Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia has been the topic of heated debate after his comments Wednesday criticizing affirmative action and noting its detriment to academically qualified black students during a court hearing.
"There are those who contend that it does not benefit African-Americans to get them into the University of Texas where they do not do well, as opposed to having them go to a less-advanced school, a less—a slower-track school where they do well," Scalia said. "One of the briefs pointed out that most of the black scientists in this country don't come from schools like the University of Texas."
After being interrupted, Scalia continued.
"They come from lesser schools where they do not feel that they're being pushed ahead in classes that are too fast for them," he said. "I'm just not impressed by the fact that the University of Texas may have fewer. Maybe it ought to have fewer. And maybe some—you know, when you take more, the number of blacks, really competent blacks, admitted to lesser schools, turns out to be less."
The Fisher vs. Texas case Scalia had been commenting on, was an ongoing federal lawsuit involving the UT at Austin vs. Abigail Fisher and Rachel Michalewizc, two white females who had filed the case in 2009 after being rejected from the University on the basis of their race. Michalewizc withdrew from the case in 2011. The case was heard for the second time Wednesday after the U.S. District Court ruled in favor of the university in 2009, only after being turned down by the Supreme Court in 2013.
Scalia was bashed by many people who viewed his comments as "racist," but they ignored that the concept of affirmative action—favoring one racial group over the other on the basis of historical discrimination that one group faced—is racism towards the group not favored. Furthermore, Scalia had pointed out that the favoring of lesser qualified black students in higher education will cause truly qualified black students to be at a real disadvantage academically and opportunistically.
Students and educators took part in the Scalia-bashing. As reported by the Daily Caller''s Peter Hasson, Ben Carrington, assistant professor of Sociology at the University of Texas, "called Justice Thomas a 'dumb fuck' for something he imagined Thomas doing," while Cornell English doctoral student Jesse Goldberg tweeted, “Fuck you, Scalia.”
Here is a compilation of some of the professors’ insults at Scalia, from Hasson:
The Daily Wire reached out to some of the professors to find out whether they truly believed “black students need special treatment in order to succeed academically.”
"I noticed this article about your recent tweet against Supreme Court Justice Scalia after his comments about affirmative action," The Daily Wire asked. "Do you believe that black students need special treatment in order to succeed academically?"
"Depends what you mean by 'special treatment' to succeed," Carrington responded. "I don’t believe that any ethnic or racial group has any inherent qualities that make them better or worse than anyone else, but I do believe that structural inequalities play a role in determining life chances including educational opportunity, and that universities should strive to have a diverse student body."
Goldberg responded in a manner that relayed he was clearly offended by The Daily Wire’s question but also indicated that he believed in the affirmative. He said that he had "no desire to answer your leading and poorly-formed question to contribute any statement to an article on The Daily Wire," but offered to engage in a "real discussion" of affirmative action in a manner that presumably did not portray it as simply "special treatment."
Goldberg also referenced "questions of historicity and power," alluding to his boast-worthy knowledge of African American historical oppression as an African American Literature major, which he often uses to justify current racism promoted by affirmative action in the U.S. education system.
Thank you for reaching out, but I have no desire to answer your leading and poorly-formed question to contribute any statement to an article on The Daily Wire. If you're interested in a real discussion of affirmative action that goes beyond the underthought and limiting framework of "special treatment" to consider questions of historicity and power, let me know. But if you're just interested in a soundbite, well, I'm sure you can go through my tweets and find something to your liking. They are public, after all.