Affirmative action and law students

Somebody requested that I post the following article – and I agreed to do so.  Being a man of my word, here it is:

5 Ways Affirmative Action has Lowered the Standards for Law Students

No matter what law school or education you decide on, affirmative action can be a major factor as to whether you get in or not.  Affirmative action was first brought about in the 60’s to help give minority students a chance at entering the same schools as their white counterparts.  However, today the laws surrounding it have astounding results as detailed in part by UCLA law professor Rick Sander (link).  His study found several disturbing results which are listed below.

  1. Poorer grades – Although students of various races who are admitted to a law school based on the same criteria do the same, those given preferential treatment were found by the study to have lower grades in law school.  According to the study, average black students were found to have first-year grades comparable to a white student at the 7th or 8th percentile.
  2. Lower bar exam pass rates – Every law student knows the bar can be an immensely difficult exam for any student.  Only 45 percent of black law students in the study were able to pass the bar on their first attempt while Professor Sandler estimated that without affirmative action, the number would rise to 74 percent.
  3. Not many more black law students – Even with preferential treatment, the study estimates that 86 percent of blacks who apply for law school would have been admitted anyway, regardless of any affirmative action policies.
  4. Fewer lawyers – All this affirmative action may have good intentions, but it actually seems to be hurting the number of black law school students who go on to be lawyers.  The total number of blacks who became lawyers dropped 7.9 percent, according to the study.
  5. Unseen effects – Although all of the above can be measured on some scale, there really is no way to measure the impact a law school student who was admitted mainly because of affirmative action will react to entering a school where their peers are more qualified.
    Effects on these student’s learning, motivation, and goals can all be affected in all sorts of unseen ways.

Shelby Crockett has been a Paralegal for 9 years and owns the site How to Become a Paralegal. Her site helps students find the right paralegal school

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11 Responses to Affirmative action and law students

  1. jewamongyou says:

    I wanted to point out that Professor Sander appears to be concerned only with the welfare of the beneficiaries of affirmative action. It seems to never occur to him that affirmative action, being merely a euphemism for “anti-white discrimination”, harms the whites who are rejected due to their race. It also harms the people who hire the inferior lawyers that affirmative action produces. Sander apparently makes no attempt to explain why we should be concerned about the number of black law students or lawyers. Shouldn’t we be concerned, instead, that we have GOOD attorneys, regardless of their race?
    What if I were to argue that the American institution of slavery was evil solely because it harmed whites? I doubt very many people would take me seriously.

    • Octopole says:

      Actually JAY, the group harmed the most by AA are Asians. I recall reading somewhere recently that if AA were abolished, admission at elite Universities for Asians would rise by 40% while white admission would only marginally increase.
      BTW, you should do a post on AA in Med Schools. It’s even more egregious. My son scored in the 99.99th percentile on MCAT but still couldn’t get a second look from most Ivies. He had stellar EC’s (worked at a prestigious medical institution for 3 summers in Research, did Diabetes research in two third-world countries), was an EMT for 3 years, was ranked the #1 student for four years running as an undergraduate, has excellent social skills to name just a few. While attending interviews, he’d tell me that all the black students were accepted at every school where they’d interviewed which was not the case for the white or Asian kids. Consider this – the average MCAT score and GPA of an Asian or white kid rejected from med schools is higher than the average MCAT score and GPA of a black or Hispanic student admitted to med schools. This alone should discourage one from going to a Black, Hispanic or Puerto Rican doctor.

  2. JL says:

    Richard Hoste once wrote a great piece on law schools and affirmative action:
    I wonder what happened to him. He was one of the most interesting writers in the HBD-sphere.

  3. Recently I talked to a Brazilian Astrophysicist. He told me that in Brazil they have quotas for poor or public high school students. They tend to be of darker race, but it is not a racial quota
    He says these people enter college with major deficits. But as they are the cream of the crop of the deficient public school system, they are very intelligent and disadvantaged. Pretty soon the develop to have very high achievement.
    Please interpret and point out the differences, what Brazilians seem to be doing right.

  4. John Smith says:

    The difference is that likely those students have a worse public school system than our inner city schools, so there is untapped potential there. However, in the US, even the inner city schools are passable enough that a reasonably intelligent kid there can still do well.

  5. countenance says:

    Law school AA doesn’t mean that too many more undergraduate blacks get admitted to any law school, it means that the blacks who do get admitted to better law schools than they would without it. If they wind up graduating, most of them will be token employees at relatively big name law firms in order to keep the civil rights hounds at bay.

  6. Don Herron says:

    Michelle Obama’s thesis deals with being a fish out of water at Princeton.
    She would never have gotten into Princeton without AA but would have made somewhere else more suitable.
    AA means that certain people get promoted above their abilities and it does not do them any good.
    For example the same Michelle Robinson went to a law firm and found that she hated law of any sort so much that she has let her reigistration as a lawyer expire.
    That was a waste of her time and that of the student who could have been in thta placeif it were not for AA.

  7. destructure says:

    I went to school with a girl who got into Harvard with a GPA of 3.7 and an ACT of 26. She dropped out after a year. I don’t know the specific reasons she dropped out. All I heard is that she was “miserable” there.
    I also went to school with a boy who went to state university on a full basketball scholarship. He graduated valedictorian of his department with a 4.0 and went to Harvard Law School. He now has his own law firm.
    Now, before I give it away can you guess which one is white and which one is black?
    In spite of the basketball scholarship I think it’s pretty obvious. Because no white student would have gotten into Harvard with a GPA of 3.7 and an ACT of 26. The irony is that the second student had been rejected when he applied in high school. But, really, which one belonged at Harvard and which one didn’t?

  8. anti-racist says:

    white men have had 500 yeears of affirmative action
    wquit whining

    • jewamongyou says:

      LOL at the spelling! For most of those 500 years, my ancestors were persecuted for being Jews. Even my own parents experienced that. Are you in favor of affirmative action for Jews?

  9. anti-racist says:

    I am in favor of a level playing field.
    You are a person of color if you are a jew so you should be on my side. Non anti racistf white people hate you.

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