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ERIC Number: EJ780770
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Aug-23
Pages: 3
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1557-5411
Fight or Flight
Watson, Jamal
Diverse: Issues in Higher Education, v24 n14 p24-26 Aug 2007
Opponents of higher education affirmative action programs are gearing up to launch their largest attack in recent years. The planned assault comes in the wake of the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling that severely limited the use of race in K-12 integration plans. It was Ward Connerly, the chairman of the American Civil Rights Institute, a conservative organization based in Sacramento, California, that opposes racial and gender preferences, who orchestrated Proposition 209, a California ballot initiative that outlawed race and gender preferences in state hiring and university admissions. Now, he is leading a national effort aimed at placing similar anti-affirmative action initiatives on the November 2008 presidential ballot in Arizona, Colorado, Missouri, Nebraska and Oklahoma. The imminent assault on affirmative action has some wondering why more civil rights groups aren't actively strategizing a defense. One possible explanation is that the groups simply don't have the money necessary to mount an aggressive campaign. Dr. William F. Tate, the president of the American Educational Research Association and a professor of education at Washington University in St. Louis, predicts that Connerly's well-organized and well-financed effort will likely pass in Missouri. Connerly's group has raised millions of dollars and is planning to launch public service announcements in the battleground states aimed at convincing voters to abandon state-funded affirmative action programs. On the other hand, Theodore M. Shaw, the outgoing director-counsel and president of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, says that they are fighting tooth and nail against those like Ward Connerly who are trying to pretend that race no longer matters, and trying to declare themselves color blind before they have even finished the business of doing all that they can to create a society where race no longer defines not only who and what people are but the quality of their lives. He argues that minority students are the ones most affected by the rulings, not the plaintiffs or the institutions that are sued.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California
Identifiers - Laws, Policies, & Programs: Brown v Board of Education; Grutter et al v Bollinger et al; Proposition 209 (California 1996)