The Brouhaha About Affirmative Action
Junious Ricardo Stanton
The recent US Supreme Court’s ruling stating the student acceptance policies at Harvard and the University of North Carolina which factored in race, gender and economic status were unconstitutional and a violation of the Fourteenth Amendment’s guarantee of equal protection under the law will have huge impacts on not only college acceptance and enrollment but on the psyche of this nation. That Supreme Court’s ruling is preposterous and to use the Fourteenth Amendment to the US Constitution as the rational is an egregious injustice in itself!
The Fourteen Amendment like the Thirteenth and Fifteenth Amendments to the US Constitution were written, and ratified following The War Between The States (incorrectly called The US Civil War) in the late 1860’s. (Note: a civil war by definition is when two or more parties/groups engage in hostile and violent activities against each other or the government in an attempt to take over, usurp or abolish the existing government. That is not what happened in the US! The Confederate States seceded from the Union, galvanized themselves, formed their own separate government with their own governing body, their own currency, commerce and international relationships.
South Carolina demanded the Union evacuate and surrender Fort Sumter which was located in the Charleston Harbor. Abraham Lincoln refused to surrender the Fort and he sent supplies to reinforce the post. As a result hostilities broke out starting the war between the Union and Confederacy.
Following the war, a “reunited nation”, was forced to address and figure out what to do with its enslaved population. (Note Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation did not free any enslaved people, not one, not any in the Confederacy and none in the Union states that still enslaved Blacks!) The so called “Radical Republicans worked to resolve the status of enslaved people in this country; to clarify and define their legal standing and status. With little dissent because their former Southern colleagues were no longer in office or power the Republicans were able to rally support for, draft, pass and ratify the Thirteenth, Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments to the US Constitution.
Here’s the tricky part, the Thirteenth Amendment did not abolish slavery entirely! Read it for yourself and see. As far as the Fourteen Amendment goes, since its ratification Section One has never been uniformly enforced on any level in this nation! The Fifteenth Amendment gave the right to vote but once the Southern oligarchs retook control via a treacherous deal with the Republican Party in 1877, they worked assiduously to disenfranchise Blacks and reduce us to peons and neo-slavery!
This brings us back to the recent decision by the US Supreme Court. We have been programmed and brainwashed to believe the US Supreme Court is the institution where the nation’s brightest legal scholars and minds reside, a place where decisions are flawless, unbiased, rendered with the best interests of the greatest number of people and that they are just. It’s all propaganda and lies.
The US Supreme Court has been a bastion of racism, gender and class bias, political cronyism and ideological partisanship and politics since its founding! The Supreme Court reflects the prejudices, biases, values and consciousness of the ruling class. The courts for the most part were designed to maintain the status quo and balance of power for certain groups. We can see it at work today as Presidents attempt to pack the court with their ideological sycophants.
The Supreme Court’s recent decision is merely one of a long series of rulings that in turn have had devastating consequences for Blacks and the nation, the most familiar cases are: Dred Scott 1857, the Civil Rights Cases of the 1880’s, Plessy vs Ferguson 1896 and others too numerous to mention. Keep in mind even a favorable ruling like Brown vs Board of Education has not resulted in racial equity in education or the society ingeneral! To fully grasp this reality read Shades of Freedom Racial Politics and Presumptions of the American Legal Process by A. Leon Higginbotham Jr. the late great lawyer and jurist.
The fact is, “integration” was not the lawsuit known as Brown vs Board of Education’s goal! Destroying the US state sanctioned apartheid system was its goal and the 1954 Supreme Court ruling came up way too short! De jure housing segregation has been made illegal; but de facto housing segregation still exists, red lining (arbitrary property devaluation, land use restrictions withholding resources based on color and class) still exist, job discrimination still exists and “Affirmative Action” has not eliminated systemic bias and deprivation!
This is the crux of the issue but we have to also grasp the fact that in addition to the lies and misrepresentations about the Thirteenth, Fourteenth and Fifteenth Amendments we have been lied to about “Affirmative action”. Its critics say Affirmative Action promotes reverse racism and preference! Not true. “Affirmative Action” has not, I repeat his not resulted in massive shifts, improvements or parity in wealth or employment for Black people. Black unemployment is still the highest in the country, “Black men have the highest unemployment rates of any race/gender group, and the lowest labor force participation and employment rates among men.” https://www.brookings.edu/articles/why-are-employment-rates-so-low-among-black-men/#:~:text=Employment%20in%20the%20population%20by,January%202020%20and%202021%20
The fact of the matter is the main beneficiaries of “Affirmative Action” have been White women! https://www.vox.com/2016/5/25/11682950/fisher-supreme-court-white-women-affirmative-action https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/us-news/who-benefits-most-affirmative-action-30356404 https://www.aaaed.org/aaaed/History_of_Affirmative_Action.asp But the plutocrat owned mind control apparatus will not tell us this truth.
Just like the lie “Separate but equal” was pushed, internalized and regurgitated so too the lies about “Affirmative Action” being reverse racism are perpetuated and promoted as fact when in reality they are lies. Here are a few examples of the lies and the refutation of these dastardly falsehoods: https://portal.ct.gov/-/media/DAS/Commissioners-Office/Myths-and-Facts-11082007.pdf , https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2023-06-29/affirmative-action-supreme-court-decision-college-admissions-misconceptions , https://www.mic.com/articles/183223/5-big-myths-about-affirmative-action-in-colleges
All this talk about a “colorblind” society and judging people on the basis of their character rather then their pigment sounds noble; but when has America ever been a colorblind society? When have Black people ever been judged by their character in this country, especially now? The same people who rue the changes brought about by Civil Rights agitation now use the rhetoric of the movement to thwart implementation of the very changes needed to bring justice and equity!
Do not fall for their okey-doke and the flim flam. Remember the Thirteenth Amendment did not totally abolish slavery (convict leasing, mass incarceration, the prison industrial complex, disenfranchisement are its legacy), Section One of the Fourteenth Amendment has never been uniformly or universally enforced and the Fifteenth Amendment was ignored, suppressed and fought against for over one hundred years! Today there still vestiges of resistance to Black political power and active threats of disenfranchisement. This is the real deal not the fairy tale propaganda they want us to believe.