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Reverse Discrimination - Term Paper Example

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Running Head: REVERSE DISCRIMINATION Reverse Discrimination [Name] [University] Reverse Discrimination Introduction Issues such as gun control, abortion and affirmative action are guaranteed to spark debate within society. However, unlike gun control and abortion, arguments over affirmative action force people to recognize differences in race and ethnicity, making the policy even more contentious…
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Download file to see previous pages Reverse Discrimination The claim of reverse discrimination linked to affirmative action has become a leading argument against the affirmative action policy (Beauchamp, 2007). “The charge of reverse discrimination rests on the implicit premise that whites are denied access to advantages to which they are entitled, and which they would have obtained had not preference been given to minorities” (Livingston 1979, 40). Reverse discrimination was the basis for Barbara Grutter's lawsuit against the University of Michigan Law School. Grutter maintained that because she had higher scores than the minorities that were accepted into the program, the law school discriminated against her on the basis of race. Reverse discrimination advocates argue that by favoring minorities, the affirmative action plan discriminates against the majority. In Grutter, a qualified member of the majority was denied admission while a less qualified minority was admitted which depicts the perfect illustration of how affirmative action is reverse discrimination. ...
Those who defend the premise that affirmative action serves as reverse discrimination adduce that discrimination is unconstitutional. If past discrimination is unjust, so is discrimination against whites (Livingston 1979). Preferential Treatment Critics of affirmative actions content that preferential treatment is not necessary to eliminate discrimination since existing protection prohibiting discrimination will suffice. Moreover, affirmative action creates further injustice through what critics contend is actually reverse discrimination. Vocal critics of race based quotas point out that such policies undermine American ideological notions of individuality and personal responsibility, treating the group as the measure of significance and not the individual (Berry 1996). The concept of a "colorblind" society originated in Justice John M. Harlan's dissent in Plessy v. Ferguson, 163 U.S. 537 (1896). Justice Harlan wrote, There is no caste here. Our Constitution is color-blind and neither knows nor tolerates classes among citizens. In respect of civil rights, all citizens are equal before the law. The humblest is the peer of the most powerful. The law regards man as man, and takes no account of his surroundings or of his color when his civil rights as guaranteed by the supreme law of the land are involved (Berry 1996, 138). In Plessy, “the Court upheld a Louisiana statute, passed in 1890, which provided for separate railway carriages for white and colored races” (Goring 2000, 4). Through Plessy and other Supreme Court decisions, the notion of a "colorblind" society has become an integral argument against affirmative action. Advocates of a "colorblind" society maintain that Because race really is, and properly only would be, a matter of unchosen appearance ...Download file to see next pages Read More
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