Imagine the following press release:
In a closed-door meeting, the owners voted to limit the number of black players, in order to increase attendance from non-black customers. The NBA now consists of over 80 percent black players, which creates a non-diverse and less enlightening experience for the predominately non-black fan. Thus, in order to continue basketball's popularity, the NBA determines player diversity a necessity to maintain the game's prosperity.
-- NBA commissioner David Stern.
Before you could say "Michael Richards," in swoop the Revs. Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton, as well as the other usual suspect "black leaders." Marching, screaming, stomping and howling will precede enough lawsuits to keep the entire American and National Bar Associations fully employed for the next decade.
Yet when it comes to colleges and universities admitting Asian-American students, this is, in effect, exactly what is happening. Because of the superior performance of Asian students on high school grades and pre-college aptitude tests, many colleges and universities, through unannounced policies, place these "minority students" at the back of the line.
California, in 1996, outlawed race-based preferences. After this new law, the percentage of Asian students enrolled at the elite, competitive campus of UC Berkeley increased from 34.6 percent to 42 percent by fall 2006. Similarly, the state of Washington outlawed preferences in 1998, and Asian enrollment at the University of Washington increased from 22.1 percent to 25.4 percent by 2004. Michigan recently passed laws outlawing the use of race in government hiring, contracting and admission into public colleges and universities. Expect an increase in the Asian student body at the University of Michigan.
Question: Why do Asian students and their parents put up with it?
Jian Li does not intend to. Li, a permanent U.S. resident, immigrated to America from China at the age of 4. He graduated at the top 1 percent of his high school class. On his SATs, he received a perfect 2400, and totaled 2390 (10 points less than perfection) on his SAT II subject tests in math and science. Yet Li received rejections from Princeton, Harvard, Stanford, the University of Pennsylvania and MIT. Li is not alone. Attorney Don Joe from Asian-American Politics, an enrollment-tracking Internet site -- says he receives complaints "from Asian-American parents about how their children have excellent grades and scores but are being rejected by the most selective colleges. It appears to be an open secret."