SCOTUS Should Have Found That The University Of Texas’ Affirmative Action Plan Needed Fixing

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                    

Contact: Jennifer Farmer, 614.596.0432

jfarmer@advancementproject.org

June 24, 2013                                                

 

SUPREME COURT SHOULD HAVE FOUND THAT THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS' AFFIRMATIVE ACTION PLAN WAS SORELY NEEDED TO REMEDY ITS HISTORY OF EXCLUSION, SUSTAINED RACISM

This Statement Can Be Attributed to Advancement Project

 

Washington, DC – Today, the U.S. Supreme Court remanded to the Court of Appeals the University of Texas' race conscious admissions plan.  In response to this decision, Advancement Project Co-Director Penda Hair issued the following statement:

“Today, the Supreme Court found that the lower court should not have deferred to the University's decision to use race in its admissions process, and that neither the special mission of universities, nor the University of Texas' good faith reliance on Supreme Court precedence was enough to make the admissions plan constitutional.

"We are grateful the Supreme Court's decision continues to recognize that colleges and universities can use race to achieve their compelling interest in having a diverse student body.

However, the Court did not have to send the case back to the Court of Appeals, because as shown in Advancement Project's amicus brief filed in the case, the University's use of race was clearly necessary under even the most exacting standard.

“As Gerald Torres, Advancement Project’s founding board member and the Bryant Smith Chair in Law at the University of Texas School of Law has rightly stated: ‘Any suggestion that the University's use of race was not necessary ignores that the flagship public University in Texas was racially segregated for most of its existence. The University excluded applicants solely on account of race for most of its history, practiced segregation when forced to integrate in the 1950s, had a dormitory named after a member of the Ku Klux Klan until 2010, and continues to provide a chilly climate for students of color.  The current admissions process suffers none of those disabilities, but endeavors to make the University of Texas one that truly serves the whole state and the whole person.’

“Opponents of affirmative action may elect to pretend race and racism are not relevant in contemporary education.  In reality, racial equity in education is still an aspiration and our educational institutions must be allowed to confront disparities head-on.”