Equal Rights for Black and Whites | Teen Ink

Equal Rights for Black and Whites

January 11, 2010
By Angela Pidala SILVER, Houston, Texas
Angela Pidala SILVER, Houston, Texas
5 articles 0 photos 0 comments

Imagine if you skipped social events, sports practices, and family occasions, to work on homework and study to make sure you had the best grades for college. Your friends and family were so proud when they found out you were top 10% of your class and you received the highest SAT scores for your class. Think of how mad you would be when your “acceptance letter” arrived, and you were declined! That’s not all though. You were bumped out because of someone who got more points because they are a different race or ethnicity. You think this is crazy, absurd?! Well this is happening more and more to students throughout America.
Affirmative action is when students get extra points on their application for different reasons including race, gender, and ethnic background. Some people believe affirmative action is right, and others argue it shouldn’t be used and it is racist. Affirmative action should not be based on race or gender, but that of income and school conditions. I argue that affirmative action is wrong, but those who are taught in schools with bad conditions should get a few extra points.

Affirmative action is not right when used for race and gender, but in some situations extra points are necessary. If students are taught in bad schools with bad conditions, they should be given extra points. In many cases the schools are so bad, it is an unsafe environment for them. For example, “’East St. Louis Senior High School was awash in sewage for the second time this year.’ The school had to be shut because of the ‘fumes and backed-up toilets’” (Kozol 2). It is very unfair to these students because their school is not being properly taken care of, so they cannot get a proper education. The reason I think affirmative action points should be given to those who have bad high school conditions and not for race or gender is because it is not the kids’ fault that their school is not being taken care of.
Not only are schools becoming a hazard and are not being taken care of, the school boards are wasting the school’s money on extracurricular activities instead of the student’s academic studies. Johnathan Kozol interviews the chairman of the St. Louis state board and he says, “Sports and music… are, for many children here, ‘the only avenues of success” (3). The schools are focusing only on sports and music, and don’t believe the children can succeed in anything else; therefore they don’t care about teaching them or their education. As a result of the school not having strong academics, the student’s grades may be poor. Even though their grades are low, the students sometimes score an average or high score on the SAT. If students who came from a school with weak academics can still do as well as other students on the SAT, then that shows they can work hard and learn the information needed in horrible conditions. If that is the case, then imagine what they could accomplish in a great school that actually cares about their future.
It is unfair and racist to use affirmative action towards applicants for colleges. When the school admission office focuses completely on students of a unique race, ethnicity, their wealth, or sex, it is racists to whites, and sexist! Whether you get into a college or not should be based on grades, and what you will bring to the school. Even though kids of a distinctive race might bring diversity to the school, there is no guarantee that their cultural differences will be integrated into the atmosphere of the school. Initially, affirmative action turns around and becomes racist to whites, and gives people of a different race more attention. Not only is it racist against whites, but it can also be racist against those who are receiving the points. It shows that minorities need extra help to get into college and can’t get in on their own without those extra points. Affirmative action is very unfair to those students who work really hard and deserve a spot in that college. They are declined for no other reason than someone else received affirmative action points and beat them out. If minorities have good enough grades, they won’t work as hard in high school, because they know they will obtain affirmative action points that will automatically help them get into college. Affirmative action should not be based on race or gender because it is racist and unfair in many different ways.

While I agree that affirmative action should be based on only school income and conditions, others may think affirmative action is right and should be based on race and gender. People who argue for affirmative action might add in that if you are rich than you can afford test preparation for the SAT. Well, not all whites are rich, and there are many whites that are very poor and homeless. Under many highways in Texas, there are homeless families who are begging for food or money on the side of the road. On the other hand there are many blacks and families of a different race other than being white, who are very wealthy. Not all are, but if affirmative action includes everyone of a different race then it is not fair to whites that are considered apart of the minority. Why should all students of a different race be given extra points, when not all of them are part of the minority group and are rich enough to get test prep also?
Pro affirmative action groups may also argue that minorities did not get access to a good education. That is not entirely true, because there are some minorities that can afford to go to a good school such as Houston Christian High School. Those who cannot afford to go to a well-educated school would not be applying for a really hard or expensive college anyway. The schools they would be applying to, they would most likely get in. In some cases though, kids who are taught in bad schools where they did not receive a good education because of the condition the school was in, should be given extra points like I had mentioned early in my paper.
In conclusion, I understand why affirmative action started out helping minorities, but in my opinion it has become reverse discrimination towards the majority and is unfair to whites. I believe that affirmative action is wrong, but in certain cases where school income is low, the surroundings of the school are unsafe, and they have terrible conditions, extra points are necessary.

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This article has 1 comment.

Neuro said...
on Feb. 13 2013 at 5:10 am
Amen to that! Anyone who disagrees needs some fresh air.