Do you recommend I declare myself African?

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esq
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby esq » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:11 pm

afitouri wrote:Additionally, I did not grow up with the middle class life that most whites are privy to. . . . there is no significant European migrants to the nation that I hail from since the Vandals migrated to North Africa after the fall of Rome (in other words, that I am definitely African; unlike a Dutch Afrikaner), and because I faced the economic hardships of being African (in that my family's income was well below average) and the sociological hardships of being a minority (because I am Muslim and suffer from discrimination based on my name in airports, with police, and with neighbors) I feel that I am still more than justified in listing African American.

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vanwinkle
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby vanwinkle » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:17 pm

esq wrote:
afitouri wrote:Additionally, I did not grow up with the middle class life that most whites are privy to. . . . there is no significant European migrants to the nation that I hail from since the Vandals migrated to North Africa after the fall of Rome (in other words, that I am definitely African; unlike a Dutch Afrikaner), and because I faced the economic hardships of being African (in that my family's income was well below average) and the sociological hardships of being a minority (because I am Muslim and suffer from discrimination based on my name in airports, with police, and with neighbors) I feel that I am still more than justified in listing African American.

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yngblkgifted
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby yngblkgifted » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:17 pm

A crucial part of being black is knowing that you're black before you are twenty two years old.

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TIKITEMBO
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby TIKITEMBO » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:20 pm

Yes because calling an admissions officer and asking them is a brilliant idea when they obviously will not give a definitive answer because it is not their place to advise someone how to answer the question.


Email. I always said email. RC fail.


How is it not their place? It might be uncomfortable sure, but if there is email correspondence, that will give time for some research on the schools part. Or at least just a "well, we don't have a policy, but it's up to you" response and then the OP knows for sure. An email would allow them to send a written request for information for an inquiry into what is generally accepted.

I mean really, there has to be something where a white person can't trot into an interview with the school say "I'm black" and get away with it. With so many schools having international and more diverse student bodies, I'm assuming they've looked into this for some sort of policy guideline as they get points for being able to declare diversity for admissions and how many students they can and can not count is therefore important to them. If someone was able to point out to a school that "uh, yeah all your URM's are fakes" they'd probably be in some deep crap.

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bk1
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby bk1 » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:23 pm

TIKITEMBO wrote:it's up to you


This is the exact response they will give to everybody. Heck I'm fairly sure that I, a bona fide white guy, could give them some random bullshit reasons why I thought I was African American and they would say the same thing. It doesn't then mean I'm in the clear to go apeshit all over the race/ethnicity questionnaire and check whatever I feel like.

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Helicio
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby Helicio » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:25 pm

I mean really, there has to be something where a white person can't trot into an interview with the school say "I'm black" and get away with it. With so many schools having international and more diverse student bodies, I'm assuming they've looked into this for some sort of policy guideline as they get points for being able to declare diversity for admissions and how many students they can and can not count is therefore important to them. If someone was able to point out to a school that "uh, yeah all your URM's are fakes" they'd probably be in some deep crap.




I know this Egyptian dude who puts African-American on all his applications. He's Arab (or in admissions terms "Caucasian"), but so far he's got a Goldman Sachs internship, admission into a top 10 university with a sub-par SAT score, and an African-American merit scholarship out of it. Apparently interviewers and stuff don't really care.

It annoys me.
Last edited by Helicio on Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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20121109
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby 20121109 » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:26 pm

Some of these responses are just absolutely terrible.

Can anyone name one school that has a race section that has a box which merely states African American? I genuinely want to know...because only then is this even up for debate. Because most, if not all, schools have boxes that explicate African American/Black.

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yngblkgifted
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby yngblkgifted » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:27 pm

bk1 wrote:
TIKITEMBO wrote:it's up to you


This is the exact response they will give to everybody. Heck I'm fairly sure that I, a bona fide white guy, could give them some random bullshit reasons why I thought I was African American and they would say the same thing. It doesn't then mean I'm in the clear to go apeshit all over the race/ethnicity questionnaire and check whatever I feel like.



Yet you're also an ethnic minority?

Mind blown...

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TIKITEMBO
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby TIKITEMBO » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:29 pm

This is the exact response they will give to everybody. Heck I'm fairly sure that I, a bona fide white guy, could give them some random bullshit reasons why I thought I was African American and they would say the same thing. It doesn't then mean I'm in the clear to go apeshit all over the race/ethnicity questionnaire and check whatever I feel like.


Nope, it doesn't. But I'm guessing it would come back on you one way or another throughout your three years at said school and thus the reason I suggest that if you're not sure or going to do it anyway, get something in writing.

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Helicio
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby Helicio » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:30 pm

yngblkgifted wrote:
bk1 wrote:
TIKITEMBO wrote:it's up to you


This is the exact response they will give to everybody. Heck I'm fairly sure that I, a bona fide white guy, could give them some random bullshit reasons why I thought I was African American and they would say the same thing. It doesn't then mean I'm in the clear to go apeshit all over the race/ethnicity questionnaire and check whatever I feel like.



Yet you're also an ethnic minority?

Mind blown...


Wait, I'm confused.

I'm pretty sure you and him have been arguing on the same side, blk...

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Helicio
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby Helicio » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:30 pm

This whole thread is full of fail.

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bk1
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby bk1 » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:31 pm

yngblkgifted wrote:Yet you're also an ethnic minority?

Mind blown...


My existence is a constant reminder why we should have kept those anti-miscegenation laws on the books.

Also this thread has given me a great idea. I'm gonna move to Kenya and start calling myself an African American (born in America, living in Africa, sounds African American to me).

Helicio wrote:I'm pretty sure you and him have been arguing on the same side, blk...


We are. It was a joke.

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bk1
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby bk1 » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:32 pm

TIKITEMBO wrote:But I'm guessing it would come back on you one way or another throughout your three years at said school and thus the reason I suggest that if you're not sure or going to do it anyway, get something in writing.


I keep saying that you're not going to get anything in writing other than "it's not our place to tell you how to answer that question."

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Helicio
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby Helicio » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:32 pm

bk1 wrote:Also this thread has given me a great idea. I'm gonna move to Kenya and start calling myself an African American (born in America, living in Africa, sounds African American to me).


Kenya? Psh. I'll be in South Sudan.

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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby smittytron3k » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:34 pm

In this context, there is a dramatic difference between a "random white guy" and an applicant from Libya checking the AA box. I'm not even going to fight the issue of whether this is dishonest, what box he should check, etc. I just think the claim that this would ever be an issue for adcoms or C&F examiners is laughable, because they are not in the business of policing whether people fit into pre-determined racial categories, particularly not in a case like the OP's. I cannot imagine a plausible scenario under which someone would tell the OP "you cannot practice law because we disagree with your assertion that you are African-American and think you attempted to mislead us." I am surprised so many people seem to be able to.

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vanwinkle
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby vanwinkle » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:36 pm

bk1 wrote:
TIKITEMBO wrote:But I'm guessing it would come back on you one way or another throughout your three years at said school and thus the reason I suggest that if you're not sure or going to do it anyway, get something in writing.

I keep saying that you're not going to get anything in writing other than "it's not our place to tell you how to answer that question."

They will not tell you how to answer. They will, however, provide information to help you decide how to answer.

OP, they may provide a definition of "African-American". It will probably be taken directly from the US census definition, since they're asking for reporting reasons. That definition will tell you it means people of racially black/sub-Saharan African origin. Then you REALLY would be lying to them if you still claimed it.

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vanwinkle
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby vanwinkle » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:39 pm

smittytron3k wrote:I just think the claim that this would ever be an issue for adcoms or C&F examiners is laughable, because they are not in the business of policing whether people fit into pre-determined racial categories, particularly not in a case like the OP's.

They are in the business of policing lying, and if OP ever makes a comment to rhe effect of "and I'm not black, haha", it could be reported and result in disbarment even years later.

Can he go without ever getting in trouble for it? Sure, possibly. But it's also possible it could lead to a torpedoing of his own career, and a legal career is the whole point of going to law school.

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TIKITEMBO
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby TIKITEMBO » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:41 pm

Some of these responses are just absolutely terrible.

Can anyone name one school that has a race section that has a box which merely states African American? I genuinely want to know...because only then is this even up for debate. Because most, if not all, schools have boxes that explicate African American/Black.


Yep, it's gotten pretty lulzy. I would assume most admissions would have addressed this already like you're saying and that getting their policy is best and then yes, of course, answering honestly based on their policy/available options.

I know this Egyptian dude who puts African-American on all his applications. He's Arab (or in admissions terms "Caucasian"), but so far he's got a Goldman Sachs internship, admission into a top 10 university with a sub-par SAT score, and an African-American merit scholarship out of it. Apparently interviewers and stuff don't really care.


Another case for the adcoms I would think. Maybe some schools care to look and others don't but it seems like to not care at all would leave a pretty crappy hole for some rival school to blast them on if a person wasn't actually considered a URM. If you don't know, check.

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TIKITEMBO
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby TIKITEMBO » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:45 pm

They will not tell you how to answer. They will, however, provide information to help you decide how to answer.


That's what I'm thinking as well. If you're given help in how to answer this by a school you're applying to and they give you the clear then you can feel safer. If they give you help and you refuse it well then that is on you as well as all the potential consequences.

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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby smittytron3k » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:50 pm

. Maybe some schools care to look and others don't but it seems like to not care at all would leave a pretty crappy hole for some rival school to blast them on if a person wasn't actually considered a URM.


This is one of the dumbest things I have read on this website, and that's saying something. I cannot imagine a school saying "(Rival) is giving admissions boosts to minorities WHO AREN'T REAL MINORITIES!!!!" And even if that school did, who would "blast" the offending school? The ABA? "We have decided to revoke your accreditation because you are giving admissions boosts to people who do not meet the following rigid criteria to be considered a URM." "Shame on you, letting in all these pretenders and interlopers!"

No one would say these things, because judging whether someone fits into a minority category when there is any question at all is largely taboo. Outside of anonymous internet fora, race is a third rail, and no one wants to be in the business of policing it or saying anything more substantive about it than "we appreciate diversity."

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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby smittytron3k » Sat Jul 09, 2011 12:53 pm

vanwinkle wrote:
smittytron3k wrote:I just think the claim that this would ever be an issue for adcoms or C&F examiners is laughable, because they are not in the business of policing whether people fit into pre-determined racial categories, particularly not in a case like the OP's.

They are in the business of policing lying, and if OP ever makes a comment to rhe effect of "and I'm not black, haha", it could be reported and result in disbarment even years later.

Can he go without ever getting in trouble for it? Sure, possibly. But it's also possible it could lead to a torpedoing of his own career, and a legal career is the whole point of going to law school.


Sure, if he declares that he is black on his application, and then says "haha, I'm not black", he will be in well-deserved hot water. He should not hold himself out to adcoms as AA if he does not believe that he is or hold himself out to the world as such. On this much we agree.

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TIKITEMBO
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby TIKITEMBO » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:04 pm

This is one of the dumbest things I have read on this website


I'm glad you can read.

Now are you privy to any actual admission information/policies ? If so, that's great! If not, you should suggest an idea that will actually further in answering OP's question then this tossing back and forth of forum fodder that will have no say on his admissions.

The idea that schools wouldn't take advantage of anything that would hurt the credibility of another school (say like it being discovered that they're giving people who are not URMs admittance and then reporting they are giving URM's admittance) shouldn't be all that surprising to someone posting on a website largely devoted to attending schools obsessed with rankings.

But sure, I guess law schools are notorious for not wanting to protect their reputations...

I cannot imagine a school saying "(Rival) is giving admissions boosts to minorities WHO AREN'T REAL MINORITIES!!!!


Yeah, that would be pretty dumb and that's why (I'm pretty sure) I specified URM vs. minorities in my posts. URM is relevant to admissions while minority isn't always. Learning to cultivate an attention to detail will assist you greatly with law school and the career choice in general. I would think it would go more like "(Rival) is giving admissions boosts to URM's who are not actually URM's". (Example giving URM status to someone from Argentina)

Does any T14 want that tacked on to their reputation? Probably not.
Last edited by TIKITEMBO on Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby kapachino » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:12 pm

GAIAtheCHEERLEADER wrote:Some of these responses are just absolutely terrible.

Can anyone name one school that has a race section that has a box which merely states African American? I genuinely want to know...because only then is this even up for debate. Because most, if not all, schools have boxes that explicate African American/Black.


+1.

I was afraid to say this, lest it inspire a shitstorm of ignorant comments, so I didn't. :p It annoys me to no end when people try to claim URM status when they know they aren't a URM, and therefore don't deserve an admissions boost. No offense, OP, but you already know that you aren't a URM. You wouldn't have started this thread otherwise.


Also, LSAC explicitly states that applicants of North African descent do not get a URM boost. It's pretty cut and dry.
Last edited by kapachino on Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.

smittytron3k
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby smittytron3k » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:13 pm

TIKITEMBO wrote:
This is one of the dumbest things I have read on this website


I'm glad you can read.

Now are you privy to any actual admission information/policies ? If so, that's great! If not, you should suggest an idea that will actually further in answering OP's question then this tossing back and forth of forum fodder that will have no say on his admissions.

The idea that schools wouldn't take advantage of anything that would hurt the credibility of another school (say like it being discovered that they're giving people who are not URMs admittance and then reporting they are giving URM's admittance) shouldn't be all that surprising to someone posting on a website largely devoted to attending schools obsessed with rankings.

But sure, I guess law schools are notorious for not wanting to protect their reputations...


The fact that you are utterly tone-deaf when it comes to race does not mean that law schools are. If a school's reported URM data did not match self-reported data from applications, that is one thing, but no one will ever challenge a school for letting in "fake" URMs or otherwise challenge its substantive admissions policies on racial classification. These issues do not lend themselves to brightline criteria which schools can hold each other to and they are very emotionally and politically charged. If you don't believe me, ask yourself why we don't still use the one-drop rule as the defining criterion of a black individual.

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TIKITEMBO
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Re: Do you recommend I declare myself African?

Postby TIKITEMBO » Sat Jul 09, 2011 1:21 pm

Also, LSAC explicitly states that applicants of North African descent do not get a URM boost. It's pretty cut and dry.


There we are! Thanks for this post. A post that isn't just people BSing. I would think LSAC is probably closer to what law schools would look at then a book written in 1939, the oxford dictionary, and "how people feel". I would still say that you could check with adcoms, but the fact that LSAC published this is probably a good indicator of what you would see from the top law schools.

Anyway, remember quite a few people had a fit about Obama and whether he was black until we decided for the most part that having a dark-skinned Dad from Kenya (a former British colony with quite a few white people) counts even when you grew up in a white household. So, Kenya yes, Libya, probably not, but I'm guessing there are a fair amount of people who may look at OP and not be as sure as they are in their posts. Either way, it only matters what a law school says and what C&F says, not "general consensus on TLS", so check.




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