Affirmative Action was designed initially to be a program that would encourage minority students to enroll in advanced education programs. It leveled the playing field so that poverty wouldn’t have to continue to control the life of a student who wished to do something great. Because of American workplace conditions, the concepts of Affirmative Action have been taken to businesses now as well.
Businesses that are run by women accounted for less than 3% of the government contracts that were awarded in 2002.
Workplace Affirmative Action
It’s a sad fact that discrimination still occurs in the work place today, but it is there and shouldn’t be ignored. Many see the business world as the white man’s world and that’s why Affirmative Action in the work place has become necessary. All anyone is asking for is a fair shot to succeed. That’s what this program is designed to do.
- The unemployment rate as of June 2014 is made up of 5.3% white, 10.7% black, and 7.8% Latino or Hispanic workers.
- Latinas earn 56 cents for every dollar white men earn.
- African-American men earn 75% of what white males earn.
- The poverty rate for African-American households is triple that of Caucasian households.
- In 2002, the median household income for whites was $44,964, compared with $29,177 for African-Americans.
- On average, college educated African-American women annually earn $19,054 less than college educated white men.
- A woman with a Master’s degree makes $4,765 less on average than a man with an undergraduate degree.
- More than 90,000 employment discrimination complaints were filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in 2009.
The whole purpose of American society is to give everyone an equal, fair chance to change their stars and take advantage of the capitalism foundations that are present in every sector. The only problem with this is that children who are born into poverty don’t have the same opportunities to succeed as other children. Fewer resources equate to fewer learning opportunities and this naturally limits their ability to find success. Although some may see Affirmative Action as a form of reverse discrimination, the only thing it is really doing is creating an equal playing field. Fairness means that everyone gets the same chance to succeed. It’s up to each person to grab that chance.
Minorities Don’t Get The Same Chances
- Minorities make up 12.3% of newspaper staffs and 16.4% of online-only news staffs despite being a third of the general population.
- 12%. That’s the number of management positions in the news field that minorities fill.
- Only 2% of new enrollments in California colleges are African-American after the removal of Affirmative Action as a standard.
- In 2000, black women earned a median weekly income of $458 compared to $523 for white women and $717 for white men.
- Workers of color are still concentrated in the less well-paying, unskilled sector.
- Whites are offered jobs 52% more often than Latino applicants when skill sets, experience, and education are all similar.
- Young white men receive 45% more job offers than their African-American counterparts.
- 63% of whites think African Americans have equal opportunity, whereas 80% of African Americans feel that they do not.
- In 1997, the University of California-San Diego School of Medicine did not admit a single one of their 196 black applicants.
There is definitely an ethnic understanding gap that is happening in the United States and this is why Affirmative Action in the work place is still necessary. The perception is that everyone already has an equal chance to succeed, but that just isn’t true. If white men get more job offers and higher salaries than their minority counterparts, then this is the very nature of discrimination. People have been fighting to end these practices for over a century, so people are only fooling themselves if they believe that the problems have been solved. If anything, the statistics show that we need a more influential Affirmative Action program to make sure that everyone gets the same chances because everyone has the right of citizenship and equal access.
Is There A Case Against Affirmative Action?
- 69% of Hispanic high-school graduates, 67% of white graduates and 62% of black graduates went on to college in 2012.
- More than 80% of Asian graduates enrolled in a higher-education program.
- The difference between white and black college attendance went from an average of 13 percentage points from 1980-2008 to just just five percentage points from 2009 to 2012.
- In the 2011-2012 academic year, the averaged freshman graduation rate for whites was 85% and 93% for Asian/Pacific Islander students.
- More than 80% of high-income graduates go on to college, compared to 66% of middle-income students and just 52% of low-income graduates. These gaps haven’t narrowed in 30 years.
- Except for the Asian racial demographic, a majority of students of all racial colors and ethnicities, including Cacuasians, are not proficient in any standard school subject. The only exception to this is in English, where 64% of white students test as proficient.
If the goal of Affirmative Action has been to give low income households the chance to send kids to college so they can get a good job, then the purpose of the program hasn’t work. Enrollment rates that are based on income haven’t really changed over the years, but what is often missed in the final statistic above is that it includes all races. When minority groups don’t have access to Affirmative Action, the information is conclusive. Admissions drop by upwards of 80%. Is it providing minorities with preferential treatment if race is considered as a factor for a job? It is illegal to hire to fill quotas. With that consideration, the answer to these questions you have will determine which side of the Affirmative Action in the work place debate you fall on.