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Affirmative action. (You be the Judge!).

THE CASE:

Barbara Grutter wanted to become a lawyer. So, the 43-year-old mother of two applied to law school at the University of Michigan.

Grutter thought that her age and experience in business would help get her into law school. But instead of being accepted, she got a rejection letter from the university.

Grutter later learned that students with lower college grades and lower standardized test scores had been accepted by the law school instead of her. These students were admitted, in part, because they were minorities.

Grutter, who is white, believed that affirmative action (giving minority students special treatment in the admissions process) was a form of discrimination. So she sued the University of Michigan. The case is now before the Supreme Court.

THE ARGUMENTS:

Grutter and her lawyers claim that affirmative action gives some people special rights, and thus violates the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which grants all Americans equal opportunities in education. Grutter's lawyers also argue that affirmative action denies many people their 14th Amendment right to "due process of law."

Lawyers representing the university argue that diversity is an important part of education, and that affirmative action helps to achieve this goal. And, in previous cases, other courts have allowed universities to seek out minority students in the admissions process, as long as they do not use quotas (set number or percentages) for admitting these students.

YOU DECIDE:

Should affirmative action be of school's admission process? Or is it a form of discrimination that violates the 14th Amendment?

ANSWERS

Affirmative Action: The case, Grutter v. Bollinger, is currently before the Supreme Court. Check the Court's Web site for a decision: www.supremecourtus.gov.
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Article Details
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Publication:Junior Scholastic
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jan 24, 2003
Words:277
Previous Article:Marbury v. Madison: a landmark decision made 200 years ago changed the Supreme Court forever. (American History).
Next Article:Freedom of speech. (You be the Judge!).
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