Egyptian as URM?

(BLS, URM status, non-traditional, GLBT)
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VaultBound
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby VaultBound » Mon Aug 11, 2008 6:05 pm

riccardo426 wrote:Most of the times it is listed as Black/African-American, not just African-American. While technically African-American could mean americans of african descent, it instead refers to those descended from former slaves. Try applying for a scholarship for African-Americans, and see how they react when you go into the interview.

I don't know how black Africans get treated, but Egyptian definitely does not count. There have been similar threads about Moroccans here, I believe.


Whoa. So this is similar to proving your royal bloodline by attaching a family tree, only this one dates back to colonial slaves? :roll:

It's for under-representation in the profession. Your enslaved ancestors have nothing to do with it.

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isaaca
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby isaaca » Mon Aug 11, 2008 6:09 pm

jsporter wrote:
isaaca wrote:
jsporter wrote:An Egyptian checking the African-American box is really no different than a white South African or Zimbabwean checking the box.

It wasn't intended for you.


Wrong. It is intended primarily for people who are under-represented in the educational system for whatever reason...

It is not efficient to have check boxes that say, Black/African-American excluding Morocco, Egypt, South Africa or any other state that is not truly black or underrepresented.

That clearly does not make sense considering they dont relate themselves to being "black." Its a clear abuse of the system.

Just as Hispanic excludes Brazil and some other country in South-America (i forgot the name,) they do not have a checkbox that say Hispanic excluding Brazil and Spain. Brazil is clearly on a spanish speaking continent but they assume a "law school applicant" applying in the legal field will not abuse this system.


How is it that you say "Wrong" but then don't follow up with anything inconsistent with what I said? I've never seen someone claim I'm wrong and then give a bunch of evidence that actually helps my case.

You said it's intended for people who are under-represented in the educational system. A large majority of Egyptians are Arab. Arab Americans are not under-represented. Case closed, I'd say.

OP: you can either take advantage of this or not. Use your own judgment. Just realize that affirmative action was not intended for your benefit.


Haha. Sorry Jsporter, i skimmed your post and thought it said "it was intended for you."

My apologies...

The_Wall
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby The_Wall » Mon Aug 11, 2008 6:28 pm

We had this argument a while back.

No, do not check the box. It's not intended for you, but, primarily, for Hispanics, American Indians and the descendants of black African slaves or, arguably, black African immigrants or children of immigrants to this country, not descendants of Arabs, North Africans or European colonists of Africa. By some of the arguments made here, white Afrikaners and South Africans would qualify for affirmative action.

It's unethical, as you clearly know the policy is not for you, and also very risky. I don't care how semitic you look, you're not black and the dean of admissions at Harvard, where you'd very likely get in, is going to notice.

The argument that affirmative action is continental rather than racial is preposterous.

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doctorgonzo
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby doctorgonzo » Mon Aug 11, 2008 6:37 pm

The_Wall wrote:...and the descendants of black African slaves or, arguably, black African immigrants or children of immigrants to this country, not descendants of Arabs, North Africans or European colonists of Africa...


Then why doesn't the box say that?

The_Wall wrote:The argument that affirmative action is continental rather than racial is preposterous.


I think the notion of X number of arbitrary racial categories is what is truly preposterous.

LonghornDub
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby LonghornDub » Mon Aug 11, 2008 6:38 pm

The_Wall wrote:It's unethical, as you clearly know the policy is not for you, and also very risky. I don't care how semitic you look, you're not black and the dean of admissions at Harvard, where you'd very likely get in, is going to notice.

The argument that affirmative action is continental rather than racial is preposterous.


I don't agree that it's unethical, but I think that last point you make is a good one and I hadn't really considered it like that before. Clearly, it is a system in place for race, not for geography.

The_Wall
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby The_Wall » Mon Aug 11, 2008 6:50 pm

I think the notion of x number of arbitrary racial categories is what is truly preposterous, too, but fortunately affirmative action's racial categories are not arbitrary.

The box doesn't say that for the same reason it doesn't say the out of Africa theory does not make you an African American or that native American means American Indian not natives to America or that American Indians are American aborigines and not people from Hyderabad living in Los Angeles. There's an expectation that applicants will exercise a little judgment.

ak4097
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby ak4097 » Mon Aug 11, 2008 7:12 pm

you know I think it is a tricky situation, because a few other people can fall into it as well, such as people from lebanon, palestine, iraq, yemen, and places like that, they can either put they are of asian race or they can put white, because many believe being arab is white.............so because of this gray area, i do not think anyone can decisively say you belong to this race or this race, as long as you do not put african american when you are blatantly white......than it is ok. Many of these origins are underrepresented in law anyway, so i think checking other or african american is the best bet.

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JustDude
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby JustDude » Mon Aug 11, 2008 7:18 pm

ak4097 wrote:I am egyptian and have always put either other or african american, I usually do not put white, because I am clearly not white when you look at me. So should I put african american for race? What do yall think?



Egypt = Caucasian

The_Wall
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby The_Wall » Mon Aug 11, 2008 7:24 pm

No, it's not. First of all, historically and ethnically the inhabitants of the Middle East are "Western." White or brown has nothing at all to do with it. Secondly, even if Iraqis consider themselves Asian, which would be peculiar, it's not the same thing-Asians, whether from Central Asia or South Asia or East Asia, are not members of an under-represented minority and receive no boost in law school admissions.

You're not trying to decide where you fit in a column of boxes. You're rationalizing taking advantage of a policy that clearly was not intended for you. You're not an African-American for the purposes of affirmative action. You're not of a racial group that is under-represented in American professional schools and colleges nor one that has historically been brought to or conquered by and brutalized and disenfranchised en masse by this country. Your ancestors, like mine, traded in the people whose descendants affirmative action is intended to help. To take advantage of it, as well as, yes, being risky, is profoundly unethical.

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playhero
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby playhero » Mon Aug 11, 2008 7:40 pm

Mark African America and write a ds talking about your egyption life style. This way an adcom can over rule it if they do not feel you qualify as an African American (which they won't do). Then no one can say it was unethical since you fully disclosed what you meant, upfront. If anyone ever ask, you can say you thought it would qualify but since it was a grey area, you tried to be as upfront as possible and let the adcoms make the call.

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playhero
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby playhero » Mon Aug 11, 2008 7:42 pm

markakis wrote:The reason I ask is because I'm Black but not American and was wondering how the adcomms would view me in comparison to the an African American. Anybody? Thanks

Only citizens qualify for urm bosting. Soz m8! You could still write a ds in hopes for a diversity boost.

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worldtraveler
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby worldtraveler » Mon Aug 11, 2008 8:20 pm

I'm going to agree with Playhero on this one. Check the African-American box and write a ds explaining a bit about you. You're being honest. You are African-American and you're not trying to pass yourself off as black.
Also, the OP is surely well aware of this but it seems most posters are not. North Africa has had slaves from elsewhere in Africa for hundreds of years. Much of the current populations of Morocco, Algeria, etc are at least partially descended from former slaves from modern Sudan or Senegal. I can only comment in relation to Morocco since that's where I lived but I think it's a fair assumption that similar situations can be found in Egypt. In Morocco there is a definite hierarchy that fairer-skinned, lighter people are treated better than darker people. Much of the reason for this is just modern racism and people believing that lighter skinned people are more attractive. The other has to do with the historical legacy of slavery, and the assumption that the darker skinned or black people that you see or descendants of slaves. The family I stayed with in Morocco was of pretty average complexion in comparison to most Moroccans, except for the youngest daughter who was black. People would make negative comments about her. It took me forever to figure out why people were picking on a little kid. My host mom finally explained to me one day that her husband was actual the son of an "affair" between his father and the family's slave, and so he was actually half-Senagalese. He never actually divulged that to people due to social stigma, but having a black child cause them a few problems in terms of social acceptance.

The whole point of that digression was that there are North Africans that are ethnicially black, at least partially. I obviously can't assume that the OP falls into one of these categories, but there are a fair number of North Africans that are actually black. Some of them are also partly European. It's a very diverse region that has had tons of interaction with Europe, the Middle East, and Africa and so you'll find a variety of people. Even if the term African-American isn't typically used to apply to North Africa, the term isn't inaccurate to use. My host family would always give me lectures about "We are Moroccan. We are not Middle Eastern. We are not African. We are not European". The regional feeling of not being included into any of the categories is pretty strong.

OK a lot of that was pretty irrelevant but I think that if the OP wants to claim the term African American, it's fine to do along with a diversity statement. The comparisons between Egypt and Afrikaners or other European settlers in Africa really aren't applicable. There is no argument about Afrikaners and their descendants being white or not. The Egyptian population is far less homogenous.

The_Wall
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby The_Wall » Mon Aug 11, 2008 8:58 pm

It's not a fine thing to do and she is not an African-American. She's manipulating the system for an advantage to which she is certainly not entitled. That's inexcusable, whatever semantic bow you wrap it in.

American-American = Race, not continent. Is the daughter of white American citizens born in and a citizen of Nigeria entitled to affirmative action? An Afrikaner whiter than I am whose Dutch great grandparents colonized southern Africa to the detriment of the natives? The argument is absurd.

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doctorgonzo
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby doctorgonzo » Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:06 pm

The_Wall wrote:The argument is absurd.


To me, that's the whole point. It is absurd.

The_Wall
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby The_Wall » Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:16 pm

Let's not have a general affirmative action debate here, though.

I'm shocked by how far this thread has gotten without devolving into one.

ak4097
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby ak4097 » Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:18 pm

both of yall have very compelling cases, but lets be honest hear it is up to the person at hand. Anyone whose family is from africa can put african american technically. It is up to the admissions comm to judge them and say if they are or if they are not. It comes down to the person, if they have identified theirselves as caucasian or african american their whole life, how they feel. AA is for underrepresented minorities, and as far as I am concerned I do not see any arab lawyers, arab politicians, arab executives, arab.............., so for people to say that arabs are caucasions and enjoy the same level of prosperity and benefits in our society as they do have no idea what they are talking about. As far as I am concerned, arab americans are more underrepresented than any other types of people today in many fields of study, especially law. I can think of hundreds of african american executives, lawyers, politicians, presidential nominees, I bet no one can even list 5 arab lawyers, politicians, or influential people. So if you are morrocan, libyan, egyptian or whatever and you check african american there is no problem, because the AA was made specifically for underrepresented minorites, and when there are only 3 million of you in the USA, you are a minority, and you are underrepresented.

The_Wall
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby The_Wall » Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:25 pm

Uh, no, they're not. Underrepresented has nothing to do with the total number or the number of X versus the number of Y. It's the proportion of the total population represented by a consonant proportion of a given profession. Arabs are overrepresented by that standard. You also grossly misunderstand what affirmative action is, where it came from and what it's intended to accomplish. While there is no doubt discrimination against Arabs in the United States, the apartheid policies applied to the actual under-represented minorities are very different.

It is not up to the individual person and how you "feel" is irrelevant. African-American means something particular in this country and you know it does or you wouldn't be asking. You're using a dubious technicality, and one that's quite unlikely to fly with law schools, to gain an advantage intended to redress this country's most serious mistakes.

Your sense of entitlement to special treatment does not, in the end, entitle you to it.

Roo
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby Roo » Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:38 pm

as far as I am concerned I do not see any arab lawyers, arab politicians, arab executives, arab..............


Are you joking? Arab Americans are highly represented in business, law, and medicine, and on average are better off financially and better educated than the average American.

From the Arab American Institute:
Arab Americans with at least a high school diploma number 85 percent. More than four out of ten Americans of Arab decent have a bachelor’s degree or higher, compared to 24% of Americans at large. Seventeen percent of Arab Americans have a post-graduate degree, which is nearly twice the American average (9%)...Seventy three percent of working Arab Americans are employed in managerial, professional, technical, sales or administrative fields. Nearly half as many Americans of Arab decent are employed in service jobs (12%) in relation to Americans overall (27%)...Median income for Arab American households in 1999 was $47,000 compared with $42,000 for all households in the United States.


The thing is you might not always be able to tell who is an Arab, because many appear white, and the names of many Christian Arabs (the majority of Arabs in the US are Christian) are non-Arabic sounding.

If you are Nubian or some other historically oppressed group from Upper Egypt then play that up. You have a better shot if that's the case than if you are an Arab Egyptian from Alex or Cairo.

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doctorgonzo
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby doctorgonzo » Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:50 pm

The_Wall wrote:You're using a dubious technicality...


Again, how is it a technicality? African? Check. American? Check. Thus, African-American. Americans whose ancestors came from Africa. Why wouldn't he qualify? Incidentally, I noticed that nobody has answered my Somali hypothetical, which is pretty much the same situation as this.
Last edited by doctorgonzo on Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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iagolives
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby iagolives » Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:52 pm

Without wading into this sticky situation too deeply, I have to agree with doctorgonzo.

The_Wall
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby The_Wall » Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:55 pm

Because African-American is a racial distinction, not a geographic one. We all know this.

It is, as I say, a technicality. By that standard, the descendants of Europeans and Americans with African citizenship are also entitled to affirmative action. We both know this isn't what the policy is intended to accomplish and that law school admissions committees would find it unacceptable. I see no difference substituting an Egyptian for an Afrikaner.

Native American means everybody born in this country by the definition you're applying. It's nonsense.

You want to use this as a snide swipe at affirmative action in general, by all means, but don't give the original poster awful advice.

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doctorgonzo
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby doctorgonzo » Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:56 pm

The_Wall wrote:You want to use this as a snide swipe at affirmative action in general, by all means, but don't give the original poster awful advice.


Have you read my other posts here? I'm 100% in favor of AA.

The_Wall
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby The_Wall » Mon Aug 11, 2008 10:02 pm

I apologize. Your posts in this thread seemed to suggest you felt otherwise.

At any rate, African American as a term is not simply the hyphenation of African ancestry and American citizenship. It was coined to describe blacks in this country, and the definition used by the Census Bureau, and subsequently all other government agencies, is an American descended from the black racial groups of the African continent.

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playhero
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby playhero » Mon Aug 11, 2008 10:04 pm

The_Wall wrote:Because African-American is a racial distinction, not a geographic one. We all know this.

Race is a social construct that can not be quantified and wildly changes based on personal opinions. Thy gold standard of law schools is self-identification. Which means it's up to the op to do, not you or anyone else.

The_Wall wrote:It is, as I say, a technicality. By that standard, the descendants of Europeans and Americans with African citizenship are also entitled to affirmative action. We both know this isn't what the policy is intended to accomplish and that law school admissions committees would find it unacceptable. I see no difference substituting an Egyptian for an Afrikaner.

If we know they would find it unacceptable, then why would you be against check the box as long as he discloses fully what he means?

The_Wall wrote:At any rate, African American as a term is not simply the hyphenation of African ancestry and American citizenship. It was coined to describe blacks in this country, and the definition used by the Census Bureau, and subsequently all other government agencies, is an American descended from the black racial groups of the African continent.

Proof or stfu!

I'm asking because people use to claim the same shit about brizilans/portugies until I actually went around and drug it up. They were clearly wrong.
Last edited by playhero on Mon Aug 11, 2008 10:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.

The_Wall
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Re: Egyptian as URM?

Postby The_Wall » Mon Aug 11, 2008 10:07 pm

Because in order to fully disclose what he means, he'd have to actively explain that he's an Egyptian of non-black African origin, which seems rather unlikely given that he's clearly after the bump. It's also factually incorrect.

As for this social construct BS, please.




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