Thursday, January 27, 2022

Feeding Students To The Wolves

Powerline had a post up yesterday discussing Harvard's latest attempts to justify their racist admission policies. If you haven't kept up, Harvard is alone among the elite universities in that they made the mistake of keeping their admissions records instead of incinerating them to keep others from finding out how they decided who gets into the school.

A group of Asian parents sued Harvard because they were certain their kids were being cheated and they were right. An Asian needs to score 350 points higher on their SATs than a black kid. In addition to using grades, extracurricular activities and test scores, Harvard employs a personality scoring system where they rate candidates for their leadership, courage and possibly hygienic qualities. According to these scores, Harvard thinks Asians are smelly, ambitionless cowards. Because of that, Asian overall scores are dragged down to where the 350-point advantage in the SATs is required to get in to the school.

The case is being heard by the Supreme Court. Depending on whether John Roberts' spine is functioning that day and Brett Kavanaugh's hangover has subsided, Harvard could be in deep kimchi. Worried, Harvard's  president, Lawrence Bacow, had this to say after changing into some dry pants:

Harvard celebrates and nurtures individuality as intensely as this nation. Those who challenge our admissions policies would ask us to rely upon a process far more mechanistic, a process far more reliant on simple assessments of objective criteria. Each of us is, however, more than our numbers, more than our grades, more than our rankings or scores. Ask yourself, how much have you learned from other people at this University? How much have you grown from conversations across difference? Would these conversations have been as rich if you had shared the same interests, the same life experiences, and—yes—the same racial or ethnic background as your fellow community members? This is why applications of any kind routinely go beyond mere numbers to include interviews, samples of work product, recommendations, and references. Narrowly drawn measures of academic distinction are not the only indicators of individual promise.

Wow. So blacks are basically conversation pieces? Note that nothing in that paragraph discusses the primary reason admission criteria exist in the first place - to winnow out students who are doomed to failure before they get in and are crushed.

We know that kids who are admitted to elite schools with scores well below their peers typically flunk out or change their majors into easy, but useless ones, those blacks are being fed into an educational meat grinder just so the other students can talk to them from time to time.

It might be less expensive and less damaging to simply set up "talk to marginalized people" booths around the campus and hire properly diverse people to man, err, woman, err xer them. Then you could admit only qualified students, you wouldn't have to watch whole groups wash out, the unqualified wouldn't leave with massive student loan debts and the students would still get all of the benefits of diversity, such as they are.

It would look kind of like this.

Nah. What's the fun in that? Let's admit kids with mediocre test scores and have them compete with the ultra-smart set. What fun it will be for them to join study groups where everyone else understands the material quickly and easily while they struggle*!


As a bonus, those blacks who aced the SATs will always have the stigma of their peers wondering if they were beneficiaries of Harvard's anti-Asian racism. Yay.

* - This was me in grad school. I was taking theoretical math classes. Real Analysis came pretty easily, but Abstract Algebra might as well have been taught in Russian. My classmates, much better than I was, understood the stuff. I hated studying with them because it kept reinforcing my inadequacies.


Ohioan@Heart said...

I hope, fore lonely, that the Supreme Court will, in their final majority opinion, tell Harvard (and the rest of America) that ‘henceforth and forever more we Americans will judge people not on the color of their skin, but by the content of their character’. It would be great to see the minority, leftist, “anti-racist”, opinion explain how they disagree with MLK.

Mostly Nothing said...

The left has long abandoned the 60s liberal. JFK wouldn't make it out of Iowa in the run to the Presidency now. And like you said, BLM has absolutely nothing to do with MLK.

I have started to wonder if JFK and Truman were actually the exceptions to the democratic way. The "you can't be expected to be responsible" platform pushed by FDR, Johnson, Obama, Biden, etc.

tim eisele said...

Speaking of the Supreme Court and Harvard, one could argue that the ones who actually went to Harvard should recuse themselves if this comes before them. This would leave us with just Thomas, Alito, Sotomayor, Kavanaugh, and Coney Barrett (four from Yale and one from Notre Dame). I wonder if they'll do it?

Mostly Nothing said...

That's interesting. I'm sure they won't. I suppose that if they continue to donate to the University, there is then a fairly clear conflict of interest. If they don't, then not as much.

We still give some to our schools, not a lot. And I'm disinclined to do so now.

K T Cat said...

Personally, I'd love it if everyone who hasn't directly endured intense racial discrimination recused themselves. That would leave only Justice Clarence Thomas.


IlĂ­on said...

==the democratic way==

The Tao of the Democratic Party has *always* been to use government force and violence to “rob Peter to pay Paul” … with, of course, the swag having to pass through their sticky fingers before any of it gets to Paul.

What do you think the “Trail of Tears” (*) was? It was the Democratic Party using government force and violence to dispossess people who were not US citizens so as to reward Democratic voters with the wealth and property of those people.

(*) Some of my “indirect” ancestors, cousins and siblings of my direct ancestors, were among those dispossessed and exiled; and several of them died along the way. I once saw photos a second-cousin had taken of some of the tombstones he had tracked down.