15 Sources Annotated – Joe Mleczko

1. Affirmative Action: Pros and Cons

-This source provides the reader with the perspective of two Kansas State University professors that stand behind affirmative action. They argue that the negative effects of the policy are negligible when compared to the positives it brings. One of the professors also states that he believes a time will come when affirmative action is no longer needed.

-While the counterintuitive aspect of my topic is that Affirmative Action does the opposite of what it claims to do, I know that I must acknowledge the reasons people believe it is useful. Therefore I will use the claims of these two college professors while looking at the positive sides of affirmative action.


-This source goes into how reverse discrimination is caused and whether or not affirmative action is worth what it was when it was initially introduced. There is an on-going debate examining the possibility that these policies actually cause more racial tension than it eliminates. There is also a section that compares U.S. affirmative action to other country’s policies, which provides insight on whether or not our policies are the best option.

-I am using this source as a guide to my topic of reverse discrimination. It will help me to form ideas and will also be helpful when looking for further examples to research. Also, if I can make a proposal claim towards the end of my paper, I will use the section that compares our policies to others.

3. The Case Against Affirmative Action

-Here is a source that involves the offices at Stanford being accused of racism by simply following the policies set forth by affirmative action. It also states that the accusations of racism are unfair, because decisions are only being made to satisfy the government policies.

-This is a great example of showing that as a society, there is a lot of negative attention towards admission officers even though they are only doing what they have to. I like this because it is very neutral on the topic of whether the nation should throw out affirmative action, and instead focuses on social negative effects involving people placing blame on the wrong individuals for decision making.

4.  The Diversity Imperative

-This article explores the concept of “reverse discrimination” in college acceptance and employment. There are multiple cases where caucasian applicants were denied due to the fact that racial quotas needed to be filled and no more white people could be taken. In one specific case, a white female applicant to the Law School at the University of Michigan sued because she was denied acceptance based on her race. Instead of being rejected because she was a certain race, she was rejected because she was NOT a certain race.

-There are multiple accounts of reverse discrimination in this article, so I plan on using them throughout the course of the paper. When a specific example can be fit into the assignment, I feel it will help the meaning of the paper because they are first hand accounts of reverse discrimination. There is also a statement made by a Justice of the Supreme Court that expresses his belief “that affirmative action may become obsolete if diversity can be maintained by using race-neutral policies.” I like this quote because it supports the proposal to come from source 3.

5. Affirmative Action and Campus Racism

-This article suggests that through the policies of affirmative action, racism can actually be created. This idea is somewhat abstract; however, the basis for the argument has potential. If caucasians know they are at a disadvantage for a position because they are white, despite qualifications, it will ultimately cause tension between them and the races that have a better chance at the position due to their minority status.

-When speaking of the many negative effects of affirmative action, this is another that I believe can be a very compelling one. Affirmative action was established to eliminate racial tendencies, but if it in turn actually causes racism in some ways, then it is the epitome of counterintuitivity.

6. About the AAAA

-This source describes the American Association for Affirmative Action’s automatic opposition to any federal or state programs that eliminate or even reduce the policies of Affirmative Action.

-The AAAA has often publicly opposed efforts by legislators to “throttle back” on affirmative action. I will examine the proposed changes in policy to evaluate whether the AAAA’s reflex opposition has prevented changes that could have made Affirmative Action better for everyone.

7. Conflicted Views of Affirmative Action

-This source provides actual data on how many Americans view affirmative action. These statistics provide the reader with views from both sides of the argument, some people express approval and others express their dislike.

-With the help of the numbers provided by the tables, I hope to clearly outline where and how many people stand on the many topics of affirmative action. For example, the “Personally Affected by Affirmative Action” numbers show that of the majority of people affected by affirmative action are affected in a negative way.

8. Justices Take Up Race as a Factor in College Entry

-This article found in the New York Times, reports the 2003 verdict by the Supreme Court, in which it said colleges have the right to take race into account when  admitting new students. Now eleven years later, the justices are contemplating changing that ruling.

-I must sound like a broken record, but the purpose of affirmative action was to create a color blind nation by providing every race with equal representation in places of employment and higher education. Color blind implies that race does not come into account whatsoever in the recruiting process. This ruling by the Supreme Court is allowing colleges to discriminate against applicants. This is the definition of reverse discrimination.

9. System Justification Beliefs, Affirmative Action, And Resistance to Equal Opportunity Organizations

-This source further explores the possibility that affirmative action causes more harm than good. According to actual studies, affirmative action policies have opponents not only among the majorities they harm, but also among the minorities they benefit.

-As a rebuttal to the argument that minorities truly need affirmative action and would suffer without it, I will use direct examples of minorities disagreeing with affirmative action. It is now common to see people that think the United States has come far enough to survive without the policies of affirmative action. In fact, minorities now feel affirmative action takes away from true accomplishments, because others view these accomplishment as only possible through affirmative action policies. In other cases, people are less likely to support a business that is notorious for reverse discrimination against applicants. This brings a past topic of mine to the surface again where the wrong people are blamed for simply following the laws set by the government.

10. White Americans’ opposition to affirmative action: Group interest and the harm to beneficiaries objection

-This source explores the view that White American’s are the main group behind opposition to affirmative action, even though there are those in the minority who also oppose it. The paper explains that White American’s object to the fact that merit is not the primary qualification.

-I like this source, because this entire time I have been arguing that affirmative action creates reverse discrimination. While I still find this to be true, this paper addresses the fact that through reverse discrimination, the concept of merit is suddenly less important. In a nation that pride’s itself on the American Dream, merit and ability is extremely relevant. Making merit irrelevant is un-American, and is another good example of the harm affirmative action does.

11. To Enroll More Minority Students, Colleges Work Around the Courts

-This New York Times article covers the recent abolition of using race as a means of determining acceptance to college in California. It also provides an alternate way to increase diversity, without the use of affirmative action policies.

-While I actually used this article in my rebuttal essay, I find it helpful in any other essay to be written about the abolition of affirmative action. Examples are provided on different systems used where affirmative action no longer exists, but diversity does.

12. California: Affirmative Action Ban Upheld

-While short, this article is an update on my 11th source. After the ruling was made to ban affirmative action from California public school admissions, those in favor of affirmative action tried to have the decision reversed. A federal appeals court denied this motion.

-In order to substantiate my beliefs, it helps to have people in the federal judicial system that agree with what I advocate. The idea of abolishing affirmative action is definitely gaining momentum, and this example helps prove that it is happening at high levels in the hierarchy of the country, which is crucial for action.

13. Is Race Neutrality a Fallacy? A Comparison of the U.S. and French Models of Affirmative Action in Higher Education

-This source dissects the United States’ and French forms of affirmative action. While the United States uses race, France uses economics standing to determine federal assistance.

-By now, I have a good arsenal of sources for and against the abolition of affirmative action. I like this source because the French way can be used as an alternative to help those in need, AND is not restricted to racial boundaries. To me this makes the most sense, so if I can throw in a proposal other than abolishing affirmative action, this is what it will be.

14. The Promise of Brown: Desegregation, Affirmative Action, and the Struggle for Racial Equality

-This is a written account of a witness to the Civil Rights Movement and the birth of Affirmative action. Historical accounts of events surrounding the CRM are highlighted, bringing emphasis to the need for affirmative action during the time it was created.

-I feel I have not given affirmative action enough credit for the time it was created. Clearly I no longer agree with it, but for the Civil Rights Movement, I respect its power and intensions more than it may seem in my essays. With the use of historical accounts of racism, and how affirmative action was needed (for the time) I hope to praise its nobility, but also bring light to the negative repercussions that came as a result of not ending it years ago.

15. Diversity by Any Other Name: Are There Viable Alternatives to Affirmative Action in Higher Education?

-The author of this article addresses the possibilities of creating alternative programs to affirmative action that address integration and diversity differently than affirmative action. Her conclusion is that alternative programs do not adequately address the obstacles for minority students.

-While my rebuttal essay is already written, another small rebuttal may be of use to me in the essays to come. I think this is an excellent source to refute because, as I explain in my rebuttal essay, it has been proven that diversity can be maintained without affirmative action, to the same degree as when it is present.

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1 Response to 15 Sources Annotated – Joe Mleczko

  1. davidbdale says:

    I very much appreciate the highly detailed explanations of the theses, attitudes, and biases of the sources, Joe. Your commentaries are also entertaining.
    Grade Recorded.

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