Ethics: Affirmative Action and Action Programs Affirmative Essay

Submitted By Tammykath
Words: 610
Pages: 3

Debate 3 Affirmative Action Programs

Affirmative action is a federal program that began in 1964 as a plan to “equalize the educational, employment and contracting opportunities for minorities and women”. Since the beginning of “Affirmative Action” programs many have argued over the fairness and the unfairness of such programs. In debate 3 Carl Cohen argues that “affirmative action programs are unfair discrimination while Luke Charles Harris believes that affirmative action programs are a necessary for “basic justice.”

Carl Cohen provides us with a bunch of rhetoric in his attempt to persuade us that affirmative action programs create unfair or “reverse discrimination.” He concludes that race preference is morally wrong because it violates the principal of “equals should be treated equally.” Mr. Cohen additionally claims that race preference violates the principal of human equality and race preference gives to those who don’t deserve, and doesn’t give to those who do.” Mr. Cohen does not present the facts concerning how affirmative actions programs work or were designed to work; he chooses to insist that “AA” programs select certain minorities over qualification. This is not a true reflection of “AA” programs. Mr. Cohen does not present any facts, statistics or proof concerning his stance. His argument is strictly his opinion.

In defense of affirmative action programs Luke Charles Harris structures his argument with an introduction that states clearly what the argument is about. “Affirmative action policies should be understood as attempts to equalize opportunities for groups of people who confront ongoing forms of institutional discrimination and a lack of equal opportunity. The point being affirmative action programs were necessary. Affirmative action programs are not “raced based policies alone.” Mr. Harris points out the argument is based on false interpretations that “African Americans” are the only minorities that benefit from “AA” programs. Mr. Harris provides us with statistics and facts to support his argument. He provides us with facts such as “two-thirds of the students admitted under the affirmative action program of the Davis Medical School that was challenged…were Latino or Asian.” In his argument Mr. Harris does not claim that affirmative action policies are the complete answer but they have “enabled many talented and promising individuals to have their