The Instigator
whyt3nn3rdy
Pro (for)
Winning
2 Points
The Contender
Sword0fVirtue
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Affirmative Action (when used in the college application process) is a bad policy.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
whyt3nn3rdy
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/19/2012 Category: Education
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,936 times Debate No: 22973
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (12)
Votes (2)

 

whyt3nn3rdy

Pro

There will be no actual character limit, if one side of the case would like to post a link to a Google Document they may do so. Of course, the case is that most people will not read such long debates, so I will try to keep within the 8,000 characters that debate.org allows.

The first round is for acceptance and acceptance only. No definitions will be presented, nor outlines of arguments. If the Con side of this argument does post any definitions or outlines, they will immediately have forfeited this debate.

Con will be arguing that Affirmative Action (when used in the college application process) is a good policy.

Either side may present new arguments up until round 5. Round five will be strictly for rebuttals and closing analysis.

I look forward to an interesting debate.
Sword0fVirtue

Con

I'll give it a shot, 5 rounds or bust
Debate Round No. 1
whyt3nn3rdy

Pro

I would first like to point out that we will not be debating the idea of affirmative action, but how the policy acts in the status quo.

bad: "morally reprehensible" as defined by diction [dictionary.com]

1. Status Quo
When first suggested, Affirmative action meant: to give preferential treatment to minorities and other historically oppressed social classes in the admission process of universities [1]. Nowadays, it more means something along the lines of: reverse discrimination. Affirmative action began as a policy to correct historical discrimination and to make up for oppression of certain minorities in history. Though the greater diversity in schools, areas of work, and general communities may suggest that this policy is a clear success, the behind-the-scenes of this policy prove it to be both unfair and offensive to both the majority and minority students. The diversity now, as opposed to the diversity of 50 years ago is much greater, admittedly. However, because affirmative action in the past had succeeded to an extent, nowadays it seems to lead to more problems than solutions. When viewing the pros and cons of affirmative action, the first con people usually think of involves court cases. One example is the case argued between the University of Michigan and three white students claiming that the policy that rejected them from the university was raced-based discrimination [2]. While most assume affirmative action to be a policy to end discrimination in the educational system, it only seems to swap the roles of who is being discriminated against, and who has the advantage.

2. Reverse Discrimination
Affirmative action, instead of reversing the effects of discrimination, is reverse discrimination. The main objective of this policy is to end discrimination and the effects of unfair treatment of students based on their race. However, it does indeed do the opposite [3]. The majority students who apply to universities can be passed over solely because they are within this racial class. Contrary to most stereotypes, there are many people of the majority (race-wise) that live in poverty. However, the way that affirmative action is currently set up, a poverty-stricken student that falls into the racial majority of society, who works as hard as he can and fairly earns his place at a university, can be passed over by a rich minority student who has not worked nearly as hard to earn that place.

3. Standards of Accountability
Affirmative action also lowers the standards of accountability that are needed to encourage students to work harder and perform better [4]. If a minority student is able to earn a spot in an Ivy League school with a 3.2 GPA, why would he push himself to get a 4.0? If a student has the chance to get into an Ivy League school with just a 3.2 they wouldn't pull work to boost their GPA above that mark. Though some students may be self-motivated, most need that extra push or initiative to do as well as they possibly can. By lowering the standards for admission into universities, the policy of affirmative action lowers the level of accountability. Hard work, discipline, and achievement are the qualities that need to be rewarded because when we reward a student based solely on their race, we punish another because of theirs.

4. Ill-Equipped Students
Even when students are admitted on this basis, they are ill-equipped to handle the school's actual curriculum. Imagine asking a science fair contested to take a rocket scientist job at NASA just because they won 1st place at the fair. This is essentially what affirmative action allows. Minority students, who do not have the qualifications needed to succeed in the school, are admitted anyway. The possibility of success in these situations is extremely low, and over their heads. Ivy-League schools have very high GPA and SAT requirements because it takes a lot to be able to graduate from these universities. When these schools are forced to lower their standards to achieve diversity, some students are just unable to keep up [5]. Some would argue that this is to say that the students are less capable, but the fact is, if they cannot reach the minimum requirements for the university they are not ready for that level of education. The low graduation rate of minorities is proof of this fact, because they are going to schools that don't match their own abilities.

5a. Condescending to All.
Not only is it unfair to the students of racial majority, affirmative action is condescending to minority students. To say that the minority students need affirmative action to succeed is condescending in its entirety. Though the intention is to strengthen diversity, doing this by allowing minority students into schools that they are not qualified for is insulting. Though a less qualified minority student would be grateful for this policy, the more qualified would be deeply insulted. If a minority student makes a high GPA, that student will not know if it is because of their grade or their race that got them into the school. Because colleges do not send you a letter explaining on what points you got accepted on, many minority students that are accepted into top-notch schools are uneasy about why they got accepted. Most people in general like to know that they are good enough for something. A sense of pride is healthy in students when they get into college because they know that their heavy work has finally paid off. However, you take this feeling away from minority students because they could easily be accepted based off of just their race. Some people may claim that some stereotypes will never be broken without this policy; however it is clear that this policy only seems to enhance these stereotypes. For example, some stereotypes may say that blacks are less capable than whites. Because of affirmative action, this stereotype is only expressed in a 'nicer' manner.

5b. Achievement Assumed Affirmative Action
Affirmative action demeans true minority achievement. In other words, a person of the racial minority group will be labeled as successful based solely on this policy and not the hard work and brightness of their character [6]. Barack Obama, Oprah Winfrey, Herman Cain and Colin Powell are just few members of the racial minority that are known by their success through hard work, and because they've earned their places in power. Any of these examples would be clearly offended if they were accused of getting to where they are strictly because of this policy. This can also be said of minority doctors and other leaders in the work force. Too often, their success is demeaned by people who believe that preferential treatment got them to where they are today. Thus, affirmative action forces minorities to prove themselves in ways that majority students would not.

6. Unable to say goodbye.
Affirmative action is not a policy that once enacted will be easily removed. Even if the underlying discrimination has been compromised for, affirmative action is still quite tough to remove after being enacted when it comes to college admissions. Even though in almost all areas of the country, racism and discrimination have become a thing of the past, the fact is that affirmative action is still hard to remove. After doing its initial job, lawmakers and policy makers move slowly and must haggle over everything that may pose controversy in the future. Even if racism is much less of a problem now, affirmative action is a policy that will take quite a time to be removed. It's extremely difficult to get hundreds of people and branches of government to agree. Because affirmative action is considered a political policy, it is too controversial of an issue to immediately revoke.

[1] http://tinyurl.com...
[2] http://tinyurl.com...
[3] http://tinyurl.com...
[4] http://tinyurl.com...
[5] http://tinyurl.com...
[6] http://tinyurl.com...
Sword0fVirtue

Con

Sword0fVirtue forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
whyt3nn3rdy

Pro

Please extend my case to the next round.
Sword0fVirtue

Con

Sword0fVirtue forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
whyt3nn3rdy

Pro

Please extend my case, again. I hope all is well with my opponent.
Sword0fVirtue

Con

Sword0fVirtue forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
whyt3nn3rdy

Pro

Please extend my arguments to the final round.
If anyone is interested in debating this topic with me, please let me know.
Sword0fVirtue

Con

Sword0fVirtue forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
12 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by whyt3nn3rdy 5 years ago
whyt3nn3rdy
Please don't forfeit. I was really looking forward to this debate...
Posted by whyt3nn3rdy 5 years ago
whyt3nn3rdy
That does not matter in this debate, however. The debate will revolve around my case in comparison to the resolution. If you aren't able to figure out what I'm arguing, it's not my fault. Besides, it's both the idea of it and the consequences that is bad. I'm not arguing both, however.
Posted by Nick11 5 years ago
Nick11
Okay, it is a bad policy not a bad idea. I guess you are recanting your claim to not argue definitions since you completely ignored the point of what was said and instead defend your wording.

Again, the resolution does not say if it is bad inherently or because if its consequences.
Posted by whyt3nn3rdy 5 years ago
whyt3nn3rdy
The resolution states "Affirmative Action is a bad policy," that in no way states: "Affirmative Action is a bad idea."
Posted by Nick11 5 years ago
Nick11
I agree with thejmanjman. It should be made clear if you are arguing that the outcomes will be less than optimal or if the very idea of affirmative action is a problem.

If the definitions are not laid out to begin with the debate easily falls into incoherency--which is completely separate from arguing definitions.
Posted by whyt3nn3rdy 5 years ago
whyt3nn3rdy
Everyone knows what bad means, it may be general, but everyone gets the point. I won't be arguing definitions.
Posted by thejmanjman 5 years ago
thejmanjman
You need to be more specific on the definition of "Bad".
Posted by InVinoVeritas 5 years ago
InVinoVeritas
That's why I never debate for the purpose of getting a win. The voters here tend to not read arguments and simply vote based on a combination of a vague understanding of the debate and their own opinion.
Posted by whyt3nn3rdy 5 years ago
whyt3nn3rdy
Ah well, I feel like if someone else took it up it would be worth while. The vote really goes to arguments, not opinion.
Posted by FourTrouble 5 years ago
FourTrouble
I'm saying because of my experience with the voters on this site.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by K.GKevinGeary 5 years ago
K.GKevinGeary
whyt3nn3rdySword0fVirtueTied
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Total points awarded:10 
Reasons for voting decision: conduct
Vote Placed by 1dustpelt 5 years ago
1dustpelt
whyt3nn3rdySword0fVirtueTied
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Total points awarded:10 
Reasons for voting decision: ff