I am so sick of entitled white students from the suburbs that blame affirmative action for their lack of success in college admissions. College admission, especially for very selective schools, is the epitome of an arbitrary process. Either you stand out, or not. Quite simple. While race does play a role in the admission, it’s typically very minor. Nowhere is this most evident than at my school, the University of Chicago. In 2011, black students only represented 5 % of the undergraduate student body. White students, however, represented almost half of the school, and still do. But if you ask Abigail Fisher, and other girls like her, all those minorities at these universities are the root problem. Cue the eye roll!
If you do not know already, Abigail Fisher is suing the University of Texas, demonizing affirmative action for her subsequent denial from the elite institution. Nevermind her lackluster SAT score of 1180 out of 1600, and her average GPA of 3.59. Interestingly, what is often excluded from this entire case and national discourse on affirmative action, is the simple fact that white women benefit more from affirmative action than other minorities. People often ignore the fact that sex is also included in the affirmative action legislation. What is more interesting are the statistics that explicitly demonstrates that white women have benefited immensely from this legislation. Sally Kohn cites that in 1995, 6 million women (majority being white) had jobs exclusively because of affirmative action legislation. Since then, this has number has grown exponentially. Conversely, today black workers, on average, still earn 35 percent less than their white counterparts.
To bring it back to the Fisher case, 168 latino and black students were denied admissions with comparable or better grades than Fisher! But Fisher and her attorneys don’t seem to care about this fact that single-handedly shatters their entire case. And that’s not the only one. Fisher was offered provisional admission, promising admissions after her first year if she maintain a 3.2 or higher gpa. 42 white students with lower test scores than her were offered the same provisional admissions compared to only 5 black students. All this information shows us a very different picture than one argued by Fisher. While she dumbfoundedly demonizes affirmative action for her denial, it is clear that people of color haven’t benefitted that much.
To Abigail Fisher, I am sorry you did not get into your dream school. But instead of blaming affirmative action, and the very small percent of minorities that attend elite universities, maybe you should focus on developing a stronger application. Moreover, please check your privilege! The statistics paint a clear picture: white women have benefitted immensely because of affirmative action. Understand that, and get over yourself and your entitlement.
You simply cannot always get what you want.