An Affirmative Mismatch:
Do Racial Preferences Limit Black Lawyers? (Part II)

Economics & Law — By on December 21, 2004 at 12:52 pm

In response to my most recent post on affirmative action, Nick Matzke of The Panda ‘



  • Phil Aldridge

    President Bush is not known for his eloquence, but I think he said it best when he called it the “soft bigotry of low expectations”.
    Not only is it insulting to presume that minorities need extra help because of the color of their skin, but it’s also cruelly ironic that these measures, meant to somehow help the minority community, actually do more harm than good.
    Isn’t that often the case with leftist policies though? They make you feel good about yourself, but they actually do harm. See high taxes, see also gun control, see also minimum wage laws, see also sanctioning illegal immigration

  • Phil Aldridge

    President Bush is not known for his eloquence, but I think he said it best when he called it the “soft bigotry of low expectations”.
    Not only is it insulting to presume that minorities need extra help because of the color of their skin, but it’s also cruelly ironic that these measures, meant to somehow help the minority community, actually do more harm than good.
    Isn’t that often the case with leftist policies though? They make you feel good about yourself, but they actually do harm. See high taxes, see also gun control, see also minimum wage laws, see also sanctioning illegal immigration

  • Phil Aldridge

    Whoops, that was supposed to go under Part 1, not Part 2. Oh well. That’s what I get for not paying attention

  • Phil Aldridge

    Whoops, that was supposed to go under Part 1, not Part 2. Oh well. That’s what I get for not paying attention

  • Larry Lord

    [quote]Even if we believed that affirmative action is a noble goal, the approach being taken is counterproductive. Lowering the admission standards is like lowering the qualifying time for the 100m relay at the Olympics. While it might help a runner to get to the actual race, it would only set them up for failure. If they qualified with a time of 14 seconds and everyone else can finish under 10 then the chances of their winning are almost non-existent. [/quote]
    Isn’t it true that in the Olympics countries are limited to the number of athletes that can compete for a spot in the finals for, e.g., track and field races? Isn’t that why we have tryouts in the US to see how gets to be on the US Olympic team?
    Surely some of the US athletes who didn’t get to compete for a spot in, e.g., the 100 meter finals were much better than the fastest person fielded by [insert country here]. Is it “unfair” that more US athletes aren’t allowed to compete in the olympics?
    Again, I’m not an affirmative action proponent. But whiny underachieving white people irritate me.

  • Larry Lord

    [quote]Even if we believed that affirmative action is a noble goal, the approach being taken is counterproductive. Lowering the admission standards is like lowering the qualifying time for the 100m relay at the Olympics. While it might help a runner to get to the actual race, it would only set them up for failure. If they qualified with a time of 14 seconds and everyone else can finish under 10 then the chances of their winning are almost non-existent. [/quote]
    Isn’t it true that in the Olympics countries are limited to the number of athletes that can compete for a spot in the finals for, e.g., track and field races? Isn’t that why we have tryouts in the US to see how gets to be on the US Olympic team?
    Surely some of the US athletes who didn’t get to compete for a spot in, e.g., the 100 meter finals were much better than the fastest person fielded by [insert country here]. Is it “unfair” that more US athletes aren’t allowed to compete in the olympics?
    Again, I’m not an affirmative action proponent. But whiny underachieving white people irritate me.

  • Nick

    Even if we believed that affirmative action is a noble goal, the approach being taken is counterproductive. Lowering the admission standards is like lowering the qualifying time for the 100m relay at the Olympics. While it might help a runner to get to the actual race, it would only set them up for failure. If they qualified with a time of 14 seconds and everyone else can finish under 10 then the chances of their winning are almost non-existent.
    I’m not sure this analogy is a perfect fit. It is claimed by the proponents of affirmative action that historical inequities have created current problems (e.g. the atrocious conditions in many inner city schools) that alter the ability of minority students to compete. In your race analogy, the minority student is running the qualifier with 50 lbs of lead weights strapped to his or her back. So, if affirmative action alters the qualifying time for the race, it does so to account for the weights.
    The second part of your analogy, that law school is like a race, should also be considered critically. Is law school a race? Certainly those who drop out are losers, but is a poorly performing Harvard graduate worse off than a star at a second tier school. We might take into account whether a poorly performing student at Harvard would still have better access to world class professors, prestigious clerkships, etc. If one of the goals of affirmative action is to correct historic inequities that have barred minorities from the most influential upper echelons of society, perhaps it is justified, even if it also results in the failure of some poorly prepared minority students. I don’t know the answer to those questions but they would need to be accounted for before we can conclude that affirmative action actually harms minority students.
    Perhaps a better analogy than a human race would be a horse race, where certain horses are handicapped in order to even the field. the obvious difference there is that the race horse’s aptitude for running is largely genetic, while the aptitude measured by the LSAT includes a very large environmental component.

  • Nick

    Even if we believed that affirmative action is a noble goal, the approach being taken is counterproductive. Lowering the admission standards is like lowering the qualifying time for the 100m relay at the Olympics. While it might help a runner to get to the actual race, it would only set them up for failure. If they qualified with a time of 14 seconds and everyone else can finish under 10 then the chances of their winning are almost non-existent.
    I’m not sure this analogy is a perfect fit. It is claimed by the proponents of affirmative action that historical inequities have created current problems (e.g. the atrocious conditions in many inner city schools) that alter the ability of minority students to compete. In your race analogy, the minority student is running the qualifier with 50 lbs of lead weights strapped to his or her back. So, if affirmative action alters the qualifying time for the race, it does so to account for the weights.
    The second part of your analogy, that law school is like a race, should also be considered critically. Is law school a race? Certainly those who drop out are losers, but is a poorly performing Harvard graduate worse off than a star at a second tier school. We might take into account whether a poorly performing student at Harvard would still have better access to world class professors, prestigious clerkships, etc. If one of the goals of affirmative action is to correct historic inequities that have barred minorities from the most influential upper echelons of society, perhaps it is justified, even if it also results in the failure of some poorly prepared minority students. I don’t know the answer to those questions but they would need to be accounted for before we can conclude that affirmative action actually harms minority students.
    Perhaps a better analogy than a human race would be a horse race, where certain horses are handicapped in order to even the field. the obvious difference there is that the race horse’s aptitude for running is largely genetic, while the aptitude measured by the LSAT includes a very large environmental component.

  • Larry Lord

    Phil writes
    “President Bush is not known for his eloquence, but I think he said it best when he called it the “soft bigotry of low expectations”.
    Given the simpleton’s view of the world exhibited in the rest of your post, Phil, I am going to assume that you actually believe the Chimp coined that meaningless catch phrase.

  • Larry Lord

    Phil writes
    “President Bush is not known for his eloquence, but I think he said it best when he called it the “soft bigotry of low expectations”.
    Given the simpleton’s view of the world exhibited in the rest of your post, Phil, I am going to assume that you actually believe the Chimp coined that meaningless catch phrase.

  • http://www.evangelicaloutpost.com Joe Carter

    Larry,
    Again, I’m not an affirmative action proponent. But whiny underachieving white people irritate me.
    I’m not sure I follow your logic. If the people who are complaining about being affected by reverse discrimination are more qualified and yet you consider them to be

  • http://www.evangelicaloutpost.com/ Joe Carter

    Larry,
    Again, I’m not an affirmative action proponent. But whiny underachieving white people irritate me.
    I’m not sure I follow your logic. If the people who are complaining about being affected by reverse discrimination are more qualified and yet you consider them to be

  • http://www.gryphmon.com/ Patrick

    “By providing an incentive for underqualified students to

  • http://www.gryphmon.com Patrick

    “By providing an incentive for underqualified students to

  • Mr Ed

    Patrick wrote: Affirmative action attempts to provide opportunity, not results. It’s in repayment for betraying essential fundamental principles of our country and making slaves of our fellow Americans. It’s not perfect and at times it downright sucks. But the time to get rid of it is when it has been around at least as long as this country practiced slavery. So give it about another 90 years and then you can argue about it.
    I don’t think we need to wait another 90 years to see when something isn’t working. AA is, as usual for a government program, a day late and a dollar short. Instead of providing a way for less qualified students we should be “qualifying” those students. I submit that an unchecked welfare program that leads to generational welfare, Leftist incentives such as the legitimization of Ebonics, and the kind of hypersensitivity towards language that lead to the censuring of an individual for saying “niggardly” are keeping the constituency of the current minority leadership exactly where they are. One might even suspect that this is the desired effect.

  • Mr Ed

    Patrick wrote: Affirmative action attempts to provide opportunity, not results. It’s in repayment for betraying essential fundamental principles of our country and making slaves of our fellow Americans. It’s not perfect and at times it downright sucks. But the time to get rid of it is when it has been around at least as long as this country practiced slavery. So give it about another 90 years and then you can argue about it.
    I don’t think we need to wait another 90 years to see when something isn’t working. AA is, as usual for a government program, a day late and a dollar short. Instead of providing a way for less qualified students we should be “qualifying” those students. I submit that an unchecked welfare program that leads to generational welfare, Leftist incentives such as the legitimization of Ebonics, and the kind of hypersensitivity towards language that lead to the censuring of an individual for saying “niggardly” are keeping the constituency of the current minority leadership exactly where they are. One might even suspect that this is the desired effect.

  • http://www.evangelicaloutpost.com/ Joe Carter

    Nick: It is claimed by the proponents of affirmative action that historical inequities have created current problems (e.g. the atrocious conditions in many inner city schools) that alter the ability of minority students to compete.
    The problem is that the

  • http://www.evangelicaloutpost.com Joe Carter

    Nick: It is claimed by the proponents of affirmative action that historical inequities have created current problems (e.g. the atrocious conditions in many inner city schools) that alter the ability of minority students to compete.
    The problem is that the

  • Nick

    My only assumption is that an aptitude for law school exists and that it can, to some extent, be measured. If the entire population were to take the LSAT, the resulting distribution would likely take the shape of a bell curve with those with a high aptitude for law school on one end, those with almost no aptitude on the other, and the rest of us falling somewhere in the middle.
    In my opinion, a person

  • Nick

    My only assumption is that an aptitude for law school exists and that it can, to some extent, be measured. If the entire population were to take the LSAT, the resulting distribution would likely take the shape of a bell curve with those with a high aptitude for law school on one end, those with almost no aptitude on the other, and the rest of us falling somewhere in the middle.
    In my opinion, a person

  • gedi

    Sayeth Joe, “Also, look at where most of the worst inner city schools are located: New York, D.C., L.A., Chicago. Notice what they all have in common? They are all located in states where slavery and segregation were least likely to affect the population.”
    It is not just slavery which is attempted to be remedied by programs such as Affirmative Action. It is a long history of prejudice and inopportunity upon many different ethnic groups, not just those of African descent, i.e. Native Americans and Hispanics. In dealing with these kinds of issues, geography is less an indicator of validity and more an indicator of severity.

  • gedi

    Sayeth Joe, “Also, look at where most of the worst inner city schools are located: New York, D.C., L.A., Chicago. Notice what they all have in common? They are all located in states where slavery and segregation were least likely to affect the population.”
    It is not just slavery which is attempted to be remedied by programs such as Affirmative Action. It is a long history of prejudice and inopportunity upon many different ethnic groups, not just those of African descent, i.e. Native Americans and Hispanics. In dealing with these kinds of issues, geography is less an indicator of validity and more an indicator of severity.

  • Jack

    Again, I’m not an affirmative action proponent. But whiny underachieving white people irritate me.
    As opposed to a perfectly content underachieving white person like yourself? :)
    Jack

  • Mr Ed

    Nick,
    Not discounting the effects of 2b. But I don’t think it necessarily follows that AA is the best to correct the problem. In fact, I don’t think it even addresses the problem. The problem occurs much ealier in life when students aren’t taught the ‘basics’, if you will, in school. If you want to talk about the “pernicious effects of racism” you should probably include the backlash. I think AA is a backlash to racism and not an answer to it. Like most backlash, it only leads to more resentment and more backlash.
    There isn’t, I believe, one single answer. A huge part of the answer is getting the parents more involved. And this is a huge can of worms since a large reason that parents aren’t involved is because they’ve gone through the same inadequate system and are themselves ill-prepared for life after school.

  • Nick

    Joe:
    And what about middle and upper class black Americans? Should a rich black kid who went to a private prep school get preferential treatment over a white kid who went to a substandard rural school just because his great-great-great-grandparents suffered injustice?
    Good point. My understanding of law school admissions is that they try to take into account unique characteristics of each student. IMO, they should also consider the difference between a poor rural kid and a wealthy suburbanite, so I would tend to support giving admissions committees maximum flexibility rather than forcing them to put a lot of emphasis on standardized test scores (and I write as one who happened to be good at standardized tests, so they probably overestimated my actual abilities)
    Also, look at where most of the worst inner city schools are located: New York, D.C., L.A., Chicago. Notice what they all have in common? They are all located in states where slavery and segregation were least likely to affect the population.
    Granted, although correct me if I am wrong: Weren’t the black populations of northern industrial cities drawn largely from southerners who were fleeing racism?

  • Jack

    Again, I’m not an affirmative action proponent. But whiny underachieving white people irritate me.
    As opposed to a perfectly content underachieving white person like yourself? :)
    Jack

  • Mr Ed

    Nick,
    Not discounting the effects of 2b. But I don’t think it necessarily follows that AA is the best to correct the problem. In fact, I don’t think it even addresses the problem. The problem occurs much ealier in life when students aren’t taught the ‘basics’, if you will, in school. If you want to talk about the “pernicious effects of racism” you should probably include the backlash. I think AA is a backlash to racism and not an answer to it. Like most backlash, it only leads to more resentment and more backlash.
    There isn’t, I believe, one single answer. A huge part of the answer is getting the parents more involved. And this is a huge can of worms since a large reason that parents aren’t involved is because they’ve gone through the same inadequate system and are themselves ill-prepared for life after school.

  • Nick

    Joe:
    And what about middle and upper class black Americans? Should a rich black kid who went to a private prep school get preferential treatment over a white kid who went to a substandard rural school just because his great-great-great-grandparents suffered injustice?
    Good point. My understanding of law school admissions is that they try to take into account unique characteristics of each student. IMO, they should also consider the difference between a poor rural kid and a wealthy suburbanite, so I would tend to support giving admissions committees maximum flexibility rather than forcing them to put a lot of emphasis on standardized test scores (and I write as one who happened to be good at standardized tests, so they probably overestimated my actual abilities)
    Also, look at where most of the worst inner city schools are located: New York, D.C., L.A., Chicago. Notice what they all have in common? They are all located in states where slavery and segregation were least likely to affect the population.
    Granted, although correct me if I am wrong: Weren’t the black populations of northern industrial cities drawn largely from southerners who were fleeing racism?

  • http://www.evangelicaloutpost.com/ Joe Carter

    Nick: You seem to be arguing for possibility #1. Those in favor of AA argue for possibility #2b, and claim that AA is the best way to correct the problem. Various racists point to 2a, but they seem to lack supporting evidence.
    Good point. My argument relies on two key premises:
    a) Genetic differences between races would have a negligible impact on test results.
    b) Each race would be sufficiently represented along the socio-economic spectrum to compensate for environmental conditions.
    While I’m pretty confident about (a), I could be wrong about (b).

  • Mr Ed

    Touche, Jack.

  • http://www.evangelicaloutpost.com Joe Carter

    Nick: You seem to be arguing for possibility #1. Those in favor of AA argue for possibility #2b, and claim that AA is the best way to correct the problem. Various racists point to 2a, but they seem to lack supporting evidence.
    Good point. My argument relies on two key premises:
    a) Genetic differences between races would have a negligible impact on test results.
    b) Each race would be sufficiently represented along the socio-economic spectrum to compensate for environmental conditions.
    While I’m pretty confident about (a), I could be wrong about (b).

  • Mr Ed

    Touche, Jack.

  • http://www.evangelicaloutpost.com/ Joe Carter

    Nick: Granted, although correct me if I am wrong: Weren’t the black populations of northern industrial cities drawn largely from southerners who were fleeing racism?
    I think you’re right about that and I was tempted to mention it myself. But it would seem that in the absence of the historical injustices, Southern blacks who moved to these cities would have a distinct advantage over their family members who didn

  • http://www.evangelicaloutpost.com Joe Carter

    Nick: Granted, although correct me if I am wrong: Weren’t the black populations of northern industrial cities drawn largely from southerners who were fleeing racism?
    I think you’re right about that and I was tempted to mention it myself. But it would seem that in the absence of the historical injustices, Southern blacks who moved to these cities would have a distinct advantage over their family members who didn

  • Nick

    There isn’t, I believe, one single answer. A huge part of the answer is getting the parents more involved. And this is a huge can of worms since a large reason that parents aren’t involved is because they’ve gone through the same inadequate system and are themselves ill-prepared for life after school.
    I agree. There’s no way I’d be where I am without my parents’ involvement and the role models provided by relatives, people in our church, etc. Everywhere I looked, I could see people like me succeeding.
    The question is, can AA be one aspect of the complex solution, even if we agree that it can’t solve the problem by itself. If AA helps minority students reach higher, then they will be placed to serve as role models and mentors for the next generation.

  • Nick

    There isn’t, I believe, one single answer. A huge part of the answer is getting the parents more involved. And this is a huge can of worms since a large reason that parents aren’t involved is because they’ve gone through the same inadequate system and are themselves ill-prepared for life after school.
    I agree. There’s no way I’d be where I am without my parents’ involvement and the role models provided by relatives, people in our church, etc. Everywhere I looked, I could see people like me succeeding.
    The question is, can AA be one aspect of the complex solution, even if we agree that it can’t solve the problem by itself. If AA helps minority students reach higher, then they will be placed to serve as role models and mentors for the next generation.

  • Larry Lord

    Mr. Ed writes
    “Leftist incentives such as the legitimization of Ebonics”
    Where o where do uptight whitie righties find scripts that contain references to long dead horses such as this???? Hilarious. Are you going to trot out Willie Horton next, Mr. Ed?

  • Larry Lord

    Mr. Ed writes
    “Leftist incentives such as the legitimization of Ebonics”
    Where o where do uptight whitie righties find scripts that contain references to long dead horses such as this???? Hilarious. Are you going to trot out Willie Horton next, Mr. Ed?

  • Jack

    This is actually a fairly timely piece; NPR did a report this morning on lawyers of color; apparently they are very hot commodity. If you want a really good job out of law school, it helps to not be white.
    Personally though, I can’t stand lawyers of any race.
    Jack

  • Jack

    This is actually a fairly timely piece; NPR did a report this morning on lawyers of color; apparently they are very hot commodity. If you want a really good job out of law school, it helps to not be white.
    Personally though, I can’t stand lawyers of any race.
    Jack

  • Larry Lord

    Joe asks
    “But why should we forcibly stunt other people

  • Larry Lord

    Joe asks
    “But why should we forcibly stunt other people

  • Mr Ed

    Larry blurted out: Where o where do uptight whitie righties find scripts that contain references to long dead horses such as this????
    Clearly part of Larry’s MO is to act as though people who disagree with him are unable to think for themselves and need ‘scripts’. He’s used tactic this a number of times.
    Larry,
    Was Ebonics, or was it not, introduced into the California and Texas legislature? Does it, or does it not betray a mindset among certain politicians currently in office? If it does, isn’t it pertinent to the conversation?

  • Mr Ed

    Larry blurted out: Where o where do uptight whitie righties find scripts that contain references to long dead horses such as this????
    Clearly part of Larry’s MO is to act as though people who disagree with him are unable to think for themselves and need ‘scripts’. He’s used tactic this a number of times.
    Larry,
    Was Ebonics, or was it not, introduced into the California and Texas legislature? Does it, or does it not betray a mindset among certain politicians currently in office? If it does, isn’t it pertinent to the conversation?

  • Larry Lord

    Joe writes
    ” Unfortunately, it is much easier to institute

  • Larry Lord

    Joe writes
    ” Unfortunately, it is much easier to institute

  • Larry Lord

    Hey Mr. Ed
    Maybe Joe will post an Ebonic thread so you can recite your anti-Leftist script in its entirety. Perhaps we can discuss the relationship between flying the Confederate flag and appreciating “Southern heritage” as well.
    But this post is about the merits of allowing the top black applicants whose merit “scores” happen to be lower than the lowest white applicants’ scores entry into law schools with a limited number of seats. Think you can stay on topic? Good luck, my friend.

  • Larry Lord

    Hey Mr. Ed
    Maybe Joe will post an Ebonic thread so you can recite your anti-Leftist script in its entirety. Perhaps we can discuss the relationship between flying the Confederate flag and appreciating “Southern heritage” as well.
    But this post is about the merits of allowing the top black applicants whose merit “scores” happen to be lower than the lowest white applicants’ scores entry into law schools with a limited number of seats. Think you can stay on topic? Good luck, my friend.

  • Larry Lord

    Joe, for the record, in my 3:42 post above, last paragraph, I was using the term “you” as the universal “you” not “you” as in “Joe Carter.” I probably should have written “anyone” instead but, hey, that’s twice as many letters.

  • Larry Lord

    Joe, for the record, in my 3:42 post above, last paragraph, I was using the term “you” as the universal “you” not “you” as in “Joe Carter.” I probably should have written “anyone” instead but, hey, that’s twice as many letters.

  • Mr Ed

    Are there any evangelical Christian groups which favor apportioning greater amounts of Federal tax money to reform and improve public education, with particular emphasis on the relatively poor communities where many African-Americans coincidentally live?
    Perhaps they have seen the recent numbers the Washington D.C. school district which has a per-pupil spending that is higher than the national average but has outcomes which are lower than the national average.

  • Mr Ed

    Are there any evangelical Christian groups which favor apportioning greater amounts of Federal tax money to reform and improve public education, with particular emphasis on the relatively poor communities where many African-Americans coincidentally live?
    Perhaps they have seen the recent numbers the Washington D.C. school district which has a per-pupil spending that is higher than the national average but has outcomes which are lower than the national average.

  • Mr Ed

    Larry quipped Think you can stay on topic? Good luck, my friend.
    On the contrary, it was you who, in an attempt to build another strawman argument, chose to pluck one small point out of my whole post and respond to it–a post which was very much on topic.

  • Mr Ed

    Larry quipped Think you can stay on topic? Good luck, my friend.
    On the contrary, it was you who, in an attempt to build another strawman argument, chose to pluck one small point out of my whole post and respond to it–a post which was very much on topic.

  • Larry Lord

    Mr. Ed
    “Perhaps they have seen the recent numbers the Washington D.C. school district which has a per-pupil spending that is higher than the national average but has outcomes which are lower than the national average.”
    And so what is your conclusion, Mr. Ed? I would hate to put words in your mouth. I’m sure you have some interesting thoughts on the subject of how to improve the performance of students in D.C. schools. The floor is yours!

  • Larry Lord

    Mr. Ed
    “Perhaps they have seen the recent numbers the Washington D.C. school district which has a per-pupil spending that is higher than the national average but has outcomes which are lower than the national average.”
    And so what is your conclusion, Mr. Ed? I would hate to put words in your mouth. I’m sure you have some interesting thoughts on the subject of how to improve the performance of students in D.C. schools. The floor is yours!

  • Larry Lord

    And Mr. Ed, please don’t choke on these facts in your eagerness to take money away from the D.C. school system:
    http://www.cnn.com/2004/EDUCATION/12/20/texas.school.cheating.ap/index.html
    Newspaper finds evidence of cheating by Texas schools
    DALLAS, Texas (AP) — Dozens of Texas schools appear to have cheated on the state’s redesigned academic achievement test, casting doubt on whether the accountability system can reliably measure how schools are performing, a newspaper found.
    An analysis uncovered strong evidence of organized, educator-led cheating on the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills at schools in Houston and Dallas, along with suspicious scores in hundreds of other schools, The Dallas Morning News reported.
    Texas education policies on student accountability became the model for the federal No Child Left Behind law enacted after President Bush’s election in 2000.

  • Larry Lord

    And Mr. Ed, please don’t choke on these facts in your eagerness to take money away from the D.C. school system:
    http://www.cnn.com/2004/EDUCATION/12/20/texas.school.cheating.ap/index.html
    Newspaper finds evidence of cheating by Texas schools
    DALLAS, Texas (AP) — Dozens of Texas schools appear to have cheated on the state’s redesigned academic achievement test, casting doubt on whether the accountability system can reliably measure how schools are performing, a newspaper found.
    An analysis uncovered strong evidence of organized, educator-led cheating on the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills at schools in Houston and Dallas, along with suspicious scores in hundreds of other schools, The Dallas Morning News reported.
    Texas education policies on student accountability became the model for the federal No Child Left Behind law enacted after President Bush’s election in 2000.

  • Larry Lord

    Oh, and Mr. Ed: note the date of the news piece I referenced in my previous post. Compare with the stale musty smell of your ebonics reference. If you’re going to recite from a “Leftist” bashing script, at least use a fresh one! Live and learn, my friend. Live and learn.

  • Larry Lord

    Oh, and Mr. Ed: note the date of the news piece I referenced in my previous post. Compare with the stale musty smell of your ebonics reference. If you’re going to recite from a “Leftist” bashing script, at least use a fresh one! Live and learn, my friend. Live and learn.

  • Mr Ed

    And Mr. Ed, please don’t choke on these facts in your eagerness to take money away from the D.C. school system
    Since you stated that you don’t want to put words in my mouth then… don’t put words in my mouth. Pretty simple, eh? I’ve never said I want to take money away from anyone.
    Secondly, I find it peculiar that the same story that touts that educators were caught cheating on test reporting would also state that said cheating casted doubts on the whether an accountability system would work. I mean, doesn’t the fact that they were ‘caught’ mean anything? That’s similar to saying “Well, students cheat all the time so I doubt giving them tests would prove that they are learning.” Isn’t that silly?
    If there’s a problem with cheating then punish the cheaters. Don’t drop the test.

  • Mr Ed

    And Mr. Ed, please don’t choke on these facts in your eagerness to take money away from the D.C. school system
    Since you stated that you don’t want to put words in my mouth then… don’t put words in my mouth. Pretty simple, eh? I’ve never said I want to take money away from anyone.
    Secondly, I find it peculiar that the same story that touts that educators were caught cheating on test reporting would also state that said cheating casted doubts on the whether an accountability system would work. I mean, doesn’t the fact that they were ‘caught’ mean anything? That’s similar to saying “Well, students cheat all the time so I doubt giving them tests would prove that they are learning.” Isn’t that silly?
    If there’s a problem with cheating then punish the cheaters. Don’t drop the test.

  • http://www.evangelicaloutpost.com/ Joe Carter

    Larry,
    And Mr. Ed, please don’t choke on these facts in your eagerness to take money away from the D.C. school system:
    I’m not sure what your point is in bringing up this story. The reason that cheating is going on is because the teachers who are incompetent are afraid of losing their jobs. By helping their students cheat they are attempting (rather unsucessfully) to protect their jobs.

  • http://www.evangelicaloutpost.com Joe Carter

    Larry,
    And Mr. Ed, please don’t choke on these facts in your eagerness to take money away from the D.C. school system:
    I’m not sure what your point is in bringing up this story. The reason that cheating is going on is because the teachers who are incompetent are afraid of losing their jobs. By helping their students cheat they are attempting (rather unsucessfully) to protect their jobs.

  • Mr Ed

    Oh, and Mr. Ed: note the date of the news piece I referenced in my previous post…
    Better a relevant piece from 1997 than an irrelevant piece from yesterday.

  • Mr Ed

    Oh, and Mr. Ed: note the date of the news piece I referenced in my previous post…
    Better a relevant piece from 1997 than an irrelevant piece from yesterday.

  • http://pseudopolymath.blogspot.com/ Mark O

    Nick,
    You write:

    Certainly those who drop out are losers, but is a poorly performing Harvard graduate worse off than a star at a second tier school. We might take into account whether a poorly performing student at Harvard would still have better access to world class professors, prestigious clerkships, etc.


    In fact that is exactly what I understand the study found. That a student in a first tier school who is not prepared for that, does worse than if he is at the tier he would have been if admissions where not racially biased. That the affirmative action “favor” is actually the reverse. He would be better off in an envionment meeting his qualifications.

  • http://pseudopolymath.blogspot.com/ Mark O

    Nick,
    You write:

    Certainly those who drop out are losers, but is a poorly performing Harvard graduate worse off than a star at a second tier school. We might take into account whether a poorly performing student at Harvard would still have better access to world class professors, prestigious clerkships, etc.


    In fact that is exactly what I understand the study found. That a student in a first tier school who is not prepared for that, does worse than if he is at the tier he would have been if admissions where not racially biased. That the affirmative action “favor” is actually the reverse. He would be better off in an envionment meeting his qualifications.

  • Mr Ed

    Mark O wrote: In fact that is exactly what I understand the study found. That a student in a first tier school who is not prepared for that, does worse than if he is at the tier he would have been if admissions where not racially biased. That the affirmative action “favor” is actually the reverse. He would be better off in an envionment meeting his qualifications.
    This brings up another point: isn’t it a disservice to the other students in that Harvard class to have classmates that aren’t “up to speed”? Certainly everyone will perform at different levels once they are in college but shouldn’t we opperate under the assumption that they need to be at a certain minimum level when they start?

  • Mr Ed

    Mark O wrote: In fact that is exactly what I understand the study found. That a student in a first tier school who is not prepared for that, does worse than if he is at the tier he would have been if admissions where not racially biased. That the affirmative action “favor” is actually the reverse. He would be better off in an envionment meeting his qualifications.
    This brings up another point: isn’t it a disservice to the other students in that Harvard class to have classmates that aren’t “up to speed”? Certainly everyone will perform at different levels once they are in college but shouldn’t we opperate under the assumption that they need to be at a certain minimum level when they start?

  • Larry Lord

    “If there’s a problem with cheating then punish the cheaters.”
    You mean George W. Bush? The Ultimate Cheater? Sure, I’m all for that. Impeach him now, and throw him in jail with big fat white lying guy Dick Cheney, incompetent lying white guy Rumsfeld, and incompetent black liar-under-oath Condi Rice. The greater point is that those corrupt people were held up as glittering jewels by George “most unpopular incumbent president in history” Bush as support for his No Stupid Idea Left Behind policy. Kind of like how Georgie Boy held up Bernie “Human Scum” Kerik as a glittering example of a guy “overcoming obstacles” to achieve great things.
    “Certainly everyone will perform at different levels once they are in college but shouldn’t we opperate under the assumption that they need to be at a certain minimum level when they start?”
    Gee, Ed, it’s my impression that the administrators who admit black students to law schools are “opperating” under the assumption that they meet the “minimum level” which you refer to. Let me know if you have reason to believe that black students are being admitted whom the admissions officers assume will fail.
    Just so you know, Ed, a lot of white students drop out of law school too or fail to become “lawyers”, in spite of the fact that they look like your stereotypical lawyer, act like your stereotypical lawyer, dress like your stereotypical lawyer, talk like your stereotypical lawyer, and were raised by one or two stereotypical white lawyers. Nevertheless, some of these privileged white kids can’t cut it. Why or why aren’t we doing something to help these privileged white kids out?
    “The reason that cheating is going on is because the teachers who are incompetent are afraid of losing their jobs.”
    Uh… duh. But can we turn up the brain power a notch or two? Is it your position that any competent teacher should be capable of training any group of students to pass these tests, under any set of circumstances? Or might some other factors be at work which prevent certain a particular class from meeting the goals set for them by the President’s enlightened task force?
    And before the discussion goes above all of our heads: solving the problems plaguing the public education system in this country requires a hell of a lot more than just “accountability.” And changing it is going to require money, even if that money is used simply to restructure the existing program to survive on the budget at which it currently operates. But the fact is that quite a few conservatives (rich ones, mostly) and a few so-called liberals (libertarians mostly) would be happy to see the public education system go belly up and privatized. I submit that such folks are disproportionately white. You can ask yourself whether that’s true and why that might be. I think it’s true and I think it’s disgusting.

  • Larry Lord

    “If there’s a problem with cheating then punish the cheaters.”
    You mean George W. Bush? The Ultimate Cheater? Sure, I’m all for that. Impeach him now, and throw him in jail with big fat white lying guy Dick Cheney, incompetent lying white guy Rumsfeld, and incompetent black liar-under-oath Condi Rice. The greater point is that those corrupt people were held up as glittering jewels by George “most unpopular incumbent president in history” Bush as support for his No Stupid Idea Left Behind policy. Kind of like how Georgie Boy held up Bernie “Human Scum” Kerik as a glittering example of a guy “overcoming obstacles” to achieve great things.
    “Certainly everyone will perform at different levels once they are in college but shouldn’t we opperate under the assumption that they need to be at a certain minimum level when they start?”
    Gee, Ed, it’s my impression that the administrators who admit black students to law schools are “opperating” under the assumption that they meet the “minimum level” which you refer to. Let me know if you have reason to believe that black students are being admitted whom the admissions officers assume will fail.
    Just so you know, Ed, a lot of white students drop out of law school too or fail to become “lawyers”, in spite of the fact that they look like your stereotypical lawyer, act like your stereotypical lawyer, dress like your stereotypical lawyer, talk like your stereotypical lawyer, and were raised by one or two stereotypical white lawyers. Nevertheless, some of these privileged white kids can’t cut it. Why or why aren’t we doing something to help these privileged white kids out?
    “The reason that cheating is going on is because the teachers who are incompetent are afraid of losing their jobs.”
    Uh… duh. But can we turn up the brain power a notch or two? Is it your position that any competent teacher should be capable of training any group of students to pass these tests, under any set of circumstances? Or might some other factors be at work which prevent certain a particular class from meeting the goals set for them by the President’s enlightened task force?
    And before the discussion goes above all of our heads: solving the problems plaguing the public education system in this country requires a hell of a lot more than just “accountability.” And changing it is going to require money, even if that money is used simply to restructure the existing program to survive on the budget at which it currently operates. But the fact is that quite a few conservatives (rich ones, mostly) and a few so-called liberals (libertarians mostly) would be happy to see the public education system go belly up and privatized. I submit that such folks are disproportionately white. You can ask yourself whether that’s true and why that might be. I think it’s true and I think it’s disgusting.

  • Mr Ed

    Larry wrote: You mean George W. Bush? The Ultimate Cheater? Sure, I’m all for that…
    Red herring. I believe it was you who said: “Think you can stay on topic?”
    Gee, Ed, it’s my impression that the administrators who admit black students to law schools are “opperating” under the assumption that they meet the “minimum level” which you refer to. Let me know if you have reason to believe that black students are being admitted whom the admissions officers assume will fail.
    But the minimum level falls once they admit a student who wouldn’t otherwise be admitted were it not for his/her ethnicity. But I’ll give you one thing: you caught me in a typo. Happy?
    Nevertheless, some of these privileged white kids can’t cut it. Why or why aren’t we doing something to help these privileged white kids out?
    How do you know we aren’t? There are plenty of programs available for students of all ethnicities who aren’t up to speed. But, in the end, the student will either pass or fail that LSAT. I really don’t get your point.
    And before the discussion goes above all of our heads: solving the problems plaguing the public education system in this country requires a hell of a lot more than just “accountability.”
    I think you’re the only one here bringing up that issue.

  • Mr Ed

    Larry wrote: You mean George W. Bush? The Ultimate Cheater? Sure, I’m all for that…
    Red herring. I believe it was you who said: “Think you can stay on topic?”
    Gee, Ed, it’s my impression that the administrators who admit black students to law schools are “opperating” under the assumption that they meet the “minimum level” which you refer to. Let me know if you have reason to believe that black students are being admitted whom the admissions officers assume will fail.
    But the minimum level falls once they admit a student who wouldn’t otherwise be admitted were it not for his/her ethnicity. But I’ll give you one thing: you caught me in a typo. Happy?
    Nevertheless, some of these privileged white kids can’t cut it. Why or why aren’t we doing something to help these privileged white kids out?
    How do you know we aren’t? There are plenty of programs available for students of all ethnicities who aren’t up to speed. But, in the end, the student will either pass or fail that LSAT. I really don’t get your point.
    And before the discussion goes above all of our heads: solving the problems plaguing the public education system in this country requires a hell of a lot more than just “accountability.”
    I think you’re the only one here bringing up that issue.

  • Chris Lutz

    I submit that such folks are disproportionately white. You can ask yourself whether that’s true and why that might be. I think it’s true and I think it’s disgusting.

    And your submission would be….wrong. Minorities favor vouchers and other privatization measures in greater numbers than whites. Whites tend to have a greater ability to move to a good school system while poor minorities are stuck in failing school systems. So, they don’t want to mess up their school systems.
    We’ve been pouring money into urban school districts and watching it disappear for no result. Now, I live in an urban district and they are at least starting to get things straightened out some here. Why? First of all the private schools are bleeding them dry and second, people started holding up levies until they saw results. They moved up on the standardized tests, and I voted for the levy.
    Finally, someone recently did a survey of students asking them what were the grade expectations of their parents. The results speak volumes.
    Asian – A
    Caucasion – A/B
    Black/Hispanic – C/passing
    Schools can’t make people succeed who don’t want to.

  • Chris Lutz

    I submit that such folks are disproportionately white. You can ask yourself whether that’s true and why that might be. I think it’s true and I think it’s disgusting.

    And your submission would be….wrong. Minorities favor vouchers and other privatization measures in greater numbers than whites. Whites tend to have a greater ability to move to a good school system while poor minorities are stuck in failing school systems. So, they don’t want to mess up their school systems.
    We’ve been pouring money into urban school districts and watching it disappear for no result. Now, I live in an urban district and they are at least starting to get things straightened out some here. Why? First of all the private schools are bleeding them dry and second, people started holding up levies until they saw results. They moved up on the standardized tests, and I voted for the levy.
    Finally, someone recently did a survey of students asking them what were the grade expectations of their parents. The results speak volumes.
    Asian – A
    Caucasion – A/B
    Black/Hispanic – C/passing
    Schools can’t make people succeed who don’t want to.

  • Larry Lord

    “Asian – A
    Caucasion – A/B
    Black/Hispanic – C/passing
    Schools can’t make people succeed who don’t want to.”
    I guess it depends on how you define success. If my parents never graduated from high school and can barely read the local newspaper, they’d probably be pretty pleased if I passed all my classes and graduated.
    Frankly, posting that weird poll followed by your comment is sort of creepy. I mean, do you honestly believe that black and Hispanic parents don’t want their children to succeed in school? Are low expectations genetic, in your view? Or what? What is your point exactly? If you’re throwing in the towel, that’s fine. Lots of white people (and plenty of black people, too) find it easier to give up trying to solve problems and prefer to just point fingers and demand their money back. The rest of us don’t give up so easily.
    “And your submission would be….wrong. Minorities favor vouchers and other privatization measures in greater numbers than whites.”
    Favoring vouchers and hoping that public education goes belly up are two different issues, Chris. Where public schools are doing well (i.e., where they are cared for by the local community and competently managed), I’m sure that the African-American families whose children attend those schools do not favor vouchers. And if you ask Americans whether they believe that the Federal public school system should be tanked, I think you’ll that most of the positive respondents are white conservative Christians. Again, I don’t have the data. Before you get all huffy, though, ask yourself if such a result would be the least bit surprising?

  • Larry Lord

    “Asian – A
    Caucasion – A/B
    Black/Hispanic – C/passing
    Schools can’t make people succeed who don’t want to.”
    I guess it depends on how you define success. If my parents never graduated from high school and can barely read the local newspaper, they’d probably be pretty pleased if I passed all my classes and graduated.
    Frankly, posting that weird poll followed by your comment is sort of creepy. I mean, do you honestly believe that black and Hispanic parents don’t want their children to succeed in school? Are low expectations genetic, in your view? Or what? What is your point exactly? If you’re throwing in the towel, that’s fine. Lots of white people (and plenty of black people, too) find it easier to give up trying to solve problems and prefer to just point fingers and demand their money back. The rest of us don’t give up so easily.
    “And your submission would be….wrong. Minorities favor vouchers and other privatization measures in greater numbers than whites.”
    Favoring vouchers and hoping that public education goes belly up are two different issues, Chris. Where public schools are doing well (i.e., where they are cared for by the local community and competently managed), I’m sure that the African-American families whose children attend those schools do not favor vouchers. And if you ask Americans whether they believe that the Federal public school system should be tanked, I think you’ll that most of the positive respondents are white conservative Christians. Again, I don’t have the data. Before you get all huffy, though, ask yourself if such a result would be the least bit surprising?

  • Chris Lutz

    I mean, do you honestly believe that black and Hispanic parents don’t want their children to succeed in school? Are low expectations genetic, in your view?
    No, not all. But those communities tend to place less of an emphasis on education than other groups. And, no its not genetic, its cultural. Ask Asian students why they succeed and they’ll tell you they work hard. My point is not to give up, but until expectations change, you could through $30K a year per student into problem areas and most likely achieve nothing.
    Favoring vouchers and hoping that public education goes belly up are two different issues
    That is a tactic used by the education bureaucracy that doesn’t want to change. Anyone wanting vouchers, wants to destroy public education. I don’t doubt that some people do, but it is an extemely small minority. I do think there is a push to change the model of public education.

  • Chris Lutz

    I mean, do you honestly believe that black and Hispanic parents don’t want their children to succeed in school? Are low expectations genetic, in your view?
    No, not all. But those communities tend to place less of an emphasis on education than other groups. And, no its not genetic, its cultural. Ask Asian students why they succeed and they’ll tell you they work hard. My point is not to give up, but until expectations change, you could through $30K a year per student into problem areas and most likely achieve nothing.
    Favoring vouchers and hoping that public education goes belly up are two different issues
    That is a tactic used by the education bureaucracy that doesn’t want to change. Anyone wanting vouchers, wants to destroy public education. I don’t doubt that some people do, but it is an extemely small minority. I do think there is a push to change the model of public education.

  • Chris Lutz

    believe that the Federal public school system
    Plus, when did the Federal gov’t get responsibility for school systems? I don’t see that in the Constitution anywhere.

  • Chris Lutz

    believe that the Federal public school system
    Plus, when did the Federal gov’t get responsibility for school systems? I don’t see that in the Constitution anywhere.

  • Larry Lord

    Mr. Ed
    “But the minimum level falls once they admit a student who wouldn’t otherwise be admitted were it not for his/her ethnicity.”
    No, it doesn’t. The requirements for admission into the school are NOT equal to the minimum skill level required for successfully graduating. So nothing “falls” when a person passes the threshold admission criteria with help from his/her skin color.
    Can I say again that I’m not a big fan of affirmative action? And that it’s really whining white people who get all righteous about fairness to white people that bug me? Especially when they don’t have a solution to address the very real disparities in educational opportunities for whites and blacks in this country? And when these same white people refuse to support any program that involves spending money (that green stuff which is disproportionately owned by white people in this country)?

  • Larry Lord

    Mr. Ed
    “But the minimum level falls once they admit a student who wouldn’t otherwise be admitted were it not for his/her ethnicity.”
    No, it doesn’t. The requirements for admission into the school are NOT equal to the minimum skill level required for successfully graduating. So nothing “falls” when a person passes the threshold admission criteria with help from his/her skin color.
    Can I say again that I’m not a big fan of affirmative action? And that it’s really whining white people who get all righteous about fairness to white people that bug me? Especially when they don’t have a solution to address the very real disparities in educational opportunities for whites and blacks in this country? And when these same white people refuse to support any program that involves spending money (that green stuff which is disproportionately owned by white people in this country)?

  • http://tomgrey.motime.com/ Tom Grey

    See Peter Gordon:
    http://www-rcf.usc.edu/~pgordon/blog/2004/12/consolidation-and-centralization.html
    on how, 60 years ago, there were some 100 000 local school districts.
    After consolidation, there are now 13 500.
    I conclude — big school districts, big mistake. Yes on vouchers — anybody against vouchers is AGAINST parent involvement/ power/ authority over their kid’s education.
    Whether it’s genetic or environment doesn’t matter that much to high school ghetto students who can’t read. In DC or Watts or wherever. In fact, local black leaders in most cities have been moderately in favor of vouchers. I guess that in the next few years it will be greater.
    Real Estate price discrimination/ segregation has also been a huge negative, and vouchers will reduce that problem.

  • http://tomgrey.motime.com Tom Grey

    See Peter Gordon:
    http://www-rcf.usc.edu/~pgordon/blog/2004/12/consolidation-and-centralization.html
    on how, 60 years ago, there were some 100 000 local school districts.
    After consolidation, there are now 13 500.
    I conclude — big school districts, big mistake. Yes on vouchers — anybody against vouchers is AGAINST parent involvement/ power/ authority over their kid’s education.
    Whether it’s genetic or environment doesn’t matter that much to high school ghetto students who can’t read. In DC or Watts or wherever. In fact, local black leaders in most cities have been moderately in favor of vouchers. I guess that in the next few years it will be greater.
    Real Estate price discrimination/ segregation has also been a huge negative, and vouchers will reduce that problem.

  • Larry Lord

    ” but until expectations change, you could through $30K a year per student into problem areas and most likely achieve nothing.”
    That’s probably right. How much does it cost to change a parent’s expectations? Per year? Seriously.
    “Plus, when did the Federal gov’t get responsibility for school systems? I don’t see that in the Constitution anywhere.”
    Maybe you need to read it more carefully and pretend that it was written by people who weren’t slave owners. Sometimes that helps.

  • Larry Lord

    ” but until expectations change, you could through $30K a year per student into problem areas and most likely achieve nothing.”
    That’s probably right. How much does it cost to change a parent’s expectations? Per year? Seriously.
    “Plus, when did the Federal gov’t get responsibility for school systems? I don’t see that in the Constitution anywhere.”
    Maybe you need to read it more carefully and pretend that it was written by people who weren’t slave owners. Sometimes that helps.

  • http://www.gryphmon.com/ Patrick

    Since I don’t think we have strayed far enough from the topic…..
    http://www.advocate.com/new_news.asp?ID=14661&sd=12/22/04
    I suppose this would be called Christian gay affirmative action? Of course, its a private school, so they should be allowed to burn as many witches as they want.
    But back to the original topic, I do wonder how many white law students who are let in to college are permitted because they have other factors weighed in their favor. Such as whether they are the children of alumni, or whether they or their parents have the ability to pay the tuition.
    I think you are to a certain extent pretending that the only factor for admission for white students is test scores, and that the only reason black students get in is because of skin color.
    Neither premise is accurate.

  • http://www.gryphmon.com Patrick

    Since I don’t think we have strayed far enough from the topic…..
    http://www.advocate.com/new_news.asp?ID=14661&sd=12/22/04
    I suppose this would be called Christian gay affirmative action? Of course, its a private school, so they should be allowed to burn as many witches as they want.
    But back to the original topic, I do wonder how many white law students who are let in to college are permitted because they have other factors weighed in their favor. Such as whether they are the children of alumni, or whether they or their parents have the ability to pay the tuition.
    I think you are to a certain extent pretending that the only factor for admission for white students is test scores, and that the only reason black students get in is because of skin color.
    Neither premise is accurate.

  • gedi

    Christ Lutz wrote, “Finally, someone recently did a survey of students asking them what were the grade expectations of their parents. The results speak volumes.
    Asian – A
    Caucasion – A/B
    Black/Hispanic – C/passing”
    Really. You must be joking. Someone posted a survey.
    Frankly, any black parents who do not send their children to private schools are doing a grave disservice to their children. Why would one want to inflict upon their children the overtly racist underpinnings of the public education system? Why would one want to send their children to public schools where teachers believe their children should aim for c/passing just because they are black?

  • gedi

    Christ Lutz wrote, “Finally, someone recently did a survey of students asking them what were the grade expectations of their parents. The results speak volumes.
    Asian – A
    Caucasion – A/B
    Black/Hispanic – C/passing”
    Really. You must be joking. Someone posted a survey.
    Frankly, any black parents who do not send their children to private schools are doing a grave disservice to their children. Why would one want to inflict upon their children the overtly racist underpinnings of the public education system? Why would one want to send their children to public schools where teachers believe their children should aim for c/passing just because they are black?

  • Chris Lutz

    Maybe you need to read it more carefully and pretend that it was written by people who weren’t slave owners. Sometimes that helps.
    I read it for what it says. Who wrote it is irrelevant to what it says. And what it says is that all powers not explicitly given to the Federal government are left to the States. And, running school systems is not a power defined for the Federal government. Now you may not like that, but there is a mechanism to get it changed.
    How much does it cost to change a parent’s expectations? Per year? Seriously
    My point was that money won’t change that fact. If the parents don’t set expectations at home, the effect of more money won’t have a significant impact. So far Larry you are dodging the questions/points.
    The requirements for admission into the school are NOT equal to the minimum skill level required for successfully graduating. So nothing “falls” when a person passes the threshold admission criteria with help from his/her skin color.
    Yes and no. The problem is that once you start letting in lesser qualified students, they fail at a higher rate. There then comes pressure to lower standards to increase the passage rate to acceptable levels.
    I think you are to a certain extent pretending that the only factor for admission for white students is test scores, and that the only reason black students get in is because of skin color.
    True there are other criteria. But in the example of the Michigan case, being the child of an alum added a couple of points. On the other hand, racial categories added tens of points. I don’t like either and both should be dropped, but the racial weighting was much more significant.

  • Chris Lutz

    Maybe you need to read it more carefully and pretend that it was written by people who weren’t slave owners. Sometimes that helps.
    I read it for what it says. Who wrote it is irrelevant to what it says. And what it says is that all powers not explicitly given to the Federal government are left to the States. And, running school systems is not a power defined for the Federal government. Now you may not like that, but there is a mechanism to get it changed.
    How much does it cost to change a parent’s expectations? Per year? Seriously
    My point was that money won’t change that fact. If the parents don’t set expectations at home, the effect of more money won’t have a significant impact. So far Larry you are dodging the questions/points.
    The requirements for admission into the school are NOT equal to the minimum skill level required for successfully graduating. So nothing “falls” when a person passes the threshold admission criteria with help from his/her skin color.
    Yes and no. The problem is that once you start letting in lesser qualified students, they fail at a higher rate. There then comes pressure to lower standards to increase the passage rate to acceptable levels.
    I think you are to a certain extent pretending that the only factor for admission for white students is test scores, and that the only reason black students get in is because of skin color.
    True there are other criteria. But in the example of the Michigan case, being the child of an alum added a couple of points. On the other hand, racial categories added tens of points. I don’t like either and both should be dropped, but the racial weighting was much more significant.

  • Chris Lutz

    Gedi, sorry if I wasn’t clear. The children were asked about their parents’ expectations. That was the result. If the parents don’t care, schools can’t do a whole lot.

  • Chris Lutz

    Gedi, sorry if I wasn’t clear. The children were asked about their parents’ expectations. That was the result. If the parents don’t care, schools can’t do a whole lot.

  • Rob Ryan

    “Frankly, any black parents who do not send their children to private schools are doing a grave disservice to their children. Why would one want to inflict upon their children the overtly racist underpinnings of the public education system? Why would one want to send their children to public schools where teachers believe their children should aim for c/passing just because they are black?”
    Please. As if anyone ever decided to be a nothing because a jerk teacher thought he couldn’t reach his goals. Give me a break. It is parental, not teacher, expectations that truly determine a person’s motivation. As a teacher, I can assure you that I expect every bit as much from my black students as I do from my white students. I don’t know any teachers who don’t. The students who fail my class, black and white, are the children of apathetic or incompetent parents. I don’t know of any failing child with an involved parent.

  • Rob Ryan

    “Frankly, any black parents who do not send their children to private schools are doing a grave disservice to their children. Why would one want to inflict upon their children the overtly racist underpinnings of the public education system? Why would one want to send their children to public schools where teachers believe their children should aim for c/passing just because they are black?”
    Please. As if anyone ever decided to be a nothing because a jerk teacher thought he couldn’t reach his goals. Give me a break. It is parental, not teacher, expectations that truly determine a person’s motivation. As a teacher, I can assure you that I expect every bit as much from my black students as I do from my white students. I don’t know any teachers who don’t. The students who fail my class, black and white, are the children of apathetic or incompetent parents. I don’t know of any failing child with an involved parent.

  • Larry Lord

    “My point was that money won’t change that fact. If the parents don’t set expectations at home, the effect of more money won’t have a significant impact.”
    Well, wait just a second. I’m suggesting that some money be used to change the expectations of parents in the communities served by public schools. Certainly you admit that it’s possible to change parent’s expectations, through some some sort of modest outreach program to get parents to understand the benefits of achieving in school. And through greater contact between teachers and parents. How much do such programs cost per parent per year? Surely less than $30,000 parent.
    I have to admit I don’t have a specific solution in mind, but I don’t see why this problem should be considered intractable.
    As for the Constitution, I might argue that without access to some sort of modest education in today’s world, you are very very likely to be royally screwed in your pursuit of anything happiness (panhandling is illegal in many jurisdictions, is it not?). If I could amend the Constitution, that’s one of the first things I’d put in: a right to education.

  • Larry Lord

    “My point was that money won’t change that fact. If the parents don’t set expectations at home, the effect of more money won’t have a significant impact.”
    Well, wait just a second. I’m suggesting that some money be used to change the expectations of parents in the communities served by public schools. Certainly you admit that it’s possible to change parent’s expectations, through some some sort of modest outreach program to get parents to understand the benefits of achieving in school. And through greater contact between teachers and parents. How much do such programs cost per parent per year? Surely less than $30,000 parent.
    I have to admit I don’t have a specific solution in mind, but I don’t see why this problem should be considered intractable.
    As for the Constitution, I might argue that without access to some sort of modest education in today’s world, you are very very likely to be royally screwed in your pursuit of anything happiness (panhandling is illegal in many jurisdictions, is it not?). If I could amend the Constitution, that’s one of the first things I’d put in: a right to education.

  • Chris Lutz

    Certainly you admit that it’s possible to change parent’s expectations, through some some sort of modest outreach program to get parents to understand the benefits of achieving in school.
    I don’t disagree with you there. And I do agree that evangelicals could probably do more to help in that area. I am just wary of any massive government program to work on that. They tend to end up serving themselves instead of their intended purpose.
    As for the Constitution, I might argue that without access to some sort of modest education in today’s world, you are very very likely to be royally screwed in your pursuit of anything
    I agree with you that an education is necessary. (Although I think we need to reevaluate the whole concept of spending 16+ straight years in the education system. Ah a topic for another day.) Making it a right in the Constitution though will only end up causing the bureaucracy to demand more and more money without result, like in my state of Ohio where it is a right.

  • Chris Lutz

    Certainly you admit that it’s possible to change parent’s expectations, through some some sort of modest outreach program to get parents to understand the benefits of achieving in school.
    I don’t disagree with you there. And I do agree that evangelicals could probably do more to help in that area. I am just wary of any massive government program to work on that. They tend to end up serving themselves instead of their intended purpose.
    As for the Constitution, I might argue that without access to some sort of modest education in today’s world, you are very very likely to be royally screwed in your pursuit of anything
    I agree with you that an education is necessary. (Although I think we need to reevaluate the whole concept of spending 16+ straight years in the education system. Ah a topic for another day.) Making it a right in the Constitution though will only end up causing the bureaucracy to demand more and more money without result, like in my state of Ohio where it is a right.

  • gedi

    Bob Ryan wrote, “Please. As if anyone ever decided to be a nothing because a jerk teacher thought he couldn’t reach his goals. Give me a break.”
    It is not an all or nothing. Do you expect your black students to excel and be at the top of the class? People have a way of fulfilling expectations.
    “It is parental, not teacher, expectations that truly determine a person’s motivation.”
    You would do nothing for those children black or white who have limited parental pushing?
    “As a teacher, I can assure you that I expect every bit as much from my black students as I do from my white students. I don’t know any teachers who don’t. The students who fail my class, black and white, are the children of apathetic or incompetent parents. I don’t know of any failing child with an involved parent.
    Good for you. I just hope for the childen’s sake that you teach to all of your children, not just your favorites. It sounds to me like you have a built in scapegoat for those students who happen to fail your class. It wasn’t my fault, it was the parents. Do you happen to be a member of the Teacher’s Union per chance?

  • gedi

    Bob Ryan wrote, “Please. As if anyone ever decided to be a nothing because a jerk teacher thought he couldn’t reach his goals. Give me a break.”
    It is not an all or nothing. Do you expect your black students to excel and be at the top of the class? People have a way of fulfilling expectations.
    “It is parental, not teacher, expectations that truly determine a person’s motivation.”
    You would do nothing for those children black or white who have limited parental pushing?
    “As a teacher, I can assure you that I expect every bit as much from my black students as I do from my white students. I don’t know any teachers who don’t. The students who fail my class, black and white, are the children of apathetic or incompetent parents. I don’t know of any failing child with an involved parent.
    Good for you. I just hope for the childen’s sake that you teach to all of your children, not just your favorites. It sounds to me like you have a built in scapegoat for those students who happen to fail your class. It wasn’t my fault, it was the parents. Do you happen to be a member of the Teacher’s Union per chance?

  • steve h

    Hey guys, I skipped most of the comments here.
    Have any of you read any comments on affirmative action by Thomas Sowell?
    Sowell is a black scholar (in economics, at Stanford) who has studied affirmative action around the world, and written a book on it. I have not read the book, but I have read many speaches and articles about affirmative action by Sowell.
    Sowell’s research has pulled out many interesting points from American history.
    As a sampler:
    –Did you know that a large majority of blacks in America moved out of poverty during the 1940′s, before any nationwide civil rights or affirmative action campaigns?
    –How about the all-black, lower-class school in Washington, DC, which had students out-scoring white schools nearby for many of the years between 1890 and 1950? A large number of black college graduates during that time period (1890-1950) came from that particular high school in DC.
    What? Black students attending college before 1950? I guess we all need to study a little bit more before we say that affirmative action has saved the black community from racism and oppression.

  • steve h

    Hey guys, I skipped most of the comments here.
    Have any of you read any comments on affirmative action by Thomas Sowell?
    Sowell is a black scholar (in economics, at Stanford) who has studied affirmative action around the world, and written a book on it. I have not read the book, but I have read many speaches and articles about affirmative action by Sowell.
    Sowell’s research has pulled out many interesting points from American history.
    As a sampler:
    –Did you know that a large majority of blacks in America moved out of poverty during the 1940′s, before any nationwide civil rights or affirmative action campaigns?
    –How about the all-black, lower-class school in Washington, DC, which had students out-scoring white schools nearby for many of the years between 1890 and 1950? A large number of black college graduates during that time period (1890-1950) came from that particular high school in DC.
    What? Black students attending college before 1950? I guess we all need to study a little bit more before we say that affirmative action has saved the black community from racism and oppression.

  • Rob Ryan

    “Do you happen to be a member of the Teacher’s Union per chance?”
    No. I have considered joining the NEA for insurance purposes, but haven’t done so. There really is no teacher’s union in Tennessee, and Tennessee law prohibits striking by public school teachers. The Knox County Educational association lobbies for pay and benefits and defends its members against lawsuits.
    I don’t need a scapegoat for my failing students. I have no need to transfer blame. I reach out to every student; most respond, but some do not. Even the finest doctors lose patients. I try to learn from each case and go on.

  • Rob Ryan

    “Do you happen to be a member of the Teacher’s Union per chance?”
    No. I have considered joining the NEA for insurance purposes, but haven’t done so. There really is no teacher’s union in Tennessee, and Tennessee law prohibits striking by public school teachers. The Knox County Educational association lobbies for pay and benefits and defends its members against lawsuits.
    I don’t need a scapegoat for my failing students. I have no need to transfer blame. I reach out to every student; most respond, but some do not. Even the finest doctors lose patients. I try to learn from each case and go on.