Split by Affirmative Action Bill, California Democrats Weigh Next Steps

Jeremy White, The Sacramento Bee, April 25, 2014

When Luis Alejo applied to college at the University of California, Berkeley, admissions counselors could consider his race; when he applied to law school, it had become invisible.

It was only after a string of rejections led him to beg for a face-to-face interview with an admissions officer, Alejo said, that he won a spot at the University of California, Davis, law school, launching a career that in 2010 elevated him to the state Assembly.

The year Alejo was preparing for law school, voters altered his prospects by passing Proposition 209, California’s ban on race-inclusive admissions policies. Alejo and others unsuccessfully fought the initiative, a losing battle that he described as a formative political experience.

“All our fears came true,” said Alejo, a Democrat from Watsonville. “Once it went into effect, we saw dramatic drops in the numbers of students of color being able to attend some of our most prestigious graduate and professional schools.”

Nearly two decades after California voters banned affirmative action, the debate has re-emerged in the Legislature with new players and different stakes. It has spotlighted the augmented presence of Latino and Asian American lawmakers, voted into office by a markedly more diverse electorate, and ignited anger and tension between the two groups.

“If it weren’t for affirmative action, I, Kevin de León, wouldn’t be here today,” Sen. Kevin de León, D-Los Angeles, who will soon become the first Latino leader of the Senate, said in January.

The day de León gave that speech, Senate Democrats advanced SCA 5, a measure to put reversing California’s race-conscious admissions ban on the ballot. The ensuing backlash was swift and unexpected. Asian American lawmakers faced a groundswell of opposition from Asian American constituents concerned about losing out on university spots.

Leadership shelved the proposal, touching off racially tinged reprisals. A group of Latino and African American lawmakers informed Sen. Ted Lieu, D-Torrance, they were withdrawing their support for his congressional run. And African American and Latino lawmakers withheld their votes from an unrelated bill by Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi, D-Torrance, allowing it to fail on the floor.

“I feel I was targeted because of my race,” Muratsuchi said.

{snip}

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  • Puggg

    There was once a day when California was actually an American state, populated with actual Americans, and all this, uh, this race versus that race tug of war didn’t exist.

  • WR_the_realist

    “If it weren’t for affirmative action, I, Kevin de León, wouldn’t be
    here today,” Sen. Kevin de León, D-Los Angeles, who will soon become the
    first Latino leader of the Senate, said in January.

    We have many shameless blacks and Latinos who admit that without anti-white and anti-Asian discrimination they couldn’t have gotten into positions they have but don’t deserve and lack the competence for.

    • Luke N

      I was surprised too at how candid the colors are. The colors are really brutally honest that they have gamed the system, and they are proud of it.

    • Martel

      Asians would not be discriminated against if they would not move to the US in such great numbers.

      • borogirl54

        Asians were always discriminated against. It was no secret that Jews and Japanese Americans were not admitted to certain universities.

        • Martel

          To claim the rightful reasons for ”discrimination” in the past are somehow connected to AA today makes no sense. European Americans worked hard to build what exists today, its up to them to decide who shares in the spoils.

        • jambi19

          Same with Irish. Yet Irish, Jew and Asian AA applicants need not apply.

          • Chip Carver

            To be honest, the Jews have their own “AA” programs in place, for themselves, and they always come first. Asians don’t need AA, obviously, but they do get the nod over whites. If you think you’ll get a fair shake if you’re up against a non-white, whether they’re black, Hispanic, Asian, or a Aborigine from Australia, you’re mistaken. Not in the US. Not by a long shot.

        • IstvanIN

          1) Asians and Jews have no inherent right to a nation founded and built by people of British and Northern European extraction.
          2) Every nation has a right and a duty to decide who may enter said country. Every nation has an obligation to defend itself and its people.
          3) Discrimination has always existed and will always exist. Jews and Asians not only discriminate against us but against each other in their own societies.
          4) A White baby born today owes no apologies or reparations to any black, Jew or Asian for what may or may not have happened in the past.
          5) Non-White immigration was and is an ongoing mistake. Immigrants to a society should be at least similar to the founding population. Eastern and southern European immigrants, being White and Christian, and admitted in small enough numbers, could be assimilated in time due to the similarities to the founding group. Even large numbers of a particular European group, say Italian Catholics, could have a profound effect on the existing society, its cultures and mores if allowed to continue unchecked.
          6) Generally speaking immigrants and first generation children usually start at the bottom of the barrel because they are the NEWCOMERS. It takes time to acclimate.
          7) Destroying the society that was kind enough to take your forebears in shows that your kind should never have been let in in the first place. Ingrates and backstabbers might be the correct terms.
          8) Life isn’t fair, get used to it. I could list all the disappointments and tragedies that have befallen me, are you going to compensate me for my losses?

          • Anon

            Freeze immigration now. That would be a non-discriminatory r-set that most people could agree on.

          • IstvanIN

            That is what we should do, the lifeboat is full.

    • Tom Thumb

      competence
      ___________________
      Good word, but I prefer the word excellence. Only White people come near excellence, not perfection, but near it. Other groups don’t come near us in this regard.

    • sbuffalonative

      “Once it went into effect, we saw dramatic drops in the numbers of
      students of color being able to attend some of our most prestigious
      graduate and professional schools.”

      The only thing that ‘qualifies’ them for school or politics is the color of their skin.

      If they were white with the grades they earned, they never would have been admitted.

      • Sue

        Even when it was a white country they still wouldn’t have admitted whites with those grades.

  • Everyone wants a piece of the pie that whitey baked, but no one is willing to work for it. Screw all of them. As far as I’m concerned a race war pitting blacks against Asians against Mexicans can’t happen soon enough. Where are the whites? Gone, as any sane person would be. Just don’t bring California values anywhere close to me.

    • So CAL Snowman

      I may be insane but I’m not leaving my homeland, not now, not EVER! I hate the rain, I hate the wind, I hate the snow (unless I’m shredding it on a board). If I can’t see the ocean I get nervous and full of anxiety like I’m boxed in or something. The mexicans want my land? Fine, they can come and fight me for it tooth and nail.

    • DAWNOFNEWDAY

      I don’t know when or what it will take for most whites to wake the hell up and unite as whites. Look at how so many whites are ‘outraged’ at Sterling or debating whether or not the Clive Bundy rancher in Nevada is a ‘racist’ instead of noticing their governments and third-world invaders are going to displace them and their future generations. Hungary, Greece, Russia, and even there is a revival in Western Europe (even France!) to stop nonwhite invasion and Islam. What will it take, whitey?!!

  • JohnEngelman

    Affirmative action does not create opportunities. It takes them from people who deserve them, and gives them to people who do not deserve them.

    • Tom_in_Miami

      That is such an obvious conclusion, I can only wonder what’s wrong with the white people who favor AA against their own interests.

  • IstvanIN

    “If it weren’t for affirmative action, I, Kevin de León, wouldn’t be here today,” Sen. Kevin de León, D-Los Angeles,
    How is a Mexican being elected by Mexicans a great accomplishment?

  • Urbane Neanderthal

    How is it possible that these diverse minority groups have such friction when diversity is such a strength?

    • SFLBIB

      If diversity was such a strength, they wouldn’t need to sell it.

  • So CAL Snowman

    “The year Alejo was preparing for law school, voters altered his
    prospects by passing Proposition 209, California’s ban on race-inclusive
    admissions policies”

    If his grades were good enough it would not matter what the voters decided. I love it when they admit their inferiority.

    ““All our fears came true,” said Alejo, a Democrat from Watsonville.
    “Once it went into effect, we saw dramatic drops in the numbers of
    students of color being able to attend some of our most prestigious
    graduate and professional schools.””

    So what is stopping them from attending prestigious graduate and professional schools in countries of color? They obviously consider OUR WHITE schools and OUR WHITE universities to be superior to their schools of color.

    • JDInSanD

      “voters altered his prospects”

      No, his lack of merit based qualifications altered his prospects.

      And “being able to attend” is not the same as being qualified. I can attend a football game or a beauty pageant but I’m not qualified to compete.

  • Anon

    Notice the unstated but implied assumption that such admissions, opportunities and leadership choice should be “fair” and “merit” based with the conclusion that objective measures of such merit fail to allow those who should get these things access to them.
    No one asks what is best for society or even what society is (which in this case, society is white people with the conceit that non-whites can join white people as a group).
    Right in the same article the consequences are displayed although not commented on. All races (except whites) are in it of and for their race ONLY. So called “merit” is immaterial and all that matters is every race for itself. Result….no society. Left with no checks, the situation would devolve into war and then ethnic cleansing of the weak by the strong and a complete abandonment of our way of life (or rather the white way of doing things).
    The lesson here is the correct choice, indeed the only viable choice is that these things go to white people. You can pretend otherwise….to a point. Past that point and the whole situation simply collapses.
    There is a saying….instant ghetto…just add black people. I rather think the situation is the opposite. Remove white people from an equation, ANY equation and watch civilization collapse. Often in real time (ie South Africa).

  • rasher223

    I LOVE watching the minority groups fight amongst themselves.

    It only validates my views of diversity even further.

    • Intrep1d

      The only minority opposition to affirmative action comes from Asians. That’s the only reason there’s a “fight” going on now. They’re doing the anti-affirmative action work that Whites should have done a long time ago.

  • RyanP

    I would be curious to know the “old money” AA grades/drop out rate vs the minority grades/AA drop out rate.

  • SFLBIB

    “If it weren’t for affirmative action, I, Kevin de León, wouldn’t be here today.” — Sen. Kevin de León, D-Los Angeles

    That might not be such a bad thing.

  • Chip Carver

    I think this site should always spell “Democrats” as “Demokrats”. But maybe that’s just me.