New York, NY; May 13, 2022 – The National Association of Scholars (NAS) has filed an amicus curiae brief in support of Students for Fair Admissions (SFFA) in their case challenging the constitutionality of racially preferential admissions policies at Harvard University and the University of North Carolina. The case, which will be argued before the Supreme Court in the 2022-2023 term, has the potential to overturn the legal precedent that has propped up racial preferences in higher education for nearly fifty years.
“While lower courts have willingly pulled the wool over their eyes when confronted with blatant and admitted racial prejudice against Asian Americans, the Supreme Court now has an opportunity to reverse decades of government supported discrimination,” said NAS President Peter Wood. “The system of racial preferences was flawed from the start. Every day it remains legal is another day that higher education continues to lose legitimacy.”
The Supreme Court’s rulings in Regents of the University of California v. Bakke (1978) and Grutter v. Bollinger (2003) upheld the use of racial preferences in college admissions provided the process is “narrowly tailored” to achieve “the educational benefits that flow from a diverse student body.” In practice, as the NAS amicus brief explains, “the dream of integration has given way to a regime of ‘neo-segregation’ in America’s colleges and universities, featuring separate graduations, separate dormitories and even de facto segregated classes….The ironic result is that the use of racial preferences in pursuit of diversity may actually undermine the very goals sought in pursuing it.”
In the decades since the Supreme Court first affirmed the use of racial preferences in higher education, overwhelming evidence has been uncovered that admissions offices have intentionally discriminated against Asian-American applicants in an effort to achieve racial balancing. SFFA’s initial complaint against Harvard and UNC included reams of statistical evidence demonstrating how the schools’ admissions officers applied higher standards to Asian-American applicants to those in other demographics. Rather than combatting discrimination in higher education, college admissions offices have codified it, sacrificing one racial minority group to advance another.
“NAS has supported SFFA from the very beginning, when it first filed suit against Harvard, and we will continue to do so until race is eliminated as a qualification for college admission,” reiterated Dr. Wood. “This amicus brief was submitted to add weight to the evidence supporting SFFA’s case. It is imperative that the Supreme Court end once and for all the practice of racial preferences. Without that, the dream of equality in America is dead.”
NAS is a network of scholars and citizens united by a commitment to academic freedom, disinterested scholarship, and excellence in American higher education. Membership in NAS is open to all who share a commitment to these broad principles. NAS publishes a journal and has state and regional affiliates. Visit NAS at www.nas.org.
If you would like more information about this issue or about the National Association of Scholars, please contact Chance Layton at [email protected].
Image: Anna Sullivan, Public Domain