Many White students believed that race-based affirmative action in college admissions discriminated against them.

In an expected decision, the United States Supreme Court essentially ended affirmative action in admissions at colleges.

The 6-3 decision, however, will allow college applicants to explain how race and racism has contributed to their life story.

Many on the political right praised the decision believing it will lead to strictly merit-based college admissions.

However, many on the political left criticized the court’s decisions believing that to achieve a truly colorblind society, it will take more than the words of six Supreme Court justices.

Chief Justice John Roberts wrote the majority opinion, which centered on affirmative action policies at Harvard University and the University of North Carolina (UNC) in Chapel Hill, N.C.

Justice Roberts wrote, “The Harvard and UNC admissions programs cannot be reconciled with the guarantees of the Equal Protection Clause. Both programs lack sufficiently focused and measurable objectives warranting the use of race, unavoidably employ race in a negative manner, involve racial stereotyping, and lack meaningful end points. We have never permitted admissions programs to work in that way, and we will not do so today.”

Conservative Justices Clarence Thomas, Brett Kavanaugh, Amy Coney Barrett, Neil Gorsuch and Samuel Alito joined Roberts in voting to overturn affirmative action efforts in college admissions.

Ariane de Vogue, Devan Cole and Tierney Sneed of CNN reported, “The majority opinion claims that the court was not expressly overturning prior cases authorizing race-based affirmative action and suggested that how race has affected an applicant’s life can still be part of how their application is considered. But even if the court did not formally end race-based affirmative action in higher education, its analysis will make it practically impossible for colleges and universities to take race into account…”

Many scholars believe that having a racially diverse student-body creates a more holistic educational experience because students, and faculty for that matter, get a chance to learn from people from diverse backgrounds.

That experience, many believe, will help young adults transition into the workplace and into the “real world.”

Many college students come from backgrounds that are not diverse, so the college experience might be the first opportunity that some get to be exposed to other cultures and experiences.

Furthermore, Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) often do not have diverse student bodies.

Many HBCUs have actively recruited White, Hispanic, Native American and Asian students to attend their schools, often offering scholarships.

The Supreme Court’s decision on Sept. 29 should effectively put an end to that practice as well.

Liberal Justices Ketanji Brown-Jackson, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan joined in the dissent of the Supreme Court decision, saying that it “rolls back decades of precedent and momentous progress.”

In the dissent, Justice Sotomayor wrote, “The result of (yesterday’s) decision is that a person’s skin color may play a role in assessing individualized suspicion, but it cannot play a role in assessing that a person’s individualized contributions to a diverse learning environment. That indefensible reading of the Constitution is not grounded in law and subverts the Fourteenth Amendment’s guarantee of equal protection.”

While affirmative action opponents believe that taking race into account in college admissions discriminates against White and Asian Americans, many supporters of race-based affirmative action believe that taking race into accounts levels the playing field.

Many African-American students come from lower-income communities and schools with less resources than some of their more affluent White counterparts.

Because many African-American students do not come from wealthy parents, many cannot take advantage of standardized test preparation courses or private tutors, which is a luxury that some of their White and Asian counterparts have.

The African-American and White wealth gap in this country can be attributed to centuries of slavery, convict leasing, discrimination in housing and banking and the outright theft of property owned by African-Americans.

A lack of wealth in the African-American community can lead to a lack of resources while growing up, which contributes to the achievement gap.

Additionally, wealth has created an even more lopsided playing field, according to some, because many schools often grant admission to students whose parents have donated large sums of money to the institution or students who parents or grandparents have attended the university.

The practice of granting admission to second and their generation students is known as the legacy program.

Many critics of the legacy program have called the practice affirmative action for rich and elite White students because in many cases the parents and grandparents of minority students could not attend many schools because of segregation.

As a result of the affirmative action decision, many schools and legacy critics have vowed to end legacy programs because they believe it is unfair to students whose parents did not attend those schools.

Sotomayor added, “The devastating impact of this decision cannot be overstated…As has been the case before in the history of American democracy, ‘the arc of the moral universe’ will bend toward racial justice despite the Court’s efforts to impede its progress…”

Justice Brown-Jackson wrote, “deeming race irrelevant in law does not make it so in life.”

The only Black woman on the bench said her conservative colleagues have a “let-them-eat-cake obliviousness” and that the ruling announced, “colorblindness for all by legal fiat.”

The newest Supreme Court justice added that the majority has “detached itself from this country’s actual past and present experiences.”

She added that “no one benefits from ignorance.”

Nevertheless, schools like Harvard said that they will look for loopholes in the ruling that will still allow them to fulfill their desire for a diverse student body.

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