July 1st, 2011
04:31 PM ET

Michigan ban on considering race in college admissions struck down

A divided federal appeals court has struck down Michigan's ban on consideration of race and gender in college admissions.

The issue is likely to renew the national political and legal debate over affirmative action, which the Supreme Court could be poised to resolve in coming months.

The 6th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Friday concluded in a 2-1 ruling that the voter-approved ban on "preferential treatment" at state colleges and universities was unconstitutional, and "alters Michigan's political structure by impermissibly burdening racial minorities."

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Filed under: Civil Rights • Education • Michigan
soundoff (453 Responses)
  1. lala

    They're not saying minorities can't get in bc they're not as smart, but since many blacks live below the poverty level their high schools might not be as equipped to give them the education they need. Where you live and income does decide a lot of things. It's harder to move up in social classes than some might think, what you're born into is usually what you stay in. Past racism, discrimination, and laws set forth in our country has had a trickle down effect even today on a lot of minority groups. Just look at how hard it is for people who do have money to switch schools due to laws set forth about districts and locations, now imagine how hard it is for someone with little money.

    July 1, 2011 at 4:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sirsean

      So why dont they just use income as a factor not race?

      July 1, 2011 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • duh...winning

      Please..I grew up on a farm and was very poor. The teachers at my school passed us even if we were never in the class. I graduated with a 1.8 GPA and had no help in paying for college, I paid for it by myself or took out student loans and yes, paid them back. I now was part of the great layoff years and everyday watch people get jobs only because of the color of their skin. Yes I am a white, middle aged male. The most discriminated race out there but nobody says a word about it and there is nothing I can do but get another college degree but cannot because I don't have a group to go to that helps white people only.

      July 1, 2011 at 5:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • mp


      You'll end up with basically the same pool of students...

      July 1, 2011 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • wow

      right.....so if we hire people based on their resumes and not based on their ethnicity....why would we admit people to a school on any other principle? This is complete stupidity. My grandfather grew up dirt poor and had nothing in south Georgia. Why should a minority from the projects in downtown Atlanta have any advantage over him?

      July 1, 2011 at 5:53 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Jim

    So if I understand the Justices, racism is required to prevent racism. Is sort of like killing someone to prevent their untimely death? One Last Question: Since when do they allow Justices to smoke pot?

    July 1, 2011 at 4:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • b

      Or maybe it's this way: If someone steals something, the government can later "steal" it back and give it to the victim.

      July 1, 2011 at 4:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • rep

      war is sometimes necessary for peace, no?

      July 1, 2011 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • .Carex

      Hey Jim, perhaps you should take off you pointed white hat

      July 1, 2011 at 5:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • b

      Another analogy: Two people are running a foot race. One guy swings the back of his fist into the face of the runner next to him, knocking him flat on the ground. An official stops the race and say "OK, no more face bashing". Does the official just restart the race with one guy 10 meters back and a bleeding face, with no penalty to the first guy? Or is it fair to send the face smasher 20 meters back behind?

      If blacks were held down for 200 years, would it be fair to hold whites down for 200 years and then call it even?

      July 1, 2011 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • nojustice

      The problem with most all statements here is the fact that these programs were put in place to right a wrong. After hundreds of years of discriminating against minorities I feel a hundred years of favorable treatment is justice. Most universities give alumni special treatment, how can people who weren't allowed to attend colleges take advantage of that? so who has really been getting special treatment?

      July 1, 2011 at 5:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • Newo

      Apparently by b's logic to right a wrong one must punish people that were not alive 200 years ago by benefitting people not alive 200 years ago. Perhaps we should take this a step further and enslave the descendants of the Egyptians that once enslaved the Jew's ancestors? OR we can just do some serious geneology retracing to determine which Africans sold their fellow Africans into slavery and go ahead and make those guys slaves?
      Logical. Fallacy.

      July 1, 2011 at 6:15 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Chris

    Racism is never ever justifed as should be obvious so it is disturbing there there are some who want to promote racism by giving blacks a free pass because of the color of their skin. Racism will only divide and cause more racism overall. It's a very bad idea to promote affirmitive action. If you favor a race over another race eventually the race that was discriminated against, "whites in this case" will want revenge, it can be through many ways even up to violence.

    July 1, 2011 at 4:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • lala

      i think the sad part is we assume solely bc someone got chosen bc of their skin it's due to the fact they're getting a 'free pass' and are 'lazy'. we're assuming it's a black kid and that they can't meet the qualifications compared to a white kid. let's see if white people will want this in 50 years when they won't be the majority

      July 1, 2011 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Cedar Rapids

      There are some colleges that are actually using 'affirmative action' these days to pick more guys as women now make up over 60% of the students in those colleges.

      July 1, 2011 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • DeAguaDulce

      Wayne State University works very hard with the city of Detroit to make sure that inner-city kids can get into the university, which has meant dumbing down the freshmenn level classes. Even with that, the Detroit Public Schools are so bad that many of its graduates still cannot cut it in college and end up dropping out. So, in the end, everybody suffers. The lower standards ahve done nothing to help.

      July 1, 2011 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • pedestrian

      OH NOES! I sure hope that the white people don't become resentful and feel unfavorably toward brown people. It would be the first time ever in America! We'd better do whatever makes white people happy. Everyone else can wait.

      P.S. Racism = Prejudice + Power. It isn't just about acknowledging differences, it is about the whole SYSTEM that keeps some people at a disadvantage. If you think that the disadvantaged people are white, you need to put down the crack pipe and take a walk outside.

      July 1, 2011 at 5:22 pm | Report abuse |
  4. someoneelse

    It's not about equality anymore, and the minorities know it. It's only a matter of time when the majority is close enough to becoming a minority that we start putting minorities back in the place they belong, as equals with ONE vote each.

    July 1, 2011 at 4:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • Cedar Rapids

      ' that we start putting minorities back in the place they belong, as equals with ONE vote each.'

      and that sweeping statement about minorities shows why such things as affirmative action was required.

      July 1, 2011 at 4:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Seola

      Wow Cedar... thanks for proving the posters point. Nice reading comprehension. You realize the point you made was racist right?

      July 1, 2011 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • Cedar Rapids

      'Seola – Wow Cedar... thanks for proving the posters point. Nice reading comprehension. You realize the point you made was racist right?'

      You are correct that I misunderstood his original meaning, but how did that prove the poster's point and make mine racist? If you know I misunderstood his comment then you must therefore know the context I meant it in.

      July 1, 2011 at 5:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Seola

      The posters point that minorities expect more voice than the rest of us. Your comment against the poster was racist because you assumed off a keyword or two, when you put affirmative action back then as needed and to have a bigger count, yet the comment was about our future.

      July 1, 2011 at 5:11 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Dani

    Really??? So do our own merits count for anything these days? Well Obama did become president and got awards for???

    July 1, 2011 at 4:56 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Bgrngod

    So a kid of one color who is better qualified should be excluded from consideration so a kid of another color with lesser qualifications can be considered?

    No matter which kid is which color, that is racism plain and simple.

    July 1, 2011 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Dana P

    Sorry, guys, but you really should trying READING THE ORIGINAL VERDICT. It's online, unless you are not capable of using Google. The judges have said NOTHING about intellegence. Where do you all get off?? The verdict specifically mentions a burden. FACT: Most minoities applying to State schools are poor. Most of them are first generation HIGH SCHOOL graduates, much less COLLEGE applicants. These kids are coming from disadvantaged families and disadvantaged schools. How on earth are they suppose to compete on the face of their application with a kid that came from a well-funded school, played football, was chess-club leader, and runs his own non-profit recycling center? You all need to put yourself in the school of a child that is trying with all his might just to finish his homework after working an after-school shift at McDonalds.

    July 1, 2011 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • Seola

      Cause all white people are extremely rich. .. there *are* poor white kids, who worked just as hard that have no chance because of the governments "quota" for affirmative action and funding for the school. The states university systems all have plenty of room for more than just the "rich kid" you try to paint all white people as. The problem comes when a white kid with better grades and more commitment ends up not getting *any* education so that a black kid with worse grades applies just so the college can get the extra cash.

      July 1, 2011 at 5:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Robert

      You know there are poor white people too. What about them?

      July 1, 2011 at 5:04 pm | Report abuse |
  8. jeff

    The anti-white establishment will stop at nothing to destroy, disenfranchise and discriminate against my race. Time to send a message, us whites are mad as hell and we are not going to take it anymore.

    No one is going to Korea and saying "we're going to create a blended humanity in only Korea"

    No one is going to Saudi Arabia and saying "we're going to create a blended humanity in only Saudi Arabia"

    Only white countries are doing it, Only Anti-White politicians are supporting it, it's genocide.

    July 1, 2011 at 4:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • Cedar Rapids

      hyperbole much?

      July 1, 2011 at 4:59 pm | Report abuse |
  9. bill in Albuquerque

    reverse discrimination

    July 1, 2011 at 4:59 pm | Report abuse |
  10. White People are Mad

    Why u so mad white people?

    July 1, 2011 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Indigo

      Y u so ignorant OP. I think you and me both know what OP is. It starts with Glorious and ends with Winged F*ggot.

      July 1, 2011 at 5:26 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Goodgod

    This is crazy... I'm tired of being punished because I am white.

    July 1, 2011 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • lala

      yeah you're def discriminated against in a country where anything white is the norm and 'american' and anyone that isn't that has to hyphenate


      etc etc

      July 1, 2011 at 5:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Seola

      lala – so named because you've got your fingers in your ears?

      July 1, 2011 at 5:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ras

      Until you can walk a mile in a minority's shoes, don't presume to judge. You don't know what its like.

      July 1, 2011 at 5:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • Seola

      Ras – and they don't know what it's like to be white. And I don't know what it's like to be male... and so on. What's the point, that no one else can sympathize or feel slighted (for any race) because we aren't one?

      July 1, 2011 at 5:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Goodgod

      In my part of Atlanta I am the minority... I deal with it everyday. I wait in line while the black clerk handles all the black customers first... I have no voice because everywhere I go I am a racist biggot before I open my mouth. I have been the victim of a racist hate crime where the defendants walked. I deal with it.

      July 1, 2011 at 5:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sirsean

      I am European American LALA... i dont know what you are talking about. STOP CALLING ME WHITE!! I AM EURO AMERICAN FOOL.... btw its the minorities that insisted on being called "African Americans" or "Latino Americans". I guess simply being called Blacks or Browns made them mad.

      July 1, 2011 at 5:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • wow

      hey lala-
      you know what name for your race isn't hyphenated?

      July 1, 2011 at 5:42 pm | Report abuse |
  12. SOobvious

    What the judges are saying is: If they don't make the colleges play fair, they'll just admit "their own kind" so to speak. You would have to be a very ignorant minority to believe that they(whites) would treat you fair without someone making them do it. I have no heart understanding mankind in situation thats legalize O.J. Simpson. lol

    July 1, 2011 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Seola

      Why does it matter... no one gives "us whites" a chance to show the vast majority really could care less. There are black groups out there that are racist. They don't speak for all blacks. The only reason such open racism exists is because it's profitable. I'd hire a respectable black or Hispanic person for my business (if I ever actually get to expand) just as easily as I would a white person. Once I got a workforce, I'd get government kickbacks for hiring minorities – is that fair? No, but you can bet I'd take advantage of it! The best person for the job is truly what matters most (that and the negative PR that could come with openly discriminating would probably factor in).

      July 1, 2011 at 5:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • SOobvious

      I believe you when you say you would hire a qualified minority. Can you honestly say that would be the case for the rest?

      July 1, 2011 at 5:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Matthew

      What the judges are saying is: If they don't make the colleges play fair, they'll just admit "their own kind" so to speak.

      "Their own kind?" You mean smart people who work hard?

      July 1, 2011 at 6:00 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Josh

    Way to go Michigan!

    July 1, 2011 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
  14. shan22044

    Some of the people here need to review the definition of racism. And since when do minorities get more than one vote?

    July 1, 2011 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Dave

    All of these posts are assuming that racism doesn't exist and that race has no impact on whether a person is accepted into college. It's safe to say that racism is still alive and well in this country and there are still situations where minorities get the short end of the stick if all other things are equal. This "affirmative action" safeguard is in place to reduce the likelihood that racism is the reason a person is denied admission.

    July 1, 2011 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Goodgod

      Affirmative action weakens us as a whole. It handicaps businesses who are forced to hire people who may not provide the best performance thus weakening businesses ability to compete. This hurts the US from all angles.

      July 1, 2011 at 5:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • farlance

      racism will never go away as long as affirmative action exists. Wonder what MLK would think of AA? Didnt he say something about people only being judged by the content of their character.

      July 1, 2011 at 6:29 pm | Report abuse |
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