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Affirmative action must be based on economic background, not race

In light of this week’s Supreme Court decision regarding affirmative action, it is time to take a close look at this policy. The true American way is to give back to those who are less fortunate. However, are racial preferences the best way to help those who are at a disadvantage? The answer is no.

The color of your skin should not matter in determining if one is accepted into a university. The constitution states that you cannot discriminate based on race, sex or religion. Rather than focusing on whether some one is a certain ethnicity, it would be best to look at their personal experiences and their economic situation.

For example, lets take the tales of two different people. Person A and person B are both equally qualified for admission into a university. However, person A is financially much better off and has offers to a number of other places. Person B cannot afford to attend the university and surely cannot afford any others. In this instance, affirmative action would be in effect for Person B.

The key point in the example is that race was not involved in the decision. What if person A was the black son of Denzel Washington? Just being a minority does not put him at a disadvantage.

The way affirmative action is designed today, certain races might be wrongfully shut out. The most disadvantaged people in our society today are those that are living in poverty. It is a reward for those that work hard and deserve a chance to succeed as well as helping them overcome unfortunate circumstances.

As long as affirmative action is based on race, we will never become a colorblind society. Martin Luther King’s dream was one of equality, regardless of your race. Economic affirmative action takes skin color out of the equation, while helping people in need.

It is only a matter of time before our lawmakers and court justices realize this. Affirmative action based on economics is the best alternative that is available today and would benefit people from all different walks of life.