5 years ago

California's pathetic attempt to defend the University of Texas

By Joshua P. Thompson Senior Attorney

Yesterday, the State of California filed this brief in support of the University of Texas in Fisher v. Univerity of Texas at AustinIt is quite the embarassment.  Most of the brief is the usual, to-be-expected leftist pseudo-science touting the benefits of “diversity.”  As PLF pointed out in its brief in Fisher, there is no “social-science” expception to race-based discrimination.  It is the same reason the Supreme Court rejected Virginia’s pseudo-science argument in favor of segregated education in the 1950s. “There are few government functions that cannot be described as rooted in some interest that seems ‘compelling,’ and it will always be possible to find some social scientist who supports the notion that the consideration of race will improve that function.”  As Justice O’Connor noted,“[s]ocial scientists may debate how peoples’ thoughts and behavior reflect their background, but the Constitution provides that the Government may not allocate benefits and burdens among individuals based on the assumption that race or ethnicity determines how they act or think.”

But California’s brief in Fisher isn’t even that honest.  It only touts the benefits of “diversity” in a vaccuum.  It fails to consider the costs that accompany racial preferences.  In other words, California argues that “diversity” is better than homogeneity.  It does not argue that racial preferences are necessary to acheive diversity.  For good reason too — since 1996, California universities have increased the racial and ethnic diversity of their universities without considering the race and ethnicity of student applicants.

The absolute stunner in California’s brief, however, comes during its final argument.  California touts the “rich diversity” of its elected officials — in particular the California Supreme Court.  But because California has “eschew[ed] use of race-conscious admission standards,” it has had to rely on the race-conscious admissions policies of private universities.  In support of this argument, California notes that Justices Kennard, Chin, Liu, and Moreno all graduated from private law schools.  What the brief fails to mention, however, is that each of those justices entered law school before 1996.  That is, before California “eschew[ed] use of race-conscious admissions standards.”

What to read next