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Chief justice out to end affirmative action

phlatsphilphlatsphil Posts: 14,632 AG
Chief justice out to end affirmative action

(CNN) -- Every chief justice of the United States picks a signature issue. After Wednesday's argument on the future of the Voting Rights Act, it's clearer than ever that John Roberts has made his choice: to declare victory in the nation's fight against racial discrimination and then to disable the weapons with which that struggle was won.

Roberts' predecessors staked their ground in many ways. In the '50s and '60s, Earl Warren wanted to integrate the South. In the next decade, Warren Burger decided to fight crime. In the '80s and '90s, William Rehnquist sought to revive states' rights. Roberts came of age as a young lawyer in the Reagan administration, and there he discovered a cause that he has made his own: the color-blind Constitution.

In Roberts' first major decision as chief justice, he rejected the school integration plans of Seattle and Louisville. The authorities in those cities used several factors to determine where kids went to school: neighborhood, sibling attendance, but also racial diversity. Roberts' decision banned the schools from considering the race of the students in determining where they went to school. "The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to stop discriminating on the basis of race," the chief justice wrote.

Last October, the court heard a challenge to the race-conscious admissions policy at the University of Texas. No decision has yet been made in that case, but during the oral argument, the chief justice peppered the lawyer defending the university's plan with a series of sarcastic questions:

"Should someone who is one-quarter Hispanic check the Hispanic box or some different box?"

"What is the critical mass of African-Americans and Hispanics at the university that you are working toward?"

"So you, what, you conduct a survey and ask students if they feel racially isolated?"

As Roberts wrote in a different case, summing up his views: "It's a sordid business, this divvying us up by race."

All of that stands as background to the Voting Rights Act case, which was argued Wednesday. It is generally acknowledged that this law, passed in 1965, had a tremendous effect in finally making the right to vote real for African-Americans, especially in the South.

Under Section 5 of the act, nine Southern states (and a few other counties) must get the advance approval for all electoral changes from the Department of Justice in Washington. This process, known as pre-clearance, covers everything from drawing the lines of legislative districts to deciding the location of polling places.

Several counties have challenged the law, saying, in effect, that it's obsolete. According to this view, the South has changed and now Section 5 represents a demeaning and unconstitutional burden on the covered jurisdictions.

At oral argument, Roberts seemed very receptive to this claim. He asked Donald Verrilli, the solicitor general who defended the law, "Is it the government's submission that the citizens in the South are more racist than citizens in the North?"

Verrilli said no, but he said Congress still had the right to draw distinctions among states.

Throughout the argument, Roberts had nothing but tough words for the lawyers defending the law and little to say to the challengers. A justice's questions at oral argument do not always indicate how he is going to vote, but Roberts' record on these racial issues is already well-established.

What does this mean for the country? It depends on whether you believe, like Roberts, that the work of the civil rights movement is done.

Race-conscious policies have transformed our schools and workplaces. Diversity is a value cherished by many. Likewise, the Voting Rights Act has given the South new and very different politics. But affirmative action, in Roberts' view, has become discrimination against whites.

The country may be about to discover how America looks in the way that the chief justice wants to reshape it.

http://www.cnn.com/2013/02/28/opinion/toobin-roberts-voting-rights-act/index.html?hpt=hp_c3
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Replies

  • shadowwalkershadowwalker Posts: 2,200 Captain
    Well its about time, racial discrimination is counter productive no matter who, when or were its practiced.
  • RedBaronRedBaron Posts: 6,781 Officer
    I wonder how Sotomayor will vote on this one.......Giant mystery there.
    Come to Forced Sex University where you can **** women for free!!!
  • CyclistCyclist Posts: 23,340 AG
    He will go down as the nincompoop who killed the most effective civil rights law of American history.
  • RedBaronRedBaron Posts: 6,781 Officer
    this from a guy that says the 2nd Amendment is no longer needed.

    You are very entertaining.
    Come to Forced Sex University where you can **** women for free!!!
  • razorreilly09razorreilly09 Posts: 8,401 Admiral
    Cyclist wrote: »
    He will go down as the nincompoop who killed the most effective civil rights law of American history.

    The most effective law if youre in the group who the laws favor.
    It's referred to as 'positive discrimination' in the UK.
  • Mister-JrMister-Jr Posts: 28,892 AG
    Alabama 1965
    Vote for the other candidate
  • cprcpr Posts: 9,301 Admiral
    Good, it's about time.
    "The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function." F. Scott Fitzgerald

    "Prediction is very difficult, especially if it's about the future." Niels Bohr
  • anglingarchitectanglingarchitect Posts: 1,492 Officer
    Trapped in the 60's Mister?
    rent my beach house
  • FinfinderFinfinder Posts: 9,999 Admiral
    Cyclist wrote: »
    He will go down as the nincompoop who killed the most effective civil rights law of American history.

    ok we all know you wish you were black and you hate white people we got it already
  • Mister-JrMister-Jr Posts: 28,892 AG
    Trapped in the 60's Mister?

    If you call remembering the 60s trapped.
    Vote for the other candidate
  • anglingarchitectanglingarchitect Posts: 1,492 Officer
    I remember the 50's and 60's, but things are quite different now than they were in the picture you posted, but you knew that.
    rent my beach house
  • cprcpr Posts: 9,301 Admiral
    I remember the 60's, everyone was better educated and could speak as to be understood.
    "The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function." F. Scott Fitzgerald

    "Prediction is very difficult, especially if it's about the future." Niels Bohr
  • Icecat21Icecat21 Posts: 642 Officer
    phlatsphil wrote: »
    "The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to stop discriminating on the basis of race," the chief justice wrote.

    This


    Don't tell me in one sentence that are all races have equal ability and intelligence....then in the next say that some races need extra help and preference to compete. You can't have it both ways.
  • Mister-JrMister-Jr Posts: 28,892 AG
    I remember the 50's and 60's, but things are quite different now than they were in the picture you posted, but you knew that.

    Maybe not as much as you would like to believe (or refuse to see).
    Vote for the other candidate
  • riverdiverriverdiver Posts: 2,032 Captain
    It's not the 50's or the 60's any more.

    Our country isn't perfect, far from it. But it's a markedly different place than it used to be.

    As a rule, what's holding minorities back isn't am oppressive, discriminating group of people...it's themselves.

    If guys like Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton spent as much time working to keep black Americans from making the same mistakes over and over again, there wouldn't be so many black Americans in jail or in poverty.

    What pioneers like MLK fought for have been accomplished. MLK would likely be ashamed to see how things have turned out for many people today.
  • Mister-JrMister-Jr Posts: 28,892 AG
    riverdiver wrote: »
    It's not the 50's or the 60's any more.

    Our country isn't perfect, far from it. But it's a markedly different place than it used to be.

    As a rule, what's holding minorities back isn't am oppressive, discriminating group of people...it's themselves.

    If guys like Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton spent as much time working to keep black Americans from making the same mistakes over and over again, there wouldn't be so many black Americans in jail or in poverty.

    What pioneers like MLK fought for have been accomplished. MLK would likely be ashamed to see how things have turned out for many people today.

    Bringing Jackson and Sharpton into the conversation is like bringing in the KKK. It adds little to the content, other than to confirm some can't see past what in in front front of your faces.
    Vote for the other candidate
  • razorreilly09razorreilly09 Posts: 8,401 Admiral
    Mister-Jr wrote: »
    Bringing Jackson and Sharpton into the conversation is like bringing in the KKK. It adds little to the content, other than to confirm some can't see past what in in front front of your faces.

    So do you think races other than white are inferior to whites and need special privileges and advantages?
  • flatsfisherflatsfisher Posts: 1,381 Officer
    affirmative action is one of the most b.s laws we have in this country. You should not have to hire anyone based on their race, if someone only wants to hire whites then so be it, and vice versa
  • White DogWhite Dog Posts: 5,343 Officer
    RedBaron wrote: »
    I wonder how Sotomayor will vote on this one.......Giant mystery there.

    No it's not.
    The White Dog.........R.I.P..........1996 - June 2nd, 2011
  • Icecat21Icecat21 Posts: 642 Officer
    affirmative action is one of the most b.s laws we have in this country. You should not have to hire anyone based on their race, if someone only wants to hire whites then so be it, and vice versa

    This is something I just don't understand.

    I understand if you receive govt funds that you must play by their rules - no matter what they are.
    But if I own a business, restaurant. etc, why can't I choose to serve (or not serve), hire (or not hire), etx. whomever I like? It is a private business. Shouldn't I have that freedom of choice?
    People can call me what they want, boycott me or whatever, but I should have that choice.

    To me, it is akin to getting sued because I haven't had any minorities over to my house for dinner.
  • White DogWhite Dog Posts: 5,343 Officer
    Look, nowadays if you're white, black, chinese, indian, or a purple people eater, you got a chance thru your own ingenuity and hard work to be a success.
    Affirmative action needs to end. There are plenty of laws to cover true discrimination.
    The White Dog.........R.I.P..........1996 - June 2nd, 2011
  • White DogWhite Dog Posts: 5,343 Officer
    Icecat21 wrote: »

    To me, it is akin to getting sued because I haven't had any minorities over to my house for dinner.

    If the left could find a way, they'd do it.
    The White Dog.........R.I.P..........1996 - June 2nd, 2011
  • cprcpr Posts: 9,301 Admiral
    Mister-Jr wrote: »
    Maybe not as much as you would like to believe (or refuse to see).

    Lets see, a black president, 2 secretaries of state, chairman of the chiefs of staff, AG also a spanish AG.
    Also Oprah Winfrey Net worth: $2.7 billion

    Black Entertainment Television founder Robert Johnson became the first African American billionaire in 2000 after he sold the network to Viacom ( VIA - news - people ) for $3 billion in stock and assumed debt

    golf phenom Tiger Woods, worth an estimated $600 million.

    The grandson of a hotel doorman, Don Peebles, worth $350 million, runs one of the country's largest minority-owned real estate development companies
    Quintin Primo III is worth $300 million. The minister's son grew up in Chicago. He earned his MBA at Harvard in 1979 and took a job in Citicorp's real estate lending division. Primo founded Capri Capital in 1992 with childhood friend Daryl Carter and achieved initial success extending mezzanine loans to small borrowers that larger firms neglected to serve. Today Capri's portfolio is larded with apartment complexes; the firm's assets under management have swelled to $4.3 billion.
    With a net worth of $125 million, Kenneth Chenault, chief executive of American Express
    former Merrill Lynch chief Stanley O'Neal and Citigroup ( C - news - people ) chairman and former Time Warner ( TWX - news - people ) head Richard Parsons. Both O'Neal and Parsons were compensated primarily with stock and options while at the helms of their respective companies; the value of their stakes in those companies has languished since the onset of the recession, shoving their fortunes below the $100 million mark.

    Things have come a long way since the 60's
    "The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function." F. Scott Fitzgerald

    "Prediction is very difficult, especially if it's about the future." Niels Bohr
  • cprcpr Posts: 9,301 Admiral
    Icecat21 wrote: »
    This is something I just don't understand.

    I understand if you receive govt funds that you must play by their rules - no matter what they are.
    But if I own a business, restaurant. etc, why can't I choose to serve (or not serve), hire (or not hire), etx. whomever I like? It is a private business. Shouldn't I have that freedom of choice?
    People can call me what they want, boycott me or whatever, but I should have that choice.

    To me, it is akin to getting sued because I haven't had any minorities over to my house for dinner.

    Just try to fire anyone in a protected class, which is anyone but white males 20-50.
    "The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function." F. Scott Fitzgerald

    "Prediction is very difficult, especially if it's about the future." Niels Bohr
  • silvergsilverg Posts: 1,456 Officer
    Icecat21 wrote: »
    This is something I just don't understand.

    I understand if you receive govt funds that you must play by their rules - no matter what they are.
    But if I own a business, restaurant. etc, why can't I choose to serve (or not serve), hire (or not hire), etx. whomever I like? It is a private business. Shouldn't I have that freedom of choice?
    People can call me what they want, boycott me or whatever, but I should have that choice.

    To me, it is akin to getting sued because I haven't had any minorities over to my house for dinner.

    You should have been the attorney for all those companies Jackson and Sharpton shook down over the years.
  • shadowwalkershadowwalker Posts: 2,200 Captain
    Mister-Jr wrote: »
    Bringing Jackson and Sharpton into the conversation is like bringing in the KKK. It adds little to the content, other than to confirm some can't see past what in in front front of your faces.
    Jackson, Sharpton, KKK, share a lot in common. As one who lived thru the fifty's the sixty's I saw it first hand and remember who was doing what.
  • ben17ben17 Posts: 2,782 Officer
    cpr wrote: »
    Just try to fire anyone in a protected class, which is anyone but white males 20-50.

    I fire people of all races with no troubles. I do agree that affirmative action has run it's course and I now believe it is more harmful than helpful as it is used to rile up the masses.
  • riverdiverriverdiver Posts: 2,032 Captain
    Mister-Jr wrote: »
    Bringing Jackson and Sharpton into the conversation is like bringing in the KKK. It adds little to the content, other than to confirm some can't see past what in in front front of your faces.

    Those two guys are merely examples. There are plenty more that could be mentioned who stand by profiting from the misery of others.

    The country has changed for the better since the 50's and 60's. The true need for affirmative action is slim to none in 2013.

    The problems the black community as a whole, for example, cannot be solved by affirmative action laws. They need to be solved by themselves. Whether you're talking about black, white, hispanic, or asian groups, high crime rates, high incarceration rates, high rates of poverty, high rates of single parent households, and high rates of preventable health issues have to be solved from within.
  • cprcpr Posts: 9,301 Admiral
    riverdiver wrote: »
    Those two guys are merely examples. There are plenty more that could be mentioned who stand by profiting from the misery of others.

    The country has changed for the better since the 50's and 60's. The true need for affirmative action is slim to none in 2013.

    The problems the black community as a whole, for example, cannot be solved by affirmative action laws. They need to be solved by themselves. Whether you're talking about black, white, hispanic, or asian groups, high crime rates, high incarceration rates, high rates of poverty, high rates of single parent households, and high rates of preventable health issues have to be solved from within.

    Well said. The older I get the more I think parents are the most important factor, from a single child to a society's success.
    "The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function." F. Scott Fitzgerald

    "Prediction is very difficult, especially if it's about the future." Niels Bohr
  • Baits OutBaits Out Posts: 12,328 AG
    Long time in coming.

    Affirmative action has always been an insult to capable and productive blacks -- its premise being that without a government fix, they are not capable of competing with the rest in our society.

    Tis an embarrassment to most of the blacks with whom I have worked in the last few decades.

    A southeast Florida laid back beach bum and volunteer bikini assessor who lives on island time. 
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