Affirmative Action What Is It And How — страница 2

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any other qualified worker. This is important because until this plan was put into effect, these very same companies would turn applicants away simply based on their race or sex. An interesting example of how Affirmative Action has helped minorities occurred in the 1970 court case, NAACP vs. Allen. Basically, the court recorded the fact that in the thirty-seven year history of highway patrol in the state of Alabama, none of the officers hired were black. The court found this fact a form of discrimination and issued an order that said the highway patrol must hire one black for every white until the minority comprises twenty-five percent of the workforce. The Supreme Court later affirmed this order. Minorities were not the only ones to benefit from Affirmative Action. Women have

also come a long way thanks to this anti-discrimination plan. Many positions are occupied by women that never would have twenty years ago. Women have filled many “dangerous” positions as well. “In 1979, women represented only 4 percent of the entry-level officers in the San Francisco police department. By 1985,under an affirmative action plan ordered in a case in which the DOJ sued the City for discrimination, the number of women in the entry class had risen to 175, or 14.5 percent”(White House? p.2). Women have even been given promotions to executive positions. In the past a woman could never become the president of a company. A major aspect shared by both groups is the increase in education. Almost everyone would agree that education is one of society’s most important

missions in life. The need for American education is ever constant in our world today due to the competence of our family and leaders and the competition with other nations for an indefinite amount of reasons. According to the Affirmative Action in Focus Census composed on Monday, February 2, 1999, the rates of minority applications have increased substantially over the years. While twenty-eight percent of college graduates are white, fourteen percent are black, and eleven percent is Hispanic. Compared to the recent evaluations of 1997 records the numbers of graduates has decreased for the minority groups, but the number of actual applications given has increased by twenty-three percent. Even though Affirmative action has helped the country in many ways no plan is without error.

The negative side of the plan is not as easily seen unless a large portion of time is allowed for it to develop. Three major issues have shown America examples of Affirmative Action’s imperfection: “Glass Ceiling,” “reverse discrimination,” and “quotas.” The first issue, “Glass Ceiling” deals with minorities and women in positions of “nowhere.” These jobs entail more and more work with no promotions. The companies find ways to stretch the rules of their business to wrap around the policies of Affirmative Action by justifying these non-promotion jobs. Women and minority groups complain about this situation, but little can be done to due the loophole in the Affirmative Action policy. The second situation, “reverse discrimination” refers to whites losing a

chance for a job because of Affirmative Action. If you are a white male and a company needs black males to fulfill the equal opportunity policy then the white male may lose the job based on discrimination. In other words, in trying to take discrimination away from one racial group, another group suffers the same discrimination. This can be seen as unfair and unjust, but again not much can be done without the compromise in Affirmative Action policy. Another aspect of this “reverse discrimination” occurs in education. It is recorded that “Checking the right race checkbox triples your chances of admission to UCLA School of Medicine in 1997″(UC p.1). According to the same source, only three percent of whites were accepted to the University of California whereas 10.4 percent

of minority groups were accepted. This situation goes hand in hand with the concept of “quotas.” “Quotas” define the need to actually fulfill the Affirmative Action policy. If a school acquires a population of which eighty-five percent are white, the school feels that it needs to turn down other white males and accept minority groups’ applications to “balance” their population. In essence, the very thing that is supposed to end discrimination in America is discriminating against white males. Granted this is a hypothetical situation and one cannot always believe that an extreme attitude like this exists, but the statistics do not lie. Given the essential positive and negative aspects of Affirmative Action, one must begin to wonder what kind of effect it has on