Affirmative Action aftermath…
In the aftermath of Proposal 2, (Michigan voters recently voted to ban affirmative action programs in higher education admissions, public employment, and contracting) the universities were in the middle of an admissions cycle and opponents of affirmative action wanted the admissions standards to change immediately upon passage of the proposal. This was profoundly absurd and should show how you much good would be achieved if the energy used to keep Black kids out of college were used to improve public K-12 education..
Fortunately however, “U.S. District Judge David Lawson…said it would be too disruptive to do away with affirmative action immediately because they have already begun accepting students for next fall.” The judge went on to say that the schools have until July 1st to come up with new admissions policies for the next round of admissions. That’s great, but here’s the thing, too many people sat on the sidelines waiting for Proposal 2 to pass and then say “I told you so.”
Therefore, if you are in school right now or know people that are, this is a critical time in our history for students to help formulate policies that can do effective and meaningful outreach while surviving the legal rigor of a political climate affirmative action as a free pass for Black folks. So for all my people who were involved in this fight in Michigan and across the nation, the true ugliness of this fight is after affirmative action is banned. Now is the time to make sure mechanisms and programs are in place to make sure that universities can to the best of their ability still reach out to students that are traditionally underrepresented in higher education.
So now you have two choices, you can 1) talk about how screwed up this country is and refrain from getting involved or you can 2) stand up and fight for justice while pulling up kids behind you that need an example of success and hope. So whether it is tutoring, mentoring, or doing recreational programs, get in the game. The other side wants us to waste all of our efforts on the nuances of policy but our kids futures are in the balance. This fight isn’t really about race; it is about who can and who cannot get access to quality education. And Black people as a whole are on the outside looking in. So stop staring at your degree and provide the spark that kids need to believe in their potential and seize the power of education by the bullhorns!