The Other McCain

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The Supreme Court Ruling Won’t Change the Ivy League’s Racial Quota Regime

Posted on | July 1, 2023 | Comments Off on The Supreme Court Ruling Won’t Change the Ivy League’s Racial Quota Regime

Liberals are running around with their hair on fire, shrieking that the Supreme Court’s 6-3 ruling in Students for Fair Admission v. Harvard will necessarily produce a 21st-century Jim Crow, an idea so absurd that only liberals could possibly believe it. In fact, the safest prediction in the world is that nothing will change in the way the Ivy League and other “selective” universities choose their incoming freshman classes on the basis of racial quotas. It took more than 10 years for this lawsuit to make it all the way to the Supreme Court, by which time nearly every elite university (e.g., Columbia) announced that they would eliminate the SAT as a factor in determining admissions. They did this because SAT scores served as a crucial data point — an objective metric of academic qualification — cited by the Asian-American students who sued Harvard.

Probably no one would object if the level of favoritism extended to “underrepresented minorities” was modest. However, as the data obtained as part of discovery during the lawsuit demonstrates, the “diversity” regime at Harvard involved extreme favoritism, so that if an Asian student and a black student had identical qualifications (as measured by SATs and GPAs), the black student was more than 4 times as likely to be admitted as the Asian student. There was a reason, after all, that the admissions process at Harvard (and other elite schools) was so secretive that it took a federal lawsuit to discover the facts. If people actually knew what was happening, they’d be outraged. And, as the data obtained in the lawsuit demonstrated, “diversity” was just a fancy word for racial quotas. Year after year, Harvard’s incoming freshman class was 14% black — never 11% or 17%, but always within a few decimal points of 14% — making it plain that the administration had settled on this as the “correct” number of black students to be admitted, and then arranged the process to achieve that quota. Asian students were most affected by this quota regime, as the Harvard administration clearly didn’t want to have “too many” Asian students, because that would deprive whites of the opportunity to soak in this carefully formulated bath of “diversity.”

The University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill was added as a defendant in the lawsuit because, although UNC-Chapel Hill is not nearly as “elite” as Harvard, it is the prestigious flagship of the state’s university system, and the admissions process there reflected a similar “diversity” rationale for what were, in fact, discriminatory racial quotas that favored “underrepresented” (black and Hispanic) minorities, while disfavoring Asians and whites. In all such cases, wherever the regime of “diversity” exists, it results in evaluating people not on objective measurements of individual merit, but rather on the basis of membership in racial groups. And this emphasis on group identity breeds and nourishes resentments that might not otherwise exist — the obsession with “diversity” actually causes racism, or at least aggravates it, rather than alleviating it.

Before I share a few of the ridiculous “hot take” reactions from liberals about the Supreme Court decision, let me first emphasize this prediction about the results of the ruling: NOTHING WILL CHANGE.

Harvard and other “elite” schools will continue doing exactly what they’ve been doing, and if they get sued again, so what? They don’t care. It’s not like Merrick Garland’s Justice Department is going to swoop down and send federal marshals to prevent Harvard from doing whatever it wants in pursuit of “diversity.” Harvard will continue admitting the same 14% quota of black students and, if they do grudgingly admit a few extra Asian students as a token gesture of compliance with the SCOTUS ruling, those extra seats for Asians in the freshman class will be obtained by admitting fewer white students, so that the quotas for “underrepresented minority” students remain undisturbed. The alarmist Chicken Little sky-is-falling outrage from liberals is just emotional venting, and has nothing to do with the actual effect of the Supreme Court’s decision, which won’t change anything meaningful at elite universities.




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