Is Affirmative Action Unfair To Asian Americans?

An affirmative action battle is again playing out at the highest levels, only this time with Asian Americans at the center of the controversy. At the heart of the matter is the question of whether the Supreme Court should reconsider race in college admissions. The group, Students for Fair Admissions, has taken aim at Harvard University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, alleging that Asian Americans are less likely to be admitted than comparably qualified white, Black, or Latino applicants. In two separate cases, the group claims that 1.) Harvard’s admissions policy is regressive and discriminates against Asian Americans, and 2.) UNC – which is a public institution and therefore covered by the 14th amendment’s equal protection guarantee – violates both Title VI and the Constitution with its use of race in admissions. But opponents say race-conscious decision making is a necessary tool to address longstanding racism and discrimination. As such, in this timely debate, we ask the question of whether affirmative action is indeed unfair to Asian Americans.