Power and Politics - I am Not the Yellow Peril

The life and times of an Asian American activist who tells all the truth (and dishes news and analysis) but with a leftwards slant.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Affirmative action ban in Michigan passes

The saddest referendum to pass on Tuesday night was not Arizona Prop 103 which made English the state's official language (although it is a close one,) but rather Ward Connelly's (notorious self-hater and KKK embracer) ban against affirmative action in Michigan, which passed with 58% voting yes.

Why is this so troubling? Because Michigan was the strong defendent (under the leadership of former President Lee Bollinger, now at Columbia University) of affirmative action rights in Grutter v. Bollinger and Gratz v. Bollinger, two Supreme Court cases that were decided in 2003 and which heralded the end of affirmative action, as the final decision ruled that affirmative action would probably not be necessary because racism wouldn't exist in 25 years (I'm paraphrasing.)

The Detroit News has some info on how this will jeopardize not only people of color, but women as well, based on the experience of Californians and the passage of the similar Prop 209:

In California, subsequent court cases and interpretations that have followed in Proposition 209's wake shows that such ballot proposals go too far -- hurting women and men, rather than working to be more inclusive to all.

A case in point: Tens of thousands of scholarship dollars -- both public monies and private ones administered by public universities -- could be threatened by Proposal 2's passing, simply because they target girls, experts say.

So what if donors wanted to honor a grandmother and give the money to girls? No matter. The University of Michigan and other public colleges' officials are worried they will be restricted from giving out such money, since they -- the funds' administrators -- are publicly funded.

Michigan girls would be punished in other ways, too: Girls' science camps and other gender-specific, publicly funded programs are expected to be ended.

Just wanted to bring everyone's attention to one of the less publicized stories from this election. that will have a long-term effort and a greater reach than everyone expects.

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