Video: Peter Wood Talks Racial Preferences on Brazilian TV

National Association of Scholars

Brazil's congress recently approved a law expanding racial preferences for minorities at the nation's colleges and universities. RedeTV!, a Brazilian TV station, interviewed NAS president Peter Wood on his opinions about racial preferences. The transcript for the clip is written below.

Click on the image below to watch the 1-minute clip.


In this 80's movie, a white young man find a way to be accepted at Harvard University and also gets a scholarship. He pretends to be black, and is benefited by the affirmative action admission policy. The comedy shows a debate that has been around for years in the U.S.

Marcelo Medeiros - New York
The racial preference system, as it is called here, started in the 70's. Higher education was considered to be unfair for minorities. However, unlike Brazil, the U.S. works with affirmative action to help make students' access into universities easier.

This expert explains that this system has helped many black students, especially from the middle class, to be accepted in institutions where they weren't able to study before.

Peter Woods - Presidente of National Association of Scholars
"Instead of students getting the opportunity to go to the College where they could succeed they are placed in a higher level when they can't compete."

The Supreme Court has many litigations about the racial preference systems. In the most recent one, this student is suing the University of Texas. She says the institution denied her admission because she is white. The term starts next month, and can be crucial to end the affirmative action system in American Universities.

Peter Woods - Presidente of National Association of Scholars
"It's very interesting to me to learn that Brazil is deciding to get into a game that the US is probably deciding to get out of."

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