Supreme Court strikes down affirmative action admissions

By Katelynn Richardson

The Supreme Court ruled Thursday to block affirmative action in two closely watched lawsuits against Harvard and the University of North Carolina (UNC).

The cases, initially brought by a coalition of students, prospective applicants and their parents in 2014, challenged the universities’ use of racial preferences during the admissions process.

Wikimedia Commons

Harvard College

“Harvard’s and UNC’s admissions programs violate the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment,” the Supreme Court ruled in a 6-3 decision in the UNC case and a 6-2 decision in the Harvard case, which Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson recused herself from.

Chief Justice John Roberts wrote the majority opinion, joined by Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh and Amy Coney Barrett.

“Many universities have for too long done just the opposite,” he continued. “And in doing so, they have concluded, wrongly, that the touchstone of an individual’s identity is not challenges bested, skills built, or lessons learned but the color of their skin. Our constitutional history does not tolerate that choice.”

The court overruled its 2003 decision in Grutter v. Bollinger, which held that race could be a factor in the admissions process.

Justices Ketanji Brown Jackson, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan dissented.

“Gulf-sized race-based gaps exist with respect to the health, wealth, and well-being of American citizens,” Jackson wrote. “They were created in the distant past, but have indisputably been passed down to the present day through the generations.”

Both lawsuits were brought by Students for Fair Admissions Inc. (SFFA), a coalition of over 20,000 prospective higher education students and parents, including one Asian American member who applied for Harvard and six other top schools but was denied admission in 2014, despite his academic record.

SFFA argued that Harvard violated Title VI of the Civil Rights Act by penalizing Asian American applicants, engaging in racial balancing, overemphasiz­ing race and rejecting race-neutral alter­natives. Similarly, SFFA argued UNC violated Title VI by rejecting alternative race-neutral criteria that could also ensure diversity in the admissions process.

The Supreme Court heard both cases in October. Schools have been anticipating the decision for months, searching for ways to maintain racial quotas without explicitly using racial preferences, such as eliminating standardized testing requirements and recruiting based on geographic region.

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Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

8 thoughts on “Supreme Court strikes down affirmative action admissions

  1. Goodbye DEI – please pack up your desks and proceed through the exit door. Any lawyer want to make real good money on cases that are not slip and falls? The Supreme Court case establishes the way through the gobbledygook – let the lawfare pendulum swing like a wrecking ball on all discrimination and violations of civil rights. Ladies and gentlemen, start your affidavits!

  2. Consider Elizabeth Warren’s remarks about the SCOTUS ruling as the epitome of hypocrisy. Her tortured language attempting to justify her discontent with this SCOTUS ruling should be a lesson to all of us on the continued use of logical fallacies by progressives.

    Specifically, Warren falsely used affirmative action when she claimed to be a native American. And now she complains that the SCOTUS ‘reversed decades of settled law’.

    Since when is reversing decades of settled law an unreasonable circumstance. The 1896 Plessy v. Ferguson case that okayed ‘separate but equal’ practices wasn’t overturned until 1954 in Brown v. Board of Education. That’s ‘decades’ of settled law too, isn’t it. But it doesn’t justify the practice.

    Warren also claimed that the SCOTUS ruling “rolled back the march toward racial justice, and narrowed educational opportunity for all”. And she made this claim with no substantiation. In fact, the SCOTUS very clearly articulated the argument against that specific claim. It’s the so-called ‘soft discrimination’ exemplified by Warren’s sentiments disclosing that she is not only a liar, but a racist.

    • Jay it’s a lesson on how they steal and weaponize the language.

      Recall Barry Obama’s speeches: Miles of word salad and yet he’s saying nothing of substance.
      We’re seeing lots of examples now over this court decision!

      These people speak like my mother-in-law cooks: all spice and no chicken.

  3. Supreme Court strikes down affirmative action admissions, it’s about time.

    You talk about a slap in the face telling people the only way to proceed in higher
    education is by the color of your skin………….. how pathetic !!

    It starts with lower-level education, a father & mother, and some parenting skills,
    kid’s minds are like a sponge if you give them a chance. Public schools don’t care
    about giving these kids an education, it’s all about indoctrination……. pretty sad.

  4. The return to a Meritocracy has begun.. and lucky us – us that value highly intelligent professionals in the important positions they hold vs. the people there simply to make the numbers all work for the “Feel Good Policies” that have failed our states and nation.

    Do take note of “Justice” Ketanji Jackson’s Dissent and then Justice Clarence Thomas’ response to that Dissent.. I believe the Supreme Court itself has had it with the results of Affirmative Action.

  5. This is the time for public schools to step up their game and EDUCATE instead of indoctrinate students of color. As a teacher, I have seen students of color sit back in class and do nothing and have the administration tell me that it’s okay. It’s never okay and if they were held to task just like everyone else, there wouldn’t be this huge knowledge and skill gap that we have today. It is the responsibility of everyone to make sure all schools have standards applied to students equally. Affirmative action, as has been written in the past many times, sets kids up for failure once they reach the college that admits them without the same standards. It also produces less qualified graduates.

    • Elizabeth what you are saying is correct.

      The problem is that if a white teacher pushes a black student too hard, that is then viewed as “racist” today and that teacher will likely be facing big trouble.
      Teachers -and frankly anyone- that is trying to push to challenge students today faces all sorts of trouble because we’re all living in fear of lawsuits, boycotts, doxxing, or our homes being burned down.
      And here we are..

      Students today are failing by every measure- and it’s nothing new.
      And yet they don’t even have homework anymore because parents didn’t want it and teachers don’t push back.

      The blacks in this nation have been incredibly failed by Democrat policies that the Republicans just allowed to happen.. Candace Owens and Dr.Ben Carson tell us all about it.

      To do better, we need a cultural shift that demands much better.
      Hurt feelings or not it’s clearly time to rip off the bandaid, roll up the sleeves and get busy and dirty changing a whole lot now– now that this decision has been arrived at finally.

      We are here today in this disaster because it’s been “Politically Correct” for decades now to run *everything* based upon feelings and not sound, solid thinking, intelligence– or frankly even common sense.

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