Magazine October 15, 2018, Issue

Harvard’s Discrimination Problem

One of the 25 gates to Harvard Yard at Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass., June 18, 2018 (Brian Snyder/Reuters)
A lawsuit against the university meets the incoherence of affirmative-action jurisprudence

Harvard stands accused of illegal discrimination against Asian Americans — an overrepresented minority. About a fifth of Harvard students are Asian, far outstripping Asians’ percentage of the overall population. But if the slots were given out solely on the basis of academic credentials, the number would be even higher.

This lawsuit, and several others like it, faces a long road ahead. First, judges will decide whether colleges are breaking the law as interpreted in a series of highly confusing previous Supreme Court decisions. Then, the Supreme Court itself may have an opportunity to revisit those rulings with a conservative majority. And

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A reader sympathizes with Rael Jean Isaac’s frustration in reporting on Frank Fuster’s plight (“The Last Victim,” September 10).

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