What with all the discussion and bickering going on in the Democratic presidential primaries over just what constitutes racism and who is engaging in it, I think it is appropriate to run this column from my friend Melanie Morgan, Chairwoman of Move America Forward, the country's largest pro-troop organization.
Melanie writes regularly for World Net Daily and forwarded me this weeks column for that organization with her permission to use it here.
Ideological idiots dumb down UC system
By Melanie Morgan
In 1996, California experienced an earthquake that jolted the education and political establishment as the UC Board of Regents voted in San Francisco to end racial discrimination in college admissions. I was broadcasting live from UCSF when the historic vote came down. Immediately, the liberal establishment went ballistic, accusing conservatives who pushed the measure of racism, the standard tactic of the left.
After all the bombast, an even larger aftershock was felt as California voters then passed Proposition 209, the "California Civil Rights Initiative," which cemented the push for color-blind admissions into the state's colleges and universities. Voters in 51 of the state's 58 counties supported the measure, which was the brainchild of then-University of California Regent Ward Connerly.
At a time when reverse discrimination and race-identity politics were flaming hot in California, Ward Connerly's ballot measure was brilliant in its cool simplicity.
The racial identity politics crowd orchestrated marches in the streets, demanding equality for all people, while advancing inequitable programs and regulations such as quotas and mandates that showcased a deep hypocrisy in their souls.
So Connerly said to the public: Let's just evaluate people based on their abilities and proven record of success.
It was then that we got to see the true nature of the social engineering crowd, fueled by race-obsessed liberals. Undermining Prop 209 has been a cottage industry for the left ever since its passage, and now these leftists are within spitting distance of defying the will of the people once more. We have but a few week's time to stop them.
The University of California Board of Regents will be considering a proposal to change freshman admissions standards at their UC Regents meeting that takes place July 15-17.
The new proposal would create an end-around California's Proposition 209 by lowering admissions standards and providing fewer opportunities for high-performing students across the state. Merit and potential are taking a back seat as liberal educrats tell some of the best students of the state that they will be denied an education at the top-drawer UC system – their spot given to someone with lower grades and lower test scores.
Currently, students applying to the UC system whose high school GPA is in the top 12.5 percent of students statewide have an admissions guarantee. Under the new proposal, the guarantee would apply to students in the top 12.5 percent of their school, not statewide.
This means that students who are struggling academically, but have the "good fortune" to go to a low-performing school, will be given preferential treatment over smarter students at better schools.
Can you imagine the dilemma that will face parents as they decide whether deliberately to put their first-graders into bad schools so they will have a better shot at one day going to college?
I am writing about this situation because my own 17-year-old son is going through the college application process himself (Mommy migraines abound), and while he has pretty decent grades with a GPA of 3.7, he is not going to the top-tier UC school of his choice. So if his spot is given to a Latino, African-American or Asian-American student, or a student of any color with better grades, then I think the system is working pretty well.
The Regents apparently see things differently.
They also plan to call for more dumbing down of the requirements for admission exams. Currently, students are required to take two SAT Subject Tests as part of the application process. Gallingly, under the new proposal, the Subject Test requirement would be eliminated, and ironically, this creates a new obstacle toward admittance for thousands of eligible Asian-American, Black and Latino students.
The proposal would open admissions to students who complete as little as 73 percent of specified standards for admission certified by UC at each high school, with a minimum GPA of 2.8.
The bottom line is this – liberal education bureaucrats are setting into place a plan to punish kids who succeed, and instead rewarding youngsters who will be set-up to fail in the highly competitive UC system.
It's a disgrace, it's not fair and it's a shameless diminishment of our education system. These so-called geniuses in the education field are running a campaign to fool us into thinking that "diversity" is more important than educational quality, but I am hoping that parents in California (and across the country) are smarter than these ideological idiots.
Speaking of dumb ideas, at the University of California San Diego, administrators are complaining that too many students are opting not to identify their ethnicity when applying.
Good for them. If the goal of living in a color-blind society in America is focused on rewarding merit and achievement, regardless of race, ethnicity or gender, then that is how we should conduct our affairs.
We must be blind to the color of people's skins. We must be concerning ourselves instead with the goodness of the heart, the content of our character and the soundness of our minds.
That was Martin Luther King's dream in 1963. It remains my dream today.
Saturday, May 17, 2008