Supreme Court faces surge of briefs from college groups defending affirmative action
- Monday was the deadline for filing briefs defending the University of Texas at Austin's admissions policy--and possibly the policies of many other schools with policies that consider race and ethnicity--and the Supreme Court was flooded with amicus briefs from scholars, colleges and higher education organizations making the case for preserving affirmative action under precedent set by Justice Sandra Day O'Connor decision in a similar case in 2003.
- The briefs brought together organizations ranging from the National Collegiate Athletic Organization to the Association of American Medical Colleges and small rural colleges to the Ivy Leagues to present a clear message that the American higher education establishment is solidly behind the University of Texas and policies that consider race in admissions.
- Oral arguments in the current case--the result of a lawsuit brought against UT Austin by Abigail Fisher, a white woman who was rejected by the school--are scheduled for October 10
From the article:
When the U.S. Supreme Court last issued a ruling on the consideration of race in admissions decisions, Justice Sandra Day O'Connor's decision (which preserved the right to consider race and ethnicity) specifically cited briefs filed by various groups that were not themselves parties to the case. Describing the value of diversity in higher education, Justice O'Connor wrote: "These benefits are not theoretical but real, as major American businesses have made clear that the skills needed in today's increasingly global marketplace can only be developed through exposure to widely diverse people, cultures, ideas, and viewpoints." And she quoted briefs from business groups and military leaders to back up her point. ...
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