Diversity at the University should extend to all parts of campus

To the Daily:
With all the debate over the passage of Proposal 2, I don’t understand how we can demand such diversity only in the student body. If we need diversity in the classroom, then shouldn’t we expect it on the football field or basketball court? Our football and basketball teams are composed primarily of black players. Whites are the minority on the basketball court, and there are no Asians at all. Is this because black people are some of the most talented football and basketball players? Yes.

Recruiters look for the best talent, and that is also what admissions officers should do. If we started filling our sports teams with students who are racially diverse but not quite as talented, Michigan would lose its reputation as one of the most competitive and best athletic programs in the nation.

Diversity is not measured by race or gender, but by thoughts, experiences and talents. I have learned about diversity from my friends who went to private schools, had different religious backgrounds or grew up in different states, which shows why diversity should have nothing to do with skin color.

Sabrina Valenti
LSA junior

University cannot lose sight of affirmative action’s intent

To the Daily:
I was surprised to read Wednesday’s editorial urging the University to continue the legal battle over Proposal 2 (From the Daily: Worth fighting for, 01/17/07). I found it not only illogical but laughable that there is talk of unfairness and disenfranchisement of applicants being judged by two different admissions standards. This race-based standard was – like it or not – deemed unfair by a vast majority of Michigan voters. Thus it’s ridiculous to grandfather in an unfair policy in the name of fairness.

This argument, however, hinges on the merit one gives to the democratic process in general. The Michigan Daily’s editorial board and University leadership clearly seem to be forgetting that Proposal 2’s passage was the decision of over 2.1 million Michigan voters. Challenging it is not challenging the decision of a corrupt political leader, overzealous judges or one outspoken campus group, but ignoring the voices of 2.1 million people who have faith in the democratic system. Talk about disenfranchisement.

In the wake of Proposal 2, it is important not to lose sight of the original goal of affirmative action. Instead of wasting time, energy and money on more litigation, let’s join forces and address the inequality of K-12 education in Michigan and figure out how to make higher education financially accessible for all. As former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Conner said, “We expect that 25 years from now, the use of racial preferences will no longer be necessary to further the interest approved today.” Uniting and proactively working to make this vision a reality would be a silver lining to the cloud of Proposal 2.

Rob Dood
LSA senior

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