The Sotomayor hearings and the Ricci decision have precipitated a pushback on affirmative action bigger than anything we’ve seen before. The true nature of the policy is emerging clearly and is arousing greater opposition. The practice has nothing to do with justice, but uses the language of fairness, equality, openness, and other American ideals to push a system of group entitlements for minorities at the expense of individuals who are for the most part whites. Since their usual arguments have been stripped from them, affirmative-action supporters are reduced to spouting anti-white contempt and ridicule, as we see in the quotations from Maureen Dowd and Frank Rich cited by Mark below, and as evinced in this cartoon.
Justice Ginsburg’s dissent in the Ricci
decision also reveals the ugly face of affirmative action, but in another way. This dissent could have been fashioned by a Soviet commissar. Ginsburg’s Gratz
dissent and Grutter
concurrence are also imbued with that quality, and in Ricci
she reaches the apex. In all these opinions, she bases her reasoning entirely on statistical disparities and past discrimination (actually disallowed by the courts), in order to encourage class divisiveness and advance minority entitlements. Whites in her view are as good as non-persons. They have no standing whatsoever in her eyes, because they belong to the despised overclass.
For Ginsburg, the fact that some groups have higher scores is proof of nothing except the discriminatory nature of the tests being used, and all tests must be refashioned to yield proportional or close-to-proportional statistical outcomes. There is no such thing as merit or different levels of skills or achievement.
Through her opinions on race, joined by other leftist members of the court, Ginsburg is trying to lay a foundation for group rights in the Constitution. In this scenario, equal opportunity means equal outcome, and equal protection of the law means discrimination in favor of some groups over others. She distances herself from the Court’s opinion in Grutter
that race preferences are dangerous, violative of the import of the 14th Amendment, and should be limited in duration. Her vision of America is one of racial and tribal socialism, and if continued preferences are needed to achieve that, the Constitution must permit it.
At some point, if the demographics change sufficiently, affirmative-action supporters may be able to leave off of their tortured defenses completely and just claim their spoils. But that time is not yet and that time may never come. According to Ward Connerly in an article
in the Christian Science Monitor
When viewed in the context of other public events, such as the action of the Arizona Legislature to place an initiative on the 2010 Statewide Ballot to end race and ethnic preferences, and a host of public-opinion polls that confirm overwhelming public opposition to race preferences, the Ricci decision suggests that we are witnessing the beginning of the end of affirmative action preferences.