All are created equal
All men and women are created equal - one of the most basic and fundamental truths laid out in the document crystalizing the arguments for independence from an abusive government. Unfortunately today, a shockingly large portion of our population--including many judges in our courts--don’t actually believe it.
Using the tools of institutions and government to mold the world into a vision of the few is not freedom
I remember a story from my mother, after dinner with a group of highly educated professionals. The conversation, which took place back in the 80s, had turned to welfare reform. My mother supported it. The woman sitting next to her leaned over in response, placing her hand on my mother’s, “Oh dear, you don’t expect them to be able to do what we do. Do you?”
The idea that those in power are superior to ordinary people and therefore ought to be able to replace our free society with an engineered version that conforms to their vision, should offend all of us. It also sounds very much like religious dogma, by the way. But too many are unable to recognize it when they see it.
Even worse, the belief that the tools and power of government and societal institutions have a role in these efforts to skew the playing field to achieve whatever one’s preferred outcome might be, is dangerous. Something about not learning history … repeating it. Whatever. No time for silly history in public schools these days.
The US Supreme Court will decide
The US Supreme Court just heard a case dealing with race-based admissions at universities. Funny thing is, the side we’re always told is racist is arguing to remove race as a qualification, while the anti-racists are arguing for the use of race. But we’re not actually operating from the same dictionary anymore.
Harvard, of all places, is apparently defending the same policies they put in place in the 1920s and 30s to exclude Jews, now claiming they ought to be upheld by the court to use against whites and Asians. Back then, after struggling for years to garner sufficient support for outright discrimination and failing to find it, the school simply moved from admissions solely on the basis of academics to something new. They started including geographic considerations and ‘character and fitness and the promise of greatest usefulness,’ in addition to legacy admissions. In no time, Harvard was able to reach their goal of significantly shrinking the Jewish population at the school. Funny how that works.
In the current case, an attorney defending UNCs policies argued, in essence, that they can be justified because outcomes are better for students at the university if the selection process is discriminatory. Clarence Thomas’ response was epic - that he’d heard the same arguments used in favor of segregation as well.
Where do we go from here?
This is an important case. It has the potential to reaffirm the belief that the individual is the ultimate sovereign and shouldn't be judged on their immutable characteristics. Or it will be one more piece of evidence that our nation has abandoned one of our most basic principles. One which, by the way, is pretty much unprecedented in the history of the world.
If we have no principles, we’re lost. If we refuse to acknowledge simple truths, this country cannot survive.