The recent Supreme Court ruling, effectively terminating affirmative action in college admissions, poses a significant threat to the progress achieved over the past two generations in achieving equal opportunities in higher education.
The decision in the case of Students for Fair Admissions Inc. v. President & Fellows of Harvard College will disproportionately disadvantage Black and Indigenous individuals who aspire to attend college in the United States, particularly those already impacted by poverty and other structural inequities.
Considering race as a factor in college admissions was a small but crucial step towards addressing centuries of structural racism. However, the Court’s decision today not only perpetuates existing inequities but also expands them.
The principles underlying this case and the rationale behind today’s decision are both racist and unjust. The notion of “race-neutral” admissions in a society that is anti-Black and inherently structurally racist is nothing but a disguise for perpetuating racial discrimination. As Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson aptly expressed in her dissent, “Declaring race irrelevant in law does not make it so in reality.”
Today’s decision reveals profound insights into our society’s values, the kind of inclusive learning environments we endorse, and the society we aspire to cultivate. It is, therefore, a cause for serious concern.
Access to a quality education should be a universal right, not a privilege. Education serves as a societal necessity, advancing the collective welfare rather than being solely for personal gain.
Those genuinely invested in fostering a just and thriving America cannot align themselves with today’s judicial ruling. True freedom is not achieved until every individual is liberated from oppression and discrimination.