“We don’t want resegregation, equal quality education!” chanted students gathered on the Union steps today at a press conference shortly after the Supreme Court announced its decision to take both the Law School and undergraduate cases challenging the University’s use of race in admissions.
More than 20 students stood in the cold with snow falling around them as they held up signs supporting affirmative action at today’s press conference.
Luke Massie, a member of the Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action and Integration and Fight for Equality by Any Means Necessary implored students to get involved and expressed confidence about the Court’s future ruling.
“Every single person supporting equal rights and equality must take a stand at this time. This is the key turning point,” he said. “We will win (Grutter vs Bollinger).”
But LSA sophomore Karl Sowislo, a member of the Michigan Review who attended the press conference, declared a different prediction. “First of all, I think it’s unconstitutional because in the public sector as in colleges and universities, admissions policies should be looked at with a blind eye,” he said. “I think justice will prevail, meaning affirmative action will be overturned.”
Education senior Agnes Aleobua announced BAMN’s plans to hold a National Civil Rights March in Washington, D.C. when the Court hears the case in March or April.
“We will not turn back the hands of time. I implore everyone in this community to join us and march in D.C,” she said. “Brown vs. Board of Education means as much today as the declaration that all men are created equal meant during slavery. We will be marching on the Supreme Court when the hear our case.”
One of the lawyers for the interveners, Jody Masley, said the Supreme Court’s decision today to hear the University’s cases will have a deep impact on the civil rights movement started by Martin Luther King Jr. four decades ago.
“This case will determine whether Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream of progress and equality will be realized in this society,” Masley said.