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Opinion | The new “fairness” of college selection

Finally, the college selection process will not be based on race … even if most every other factor leading up to that is.


Finally, my daughter will get a fair shot to go to college. 

Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court, led by the court’s conservative majority that was put in place because we needed to make sure that the extremely qualified lady who played fast and loose with secret government documents didn’t get elected, fixed a long-running problem in this country – minority kids getting an “unfair” advantage during the college selection process. 

As the father of a young, white girl, I have to say it’s about time. 

After all, why should my little girl be denied acceptance to a university based solely on the color of her skin? 

Thankfully, the private pre-k program that we paid thousands of dollars for her to attend didn’t discriminate in such a way. Because of that, she’ll be well prepared to enter kindergarten in a month at the A-rated elementary school that she will attend by virtue of her parents moving into a sought-after neighborhood in a sought-after school district. 

Thankfully, no one at the bank or mortgage companies overly scrutinized our applications and sought to prevent us from obtaining the loans that allowed such a move. It would be terrible if there was discrimination against white people in the home loan business. Can you even imagine such a thing?

Now, I know that some people will say that my daughter enjoys a bit of privilege, but that’s not true. My wife and I worked for all we have. OK, sure, my family was business owners and I never worried a day in my life about where my next meal might come from or if I could afford to go to college – but I still worked. 

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And yes, I have some Black friends whose grandparents – while mine were cutting deals and snapping up lakeside property – were fighting tooth and nail to get their kids into the public schools they were supposed to attend and battling discrimination at seemingly every front – from red-lining to job access, from police abuse to court discrimination. 

And, OK, if we want to get all nit-picky, the advantages of my grandparents and great-grandparents – and those of millions of other white kids like me – did allow future generations to attend colleges – much more affordable colleges, mind you – and establish legacies and generational wealth that propelled us along an elevated track in life. 

But is that my daughter’s fault? 

Of course not. 

Nor is it her fault that her college acceptance will be based primarily on grades, standardized test scores and extracurricular activities. 

Her grades will be built over a lifetime of receiving the best education possible at the best possible schools, with help from two helicopter parents and whatever tutors and assistance deemed necessary. Her test scores will be boosted by the fact that she can take them repeatedly to achieve the best possible scores, and will have any tutors and study programs necessary to assist her. And those extracurriculars will be easy to stack up, since she probably won’t have to get a job to help her family. 

Those are just the breaks in life. I mean, it’s not like we can search back through the history of this country — and particularly this state and region — and find examples of widespread, systemic discrimination that explain clearly and concisely how white people achieved tremendous economic and educational advantages specifically by denying equal opportunities to minorities. (Or maybe we could but that would just make a lot of white people feel bad, and who really wants that?)

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Now, thanks to the Supreme Court, she won’t have to suffer the indignity of having a minority student, who most likely had few of those advantages and plenty of societal hurdles to overcome, take her spot at one college based on the color of her skin. Even if their station in life and the advantages or disadvantages they each received up to that point were almost entirely based on race. 

Because that’s our new definition of fairness. 

Josh Moon is an investigative reporter and featured columnist at the Alabama Political Reporter with years of political reporting experience in Alabama. You can email him at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter.

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