Affirmative Action and Its Effects




Affirmative Action and its Effects
The roots of affirmative action can be traced back to the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act where legislation redefined public and private behavior. The act states that to discriminate in private is legal, but anything regarding business or public discrimination is illegal ("Affirmative" 13). There are two instances when opposing affirmative action might seem the wrong thing to do. Even these two cases don\'t justify the use of affirmative action. First is the nobility of the cause to help others. Second, affirmative action was a great starter for equality in the work place. The most promanite variable in deciding affirmative action as right or wrong, is whether or not society is going to treat people as groups or individuals. Affirmative action is a question of morals. The simplicity to form two morals that are both correct but conflicting is the reason for the division of our nation on affirmative action. Affirmative action is very noble when looking at who benefits from the outcome. Take a closer look at affirmative action. The people that are involved and the damage it takes on our society surfaces many doubts. Taking a closer look also stirs up a question of nobility that needs to be answered before making a decision on affirmative action. Does affirmative action simply change who is discriminated against and makes it legal for the new discriminators? Coming from my point of view, the view of a white male, this is a serious question. One example of this came to my attention from Dave Shiflett who once worked at Rocky Mountain News wrote "Rocky Mountain Hire". In this article he tells about a new hiring strategy used at the Denver news paper Rocky Mountain News. A memo was sent out stating, "The job reviews of supervisors and others involved in hiring should address race and sex. Each review should have a hiring goal of at least half of our hires being women and at least half non-white" (Shiflett 45). Lets put this strategy to work. We have ten positions to fill, these positions can be filled following the above guidelines by hiring five black women. It can also be met by hiring five white women and five non-white men. Obviously to meet this goal successfully would mean to not hire a white male (Shiflett 45). I strongly disagree with my white fore fathers and society today who both address race and sex when hiring. Using a persons skin color in hiring is discrimination no matter how society looks at it. At St. Bonaventure University the potential for reverse discrimination became a reality. In May 1994, 22 faculty members were fired, all were male. The president of the university was very blunt about his motive, to protect the small number of women on the university staff (Magner 18). This was purely a discussion based on gender not qualification. No matter how efficient these men were some were fired for not being part of a certain minority. Gary A. Abraham, who was fired as a tenured associate professor stated, "It seems ludicrous that the university can rectify its failure to engage in affirmative action on the backs of its male faculty." Twelve of the men took their complaints to the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The commission sided with the men and are even planning to bring the university up on charges themselves (Magner 18). Giving an employer the power to discriminate only towards minorities is unfair and unethical. Now the question is who will the government protect? Society can not consider its self fair when we are still forming decisions based upon gender or race. It is not noble to protect the jobs of women at Bonaventure University simply there are not enough women on the roster. We should protect the jobs of the experienced. We can not form a new society from affirmative action and believe the rights of all United States citizens will be upheld. The whole idea behind affirmative action is to right the wrongs of the past. Well, what about the individuals that were not even born when this atrocity of discrimination was going on. Society should not