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Affirmative income

November 14, 2022

Considering race isn't the only way to achieve social justice. There's always the conservative form of affirmative action.

Milt Policzer

By Milt Policzer

Courthouse News columnist; racehorse owner and breeder; one of those guys who always got picked last.

Don’t despair, fans of college diversity and social justice. All is not lost now that the conservatives on the U.S. Supreme Court seem intent on doing away with affirmative action.

There’s a better way to spread social justice on campus. All you have to do is use an admissions criterion that no conservative can argue with: money.

Think about it. Schools with high tuitions discriminate against those who can’t afford it (or don’t want to go into permanent debt). Schools that admit “legacy” kids with parents who donate discriminate against kids with parents who had to scrap for a living. Heck, even schools that hand out scholarships discriminate against kids who don’t get scholarships.

All of the above use money — as opposed to race — as an admissions consideration.

Financial diversification makes more sense than racial diversification. You don’t promote social justice by favoring minority students who happen to come from wealthy families. You promote it by giving a break to people who need it.

If that happens to help minorities, well, so be it.

A conservative politician who really wants their kids to get into an Ivy League school can’t argue that money shouldn’t be a consideration for admission. Well, at least not with a straight face.

I know what some of you are thinking. There will be schools who decide that rich kids should get preference. True enough, but that’s happening anyway. The idea here is to give institutions that care about diversity a way of getting it.

I realize there are drawbacks to financial diversification. There will be desperate parents who try to hide their income. They’ll shop at Goodwill for clothes before taking campus tours and grit their teeth while resisting the urge to post vacation photos on Facebook.

Some of those parents will get away with it but most won’t. The temptation to ship nice clothes to school and pay for trips home will be too great. They will be exposed.

What about rich kids who don’t get a spot that’s filled with less-deserving poor kids?

Something tells me they’ll be all right.

Obvious scenario. I have to admit I don’t quite understand why people on the right are so against racial diversity — aside from, you know, racism.

Supposing they win the Supreme Court case. How is the winning side going to react when, in the near future, an incoming class at, say, Harvard, consists only of Asians and Jews based on grades and test scores?

We may be surprised to discover that the Founding Fathers originally intended some form of affirmative action.

Department of Irony. All heck may have broken loose over last week’s election by the time this gets read, but I have to make note of the deliciously ironic ruling last week just before the election from a Texas appeals court.

A conservative rich guy named Fredric Eshelman sued True the Vote Inc. and a bunch of other defendants to get his $2.5 million donation back because the defendants failed to find evidence of election fraud.

Why did he lose?

“Because there is no evidence that Eshelman’s gift was conditional….”

At least the guy in consistent about not needing evidence.

Another billionaire scamp. While many of you have been busy bashing one billionaire — Elon Musk — you may have missed some fun antics from another one — Richard Branson.

I refer you to a ruling last week from a federal judge in New York in which we learn that Virgin Galactic and/or its officers in July last year declared Branson’s space flight a “complete success.” This boosted the company’s stock price.

Unfortunately, the flight wasn’t quite so successful. There was enough of a flight path deviation that the Federal Aviation Administration stepped in to investigate.

Apparently, really rich guys can’t be trusted.

By the way, if you’ve even considered a space flight, I recommend you read this ruling. When you’re done, you’ll stop considering space flights.

Categories / Op-Ed

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