Essay - The Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Cra) Formally Ended Racial...


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The Civil Rights Act of 1964 (CRA) formally ended racial and gender discrimination by any entity doing business with or receiving money from the federal government. Nearly all institutions of higher education receive federal funding in some form, so the Civil Rights act had an immediate effect on admissi*****s policies and student recruitment as universities endeavored to comply with the law (Springer, 2003).

Most universities ***** actually stopped practicing overt ***** discrimination prior to p*****sage ***** ***** CRA. The landmark Brown v. Board of Education case (1954) outlawed racial ***** in public educational institutions, and ***** the time of the passage of the ***** all southern uni*****ersities were *****ficially desegregated. In the north and west, with much more racially homogenous populations, ***** end of desegregation was far less significant (Grofman, 2000).

The main effect of the CRA for all American universities was the emergence of the policy of affirmative action. Affirmative action ***** initially proposed by President Johnson in an executive order immediately following passage of ***** CRA. Calling on ***** contractors to take "affirmative action" to ensure that they did not discriminate, ***** initiated a policy ***** inclusion that has been criticized as "reverse discrimination" (Gurin, 2002). In a sense ***** criticism is accurate, because ***** take positive steps to include minorities ***** opposed to merely refraining from discriminating against them. However because minorities often face systemic *****d economic obstacles to achievement in areas such as higher education, affirmative action is intended to redress the imbalance and ***** minority participation.

***** action has been the main result of ***** ***** ***** the world of higher education. It appears that at first universities instituted ***** action in order ***** avoid prosecution ***** the government, but now affirmative ***** ***** generally justified in terms of the diversity it creates in the student population (Springer, 2003). A recent Supreme Court decision upholding the University of Michigan's affirmative action policy notes that universities do not violate the constitution's equal protection clause by discriminating in favor of ***** students if that ***** is designed to promote student diversity. The Court noted that institutions of ***** learning have an interest in achieving ***** ***** ***** ***** educational ***** intellectual benefits of having different perspectives represented (Springer, *****).

Therefore although conservatives have criticized affirmative ***** as hypocritical because it discriminates ***** a view toward ending discrimination, it is clear that colleges *****d universities these days want the benefits ***** a more diverse student ***** *****nd will pursue admissions policies commensurate with ***** diversity. Colleges often relax standards for other admissions categories (legacies, athletes, musicians) when they feel it is their interest to do so. Affirmative action, which began as a way to prevent discrimination, now is used as a ********** to ***** diversity (Gurin, 2002).

***** rights legislation in America w***** initially intended to protect the legal rights of African Americans following ***** abolition of slavery in 1865, and at first the benefits of ***** ***** were limited to black students (Gr*****man, 2000). However President John*****n

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