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Affirmative Action

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The roots of affirmative action can be traced back to the

passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act where legislation redefined

public and private behavior. The act states that to discriminate in

private is legal, but anything regarding business or public

discrimination is illegal ("Affirmative" 13). There are two instances

when opposing affirmative action might seem the wrong thing to do.

Even these two cases don't justify the use of affirmative action.

First is the nobility of the cause to help others. Second,

affirmative action was a great starter for equality in the work place.

The most promanite variable in deciding affirmative action as right

or wrong, is whether or not society is going to treat people as groups

or individuals. Affirmative action is a question of morals. The

simplicity to form two morals that are both correct but conflicting is

the reason for the division of our nation on affirmative action.

Affirmative action is very noble when looking at who benefits

from the outcome. Take a closer look at affirmative action. The

people that are involved and the damage it takes on our society

surfaces many doubts. Taking a closer look also stirs up a question

of nobility that needs to be answered before making a decision on

affirmative action. Does affirmative action simply change who is

discriminated against and makes it legal for the new discriminators?

Coming from my point of view, the view of a white male, this

is a serious question. One example of this came to my attention from

Dave Shiflett who once worked at Rocky Mountain News wrote "Rocky

Mountain Hire". In this article he tells about a new hiring strategy

used at the Denver news paper Rocky Mountain News. A memo was sent

out stating, "The job reviews of supervisors and others involved in

hiring should address race and sex. Each review should have a hiring

goal of at least half of our hires being women and at least half

non-white" (Shiflett 45). Lets put this strategy to work. We have

ten positions to fill, these positions can be filled following the

above guidelines by hiring five black women. It can also be met by

hiring five white women and five non-white men. Obviously to meet

this goal successfully would mean to not hire a white male (Shiflett

45). I strongly disagree with my white fore fathers and society today

who both address race and sex when hiring. Using a persons skin color

in hiring is discrimination no matter how society looks at it.

At St. Bonaventure University the potential for reverse

discrimination became a reality. In May 1994, 22 faculty members were

fired, all were male. The president of the university was very blunt

about his motive, to protect the small number of women on the

university staff (Magner 18). This was purely a discussion based on

gender not qualification. No matter how efficient these men were some

were fired for not being part of a certain minority. Gary A. Abraham,

who was fired as a tenured associate professor stated, "It seems

ludicrous that the university can rectify its failure to engage in

affirmative action on the backs of its male faculty." Twelve of the

men took their complaints to the US Equal Employment Opportunity

Commission. The commission sided with the men and are even planning

to bring the university up on charges themselves (Magner 18). Giving

an employer the power to discriminate only towards minorities is

unfair and unethical.

Now the question is who will the government protect? Society

can not consider its self fair when we are still forming decisions

based upon gender or race. It is not noble to protect the jobs of

women at Bonaventure University simply there are not enough women on

the roster. We should protect the jobs of the experienced. We can

not form a new society from affirmative action and believe the rights

of all United States citizens will be upheld.

The whole idea behind affirmative action is to right the

wrongs of the past. Well, what about the individuals that were not

even born when this atrocity of discrimination was going on. Society

should not punish the youth for the crimes of their white male

forefathers. Thomas Sowell gave an interesting story in his article

"Free Markets vs. Discrimination" about Albert Greuner. He had

graduated from Pensacola Naval photography school and



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