In today’s Pope Center Clarion Call, Jennifer Gratz — the successful plaintiff in the undergraduate case against the University of Michigan’s use of racial preferences in admissions — writes about the recently argued Fisher case. She argues that the Court should jettison the feeble idea behind the Grutter ruling (that it’s permissible to discriminate on the basis of race because doing so leads to great “educational benefits”) and return to the philosophy of Brown v. Board of Education. Public institutions should not play favorites among citizens just because of the happenstance of their ancestry.
She is right. The country shouldn’t have to wait out the 25 years Justice O’Connor suggested while letting college and university officials play with their schemes for shuffling students around in quest of nebulous “critical masses” and “balanced representation.” This kind of discrimination produces no good and cannot be justified.