Affirmative Action : Discrimination And Ethnicity Essay

1459 WordsDec 21, 20166 Pages
Lucia Lopez Intro to Philosophy Professor Gill Affirmative Action In “Arguing Affirmative Action,” Harvard professor Michael J. Sandel discusses the arguments that have arisen from the entry of affirmative action into practice. Affirmative action refers to admission policies, in this case put into effect by universities, that provide equal access to education for groups that have been historically excluded or underrepresented, such as women and minorities. In his essay, Sandel asks whether it is unjust to consider race and ethnicity as factors in university admissions. He expresses the argument that using race and ethnicity as factors are not effective in achieving the goals of affirmative action, and that other criteria such as economic class would help more students in need. I disagree with this argument and instead believe that it is just for race/ethnicity to be a factor in college admissions. One of the reasons affirmative action has been put into practice in universities is to, as Sandel puts it, “compensate for past wrongs.” This means that because minorities have been historically discriminated against, they are at an unfair disadvantage and affirmative action serves to give these students equal standing in admissions. Sandel points out, however, that those who benefit from affirmative action are not necessarily those who suffered. For example, a white student who has experienced economic struggle might not have been admitted to a university while a black student
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