really competing with white and asian students. They are competing among themselves. If the school starts getting more accomplished applications from blacks and latinos they won't need to give each as much extra credit to maintain their goals. Thus the percentage of those groups in the freshman class remains approximately the same.

I am asking about the rest of the students and my question is this: if there are a lot of more highly qualified asian students being denied admission to colleges then how come they aren't pushing out the white students? Yes, I know there are legacy advantages for a lot of white students but if the problem is as bad as people are saying then why aren't asian students increasing their representation on campuses by displacing whites without legacy advantages?

My point being that if asians are being discriminated against for these open spots now then why should they expect to increase their representation in colleges if affirmative action for blacks and latinos is curtailed?

And again, I'm not claiming to have uncovered some profound wisdom here. I expect that there is an answer to my question but I'm not informed enough to know.
I think your instinct is correct. A cap is not affected by the removal of a preference somewhere else. The cap on Jews at Harvard in the early 1900s would not have changed a whit if Harvard decided to give blacks a preference.
  #47  
Old 11-26-2017, 12:51 AM
Damuri Ajashi Damuri Ajashi is offline
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Originally Posted by Dangerosa View Post
Is this what happens though?

The impression I get is that the kids getting into these top tier schools (Harvard, MIT, Yale, Stanford, etc.) are all top tier kids (with the exception of legacy kids, who tend to still be pretty darn good). Harvard isn't letting in black kids with a 29 ACT and a 3.5 and rejecting white and Asian kids with a 32 ACT and a 3.7. At the point where you reject 90% of your applicants, it often comes down to "we have six ranked violinist, and seven state Science fair winners, but here is a kid who had a set of unique experiences to bring to the school." i.e. no one has objectively lower qualifications - except perhaps the legacy kids. Some kids might have subjectively lower qualifications.
The SAT gap between Asians and whites is about 140 points on the SATS and the gap between Asians and blacks is something like 450 points on the SATs. That's pretty significant.

Quote:
Even the objectively low qualifications is interesting - because objective measures aren't all objective. We know there is a racial bias to testing - which is some of the most objective measures we have. But high school grades are also highly subjective - some schools just grade a lot harder than other schools. Some schools offer a lot of weighted coursework, other schools offer none.
So a bunch of old white guys got together and figured out how to construct a test to help out Asians? Teachers (who are mostly not Asian) are giving Asians a preference? What advantages do Asians have over whites that justifies the gap?
  #48  
Old 11-26-2017, 08:58 AM
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If they are the best applicants, why not?
"Best candidate" is subjective.
  #49  
Old 11-26-2017, 05:13 PM
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I find the whole thing makes a lot more sense if you take a step back.

Given that there is no inherent reason why people of difference races should be of different intelligence, a fair, non-racist system should wind up with a student population that roughly the same as the population at large. If it there is a large difference, then racism must be at play.

The entire concept here comes from assuming that the Asian students are inherently smarter and should wind up with higher percentages. But that's the same racist idea as assuming that black people are inherently dumber and should take up a lower percentage.

Quotas are bad because they don't allow for natural variation across the various schools. But trying to roughly balance it out to the population is the only way to remove the racism that created the disparity in the first place.

As long as AA is geared towards trying to match the population, the no one is being discriminated against. Only if they try to change it are they engaging in racism.

Call it "reverse racism" if you want. That just means it's correcting an imbalance already in the system. It is reversing racism to create egalitarianism.
  #50  
Old 11-26-2017, 05:28 PM
Mr. Nylock Mr. Nylock is offline
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I find the whole thing makes a lot more sense if you take a step back.

Given that there is no inherent reason why people of difference races should be of different intelligence, a fair, non-racist system should wind up with a student population that roughly the same as the population at large. If it there is a large difference, then racism must be at play.

The entire concept here comes from assuming that the Asian students are inherently smarter and should wind up with higher percentages. But that's the same racist idea as assuming that black people are inherently dumber and should take up a lower percentage.

Quotas are bad because they don't allow for natural variation across the various schools. But trying to roughly balance it out to the population is the only way to remove the racism that created the disparity in the first place.

As long as AA is geared towards trying to match the population, the no one is being discriminated against. Only if they try to change it are they engaging in racism.

Call it "reverse racism" if you want. That just means it's correcting an imbalance already in the system. It is reversing racism to create egalitarianism.
It seems as if you've stepped so far back that you are unable to see the situation clearly. There is no "assumption" that Asians are inherently smarter, there is clearly demonstrated academic performance.

You don't have to go back very far in US history to see a time when mainstream attitudes towards Asians clearly assumed that they were interior to white people, nobody woke up one day and started making these assumptions about Asians.
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