Opinion | The Affirmative Action War Goes On
Robert Fullinwider and Judith Lichtenberg, in their 2004 book,Leveling the Playing Field: Justice, Politics, and CollegeAdmissions, present an integration argument for affirmativeaction centered around the little syllogism above (Fullinwider andLichtenberg 2004, 165–188). A state like Michigan has strong reasonsfor wanting its leaders of commercial, financial, legal, cultural, andeducational institutions to reflect to some practical degree theracial and ethnic variety of its population. One of the reasons isoffered by Justice O'Connor: the very legitimacy of state institutionscomes under a cloud if important segments of the population—longexcluded from participating at the highest levels—remain on theoutside looking in. Another reason is emphasized by ElizabethAnderson: democratic governance draws nurture from inclusion ratherthan exclusion. If the leaders who frame the political agenda andshape public opinion remain uniformly white, the common good getsshortchanged; it isn't really common. Finally, racial and ethniccomity are harder to achieve when whites see a black or brown face ina position of leadership or power as a novelty rather than a commonplace. Thus, if states like Michigan have strong reasons for creating anintegrated stratum of leaders, they have strong reasons for makingsure that the universities that feed this stratum are themselvesintegrated.
Affirmative Action, Public Opinion, And Federalism | …
Opinion: The future of affirmative action
King -- who launched Operation Breadbasket in 12 American cities -- supported affirmative action because he never confused the dream with American reality.
Justices voice support for state affirmative action ban
Thus, preferential affirmative action in the workplace served thesame rationale as the non-preferential sort. Its purpose wasnot to compensate for past wrongs, offset unfair advantage,appropriately reward the deserving, or yield a varietyof social goods; its purpose was to change institutions so they couldcomply with the nondiscrimination mandate of the Civil Rights Act.