The Instigator
MByronNHS
Pro (for)
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The Contender
GSchroeterNHS
Con (against)
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Affirmitive Action Debate

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/16/2013 Category: Society
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 698 times Debate No: 38997
Debate Rounds (5)
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MByronNHS

Pro

In America, minority races struggle to build up financial security because of lower pay and job discrimination causing Affirmative Action to be necessary. According to 1998 United States Department of Labor statistics; African Americans are almost twice as likely as Caucasian Americans to be unemployed. In 2000, the median weekly earning for minorities (African Americans and Latinos) was over one hundred dollars less than Caucasian Americans. (1) In addition to higher unemployment rates and lower weekly income, those with more Americanized names such as Emily and Robert are fifty percent more likely to get hired than Jamal or Laquisha according to a recent study in 2002. (2) Because America"s racial minorities suffer from discrimination, Affirmative action is necessary to have a racially balanced workplace environment in a wide range of jobs. All Americans deserve to live the American Dream no matter their race or ethnicity, and sometimes this requires "reverse discrimination".

https://www.aclu.org... (1)
http://www.chicagobooth.edu... (2)
GSchroeterNHS

Con

Affirmative Action may once have been necessary to allow minorities to get jobs and enroll in universities, but it is no longer needed for minorities in the United States. Discrimination of minorities is on the decline in America. In a 1995 survey conducted by the Pew Research center, 37% of people believed that racial discrimination was the chief impediment to black progress. In 2012, that percentage was down to 23%. (1) Affirmative Action was created to solve the problem of race-based discrimination, but the method is outdated and flawed. Low-performing minority students are chosen by college admissions officers based on their skin-color instead of their academic abilities, and many find themselves in over their heads and drop out.

The majority of people in fact do not support Affirmative Action as part of the college enrollment process. Just 22% of Americans support the practice of allowing universities to consider applicants' race as a factor, and 76% are overtly against the idea, based on an ABC News/Washington Post poll released on June 12, 2013. (1)

While my opponent's points are valid, studies conducted 15, 13, and 11 years ago are simply not relevant in a debate which is ongoing and ever-changing. It is the up-to-date information which properly demonstrates the true social climate surrounding Affirmative Action.

(1) http://www.huffingtonpost.com...
Debate Round No. 1
MByronNHS

Pro

MByronNHS forfeited this round.
GSchroeterNHS

Con

GSchroeterNHS forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
MByronNHS

Pro

While my opponents argument is well written and contains several recent statistics, I am arguing Affirmative Action in the work place, not in schools. Therefore my opponent"s argument is irrelevant in this debate.

However, Affirmative Action is relevant in schools due to various location and population diversity. Regardless who is for or against considering race as a factor when getting into schools, it is the diversity factor that schools take into account, not the general population"s opinion. Each city in America contains a different amount of minorities, causing schools having to focus on diversity of applicants. (3) Most people have no issues with Caucasian Americans being accepted into a predominantly African American school to increase diversity, but if it is the other way around it is considered "reverse discrimination".

Surprisingly, the percentage of African Americans and minorities applying for Medical School is much greater than the number of Caucasian applicants, which shows a wide range of diversity which, in that case, Affirmative Action is not necessary. (3) Although, those statistics display those who applied, not those who were accepted. The majority of Medical Schools in the United States have a low range of diversity; therefore, Affirmative Action is necessary so that those more predominant applicants get a chance.

(3) https://members.aamc.org...
GSchroeterNHS

Con

Minority students who benefit from affirmative action are often times placed in schools which they cannot handle. Most students will preform in a way which their academic credentials predict. All too often, minority students are sent to colleges well above their ability, and as a result are forced to drop out prematurely.

In an extensive study published by Richard H. Sander, professor of Law at Northwestern University, out of approximately 3,700 black students admitted to law schools, about 670 failed or dropped out, and only about 1,980 passed the bar exam. Sander's claims that the reason for this was that as white students in less prestigious schools learn the material and prepare for the exam, minority students in more elite schools struggle to keep up, become demoralized, and fail the bar(2)

With more colorblind policies, Sanders predicts, fewer black students would be admitted to law schools. However, the rate of dropout would decrease by over a third and the rate of black students who would pass the bar exam would increase by over a tenth (2)

My opponent states that "Each city in America contains a different amount of minorities, causing schools (to have) to focus on diversity of applicants." But shouldn't the diversity in schools' student populations be similar to the diversity in the population of the surrounding area? Colleges feel the need to choose an excess of minority applicants and ignore their scores and grades in order to create a diverse population, but this creates an inaccurate image of America.

My opponent also states that despite the fact that Medical Schools are receiving more minority applicants than white applicants, the applicants -still- need affirmative action to have a chance of getting into the school. This is a flawed stance. If more minorities are applying, and those minorities have comparable academic prowess to the white applicants, then even without affirmative action policies logic dictates that the majority of those accepted would be minorities. This statement is ludicrous and unfounded.

Current policies do very little to provide a benefit to minorities, and should be revised so that students are admitted to colleges which match their academic ability. Only then will students receive the proper education and become prepared for their future careers. America should be color-blind, not color-biased.

(2) http://www2.law.ucla.edu...
Debate Round No. 3
MByronNHS

Pro

My opponent has managed to reach very valid and understandable points and I am unsure how to further argue upon this topic for my opponent has shown me statistics that do not go against my believes and I have come to agree that Affirmitive Action is not required in a school setting. I would like to however go back to my first argument and state that however unneeded in school settings, Affirmitive Action continues to be a need in the work place. I request that my opponent make his last arguments on my first statement made in this debate.
GSchroeterNHS

Con

In all actuality, I find myself acknowledging my opponents point that Affirmative Action may have its uses in the hiring process. However, it is still a discriminatory process, and should be ratified. An alternative, Class-Based Affirmative Action, has not been touched upon in this debate, but is nonetheless an important topic for argument. Continuing the debate using Class-Based Affirmative Action as the topic will certainly provide better commentary and conversation than a half-hearted and, thus, bland argument to my opponent's first submission.
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America is no longer a discriminatory nation. There is no slavery, no Jim Crow laws, no "separate but equal" standard to hold establishments by. Affirmative Action is the final artifact of a forgotten chapter in our nation's history. While it is true that the scars left by slavery, redlining, and exclusion continue to have an impact on the accumulated wealth of American blacks, the problem lies not with continued discrimination, but with a neglected lower class. Giving preference based on race is overt discrimination, but preference based upon the economic status of a job/college applicant addresses past discrimination without perpetuating the idea that "two wrongs make a right".

Because impoverished people are more likely to be racial minorities, class-based affirmative action promotes equality of opportunity to those who most need it while avoiding the targeting of specific groups for policies. Class is a better indicator of true disadvantage, and has become socially more important than race. (4)

If all racism were to end, there would still be major socioeconomic inequalities which separate classes and groups. Thus, these inequalities and the issue which must be addressed when determining the bias towards a potential job/college applicant. (5)

(4)http://researchnetwork.pearson.com...
(5)http://nymag.com...
Debate Round No. 4
MByronNHS

Pro

How is a hiring manager supposed to know what an applicant's class? The only way to find out what an applicants social class is. So, the only way that managers could higher based on applicant's financial standing would be to directly ask how much money the applicant is making a year as well as if the applicant receives any government benefits. That gets unfair because many employers may chose to higher someone who needs the money over someone who is wealthy but well classified to the job. Knowing the applicant's social class leads to playing with the emotions of the one highering.

I agree with my opponents point where often lower class members of society are minorities but I am unsure how an employer would know this.

Affirmative Action is necessary in the work place for equal opportunity in the workplace for both color and race.
GSchroeterNHS

Con

GSchroeterNHS forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
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