Center for Equal Opportunity

The nation’s only conservative think tank devoted to issues of race and ethnicity.

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Affirmative Action

Should New York City Help Only Black and Latino Men?

The New York Times reported  recently that New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg will, to quote the headline, “Unveil a Plan to Aid Young Black and Latino Men.” The article said the plan is “a blunt acknowledgment that thousands of young black and Latino men are cut off from New York’s civic, educational and economic life” and are “disproportionately undereducated, incarcerated and unemployed.” The various social programs will be financed not only by the city, but by Mayor Bloomberg himself, as well as fellow billionaire George Soros.

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Congratulations to the New Haven firefighters!

First, congratulations to the New Haven firefighters and their legal team! Last week the city of New Haven agreed—finally—to pay $2 million and enhanced pension benefits to the firefighters in their celebrated case that went all the way to the Supreme Court a couple of years ago. The 20 firefighters (19 white and one Latino) sued after the city threw out the results of a civil service examination for promotions because it didn’t like the racial results.

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Does Equal Protection Violate the Equal Protection Clause?

A three-judge panel for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit this month struck down Michigan’s ban on government discrimination and preference on the basis of race, ethnicity, and sex because, it says, the ban violates the Equal Protection Clause of the U.S. Constitution.

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Discrimination in celebration of diversity

Last week, the city of New Haven, Conn., agreed - finally - to pay $2 mil- lion and enhanced pension benefits to the firefighters in a celebrated case that went all the way to the Supreme Court a couple of years ago. The 20 firefighters (19 white and one Hispanic) sued after the city threw out the results of a civil service examination for promotions because it didn’t like the racial results.

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The High Costs (and Negligible Benefits) of Political Correctness

First news item from last week: “The Justice Department today announced it has reached an agreement with officials of the Colorado Judicial Department to ensure that limited English proficient (LEP) individuals seeking services throughout Colorado’s state court system will have access to timely and competent language assistance,” according to the Civil Rights Division’s press release here .

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Your Watchdog at Work

Every day we review the Federal Register—a daily publication of proposed rules, regulations, and the like from federal agencies—for items that violate principles of colorblind equal opportunity. It’s rare that we don’t find something that provides grist for our mills here, and here’s an example of a formal comment I sent this week on a recent doozy:

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Back to the Supreme Court

The Supreme Court may have an opportunity to do some good soon in the fight against preferential treatment based on race and ethnicity. That’s because last Friday the petition for rehearing en banc (that is, asking the full court of appeals to rehear the case after a panel decision) was denied in Fisher v. University of Texas.

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The Dubious Celebration of Corporate Diversity

I frequently criticize the use of racial and ethnic preferences by universities and the government, but I should make clear that many corporations are just as bad. I’ve testified before the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission that such discrimination is widespread yet cannot be justified legally, empirically, or morally. You can read that testimony here , and an updated legal discussion here .

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New and Un-Improved Justification for Affirmative Action

The Chronicle of Higher Education recently had a piece by Professor Elizabeth Anderson titled “Affirmative Action Is about Helping All of Us,” in which she laments “the same tired arguments on the left” that are being used to defend affirmative action in higher education, and then proposes her own new and (supposedly) improved theory to be used in defending such discrimination from those attacks by “the right that reflect ignorance of the realities of race in America.”

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