The Supreme Court Thursday issued an opinion in the Texas affirmative action case, Fisher v. Univ. of Tex. at Austin, upholding the university’s admissions policy to consider race as a factor in admissions decisions. This decision highlights the Court and liberal Left’s extreme inconsistency and selective enforcement of the true meaning of equal protection under the Constitution.
On one hand, the Court demands that even those not actually qualifying for a government license on the basis of immutable characteristic (like being the same gender) can get married, yet on the other hand demand that those same immutable characteristics (in this case, race) become the basis of preference and disparate treatment in college admissions. In the case of same-sex marriage, gender is a material and essential qualification for marriage; in this case, race is entirely irrelevant to the students’ application for admission.
The Court’s logic is backward and agenda-driven. Equal protection does not mean equal entitlement. The analysis is whether the basis of treatment is relevant and whether all similarly situated individuals are treated similarly. For example, we don’t view discrimination in a child’s inability to obtain a driver’s license, and we treat all children the same way. Age is a relevant factor to one’s ability to obtain a driver’s license. But we would question equal protection if a DMV refused to provide a driver’s license on the basis of race, because race is not a relevant factor to one’s ability to drive.
In the Texas case, race is not a relevant factor, which was the original point of affirmative action—that race should not be an issue and minorities would not be put at a disadvantage because of their race. Now, the Supreme Court has allowed colleges to give preference to certain races, thereby putting all other races at the very disadvantage affirmative action originally sought to remove.
President Obama’s statement Thursday highlighted the Left’s inconsistency. “We are not a country that guarantees equal outcomes. But we do strive to provide an equal shot to everybody, and that’s what was upheld today,” he said.
Respectfully, Mr. President, how is it an “equal shot” to college applicants to consider race as an admission factor, preferring students of one race over another, when students of the less-preferred race cannot help that? What would have happened if the Petitioner in this case were African-American or Hispanic instead of Caucasian?
You begin to see the problem.
This is yet another case that underlines why the Supreme Court and its composition is THE key issue for the November election. This was a 4-3 decision (Justice Kagan recused), splitting the Court again down liberal and conservative lines. If the next president nominates a constitutional conservative (and possibly more than one) to the Court, issues like this likely would have had a different outcome.
November’s election is critical not just for the next four years, but for the next 40 years.
Jenna Ellis is an attorney, professor of law at Colorado Christian University, and international speaker.
Email Jenna at firstname.lastname@example.org