NO ADVERTISING, GOVERNMENT OR CORPORATE FUNDING
DONATE TODAY


  April 23, 2014

Affirmative Action Ruling Will Further Racial Inequality


Bruce Dixon: The Supreme Court decision furthers institutional advantages of whites under the guise of colorblindness
Members don't see ads. If you are a member, and you're seeing this appeal, click here
   

Audio

Share to Facebook Share to Twitter



I support The Real News Network because it is one of the few remaining political voices of the people. - David Pear
Log in and tell us why you support TRNN


biography

Bruce Dixon is the managing editor of the Black Agenda Report. He has had an extensive career as a union activist in a string of factories, plants and workplaces. He is also the co-chair of the Georgia Green Party.


transcript

Affirmative Action Ruling Will Further Racial InequalityANTON WORONCZUK, TRNN PRODUCER: Welcome to The Real News Network. I'm Anton Woronczuk in Baltimore.

The Supreme Court has upheld a ban on affirmative action in admission policies at the University of Michigan. The decision was made on space six-to-two vote and adds Michigan to seven other states who ban race as a factor in college admissions.

Here to discuss this is Bruce Dixon. Bruce is the managing editor of the Black Agenda Report.

Thanks for joining us, Bruce.

BRUCE DIXON, MANAGING EDITOR, BLACK AGENDA REPORT: Thanks for inviting me.

WORONCZUK: So, Bruce, let's put this in the history of recent Supreme Court decisions on affirmative action policies and racial inequality.

DIXON: Well, what the Supreme Court has done here is a couple of things. On the one hand, they've done a sort of 21st-century Plessy v. Ferguson on this. Plessy v. Ferguson, of course, was the decision more than 100 years ago now that ratified and made legal segregation in all kinds of public places and conveyances.

And as a result of these decisions that we've got here, the military and corporations are going to be free to retain their affirmative action programs, because, of course, the military needs black admirals and black generals. They're all over Africa and they're all over the Third World invading things and subverting things. Corporations have to sell their goods and steal the resources of oil and timber and whatnot around the world, so they too need black and brown and women's faces. But in all the institutions that are directly accountable to white American voters, the Supreme Court has enabled those institutions to set aside affirmative action programs and to continue to give whites preferential treatment as long as they can do it under the guise of color blindness. And in that way they've made this a political football. And so they can pretend that they're just succumbing to the will of the people. But, of course, when we're talking about social forces that are already in motion, already in play, neutrality is choosing a side too.

WORONCZUK: Now, let me read you a quotation from Sonia Sotomayor's dissent. She wrote, quote, "The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to speak openly and candidly on the subject of race, and to apply the Constitution with eyes open to the unfortunate effects of centuries of racial discrimination."

So how has this history of discrimination in the U.S. prevented students of color and minorities from having access to things like higher education?

DIXON: Our ruling class and our nativeborn [racists] here have proved very genius at devising ways to privilege white people and to punish minorities in the realm of education. We've got standardized tests which purport to measure student achievement or IQ or whatever but almost invariably favor students from families with higher incomes. We've got the tests that firemen and policemen are given around the country, and especially with fire departments around the country. Fire stations have been a haven for working-class white men to get privileged jobs and to maintain these preferences generation after generation, even after the cities around them have turned a majority black and Latino. So there are just endless numbers of ways to subvert any attempts at equality.

And the Supreme Court and the rest of the U.S. establishment has embraced the hypocritical notion that race-conscious remedies to racism are racism themselves or something that they call reverse racism. So the Supreme Court has just embraced that entire corrupt piece of reasoning and made this a political football and made anything that's accessible to white voters immune from claims of racial justice and claims that it ought to be dealt out equally.

WORONCZUK: Now, I've read in response to the decision that some have argued that we need to move away from race-based policies and, affirmative action and more towards class and income-based forms of affirmative action, basically arguing that it's class and not race that's the determining factor here. What would you say in response to that argument?

DIXON: That would have a lot of merit if race were not so awfully and totally intertwined with class, as it is in the United States. Race is often a stand-in for class, and sometimes class is a stand-in for race. And the people who say that, the forces who say that, are definitely not advocates of the right of lower-class black people to get [incompr.] public educations. You know. So this is just totally hypocritical and a way to avoid accountability for racial discrimination. It's also a totally hypocritical construct to suppose that race-based remedies to discrimination are racism themselves, but it is a hypocritical construct that a large portion of the white American polity has embraced. So be it.

WORONCZUK: Bruce Dixon, managing editor of Black Agenda Report. Thank you so much for joining us.

DIXON: Thank you for having me.

WORONCZUK: And thank you for joining us on The Real News Network.

End

DISCLAIMER: Please note that transcripts for The Real News Network are typed from a recording of the program. TRNN cannot guarantee their complete accuracy.



Comments

Our automatic spam filter blocks comments with multiple links and multiple users using the same IP address. Please make thoughtful comments with minimal links using only one user name. If you think your comment has been mistakenly removed please email us at contact@therealnews.com

latest stories

Turkey's Regional Ambitions Fuel Attacks Within its Own Borders
French Labor Law, Brexit, and Greek Austerity: Class War Against European Workers
Tired of Tax Breaks, Baltimore Activists Disrupt Developer Fete
Resurgence in Left Politics in Mexico Following Oaxaca Teachers Strike Massacre
Brexit and the Fate of the United Kingdom
Riot Police Confront Mourners of Slain Baltimore Rapper Lor Scoota
The Corbyn No-Confidence Vote and the Bleeding of the Labour Party
Breaking Through Power: Shawn Armbrust on the Conviction of Innocent People, and Making the Justice System More Just
Clinton Appointees to DNC Platform Didn't Support Positions Clinton Claims To Hold
Brexit sends Europe into Political and Economic Crises
Clinton Forces Dominate DNC Platform, Demolishing Key Sanders Issues
Supreme Court Strikes Down Texas's Repressive Anti-Abortion Bill
Imagine a Decentralized Movement, Independent of the DNC, with a Hundred Times the Fundraising and Volunteer Power - People for Bernie Co-Founder
The Laura Flanders Show: Beyond Bernie: Socialism and the Struggle Against Capitalism
Lapavitsas: The Left Needs to Develop an Alternative Plan for Europe
Extreme Heatwaves, More Wildfires, and Dying Trees
Nina Turner: The Oligarchy Must Be Challenged by Everyday People
Sanders Delegate: People Understand that the System Is Rigged in Favor of the Billionaire Class
The Empire Files: Untold History of Imperial Japan & the Bomb
Rep. Tulsi Gabbard: I Remain Concerned about Clinton's Interventionist Foreign Policy
How Western Military Interventions Shaped the Brexit Vote
Sanders Delegate: Climate Change and the Israeli Occupation Must be Raised at the Convention
Activist: You Won't Find Justice in an Unjust System
Sanders Delegate - If No Significant Concessions at Dem. Convention, Then There Will be Civil Disobedience Inside and Out
Britain Votes to Leave the European Union
Where's the Anti-War Movement in the 'Political Revolution'?
Would the Cops Be Convicted if #FreddieGray was White?
Historic Ceasefire Agreement Signed in Colombia
Outrage after Officer Accused of Murder in Freddie Gray Case Found Not Guilty of All Charges
To End War in Syria, Adopt "First, Do No Harm" Diplomacy

TheRealNewsNetwork.com, RealNewsNetwork.com, The Real News Network, Real News Network, The Real News, Real News, Real News For Real People, IWT are trademarks and service marks of Independent World Television inc. "The Real News" is the flagship show of IWT and The Real News Network.

All original content on this site is copyright of The Real News Network. Click here for more

Problems with this site? Please let us know

Linux VPS Hosting by Star Dot Hosting