The Instigator
oboeman
Pro (for)
Losing
10 Points
The Contender
zach12
Con (against)
Winning
24 Points

Resolved: Affirmative action should be practiced in college admissions.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/9/2009 Category: Entertainment
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 3,874 times Debate No: 7319
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (0)
Votes (6)

 

oboeman

Pro

Greetings.

I look forward to debating my opponent, zach12, in this fun debate tournament.

"The term affirmative action refers to policies that take sex, race, or ethnicity into account in an attempt to promote equal opportunity."
(Site: Wikipedia)

Affirmative action provides fairness in college admissions. I affirm: colleges should indeed take into account in a beneficial manner the extent of diversity amongst a particular yield of applicants when determining its admittances.

First, it produces a larger yield of diversity in the campus. More diversity means more opportunity for cultural interaction and learning of other ethnicities, promoting the educational environment.

Second, it creates more equal opportunity for minorities and women in college admissions, fields as to which they are often underrepresented in society today.

Third, in the case of extremely similar candidates vying for a specific spot in admission, affirmative action allows for colleges to favor diversity, while also generating an appealing candidate in other regards such as academics.

I began by stating some initial claims.
I reserve the right to add additional arguments as needed in the next round, as necessary.

Thanks, and I look forward to this debate.
Cheers,
Oboeman.
zach12

Con

I look forward to debating this topic on the side I actually believe in this time.

>>> Affirmative action provides fairness in college admissions <<<

Affirmative action is merely discrimination in reverse. There is the case of Barbara Grutter, who was turned down from the University of Michigan despite being more qualified than the minority groups who were admitted due to a quota.

Affirmative action tends to only benefit the high-standing, wealthy members of the minority group who are being "benefited."

>>> First, it produces a larger yield of diversity in the campus. More diversity means more opportunity for cultural interaction and learning of other ethnicities, promoting the educational environment. <<<

There may be potential for more cultural diversity, but it rarely surfaces. Minorities are usually resented for being there. They are seen as being given a handout, without earning it. Resent gets rid of any possibility of cultural enrichment.

>>> Second, it creates more equal opportunity for minorities and women in college admissions, fields as to which they are often underrepresented in society today. <<<

It does not create equal opportunity, It created unbalanced opportunity. minorities are being let through without qualifying, destroying any incentive to try and achieve and punishing the really qualified minorities by causing them to be hated by their white male peers.

>>> Third, in the case of extremely similar candidates vying for a specific spot in admission, affirmative action allows for colleges to favor diversity, while also generating an appealing candidate in other regards such as academics. <<<

How often are there extremely similar candidates with the same GPA, equally active in the community, went out for the same sports and were just as good at them, got the same scores on the ACT and the SAT?

Almost never

This is an impractical law that promotes inequality and racism in America and gives Blacks an easy pass. Not to mention it is unconstitutional.

I look forward to the rest of this debate
Debate Round No. 1
oboeman

Pro

Thanks for accepting this debate challenge.
Here go the rebuttals. I still maintain each of my arguments from Round 1 as well.

"Affirmative action is merely discrimination in reverse. There is the case of Barbara Grutter, who was turned down from the University of Michigan despite being more qualified than the minority groups who were admitted due to a quota."

Not necessarily. Given that minorities are often underrepresented at college institutions, as well as the fact that many people of different ethnicities ARE indeed qualified, more racially and gender-oriented accuracy in college institutions would only be for the better. This is not to say that less qualified candidates would be admitted. Rather, diversity would be used a tiebreaker during the college admissions process. That is how affirmative action SHOULD be used (see debate resolution). And thus, the example provided by my opponent fails.

"Affirmative action tends to only benefit the high-standing, wealthy members of the minority group who are being "benefited.""

Please supply some evidence to verify that claim. The more qualified candidates would be the ones benefited, by the definition of affirmative action.

"There may be potential for more cultural diversity, but it rarely surfaces. Minorities are usually resented for being there. They are seen as being given a handout, without earning it. Resent gets rid of any possibility of cultural enrichment."

Again, please supply some evidence of that. And because only the equally qualified or more qualified candidates would be entitled to affirmative action as described, there is no "not-deserving" factor.

"How often are there extremely similar candidates with the same GPA, equally active in the community, went out for the same sports and were just as good at them, got the same scores on the ACT and the SAT?"

How often an event may occur is irrelevant, as long as it remains possible. Given that it is possible for two or more extremely similar candidates to apply to college, the argument still stands. Granted, this is statistically more probable at larger state universities, for example because of the larger yield of students applying for spots.

"Not to mention it is unconstitutional."

Firstly, how is it unconstitutional? Secondly, I would like to point out that whether or not it is "constitutional" or not is also largely a red herring. A debate with the word "should" in the resolution as used in this debate directly implies change the possibility for change of the current system, depending on the outcome of the debate.

Affirmative action leads to higher levels of diversity in colleges, more equal opportunity for people of minority-status and women, and ensures less discrimination in the college admissions arena.

I look forward to the remaining debate.
zach12

Con

My opponent's first rebuttal is not a rebuttal at all. He promotes a different definition of affirmative action that the one he put in his first post.

He defined it as: The term affirmative action refers to policies that take sex, race, or ethnicity into account in an attempt to promote equal opportunity

In Grutter's case, they took race into account. They took into account the fact that she wasn't part of the minority and rejected her unfairly.

>>> That is how affirmative action SHOULD be used (see debate resolution). And thus, the example provided by my opponent fails. <<<

my opponent has missed the meaning of the resolution. We are talking about whether affirmative action, in the way it is currently being used, should be used. Not whether we should use an unrealistic, idealized form of affirmative action in which everyone loves everyone and there are no problems or lawsuits.

http://www.studyworld.com...

"In May 1994, 22 faculty
members were fired, all were male. The president of the
university was very blunt about his motive, to protect the
small number of women on the university staff"

This is another case of reverse discrimination

Next I will address this:

>>> Firstly, how is it unconstitutional? <<<

This was such an issue that it got all the way to the Supreme Court.
http://www.businessweek.com...

http://www.law.umkc.edu...

In this source we see that the government can't use race as a detriment but can it use it as a benefit? Seems racist and unconstitutional to me, especially since I'm a white male.

>>> Secondly, I would like to point out that whether or not it is "constitutional" or not is also largely a red herring. A debate with the word "should" in the resolution as used in this debate directly implies change the possibility for change of the current system, depending on the outcome of the debate. <<<

Obviously, if something is illegal it shouldn't be done. Any police officer will tell you that.

http://www.cbsnews.com...

This is one case proving that affirmative action only creates a wider rift between the races.

Now I'm going to introduce a new idea before rebutting my opponent's other arguments.

Affirmative action doesn't increase minority college-representation. It merely redistributes it from less-selective colleges to more highly selective colleges.
http://www.cato.org...

Only 20% of blacks and 16% of Hispanics leave High School College ready. Of those, almost all graduate. So, then, the problem is not discrimination in colleges, it's the public high-schools' failure to properly educate these children.

So affirmative action does nothing.

To further prove my point, only about 30% of colleges take race into account at all. Most colleges don't have a vast amount of applicants compared to the amount of open spaces. These colleges go generally only on the individual merits of an individual. There is only this minority of colleges that even have the opportunity to consider race. This means that the minority members who would have otherwise went to less selective colleges just get moved up to more selective colleges. Thus there is no net gain of minority college students and the law is rendered almost completely ineffective.

>>> How often an event may occur is irrelevant, as long as it remains possible. Given that it is possible for two or more extremely similar candidates to apply to college, the argument still stands. Granted, this is statistically more probable at larger state universities, for example because of the larger yield of students applying for spots. <<<

So you're saying this law has a low chance of effectiveness but a lot of chance for controversies? Sounds like a good law to me.

Affirmative action addresses the wrong part of the problem. The government should be focused on making these minority members smarter in the first place and more driven in high school instead of trying to pawn them off to colleges.

That will do for now, vote con
Debate Round No. 2
oboeman

Pro

Alrighty. Here goes:

"The term affirmative action refers to policies that take sex, race, or ethnicity into account in an attempt to promote equal opportunity."

I have stuck to this definition throughout this debate. I have expanded upon how it should be applied, but have kept and maintained this definition throughout nonetheless.

"In Grutter's case, they took race into account. They took into account the fact that she wasn't part of the minority and rejected her unfairly."

The flaw in the argument of my opponent here is that my opponent is assuming both "affirmative action" definitions (both in this debate as well as the example case given) to be exactly the same. The definition of how affirmative action SHOULD be used, as I have insinuated throughout this debate, may differ from how it has improperly been used in the past.

"…Whether affirmative action, in the way it is currently being used, should be used. Not whether we should use an unrealistic, idealized form of affirmative action…"

There are different forms and type of affirmative action. That is given. Thus, we cannot use every possible definition of affirmative action in this debate. All I must do as the Pro side of this debate is show that affirmative action should be practiced in college admissions. To get a credible definition of affirmative action, I used Wikipedia. It seems to me that my opponent has just conceded that there are good types of affirmative action (such as the one described in the previous rounds).

"In this source we see that the government can't use race as a detriment but can it use it as a benefit? Seems racist and unconstitutional…"

Minorities have suffered less opportunity than the standard Caucasian in the Untied States. It is fair to admit them based upon racial diversity over a Caucasian if an only if their academic standing and application ranking as determined by the college institution is greater than or equal to the application of the Caucasian. Constitutionality is irrelevant. It can always be amended. What matters is if it is the RIGHT decision to make, if affirmative action is just. I have argued that such is the case, that affirmative action (as described) is indeed justified for use in the college admission process.

"Obviously, if something is illegal it shouldn't be done. Any police officer will tell you that."

One hundred years ago it was not legal for women to vote in his country. Does that mean it was unethical for them to pursue these rights? Seemingly, my opponent is using a circular argument, extending that something is wrong only because it is illegal, yet citing not reason as to WHY it would be "illegal" in the first place.

"Only 20% of blacks and 16% of Hispanics leave High School College ready. Of those, almost all graduate. So, then, the problem is not discrimination in colleges, it's the public high-schools' failure to properly educate these children."

Again, affirmative action would only apply to those of equal application status as other applicants. Thus, regardless of what the statistics are, if and when the hypothetical scenario occurs, affirmative action ought to be used. That is the point.

"So you're saying this law has a low chance of effectiveness but a lot of chance for controversies? Sounds like a good law to me."

I am saying that the utilization of affirmative action may not be as high as some may imagine. Will it cause controversy? More likely than not, it will. But what things DON'T cause controversy? Even if something causes controversy, that doesn't mean it is necessarily wrong or right. Ergo, affirmative action may still be just.

"Affirmative action addresses the wrong part of the problem. The government should be focused on making these minority members smarter in the first place and more driven in high school instead of trying to pawn them off to colleges."

The government definitely SHOULD help out under-privileged children, whether minority or not. But that should be done as a separate thing. Affirmative action still has a place, however, in the national arena. Practicing affirmative action allows for colleges to admit the same academic-oriented applicants into its institution, while also increasing diversity on campus.

In summary, I have affirmed: Affirmative action, as defined, should be practiced in college admissions. It increases diversity, creates more equal opportunity at higher learning levels for minorities, and allows for ways to properly conduct a tiebreaker when needed.
Vote PRO.

I would like to thank my opponent for the fun and enjoyable debate.
Good luck in the next debates in this tournament.

Cheers,
Oboeman
zach12

Con

>>> The flaw in the argument of my opponent here is that my opponent is assuming both "affirmative action" definitions (both in this debate as well as the example case given) to be exactly the same. The definition of how affirmative action SHOULD be used, as I have insinuated throughout this debate, may differ from how it has improperly been used in the past. <<<

All I must prove in this debate is that affirmative action should not be used in college admissions. This can be any form of affirmative action. My opponent is conceding to my side of the case by saying that one form of affirmative action SHOULD NOT be used.

>>> To get a credible definition of affirmative action, I used Wikipedia <<<

What an oxymoron. ANYONE can post to wikipedia, including the guy at the end of the block with a bong all day holding his hat out for money. I would be wary of wikipedia. In fact, the very page on wikipedia my opponent has cited has these problems:

It is in need of attention from an expert on the subject. may be able to help recruit one. Tagged since May 2008.
An editor has expressed concern that the article is unbalanced.

(These are copied right off the site.)

>>> Minorities have suffered less opportunity than the standard Caucasian in the Untied States. It is fair to admit them based upon racial diversity over a Caucasian <<<

So you're saying two wrongs make a right? We were unfair to them so they can be unfair to us? An eye for an eye will make the world go blind.

>>> One hundred years ago it was not legal for women to vote in his country. Does that mean it was unethical for them to pursue these rights? Seemingly, my opponent is using a circular argument, extending that something is wrong only because it is illegal, yet citing not reason as to WHY it would be "illegal" in the first place. <<<

It was ethical for them to pursue these rights. However a woman SHOULDN'T have voted before the new law was passed. She would have been arrested. So I'm saying affirmative action shouldn't be done for 2 more reasons. 1.) it is unconstitutional 2.) It is inherently wrong.

>>> Ergo, affirmative action may still be just. <<<

My opponent is losing faith in his arguments it seems.
Debate Round No. 3
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6 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Vote Placed by Krazzy_Player 2 years ago
Krazzy_Player
oboemanzach12Tied
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Vote Placed by zach12 5 years ago
zach12
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Vote Placed by charles15 7 years ago
charles15
oboemanzach12Tied
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Vote Placed by philosphical 7 years ago
philosphical
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Vote Placed by trendem 7 years ago
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Vote Placed by NOK_Domination 7 years ago
NOK_Domination
oboemanzach12Tied
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