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affirmative action - Anthony Pugliese Political Diversity...

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Anthony Pugliese Political Diversity Professor Clyburn Affirmative Action, Is it Right or Wrong? Affirmative action, is it a program that addresses and helps eliminate the racism and discrimination against minority groups, or does it in fact institute reverse discrimination against the majority population? This is a question that has been debated since affirmative actions origins in the 1960s. However, I believe before you can even begin to answer this difficult and controversial question you must be able to define affirmative action. “Affirmative action refers to concrete steps that are taken not only to eliminate discrimination, whether in employment, education, or contracting, but also to attempt to redress the effects of past discrimination. The underlying motive for affirmative action is the Constitutional principle of equal opportunity, which holds that all persons have the right to equal access to self development. In other words, persons with equal abilities should have equal opportunities.”(1) “Affirmative action programs differ widely in the extent to which they attempt to overturn discrimination. Some programs might simply institute reviews of the hiring process for women, minorities, and other affected groups. Other affirmative action programs might explicitly prefer members of affected groups. In such programs, minimum job requirements are used to create a pool of qualified applicants from which members of the affected groups are given preference.”(1) I also believe that in order to make a reasonable and educated decision on the matter you must look and analyze both sides’ arguments. First, I would like to evaluate
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some of the positives that affirmative action can have. An argument that is often heard regarding especially educational affirmative action is that diversity is desirable and will not always happen if left untouched. To go a little deeper into this statement, advocates of affirmative action would argue that a key part of the education process is learning to interact with other races and nationalities. Furthermore, many students live very segregated and sheltered lives up until the time they start college. Therefore, opinions of other races and nationalities are based on stereotypes. Interaction allows students to learn that persons of the opposite race are people too, more or less just like themselves. I think a really good example of this could be seen in the movie Remember the Titans . In the beginning, the football players portrayed in the movie are heavily segregated and hostile towards their teammates of the other race. The coach forces them to room with a player of the opposite color as well as learns some essential facts about each other. To make a
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