How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

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20121109
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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby 20121109 » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:10 pm

d34dluk3 wrote:
GAIAtheCHEERLEADER wrote:
d34dluk3 wrote:How about instead of me discriminating against you or you discriminating against me, we just stop doing it.


You're killing me, D.

You know the racial equality will persist if left alone. Doing nothing is an acceptance of the status quo.

I'm not saying do nothing in general. I'm saying the way to address discrimination is to eradicate it, not introduce more.

Absolutely do whatever has to be done to make housing, education, etc. stop discriminating against certain races. But don't add more discrimination to the mix and act like it solves anything.


I generally agree with this....but such reform needs to be MASSIVE, and thus is kind of unrealistic given our current social institutions.

Affirmative action is merely a means to an end, not the end itself.

But I don't think its effects are pure illusion.

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NZA
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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby NZA » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:11 pm

LAWLAW09 wrote:The injustices that result from a lack of minority representation in law-related fields are largely the product of actions committed by Whites. (Judges, prosecutors, pd, jurors are all predominantly and overwhelmingly White).


That depends on what city you're in.

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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby d34d9823 » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:12 pm

LAWLAW09 wrote:
GAIAtheCHEERLEADER wrote:
d34dluk3 wrote:How about instead of me discriminating against you or you discriminating against me, we just stop doing it.



How about you ask something similar to your white colleagues at the school you end up attending?


The injustices that result from a lack of minority representation in law-related fields are largely the product of actions committed by Whites. (Judges, prosecutors, pd, jurors are all predominantly and overwhelmingly White) Something tells me that's a fight or question you don't plan to address or take up with them.

Under-representation is a problem b/c those who are over-represented, historically and presently are unable and unwilling to act in a manner that leads to more fairness, not less.

This is a great point.

I think these lines of reasoning are the strongest support for AA. Instead of arguing that it's fair (it's not), pointing out that society has a strong compelling interest in diversity seems really convincing.

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LAWLAW09
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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby LAWLAW09 » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:13 pm

d34dluk3 wrote:
GAIAtheCHEERLEADER wrote:
d34dluk3 wrote:How about instead of me discriminating against you or you discriminating against me, we just stop doing it.


You're killing me, D.

You know the racial equality will persist if left alone. Doing nothing is an acceptance of the status quo.

I'm not saying do nothing in general. I'm saying the way to address discrimination is to eradicate it, not introduce more.

Absolutely do whatever has to be done to make housing, education, etc. stop discriminating against certain races. But don't add more discrimination to the mix and act like it solves anything.



The path to "whatever it takes" cannot be found in a legal field that is almost exclusively all White. The fact that many of them have high gpa's and lsat scores has never, and does not change that.

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Gotti
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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby Gotti » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:13 pm

sophia.olive wrote:Image


Omfg this is exactly right. Why are you mad at AA when tree is some ridiculous number like 20%+ of Yale acceptances are due to legacies??? There was a damn 158 who got into Yale for legacy and you're mad at the minorities whose numbers get pushed up a little...and these legacies are completely unqualified....I'm a little confused. That person saying 'What if my accomplishments are overlooked blah blah blah' ...stop being a whiny little kid and study the picture above. See if you can identify yourself in that image....everyone else can. Hint: you're the guy who's bitter cuz he didn't get in because he wasn't good enough and the minority was better.

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20121109
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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby 20121109 » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:13 pm

NZA wrote:I'd also like to say that I'm having a really good time taking this all in. It's kind of nice that we're managing to have a discussion on an extraordinarily sensitive topic without too much flaming. :D


I like it, too :)

Hearing people's thoughts about AA is nice, especially if done with sincerity and calm.

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Gotti
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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby Gotti » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:14 pm

LAWLAW09 wrote:
The path to "whatever it takes" cannot be found in a legal field that is almost exclusively all White. The fact that many of them have high gpa's and lsat scores has never, and does not change that.


+1000
Last edited by Gotti on Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby JazzOne » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:15 pm

LAWLAW09 wrote:I didn't argue that the consequences and rationale are justified. I'm arguing that the consequences and rationale aren't the same or even close to being same. Therefore, the "reverse" never took place and doesn't take place.

I think we're talking past each other because you ascribe a negative connotation to the word discriminate. I simply mean "choose." AA is as system of "choosing" applicants based on race, and it is a system that disfavors the majority.


LAWLAW09 wrote:You can't acknowledge that there are other factors to explain why a White person gets into a school over a White person with higher grades, or that there are other factors at play to explain when a lower-scoring URM gets into a school over a higher scoring URM, and then try to say a White person didn't get into a school because an applicant took their spot b/c of a policy that considers race as an additional consideration.

You're picking and choosing which factors (outside of scores) should matter and are the deciding factor. And, you're doing so with very little information.

Fair point. I can understand why the schools would value diversity, and that factor is no less legitimate than some others. However, it just strikes me as a bit inconsistent to argue that the answer to institutionalized racism is individualized discrimination. I guess you could argue that your point about proportionality makes one acceptable and not the other. OK, fair point.

LAWLAW09 wrote:I think fair-minded, but self-interested people implicitly argue that all the time. Institutional racism isn't perpetuated b/c it's the cool thing to do or the right thing to do.

The thing is, I have no skin in the game. I'm already in law school. In fact, I probably benefited from the URM boost. But I have never been discriminated against, and I grew up in a fairly affluent family. If there was ever someone who didn't deserve the boost, it was me. But yet here I am with my full scholarship, and my white friends are up to their necks in debt. Something about that strikes me as unfair.
Last edited by JazzOne on Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby bilbobaggins » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:15 pm

d34dluk3 wrote:
LAWLAW09 wrote:
GAIAtheCHEERLEADER wrote:
d34dluk3 wrote:How about instead of me discriminating against you or you discriminating against me, we just stop doing it.



How about you ask something similar to your white colleagues at the school you end up attending?


The injustices that result from a lack of minority representation in law-related fields are largely the product of actions committed by Whites. (Judges, prosecutors, pd, jurors are all predominantly and overwhelmingly White) Something tells me that's a fight or question you don't plan to address or take up with them.

Under-representation is a problem b/c those who are over-represented, historically and presently are unable and unwilling to act in a manner that leads to more fairness, not less.

This is a great point.

I think these lines of reasoning are the strongest support for AA. Instead of arguing that it's fair (it's not), pointing out that society has a strong compelling interest in diversity seems really convincing.


It is fair. It's just not fair in the way you'd like to define it.

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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby moopness » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:17 pm

What if we got rid of AA and put more emphasis on diversity statements (or made diversity statements more like quasi-personal statements)? Not saying this is the best thing to do, but it certainly seems to satisfy a lot of the gripes that people on both sides have. If schools want to ensure diversity and respect adversity, than they'd have to consider socioeconomic status and the diversity statement. If discrimination, which isn't part of socioeconomic status per se, really affected you and your ability to perform in school, then you should have no trouble explaining it. Likewise, for those who simply belong to an ethnic group but don't experience socioeconomic or social disadvantages, then simply checking off a box won't do much. Box checking honestly just makes it slightly easier on admissions committees, which I'm not so sure is the standard we should be trying to use when it comes to something as important as law school admissions.

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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby JazzOne » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:19 pm

bilbobaggins wrote:It is fair. It's just not fair in the way you'd like to define it.

Right. It is fair when viewed at the macro level, but there can be some serious unfairness at the micro level.

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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby NZA » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:19 pm

moopness wrote:What if we got rid of AA and put more emphasis on diversity statements (or made diversity statements more like quasi-personal statements)?


This, coupled with a resume that demonstrates a commitment to serving one's community, would be the most justifiable case of URM-boosting, I think.

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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby blackwater88 » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:20 pm

moopness wrote:What if we got rid of AA and put more emphasis on diversity statements (or made diversity statements more like quasi-personal statements)? Not saying this is the best thing to do, but it certainly seems to satisfy a lot of the gripes that people on both sides have. If schools want to ensure diversity and respect adversity, than they'd have to consider socioeconomic status and the diversity statement. If discrimination, which isn't part of socioeconomic status per se, really affected you and your ability to perform in school, then you should have no trouble explaining it. Likewise, for those who simply belong to an ethnic group but don't experience socioeconomic or social disadvantages, then simply checking off a box won't do much. Box checking honestly just makes it slightly easier on admissions committees, which I'm not so sure is the standard we should be trying to use when it comes to something as important as law school admissions.


How do you verify that though?

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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby d34d9823 » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:21 pm

bilbobaggins wrote:It is fair. It's just not fair in the way you'd like to define it.

Lol. Fair criticism, because fair is pretty much impossible to define.

It's not reflective of qualifications (unless you consider being a minority a qualification).

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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby JazzOne » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:21 pm

Just to add a thought to the discussion, I worked at a firm last summer where there wasn't a singe minority other than me. The "underrepresented" portion of the equation is completely warranted. Minorities make up a disproportionately small number of attorneys, and I think that disproportion is even more pronounced in biglaw.
Last edited by JazzOne on Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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NZA
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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby NZA » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:21 pm

JazzOne wrote:
bilbobaggins wrote:It is fair. It's just not fair in the way you'd like to define it.

Right. It is fair when viewed at the macro level, but there can be some serious unfairness at the micro level.


The question is, which matters more?

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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby 20121109 » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:22 pm

JazzOne wrote:The thing is, I have no skin in the game. I'm already in law school. In fact, I probably benefited from the URM boost. But I have never been discriminated against, and I grew up in a fairly affluent family. If there was ever someone who didn't deserve the boost, it was me. But yet here I am with my full scholarship, and my white friends are up to their necks in debt. Something about that strikes me as unfair.


But the system isn't about any one individual person. Your personal anecdote is just that.

Everyone should really stop thinking about AA on the micro-level. That's where the" injustice" seems most palpable. That was not how it was meant to be viewed, and doing so, conflates the good and equitable reasons behind it.

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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby sophia.olive » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:24 pm

d34dluk3 wrote:
NZA wrote:Come on. Do you really think there are thousands of white people who are out of a job because thousands of URMs were able to get into better law schools?

Or is it more likely that thousands of URMs are living on the margins because for decades white people have treated them unfairly?

I wouldn't say out of a job, but there are thousands of white people who have had slightly lower career trajectories because of AA.

No one's denying the past. The point is that the way to fix discrimination is not more discrimination, which is what we have currently.

How about instead of me discriminating against you or you discriminating against me, we just stop doing it.

lol that would be great... I think it is hard for us to understand because we are not generally discriminated against. There are things in our power that prevent us from doing things such as getting into law school. GPA lsat. for urms it is not in their power. they will be discriminated against because thats how it is, it wont just stop. we all have tribal mentalities and prejudicious and the truth is urms suffer from that there whole life and they cant change it. we could have studied a little hard in ug or for the lsat and got into hys. I would much rather be a little white girl from Missouri , than a black guy in New orleans.
Last edited by sophia.olive on Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby JazzOne » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:24 pm

GAIAtheCHEERLEADER wrote:
JazzOne wrote:The thing is, I have no skin in the game. I'm already in law school. In fact, I probably benefited from the URM boost. But I have never been discriminated against, and I grew up in a fairly affluent family. If there was ever someone who didn't deserve the boost, it was me. But yet here I am with my full scholarship, and my white friends are up to their necks in debt. Something about that strikes me as unfair.


But the system isn't about any one individual person. Your personal anecdote is just that.

Everyone should really stop thinking about AA on the micro-level. That's where the" injustice" seems most palpable. That was not how it was meant to be viewed, and doing so, conflates the good and equitable reasons behind it.

But those injustices at the micro level are real, and they affect real people (my friends). Why shouldn't we examine both levels of this policy?

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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby bilbobaggins » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:25 pm

JazzOne wrote:Just to add a thought to the discussion, I worked at a firm last summer where there wasn't a singe minority other than me. The "underrepresented" portion of the equation is completely warranted. Minorities make up a disproportionately small number of attorneys, and I think that disproportion is even more pronounced in biglaw.


Exactly. It's similar with women at the partner issue. I think this is a serious issue that needs to be addressed. I think it's funny to talk about reverse discrimination when there are qualified white people getting jobs out the ass in Biglaw. I cannot imagine it is the same as being a URM and looking at a firm where there isn't a single person from your background in a position of responsibility. There has been study after study that this sort of societal inequality has an effect on the way all of us perceive the world around us, even if it's on an unconscious level.

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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby sophia.olive » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:29 pm

JazzOne wrote:
GAIAtheCHEERLEADER wrote:
JazzOne wrote:The thing is, I have no skin in the game. I'm already in law school. In fact, I probably benefited from the URM boost. But I have never been discriminated against, and I grew up in a fairly affluent family. If there was ever someone who didn't deserve the boost, it was me. But yet here I am with my full scholarship, and my white friends are up to their necks in debt. Something about that strikes me as unfair.


But the system isn't about any one individual person. Your personal anecdote is just that.

Everyone should really stop thinking about AA on the micro-level. That's where the" injustice" seems most palpable. That was not how it was meant to be viewed, and doing so, conflates the good and equitable reasons behind it.

But those injustices at the micro level are real, and they affect real people (my friends). Why shouldn't we examine both levels of this policy?

because any policy from recycling to going to war in europe will be unjust to some people. It is about having the leadership of society match the people it leads.
Last edited by sophia.olive on Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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20121109
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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby 20121109 » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:29 pm

JazzOne wrote:
GAIAtheCHEERLEADER wrote:
JazzOne wrote:The thing is, I have no skin in the game. I'm already in law school. In fact, I probably benefited from the URM boost. But I have never been discriminated against, and I grew up in a fairly affluent family. If there was ever someone who didn't deserve the boost, it was me. But yet here I am with my full scholarship, and my white friends are up to their necks in debt. Something about that strikes me as unfair.


But the system isn't about any one individual person. Your personal anecdote is just that.

Everyone should really stop thinking about AA on the micro-level. That's where the" injustice" seems most palpable. That was not how it was meant to be viewed, and doing so, conflates the good and equitable reasons behind it.

But those injustices at the micro level are real, and they affect real people (my friends). Why shouldn't we examine both levels of this policy?


Feel free to examine them. But I fail to see how micro-level would ever be a more important goal, and thus a more influential role, when affirmative action is directed toward entire races of people and not just some minorities who happened to luck out. I guess the issue I have with the micro-level is the inherent arbitrariness. Yeah I know some white people who are poorer than some black people. But I'm thinking of the bigger picture. And I think, so was the legislature.

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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby moopness » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:30 pm

blackwater88 wrote:
moopness wrote:What if we got rid of AA and put more emphasis on diversity statements (or made diversity statements more like quasi-personal statements)? Not saying this is the best thing to do, but it certainly seems to satisfy a lot of the gripes that people on both sides have. If schools want to ensure diversity and respect adversity, than they'd have to consider socioeconomic status and the diversity statement. If discrimination, which isn't part of socioeconomic status per se, really affected you and your ability to perform in school, then you should have no trouble explaining it. Likewise, for those who simply belong to an ethnic group but don't experience socioeconomic or social disadvantages, then simply checking off a box won't do much. Box checking honestly just makes it slightly easier on admissions committees, which I'm not so sure is the standard we should be trying to use when it comes to something as important as law school admissions.


How do you verify that though?

I'm not saying do away with box checking, but rather that box checking shouldn't be enough. However, it does come down to subjectivity, just like AA now does. Obviously if this was done, everyone would write a diversity statement, a lot claiming discrimination. The adcoms would have to examine each case and analyze whether or not (a) discrimination seems to be likely given the circumstances that the applicant describes and based on socioeconomic status, and (b) whether the discrimination described would pose significant enough hurdles for academic performance. At worst, this would change nothing about AA in the sqo other than making it a lot harder for URMs with high socioeconomic status, (which I think is fair) and giving more weight to ORMs/Majority who have been discriminated against or have low socioeconomic status. Both of which seem to be reason enough to switch. At best, this would change the game of admissions, forcing people to be genuine about their circumstances and make admissions in general a lot more fair. I dunno, it's just an alternative that I don't hear discussed that much.

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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby JazzOne » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:30 pm

bilbobaggins wrote:
JazzOne wrote:Just to add a thought to the discussion, I worked at a firm last summer where there wasn't a singe minority other than me. The "underrepresented" portion of the equation is completely warranted. Minorities make up a disproportionately small number of attorneys, and I think that disproportion is even more pronounced in biglaw.


Exactly. It's similar with women at the partner issue. I think this is a serious issue that needs to be addressed. I think it's funny to talk about reverse discrimination when there are qualified white people getting jobs out the ass in Biglaw. I cannot imagine it is the same as being a URM and looking at a firm where there isn't a single person from your background in a position of responsibility. There has been study after study that this sort of societal inequality has an effect on the way all of us perceive the world around us, even if it's on an unconscious level.

I will agree with this. There was no overt racism against me at the firm. But my cultural experiences were not the same as those of the attorneys I worked with. One of the attorneys told me a story one day about her first equestrian duet. There was a real cultural disconnect between me and her.

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Re: How do law schools even KNOW YOUR RACE?

Postby JazzOne » Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:31 pm

sophia.olive wrote:
JazzOne wrote:
GAIAtheCHEERLEADER wrote:
JazzOne wrote:The thing is, I have no skin in the game. I'm already in law school. In fact, I probably benefited from the URM boost. But I have never been discriminated against, and I grew up in a fairly affluent family. If there was ever someone who didn't deserve the boost, it was me. But yet here I am with my full scholarship, and my white friends are up to their necks in debt. Something about that strikes me as unfair.


But the system isn't about any one individual person. Your personal anecdote is just that.

Everyone should really stop thinking about AA on the micro-level. That's where the" injustice" seems most palpable. That was not how it was meant to be viewed, and doing so, conflates the good and equitable reasons behind it.

But those injustices at the micro level are real, and they affect real people (my friends). Why shouldn't we examine both levels of this policy?

because any policy from recycling to going to war in europe will be unjust to some people. It is about having the leadership of society match the people it leads.

The fact that all policies have unjust effects for some people doesn't mean we should ignore those effects when deciding on the utility of a particular policy.
Last edited by JazzOne on Fri Dec 03, 2010 9:39 pm, edited 2 times in total.




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