University of Michigan Affirmative Action Lawsuit


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MightyDog

Well-Known Member
Robber, let me tell you what I witness with the Quota system. Supervisors were asked to come up with a plan to bring qualified blacks into the system. Supervisor were asked to draw up a 5 year plan. Some Supervisors just put down some numbers and did not do anything. Well checkup time rolled around and each Supervisor had to justify why nothing had been done. It would have been proper in my mind that each Supervisor who did nothing should have been fired. But pressure were put on Supervisors to start living up their plan of action. During that period many blacks were hired to include white women. Well the good old boys got upset and started to complain about being forced to hire unqualified blacks. They raised enough "L" until the quota system was thrown out.

You must recall during the 60s there was a rebellion in America whereas blacks were saying we are black and we are proud. Those blacks who died in the cities in America opened the doors from many black college graudates, but many of those who lived in the cities got jobs but not the ones we educated blacks received. Mr. Thomas knows this and should be fighting to keep AA alive, but he also work on many job discrimination complaints in which he and his team threw out.

Quotas were good while it lasted. In the action plan an agency put down that by certain milestones they would have recruited and promoted two GS-9, promote five current employees from GS-11 to GS12 and 3 to GS13. None of this was done but these were simple goals. But when they were told to get it done then they started to complain.

Originally posted by Robber
Quotas are downright wrong. But affirmative action isn't.

Plow,

I read the exact same thing you read. It ain't just you.
 

Da_Sperm

New Member
I agree that there have been instances where a black was more qualified for a position and didn't get it because it was given to a white. But, it is just as wrong for a less qualified black to get a position due to a quota system or AA. This in my book is legal racism.

I have interview/hired several candidates in my career. Not once have I took into account a person's skin color in determining if he is the BEST fit for my open position. I couldn't do that, not even for my own race. I will always pick the best candidate for the job, based on several factor, but one factor will never be race, nationality, religion, etc.

But this case is all about a less qualified candidate getting into Law School over a qualified candidate simply because their color of their skin was not white.

Are we saying we need things like AA to compete with White America? Maybe 20 or 30 years ago, not today. We have advance way too far.
 

EB

Well-Known Member
Black men showed that they could play baseball long before Jackie Robinson (in all of baseball and eventually the National League) and Larry Doby (in the American League) broke the color line in 1947. There were many football players from HBCUs who had the ability to play in the NFL before Tank Younger did in 1949. Art Shell was not the first qualified Black person who could have become an NFL head coach. He became coach of the Raiders in 1989. The last time a Black guy coached a team was when Fritz Pollard was a player coach in the 1920s. In 1933 the NFL got rid of the Black players during the depression. (There weren?t many.) James Harris (won a pro bowl in 1974) and Doug Williams (won the ?88 Super Bowl and took Tampa Bay to two playoff appearances) were not the first Black QBs who had the ability to play quarterback in the NFL. Even in sports exclusion has been a way of life.

Originally posted by Da_Sperm
I agree that there have been instances where a black was more qualified for a position and didn't get it because it was given to a white. But, it is just as wrong for a less qualified black to get a position due to a quota system or AA. This in my book is legal racism.

.....

I agree that the more qualified person should be selected. But for us it was plain bigotry that kept us out of positions. It was not a case of where it occurred every once in a while. It occurred in a systematic fashion. Understand. IT WAS THE LAW. Read about the 1896 Plessy vs. Ferguson decision and the striking down of civil rights laws during the post-reconstruction period of the last 1800s. When it came to hiring, people could not get into schools or jobs because of the color of their skin.

Now, indeed a lot has changed. But there are still suits against companies for discrimination. And the Black plaintiffs have won. Remember the tapes at Texaco? Texaco was not the only company to have been sued for discrimination. The Texaco case happened in the ?90s.

Originally posted by Da_Sperm
......

Are we saying we need things like AA to compete with White America? Maybe 20 or 30 years ago, not today. We have advance way too far.

Yes, we have advanced very far. No, we are not saying that we need AA to compete. We have shown that we can compete. But too many of us are still excluded.

Also, we still have a long way to go. Everything is not fair and equal in this country. (Maybe Robber can talk about his Ole Miss experiences.) Look at how states have treated HBCUs. It does not matter if the politicians were democrats or republicans. Our school still got the short end of the stick. Racial profiling, stereotyping, unequal pay are still a fact of life. Let?s not forget the fiasco called the 2000 Election and what happened in Florida. As long as things stay the way they are, corrective programs like AA are needed in my opinion.
 

Dr. Sweet NUPE

New Member
We could argue this until the day the world ends. Don't get me wrong AA is needed but a lot of people have abused it and created a crutch system. If all of us be honest with ourselves, we ALL can say that we have abused AA and played the race card to get what we want.
 

Dr. Mac

Player
I've tried to stay out of this discussion..........and its late and I'm going to bed, But.......

What's "qualified"? Is it only test scores? Is it experience? What type of experience? How does articulation gets weighed; does one have to speak the king's english exactly like "someone" expects it to be spoken?

My point is that there are cultural bias built into every evaluation that is done on hiring. Any one making the decision is going to use that bias in their decision making process. For too long in this country the bias was overt when it came to African Americans. The bias is usually less overt now but still there in many cases. Until they are totally eradicated from the thought process, measures to ensure that all get some method of "fair" evaluation must remain in place. Nobody here can tell me that all evaluations of African Americans are done fairly, nor can anyone say that every white who has been denied was more "qualified" than some black who won out.

But back to the question of what does "qualified" mean. In many of the professions and programs where Affirmative Action is debated, those who are in the programs will, after leaving them, interact with people of different color, represent them, have them as customers, etc,. etc. I think its only wise to have some dealings with those different from you before one's career or their lives depend on it. OTJ training is fine, but interaction with those "others" before that point only makes the OTJ training that much smoother. Thus, to me, qualified is multi-faceted and includes elements other than just test scores. In other words, diversity is real world experience so why shouldn't it count in admittance decisions.

Further, for every case like the Michigan one, We can cite instances of blacks (College and Pro coaches who get passed over for head coaching decisions without being considered come to mind) who don't get chances because they don't fit the criteria that makes the decision makers comfortable. What about them?

This debate also is bothersome because it usually involves only a few positions but cast doubts on the abilities of many others who can do the job. Let's be real, African American individuals who are not qualified intellectually will not get in the door, thus, people who are challenging entrance on color are picking at straws. Plus, its what you do when you get in anyway that matters. And for those who say "well, if they get in and mess up it messes things up for others", I say that decision makers don't stop hiring or allowing whites in when one of them doesn't pan out. The fact that a decision maker cites this for blacks is in itself racist and further denotes why Affirmative Action is needed.

Bottomline is that this is a sinful and imperfect world. As long as we have imperfect beings making decisions they will be imperfect. If this was a perfect world with people in decision making positions capable of making decisions without regards to their bias, life experience, perceptions (i.e., does he/she talk like me, etc), then I would say Affirmative Action is not needed. Its not, so it is.

Regards.
 

MightyDog

Well-Known Member
Sperm did it occur to you that the whites who file the AA law suit did not qualilfy to attend the UofM Law School and use their race to challenge AA? Did it occur to you that they didn't meet the criteria to gain admission to Michigan Law School? Now if they were at the head of the class or in the top five then they may have had an argument. The issue here is that you have some applicants who could not match up and use race to get admitted. The qualified whites had no problem getting into the Law School, but these dummies could not meet the qualify. The situation is always the same, take what blacks have if I cannot measure up with my own race. You see they are playing the color line thing which was established by Thomas Jefferson. Simply put the color line stop at the dumbest white person and then the smartest black cannot compete with the dumbest white because we cannot cross the color line. The federal government has to enforce some folks to half way do right, but it is the supreme court that is elected to keep this color line thing going.

I always said that if you teach it I can learn it, but it you don't teach it and deny me then I don't have a chance. W***ver control the money will always rule the world.

AA is not just about hiring and admitting, it is about power and control. Now I cannot say that all whites are bad, because there are many who believe in AA, but the unqualified whites who are always complaining will always find an ear.

BTW, Justice O'Conner asked their lawyer if he was saying that race is the only factor that the dummies used for not getting admitted. The lawyer said yes.

Do you think these dummies could complete with the blacks who got admitted? They acted like they had copies of their transcripts.
 

EB

Well-Known Member
MD, that was one of your best posts. It would not surprise me that the students who are the plaintiffs are not among the best qualified. But they are skillfully using affirmative action as the reason they did not get admitted.

Consider this. Cheryl Hopwood along with two White guys filed suit against the University of Texas Law School in the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. They won. But I read where Hopwood had a test score, the LSAT, that was lower than 40% of the non-Whites who were admitted. Understand that test scores are not the only qualification that is used to admit students into school. Yet, she and the others won their suits by going against affirmative action.
 

MightyDog

Well-Known Member
EB, Thanks. When we fight for our existance we need to understand what it is that we are fighting. A good debate cannot exist in the Supreme Court because there is no one on the court who wants to give any consideration to black people. Thomas is what I call an organizational person. He can debate but someone need to be on the Supreme Court who can speak for the black race. You have the others who speak up for women and white people. Intelligence is not the way, sometimes we have to be able to over talk the issue. I will not change until we have total equality.

Most votes cast in any situation concerning blacks is lost on a 3-2 or 6-5 vote. Using my one down theory, (Charles Book "I May be Wrong, but I doubt it.") we will always be one down.
 

Da_Sperm

New Member
Of course it has occured to me that those whites might not be qualified or as qualified as the blacks that were admitted. My problem is why does there HAVE to be a % of blacks/whites/hispanics or whatever admitted anyway? Why can't you chose what will be best your program? That is my only concern.

Secondly, my first post was that I didn't have the answer to "How do resolve this problem without AA"? My statement was we will never know as long as we have AA.

I don't want nothing in life because the color of my skin, EVER PERIOD. I always have and always will earn everything I get in life based on me and my ability.

I didn't get out of high school based on the color of my skin.
I didn't get into college based on the color of my skin.
I ddin't get scholarship money based on the color of my skin.
I didn't get a job based on the color of my skin.
I didn't get any promotions based on the color of my skin.
I never hired anybody based on the color of their skin.
I never fired anybody based on the color of their skin.

That is how I would teach my kids. I will never be a number to fullfill someone's color requirement. Maybe I'm baised because I'm in an industry (technical) where there is plenty of diversity (not black, but plenty of Indians, Asian's, Africans, etc), and people look at you for your skillset, because the color of your skin will never help you to design a web-based application using .NET Technology and SQL Server.
 

Robber

Consigliere
When some people see affirmative action, they immediately think some unqualified minority is getting something they don't deserve. These same people are usually naive enough to believe that they are t*** ONLY blacks qualified enough to do their jobs.

For the life of me, I can't understand how Sperm thinks that 20-30 years is long enough to overcome 400 years of institutionalized racism. It's even funnier how whites still overlook qualified minorities in favor of their own, yet we bend over backwards trying to show how we give everybody a fair chance.

Regarding the Michigan case, that law school admission committee had a set of factors they consider. But because the white can't get in over some blacks, something is wrong with it. As Mighty Dog pointed out, there could easily be factors favoring the black that were totally unrelated to a test score, which is usually what the complaint is really about.
 

Dr. Mac

Player
Originally posted by Da_Sperm


Secondly, my first post was that I didn't have the answer to "How do resolve this problem without AA"? My statement was we will never know as long as we have AA.


Sperm:

I have to disagree. I think history, past and present, is replete with examples of what would happen if initiatives life Affirmative Action had not been put in place. All AA did was "force" some people (not all people needed this encouragement) to look outside their boxes and established comfort zones and consider people who, for whatever reason, they would not have ordinary looked at. And as a result, this country is much better off.

However, recent history has also shown us that the same pracitices that led to the need for AA still exists in the minds of some. Add to that, that some of the perceptions that cause these practices are so ingrained in the minds of the decision makers through upbringing, perceptions, culture, and other reasons that they, sometimes, don't realize that they are making preconceived rationalizations about candidates.

Test scores alone don't automatically qualify. Other factors should be considered, especially because we live in a diverse society. Business (collectively) now is smart enough to realize that they need to understand how "other" consumers think and they get people who look and think like their consumers to do this. But many of them, even, had to have AA help to get to this point.

Statistics on racial composition of jobs usually show that minorities are under-represented. I have a hard time believing that this is due to, as many companies will put it, "an inability to find qualified minority candidates." It can be the case if "qualifications" are slighted with the types of cultural and other bias I cited above, and this is what I believe happens in most cases. AA can help serve as a check and balance in cases like this.

Those wisen folks who wrote a long time ago "in order that we might form a more perfect union" had it right. This union ain't perfect and is a long long way from it. That's what it, or it should be, striving for. I hope we get to that point, but we aint there yet. People still need help to do the right thing. They need help in overcoming their own fears, bias, etc. I know some think that AA only add to those perceptions that they have. Even if thats the case, AA still does more good than bad simply because this society has not grown to the point where it can make fair decisions without it. We're a long way, still, from being that "more perfect union."

Regards.
 

Da_Sperm

New Member
I'll say this and this will be my last point on this topic.

Like my college band director told us, "We have forced the white folks to change the game, you people need to think. With AA, they have to let us in, but they don't have to let us out."

Don't think for one bit that those white folks that where forced to let you in their schools, forced to promote you, or forced to hire you because of AA, they have forgotten. All it has done is made it easier for you to get in, but harder for you to get out or ahead. Let your skills do the work. It thats not good enough, the be creative and go to another school or start your own business.
 

EB

Well-Known Member
I am cosigning Robber's and Dr. Mac's posts.

Originally posted by Robber
Sperm,

Why do you keep harping on quotas???

This is an excellent question.

As our people learned before AA, we have to be better than the best. We have to be better than the others, namely Whites. It was true then and is true now.

Like Dr. Mac, I am in engineering. I can tell you from the academic side to the corporate side things are still not fair and equal. We still need to be at the best of our ability just to get a fair shot. If one does not believe me they can look at the companies that have been sued including Texaco.

The color of our skin makes it to where we have to work harder and smarter than the other person. DS, I want to be judged on the content of my character. I would like everything to be fair and equal. But like all Black people I have to fight stereotypes, and things in this country are not fair and equal. (Do they see someone that could be or is educated? Or do they see just another Black male?) I know that I have to work harder just to get a fair shake. A lot of my judgments are based on inside information. Rarely, we will get a benefit simply because the color of our skin like our White counterparts. I do mean rare. We must be more aggressive. It is not fair. It is just the facts.
 

Da_Sperm

New Member
Originally posted by PLOW DOG
Thinking out loud!

That band was one dumb SOB. I hope he wasn't somebody daddy!:shame:

Thinking out even louder!!!

Yeah, he was only responsible for getting GSU for trips to Japan, Coke commercials, 3 daughters with PhD's, need I go on. Don't fault a man for thinking outside the box. But you are entitled to our opinion. What have you done to give a person an opportunity to see Japan for free, what have you done to put a kid on a Coke commercial, what have you done to get kids a job after college, since you are not a dumb SOB.
 

ALJSU3

New Member
I have read so many of the post listed above and as I was reading I was thinking about all the perks given to whites in order for them to attend HBCU's. What do we call this?
 

LaMont

New Member
A/A is very complex

I, frankly, believe that the whole A/A dialogue is a sham to some extent. Affirmative Action is a rather WEAK program designed to attempt to address the inequity issues. In actuality, it has only had some impact on the African American middle class. It has not, however, had any impact on the African American under class. As I often say, you could get rid of Affirmative Action today and most peoples lives would change one bit.

I see the affirmative action debate in a much larger context. Whites, for the most part, are OBSESSED with blacks. In many ways, they have never exorcised their demons or reconciled their hatred towards us. So, becaue they cannot go their old activities of cross burning and other ways to vent, they have figured out a way to express their hatred toward blacks through the policy discourse. So, real issues like crime and welfare, which could be legitimate discussions, have been turned into a euphimism for talking about blacks. It's sort of the same way more WHITES obsess over the reparatons debate than blacks. Black know that whites have no sense of justice within a temporal context and that blacks will never get reparations. But because there are a few that keep the issue alive, whites can use that issue to verbalize their negrophobia.

In the end, however, this is still just a shill. The progress of blacks continues. There are more blacks in graduate, law and medical programs than ever before. There are more blacks earning degrees than ever before. True, we have to closely examine our culture to determine why in hell we have far MORE blacks in prison than in college, but still our progress continues. At the end of the day, however, our educational backbone STILL is founded on having a number of strong HBCUs, whether you attend one or NOT. We must bring back our HBCU graduate programs. I remember reading somewhere where someone had the objective of having 13 HBCU law schools (instead of the 7 that are in existence.) That's what we need to move towards. Whitey has always been inconsistent in his policies towards us. It's sort of like Langston's book, "Deep Blue Sea" (I think that's the title.). But the last chapter will always stick with me. It was called, "When the negro was envogue." In other words, the notion of justice towards us lies on a pendulum in whites' minds. It goes back and forth. I say let's deconstruct this paradigm and move towards a system that is NOT dependent on the fickly attitudes of whites.

LaMont
 

MsJag4Jag

Moderator
Originally posted by Robber
When some people see affirmative action, they immediately think some unqualified minority is getting something they don't deserve. These same people are usually naive enough to believe that they are t*** ONLY blacks qualified enough to do their jobs.


I co-sign. AA is not to admit underqualified minorities. It does admit very HIGHLY qualified minorities (be it women, blacks, asian....whatever).
 

Da_Sperm

New Member
Originally posted by jag4life

Quota's, I'm not HARPING on quota, but the HARSH reality is that AA is tied to a Quota system. Many universities don't get the government funding unless the meet a quota (Just read a post today about JSU, Alcorn, and Valley having to meet a certain % of international enrollment in order to get some government money).
Since we are all tax payers, therefore we have a say in how our tax dollars are spent. Since schools and universities want government aid, they are forced to accept a certain % of a race. This doesn't happen at private institutions, where funding comes from donations.

Many corporations are forced to live by a quota system in order to get government money.

So, tell me how is AA not tied to a Quota system. Not that was the intent, but it is what it has unfortuantely turn out to be.

Why do we keep harping about the # of black head coaches on the D1-A level, when we have the biggest percentage of atheletes on the D1-A level with the lowest % of graduation rates? We as people just will not open our minds and think outside the box.

I agree, AA will only affect mid-class blacks.
 

EB

Well-Known Member
Maybe someone can explain it better than I can. But I would not call AA a quota system even though it uses numbers.

In a quota system it will say that a school, government agency or a company must have a set number of non-whites and/or women. In this case of a medical school a certain number of seats are reserved for non-whites and/or women. But the Supreme Court struck this down in 1978.

A case that was ruled by the high court later that summer involved a hiring case out of Louisiana. A White guy sued a company for their affirmative action program. I cannot remember the details but the plaintiff lost. So as I saw it then (I was quite young.), quotas were basically outlawed, but affirmative was not.

Now, for AA it does set goals and timetables. Some schools/companies may have, for example, 10 or 12% non-White or woman in a year or two-year's time. Let's say that they meet their goal within the time-span. However, three-years after meeting their goal, they may be at eight percent non-white and/or women. Or they may not have met their goals in getting the amount of woman/non-whites in the first place. Anyway, AA is not a rigid as quotas, and the NAACP is against quotas.

I have been a part of programs that were designed to get non-Whites in the door. Some national laboratories had programs that were designed to recruit people of certain groups. As the Sandia National Laboratories, they had a program to recruit Native Americans. While I was there, they had a program to specifically recruit students from HBCUs. (A White student from an HBCU could be a part that the program for HBCUs.) In addition to PV, students in that program came from Morgan State, Howard and Spelman to name a few schools. Students from NC A&T and Puerto Rico were in another program. My going to Texas A&M for graduate school was in my opinion somewhat similar to the Sandia programs. BTW in order to get a summer position, and hence a permanent one, at a national laboratory, one must be very QUALIFIED.

However, I must say this. Those programs changed or were eliminated in 1995. I do not know the official reason for it.

Robber, MD, Dr. Mac may have a better explanation on the goals and timetables. But AA is different from quotas.
 
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