Affirmative Action Versus White Privilege

Ebony's Jamilah Lemieux challenges the arguments of Abigail Fisher, a white candidate who says she was denied the right to attend the University of Texas, which insists she wouldn't have gotten in even without affirmative action. 

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Ebony's Jamilah Lemieux challenges the arguments of Abigail Fisher, a white candidate who says she was denied the right to attend the University of Texas, which insists she wouldn't have gotten in even without affirmative action.

Despite having graduated from a good college and working in her desired industry in the city of her choosing, she is still resentful of having been denied admission to the University of Texas. And while many graduates carry on a degree of bitterness over not having attended their first-choice school, few go so far as to take their gripes to the United States Supreme Court. Abigail Fisher has done just that ...

I also wonder where Fisher would stand if she were in a position where her gender posed a threat to her career trajectory, considering how greatly White women have benefited from affirmative action.

Alas, such is the devil that is race and class privilege; those who benefit don't say "You know what? It's enough that I have been able to grow up safely, with a relative unlikelihood that I would ever be suspended or diagnosed with a learning disorder based on my race and gender. It is enough that I was able attend college surrounded by people who looked like me and have a great career in the middle of a job crisis. It is enough that I haven't been racially profiled while driving, shopping or performing some other mundane task. It is enough that I have been assaulted by a police officer for simply daring to venture outside of my neighborhood. My privileges are enough."

No, most of these people don't even see themselves as privileged. They simply acknowledge that they have rights and freedoms that "all" people should have, yet many of them challenge efforts to extend this access to others, particularly if there is any chance that they may not have the same entitlements to which they have been accustomed; others don't even feel that all Americans deserve their level of access, and work diligently to keep it reserved to certain groups.

Abigail Fisher's privilege is not enough. If there is any miniscule barrier that may be placed before her, such as racial quotas at a school that has stated that she would not have been

Read Jamilah Lemieux's entire piece at Ebony.com.

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