DOJ targets affirmative action
Nigel Roberts, NewsOne | 8/2/2017, 10:46 a.m.
If President Donald Trump (who has benefited from White privilege his entire life) has his way, college campuses will become less racially diverse.
The New York Times reports that the administration and the Justice Department are exploring ways to pressure institutions of higher education to end affirmative action based admissions policies that “discriminate against White applicants.”
According to a document obtained by the newspaper, an internal DOJ announcement to the department’s civil rights division seeks lawyers to work on the project.
Under the project, the attorneys would conduct “investigations and possible litigation related to intentional race-based discrimination in college and university admissions.”
The coded language doesn’t identify the race of students harmed by the intentional discrimination. But as The Times noted, the intention is to target admission strategies that promote diversity and benefit Black and Hispanic students.
Vanita Gupta, who ran the DOJ’s civil rights division during the Obama administration, told The Times that there’s a reason the administration is using political appointees in the DOJ to lead the project instead of handing it to career officials in the Education Department.
“The fact that the position is in the political front office, and not in the career section that enforces anti-discrimination laws for education, suggests that this person will be carrying out an agenda aimed at undermining diversity in higher education without needing to say it,” she stated.
For conservatives, this move is long overdue. Roger Clegg, who worked in the DOJ’s civil rights division in the Reagan and Bush administrations, told The Times that civil rights laws were intended to protect everyone. He said admissions policies often discriminate against Whites and Asians.
The U.S. Supreme Court upheld race-conscious college admissions policies in a 2016 case, ruling that race can be one factor among others in the selection process.