Friday, July 13, 2007

One More Viewpoint on the Racial Tiebreaker

This op-ed piece was in today's PI. It's by Scott Barnhart, former School Board member.


Anonymous said...

Here is a letter to the editor on the same subject.

As long as there are rich people in America, as long as there are Christians in America, as long as there are corporations in America, and as long as there is a majority in America we will ALWAYS have discrimination.

We don't give a damn about fairness in America.

Fairness would mean a lot fewer golden parachutes. It would mean Paris Hilton, Michael Jackson, Tom Cruise, Jennifer Lopez, would get no more attention than my nextdoor neighbor, or me.

It would mean that there would be far fewer whites getting the jobs of their choice, the schools of their choice, the homes of their choice. There would be far fewer people doing the work Americans supposedly aren't willing to do because Americans would be doing it.

There would've been a Hindu, Buddhist, Rosicrucian, Jewish, Wiccan and Scientologist president by now.

When ALL other factors are taken into consideration and whites still are, as a percentage of the population, pay less for cars, are less likely to be convicted (a white of identical background against a black of identical background charged with the identical crime), are more likely as dropouts to get jobs than minority graduates just stop giving me the sob stories about disadvantaged whites being discriminated against.

In nearly every demographic whites have a clear advantage over everyone else that transcends their percentage of the population.

If this were truly about getting rid of discrimination there would be fewer white millionaires, more whites in prison, more whites in the unemployment lines, fewer whites in college and more whites complaining about the lack of quality educational opportunities from K-12 up through college.

Our system is currently disproportionately tilted towards white privilege. This is not and never has been about fairness or discrimination.

It is about preserving privilege.

When a minority doesn't get a job, it may or may not be discrimination.

When a minority does get a job, too many whites automatically reach the conclusion that it's because of preference, not, perhaps because the minority was the better-qualified candidate.

Getting rid of anti-discrimination laws does absolutely nothing to change that. All it guarantees is that when a white is unfairly hired, promoted, educated over a minority in this country that we will have guaranteed them far less legal remedy.

Truly getting rid of discrimination doesn't mean more whites getting opportunity. It means far more minorities getting opportunity because it means we will be free to consider all equally.

Our system is not better, or more equitable because it is treating whites the way they think they deserve to be treated even if it is demonstrably unfair. That's the big lie, the fallacy that is put forward every time a white claims discrimination.

Take the blinders off. Get off your preferential, deferential, privileged high horse and take a good long honest objective look at the United States of America.

What are you, white America, willing to give up to ensure a fair and equitable America?

Suppose Native Americans had so graciously extended you the same level of resentment and hostility you now extend to Latinos and Chicanos whose ancestors were here long before you arrived? And how exactly have they been repaid? Apparently nothing succeeds like exploitation.

What lines are you willing to wait at the back of? What land are you willing to give back? What profits are you willing to return? What seat are you willing to give up?

Not much? Anything but?

Yeah, that's what I thought.

Is this really about discrimination or about preservation of privilege?

Stop insulting the intelligence of every minority in America.

You are being asked to do, to put up with what minorities in America have had to do and put up with for centuries now. And are still putting up with.

Disgruntled? Fed up?

Take a number.

Mike Moore

Anonymous said...

Editor, The Times:

The best response to "Seattle's school parents vindicated" [Times guest column, July 12], Kathleen Brose's sad attempt at justification [of the Supreme Court ruling against racial tiebreakers in deciding school choice], comes from Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens in his dissent to the decision in the case:

"There is a cruel irony in the Chief Justice's [Roberts'] reliance on our decision in Brown v. Board of Education, the first sentence in the concluding paragraph of his opinion states: 'Before Brown, schoolchildren were told where they could and could not go to school based on the color of their skin.'

"The Chief Justice fails to note that it was only black schoolchildren who were so ordered; indeed, the history books do not tell stories of white children struggling to attend black schools. In this and other ways, the Chief Justice rewrites the history of one of this Court's most important decisions."

Justice Stevens added: "A re-writing, of course, which is crucial if you want to maintain that remedial racial classifications are precisely equivalent to racial classifications intended to subordinate a particular racial group."

Ms. Brose has left her children a legacy, but not the one she thinks.

— Larry Kimmett, Bellingham

Anonymous said...

Thos one really got me.

Comprehension suffers

English is a second language to me and thus now and then I expect to misunderstand certain statements that may appear obvious to others.

I read and reread what Kathleen Brose, of the Parents Involved in Community Schools organization, wrote [in "Seattle's school parents vindicated"] and it is obvious that she feels "vindicated" indeed, having worked so hard to make sure that all children not be "denied entrance to certain high schools because of the color of their skins."

Though I was going through similar race-relations turmoil in a land far, far away at the time, I was not in the U.S. in the '50s and during the civil-rights struggles of the '60s.

And so — and here is where the English-as-a-second-language problem may come in — were Brose's words not the ones used repeatedly during the struggle? Are Brose and Co. not deliberately throwing those words back at the struggle of those decades?

My hope is that I misunderstand as usual.

— Zenkosi Zulu, Seattle