March 6, 1998 in City

Education, Not Quotas, Advances Fairness Fairly Violating Principle We Say It’s Wrong To Discriminate By Race, - Color And Perversely Do Just That.

By The Spokesman-Review
 

As Washington begins to wrestle with Initiative 200, the disingenuous Clinton administration is planning to enforce gender quotas in the college classroom.

According to Women’s Quarterly, the Justice Department is drafting regulations to police the number of men and women enrolled in every academic program. Forget merit. Forget fairness. Our “mend it, don’t end it” president is about to launch the Mother of All Affirmative Action Assaults.

No wonder the smitten National Organization for Women stands by Clinton, no matter what. It knows he will do anything to support quotas, preferences and set-asides. Initiative 200 and measures like it are needed to block government from such discrimination against anyone: black, brown, female, gay and even white males.

Reverse discrimination violates our core belief that a person should be judged as an individual, not by skin color, ethnicity or religion. It stigmatizes women and minorities who have succeeded through grit and hard work. It isn’t needed.

Quota police fret that Initiative 200’s grass-roots assault on affirmative action will lead us back to the dark ages of discrimination. As proof, they cite a decline in minority enrollment in some California college courses since voters there passed Initiative 209. But that drop-off simply underscores the need to address the real root problem, which is poor elementary and secondary education for minorities. Good education at all levels is the equalizer, not affirmative action.

In a Policy Review article, Anita K. Blair of the Independent Women’s Forum noted why women have progressed everywhere in the workplace: college. In 1960, only 19 percent of bachelor’s degrees went to women; by 1995, that figure had reached 55 percent. Today, half of all professionals are females and women hold nearly half of all managerial and executive positions.

The debate over Washington’s I-200 puts women in a tough spot. Quotas may favor their daughters but will hurt their sons. During the California campaign, a mother of three boys wrote to the San Francisco Chronicle: “I find affirmative action and the like racist and sexist. … Just as I am opposed to racism and sexism, I am opposed to this form of unequal opportunity toward our sons.”

Discrimination is wrong, no matter who’s the target.

, DataTimes MEMO: For opposing view see headline: A backward step we shouldn’t take

The following fields overflowed: SUPCAT = EDITORIAL, COLUMN - From both sides CREDIT = D.F. Oliveria/For the editorial board’s dissenters

For opposing view see headline: A backward step we shouldn’t take

The following fields overflowed: SUPCAT = EDITORIAL, COLUMN - From both sides CREDIT = D.F. Oliveria/For the editorial board’s dissenters

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