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Hernandez 1 Edwin Hernandez John Kubler English 114A 24 September 2013 The Biggest Race of life The biggest

race in life is the human race because we are all equal. Many people have a mixed opinion and perspective on Affirmative Action. In society we are labeled and judged for how we look whether its for our body structure or the color of our skin. In our society the minorities are sometimes looked down on for example in the 1940s African American people were forced to sit in the back of the bus. They didnt have the priority to sit in the front because they were from a different race. The Declaration of Independence states, All men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness. On one hand, we have people saying that affirmative action will allow minority to reach a higher potential and they will have a better chance of getting into college. On the other hand, we have people saying that affirmative action is unfair and excludes the students that have worked hard academically because of their race. In the case of Abigail Fisher, a high school student, applied to the University of Texas and was not admitted for being of the Caucasian race. In a way it is good to have more minorities in college because it makes the school diverse. But if we choose to give minorities priority then we are just going backwards in terms of racial discrimination. What was done in the past is basically being done again. In this case the whites being discriminated rather than the Latinos or African Americans. People have been fighting for decades for no racism and equal rights, there has been slight progress, but there is still a lot of it in our society. People should not be looked upon by their race but by their abilities and their assets. From our past discussion in class, I have a mixed feeling

Hernandez 1 about affirmative action but I believe that we shouldnt be looking at race and setting up preposterous circumstances towards our education. Around the world, societies have people of different races and perspectives. In Persepolis, we see that in Marjis school she was forced to wear a veil. Then came 1980: The year it became obligatory to wear the veil at school (3). In Marjis school the circumstance for her to attend school is to wear a veil. In this case its not much about race but implementing the veil and the students feel that its uncomfortable. Like affirmative action, I believe that schools are trying to choose what they want and not accepting students for who they are. In Persepolis, students were separated into different schools. In 1979, we were in a French non-religious schoolwhere boys and girls were togetherand then suddenly in 1980all bilingual schools must be closed downwe found ourselves veiled and separated from our friends (4). There is discrimination and oppression towards each other by separating schools. Its good to have diversity in school but its not okay choosing who should attend and discriminate the students that you believe different. I think they should be considering difference in terms of thinking not different in terms of race. In Persepolis we see how one person dictates the tempo of life. We see in the story that Mahri, Marjis sitter, is devastated because of her belonging in a certain level of social class. This is similar to Abigail Fisher because in Mahris case its lower class and upper class and in Abigails case its majority and minority. They both want to achieve a goal but they cant because of where society places them rather than focusing on the human being as an individual. Also in Persepolis, I noticed that a comment was made of people from Iran that when they come to the United States they come to drive taxis. Society labels people with stereotypical sayings because of their race and sometimes it diminishes our hopes and makes us believe we are not good enough. In a way affirmative action is doing that two because Abigial was being put down because of her race and was not able to attend her dream school. Persepolis teaches us the

Hernandez 1 life of other people in their society such as the circumstances they live in for example girls wearing a veil to school. It shows us that, similar to here, there is discrimination and many obstacles to reach our dreams but theres always a glimpse of hope. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. did not believe in excluding races. Reverend Martin Luther Kingcalled for a day when every American would be judged by the content of their character rather than the color of the skin (Ferrara 10). I agree with Martin Luther King Jr., a great and wise man that we shouldnt be excluding people for their race and we should not look at the color of skin you have but your personality and ability. For example, the University of Texas should have seen Abigails academics and not seen her as being white. This quote used is self explanatory and it says what is basically happening in this world. Our ancestors fought for equality for all races, Abigail Fisher is one more example that the fight continues. As mentioned in class we should be looking at academic scores and their level of education. The Undisputed reason for that denial is that she is whitewhile those favored with admission despite lesser academic qualifications were of different racial classifications (Ferrara10). I dont approve of what was done here, they should not have been choosing by race but by her merit and studies. Even though I am minority, my opinion is that its unfair to not admit someone who works twice as hard and has a better Grade Point Average (GPA). Rather than admitting someone that hardly does their work but is a minority. This demonstrates to our society that we dont have to put hard work to obtain a goal. This is the wrong message that is being sent and it might lower the level of academics in our schools in the distant future. Even though the minority are being helped in getting a better opportunity there are some individuals that cant handle the level of work. Racial preferences in admissions have proved harmful to the very minority students that are supposed to be helped (Ferrara 13). The Universities choose race over academics because they believe they are giving a helping hand but

Hernandez 1 they should account for academics because there are some students that may not be able to handle the pressure. Some students will be put with high expectations that they may not be able to meet and the outcome may be to dropout. By admitting students in this manner, the college could be leading certain students to a downfall. Or they may be helping someone to succeed and prosper. But what do I know? Im not admitting students. I dont agree with The University of Texas and there policy or way of accepting students into their ranks. An article from NBC states The University of Texas admits about three-quarters of its students by guaranteeing a spot to anyone who finishes near the top of his or her high school class. When Fisher applied, the standard was the top 10 percent of the class. For the remainder of undergraduate admissions, race is considered as one of many factors (1). The University of Texas decided to elect the students in the top 10% in their high school and the minority. The question I ask myself is why not the people in the middle? Because what if there is someone of minority but is not capable of handling the work but there is someone in the top 15% and is more than capable of accomplishing tasks. Instead of seeing minority and the top 10% admissions should also see how a person helps there community and seeing extracurricular activities. In Affirmative Action Overview, it states that States should focus on other policies or programs that encourage equal opportunity, such as setting high expectations for all students and improving their college readiness (1). They should look at activities done outside of school because it shows that the student can manage their time. It also shows great character and discipline to stay on course without distractions. These will be important assets for being in college because the expectations are higher. For example in high school I was in athletics, clubs, took AP courses and I was able to meet expectations which enabled me to believe that I can get through college. Even though I am a minority I believed I had to work hard to show that I can be just as good as anybody else. What Im trying to say is that you

Hernandez 1 need to demonstrate that you belong in college and not have a special privilege like race because at the end of the day we are taking the same courses it just depends how much effort is put in to succeed. Even though people say that affirmative action helps minority get into college, nevertheless I believe the student needs to show that he or she belongs in college by way of academics and merit. I see affirmative action in a negative perspective because of it seeing race over academics as was in the case of Abigail Fisher. Abigail had everything to succeed in the University of Texas but could not do it there because she was white. She was not allowed admission to her dream school because of her race even though she was more than qualified to attend UT. I believe that merit, education and hard work should be the qualities of acceptance to a university and not your race. Abigail Fisher exposed this situation and now its our job to overcome this racial barrier. This is all a big race, we may not know where the finish line is but well get there.

Hernandez 1 Work Cited Satrapi, Marjane. Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood. New York: Random House, 2003. Print.

Ferrara, Peter J. Amicus Brief, American Civil Right Union in Support of Petitioner (U.S. Supreme Ct. Docs 2012). TarltonGuides. Tarlton Law Library, U of Tex. School of Law, 29 May 2012. Web. 21 2013.

Williams, Pete, and Erin McClam. Supreme Court Raises Bar for Affirmative Action in College Admissions. NBC NBC News, Corp, 24 Jun 2013. Web. 22 September 2013.

Affirmative Action Overview. National Conference of State Legislatures, Jun 2013. Web. 23 September 2013.